Planning a vacation is exciting and thrilling but can also be stressful. There are so many details to think about and arrangements to make. One thing that many people struggle with, however, is how to pack the right amount of clothing while still keeping the weight down. Many travelers find themselves in this dilemma because they want to pack as little as possible while still having enough clothing options for the duration of their trip. Read on for five tips for packing a lighter suitcase.
1. Do Your Research
Before you do anything else, you should do your homework. The easiest way to pack lighter is to research the weather and climate of your destination in advance. This way, you know exactly how many shirts, pants, and shoes you’ll need to bring along. For example, if you’re going to a tropical paradise, you’ll want to pack very lightly. Tropical climates are warm and humid year-round so you won’t need heavy winter clothes. Tropical destinations are also great for short trips, so don’t worry about bringing enough warm clothes for an extended stay; you’ll only have to pack enough for a short vacation. If you’re heading somewhere with cold or unpredictable weather, you’ll want to pack warmer clothing.
2. Make Thoughtful Clothing And Footwear Choices
Once you’ve researched the weather, you’ll want to carefully choose the clothing and footwear you bring on your trip. Pack a combination of lightweight, breathable clothing and sturdy, weather-resistant jackets and footwear. You can also choose to pack multi-use items that can be used for different occasions. For example, a lightweight button-down shirt can be worn for everyday wear, but it can also be worn with a tie for a more formal occasion. A sturdy pair of waterproof boots can be worn when exploring new places and sightseeing. A great way to ensure you only bring the clothing and footwear you need is to plan an outfit for every day of your trip. This will ensure that you don’t overpack and carry only the essentials.
3. Roll Your Clothes, Not Fold Them
Rolling your clothes instead of folding them will help you pack much lighter, especially when talking about bulky items like sweaters and jackets. Rolling clothes takes up far less space than folding, so you’ll be able to fit more items in your luggage, which means you’ll need fewer pieces of clothing and more irregular shoes. Rolling your clothes makes finding what you’re looking for easier since everything will be organized in easy-to-access rolls. You can roll shirts, pants, sweaters, and even socks! If you’re unsure how to roll clothing properly, tons of online tutorials can show you how. Another advantage of rolling your clothes is that it makes them easier to pack. If your luggage doesn’t have built-in compression straps, you can use simple rubber bands to secure your rolled items together.
4. Substitute Lighter Options
Certain clothing options are heavier than others. This includes the fabrics and materials used to make your clothes and accessories like ties, belts, and scarves. If you’re having trouble keeping your luggage light, try swapping heavier items for lighter ones. For example, silk ties are much lighter than wool ties. They’re also more modern and stylish, so they’re great if you’re visiting somewhere with a more casual dress code. You can also consider women’s sundresses. A dress is only one piece of clothing, so it is lighter than other clothes. You can also swap heavier accessories like belts, watches, and handbags for lighter ones. For example, you can pack a simple sandal or flip-flop instead of a heavy pair of shoes like oxfords or wingtips.
5. Check Your Airline’s Baggage Allowance
Some airlines allow you to bring a certain amount of checked luggage for free, but other airlines charge for every bit of luggage you check. It’s best to find out how much luggage you can bring before packing so you don’t have to worry about exceeding the limit. If possible, keep your total weight below 50 pounds per bag. It’s also important to check if your destination has special regulations regarding what you can bring on the plane. Many countries have strict rules regarding what can and cannot be brought in, so do your research before you arrive.
Packing lighter for your next vacation is easier than it sounds. Start by doing your homework, making thoughtful clothing and footwear choices, rolling your clothes instead of folding them, and substituting lighter options where possible. Once you’ve packed everything up, use compression bags and packing cubes wherever possible.