Type into Google space saving packing tips and you’ll be met with hundreds of tips and tricks for lightening your luggage load. Be it from a mum who’s mastered the art of packing up the kids gear, a savvy businessman that’s spent years on the road or a scientific genius that has studied how to maximise the number of objects fitted into a container, everyone has a tried and tested tip to share.
Wading through them all could take you forever, so we’ve taken the hard work out for you with this guide to the best tips:
Trying to pack in a jacket or blazer without it getting crushed and creased is a near impossible task. Save it from creases and create lots of extra space by wearing your bulkiest clothing instead of packing it.
Start with the items you care the least about, ie pajamas, leggings, socks and undershirts, and roll them as tightly as possible. Lay them in the base of your luggage, being sure to fill every space. Anything that needs careful folding can be laid on top. (Note: laying your folded clothing inside a dry cleaning bag will help to prevent creases.)
Lay your bras on top of each other and then inside one cup, lay some of your underwear. You can then fold one cup over the other, making use of what would otherwise be wasted space.
To make use of the space inside shoes and keep your shoes in shape, stuff the insides with basics such as socks, undies or shampoo bottles.
Don’t just sling it in your bag at the last minute. Carefully fold/roll your underwear to reduce space.
Rather than pack your entire makeup collection, only take the essentials that you need for daily makeup wear. This could include foundation/concealer, eye liner, mascara and lipstick. Concealer sticks are a lot smaller than most foundation tubes, so if you find the right shade then just use your concealer as a foundation for the short time that you’re away. If you need eye shadow, see tip #7 below.
Instead of packing multiple coloured eyeshadows, dip a few cotton buds in your favourite colours, then slip inside a ziplock bag.
Not only can sucking the air out of space-saving bags free up valuable space, it also helps you stay more organised. Separate your belongings before placing in the bags, or group into outfits. You can then release the air as and when you need to.
While you’re away, you won’t be needing your library bag or customer loyalty card for your local chemist. Pack a slim wallet with only what you need and free up room in your pocket or handbag.
For days when you don’t need to look your best, pack old clothes you no longer care about and leave them behind with a note saying ‘please donate’. This way you’ll have room for anything new you buy while you’re away.
Having a good understanding of the activities you’ll be doing while you’re away means that you can plan your wardrobe. Pack only what you plan for.
Dresses take up less space, and knits, wools and cottons resist wrinkles, meaning you can roll them up tightly.
Under no circumstances should you pack more than three pairs of shoes. Have one sporty pair, one dress pair, and one more if you must. Wear your bulkiest pair on the plane.
You may have a strict beauty regime, but when you’re away, it won’t harm your skin to have a few nights off. Forget the cleanser, toner and face mask and look for a combination moisturiser with built in SPF. As for shampoo, conditioner and body wash, use the products supplied by the hotel. That’s what it’s there for!
Wool, corduroy and denim are heavy materials that don’t easily wrinkle. They are also hard to stuff in as an afterthought, so get them in the suitcase early and then fill corners with lightweight items.
Avoid packing multiple packets and bottles, and consolidate tablets and pills into one handy container. Just be sure you can tell what’s what.
Packing a smart pair of shorts means you can wear them in the day with a casual singlet or dress them up with a smart blouse or shirt in the evening. Pack items that are easy to mix and match, and can quickly be dressed up or down depending on the occasion.
Packing light coloured, easily stained clothing reduces the likelihood of being able to wearing clothes a second time. Jeans and darker clothes can be multiple times, so it’s better to stick to these where possible.
Unless you plan on spending every chilly evening outdoors on your trip, your jacket is simply an item to get you in and out of the cold. Wearing the same one the whole trip won’t set tongues wagging.
Stick to one base colour palette, such as black or brown, and then choose different accessories to match. This will ensure that you can mix and match all of your clothing items.
Instead of packing the entire perfume or cologne bottle, use a handy travel bottle that offers a spray top. This will also save you money if you end up losing the bottle or dropping it.
Have a day-to-day plan written down that details what item goes with what. That way you won’t accidently wear the wrong shirt, jeopardising a future outfit.
A hair tie takes up a lot less room, and most hotel rooms have a hair dryer included. If you’re hair tends to be more unmanageable, consider getting a travel size hair straightener that will do the bare essentials.
E-books such as Kindles and Kobos are an inexpensive way to minimise the number of books you pack, and supply you with a huge library right at your fingertips.
Unless photography is a strong passion, your camera phone will work fine for a few days.
Do you have a tried and true space-saving method for your business trips?