It's finally the most magical time of the year! I've been waiting for months and finally, in three day, I will officially be on a plane headed to Paris, France.
For anyone who has remotely traveled anywhere, you know how stressful it can be. There are so many questions that need to be answered. How many pairs of shoes do I need? What type of clothing should I bring that will be weather-appropriate? Is my checked luggage going to be over the weight limit? For my other fellow travelers, whether you're studying abroad or traveling for a vacation, here are 5 helpful hints to ensure an easier and less stressful departure.
1. Plan outfits for each day
I know what you're thinking, "how do I know what I'll be doing on day three?" Hear me out, if you have an agenda of activities, excursions, or whatever else is on your bucket list, plan accordingly. If you have a couple of free-days, know that you'll need at least two outfits for leisure. Maybe you're planning on a nice dinner one night, that's one less outfit you'll have to worry about.
2. Make a checklist
When I pack for a trip, one thing I find extremely helpful is making a checklist. This isn't a checklist for everything to pack, but more so focused on your typical daily items used each day. You know, things such as your toothbrush, phone chargers, hairspray, makeup bag, or maybe even your favorite lipstick; Items that can't be packed days in advance which are used every day. This is why a checklist will ensure you don't forget about any of those items and eliminate some stress.
3. Weigh your bag with yourself
This is for everyone traveling on a plane. Check luggage can be a miracle for over-packers such as myself. The negatives? Checked luggage's weight limit. If you're aware of how much your bag is allowed weigh, the easier this will be. To avoid paying extra fees or stuffing luggage in your purse last minute, weigh yourself with your luggage at home. First, step on the scale alone and note your body weight. After that, hold your luggage on the scale with you once more, subtract your weight, and now you know how much your bag weighs! Simple and saves time.
4. Be smart with how you utilize your luggage
This may not apply to everyone, but for an over-packer like myself I've used this hack plenty of times. Luckily, checked luggage isn't the only bag travelers have to work with; there are carry-on bags and personal bags to utilize to maximize the amount of items you take with you. I like to use my carry-on luggage for shoes I want on my trip and extra, last minute miselanious items. This will give your checked luggage more room for clothing, accessories, toiletries, etc. If you want to bring a personal bag on the plane, you can put your chargers, hair brush, face wipes, hoodie, etc. I always found that when I place my shoes in a separate bag it allows more room for other essential items.
5. Be clever and plan for any weather situation
I discovered that packing outfits that can be used for different weather situations is super helpful. For example, my rain jacket is also wind-resistant so chances are I can wear the jacket rain or shine. I also like packing shoes that are comfy to walk in, but also would look nice with a casual outfit. This way you're packing less and combating multiple scenarios at once!