Packing tips for travelling light

by possandruby

Packing for some is a daunting aspect of travel. It becomes a juggling act between the simple essentials and just in case items. After years of travel we have come up with some handy packing tips. These tips could be applied and adapted to almost every travel scenario and are really useful tips and tricks that can save you time, money and give you valuable space to bring home treasures from your adventures.

1. Avoid the stash and dash

Last minute packing can be disasterous, you can forget important things, over pack and be ill prepared for pre-planned activities.  Whilst the idea of carry on only luggage is great the reality of this type of packing doesn’t always work especially if you are planning activities that require a specific type of gear, going to a cold or wet climate or going to an event such as a wedding where you may need fancy clothes. It’s a nice idea to think that you will just buy things when you get there but it’s not always that easy – it can be costly and time consuming. Plan your packing just like you plan your trip, the more organised you are the better experience you will have!

2. Reusable ziplock bags

I think these are a vital little packing essential.  I take a selection of empty ones in a range of sizes which are perfect for holding small purchases like jewellery and lollies so they don’t get lost in your luggage.  They are also great for storing wet swimsuits between locations.  I have actually packed a formal dress for an overseas wedding in an A4 reusable ziplock bag extracted the air and when unpacked it didn’t even need to be ironed!  The bags are handy for keeping mementos such as tickets, receipts, and cards together. They have also saved all my toiletries from the soggy scourge of a leaking shampoo bottle, simply bag it up, and no more spills. I have also used them to protect my phone in heavy rain or sandy, dusty locations simply lock it up and you can still tap the screen through the bag! The uses are endless and having a few on hand is a must.

3. A humble pen

It seems simple but you will use this little gem to complete a customs form of the plane or to sign in at a hotel. Useful for writing down details, addresses, phone numbers and booking confirmation numbers, marking up maps, and more – you won’t be sorry you popped one in.

4. The fabric multi-tool ‘The Sarong’

This may be more relevant for the ladies but I have found a sarong or large cotton scarf is a particularly useful item especially in warmer locations.  I have used it as a towel, pillow, dress, picnic rug, skirt, shawl, headscarf, and even a bag by simply tying the corners together. It can also be handy to use as a blanket on cooler evenings or to protect from the hot sun. Choose a block colour or simple pattern it is means you can get away with it for more uses.

5. Sample size me

Head to your favourite beauty product counter or store and see if they have sample or travel sizes, some stores sell them others may even give them away.  These are fantastic for short trips as you can take just enough.  Most come in reusable packaging that can be refilled or recycled at the end of the trip. No more large toiletries taking up precious space!

6. Packing tools

There are some amazing packing tools and accessories out there Mika Creations Wet Bag is ideal for damp bathers and a small towel and can make the last few hours at the pool before heading to the airport more appealing as the wet geared can be stored. I leave my swimsuit in there dry so it is easy to locate and throw in my day pack for a day at the beach or swim in a waterfall. The other accessory that I can’t live without is the Klipsta Hat clip. As an avid hat wearer, this hat clip allows you to stay hands free and keep your hat connected. The clip has a strong magnet and flexible design to attach to a handbag or backpack.

A commonly shared mantra – pack what you think you will need and then half it – or at least remove a quarter is so true! There have been so many trips where I think ‘oh just one more pair of jeans or t-shirt or summer dress and then on the trip, I have had laundry available or stuck to my favourites and not worn the ‘extras’ I thought I needed. Don’t do it!  I promise you will regret it, stick with your initial minimalist kit and you will have more than enough. Here is a basic packing list that can help you get started. 

It has taken me years of travelling to get the right bag type, packing timeline, and ratio of underwear to outerwear but now I am a packing machine and happily take off on most international trips with around ten kilograms of luggage.

What are your top packing tips?  Share your tips and comments below or on Facebook or Instagram @possandruby

You may also like

1 comment

Natalie Town August 18, 2022 - 12:00 pm

My top tip, after learning the hard way, is to pack a couple of essentials in your hand luggage in case your main luggage goes AWOL enroute, a serious possibility in these current times. If you’re heading to a sunny destination make sure your keep your togs close at hand, they may be hard to find in certain destinations and then your can relax by the pool or on the beach while your baggage hopefully catches up.


Leave a Comment