I am leaving Monday morning for a two-week trip to Seattle and Vancouver. Usually around this time of the year I pack for a warm and exotic summer vacation. Since I now live in Hong Kong and we have reached top temperatures and humidity levels here, I have to re-think my packing process. Less summer dresses, more sweaters and long pants.
Thanks to my many travels I have a routine when I pack, no matter if it is only for a few days or a few weeks or even a whole year. I have traveled and lived in a few countries that I believe I know what is necessary and what is a nice-to-have item in my suitcase. So, I have compiled my best tips.
1. Carry-on luggage for a weekend trip: If you only go away for a couple of days, don’t waste your time waiting for your baggage to arrive at the airport and only take carry-on luggage with you.
2. Pack for the purpose of your trip: Leave your trekking shoes at home if you go on a business trip or romantic getaway with your boyfriend. I have seen this so many times. People take their most non-fashionable shoes on a trip because they are comfy but would never dare to wear them at home on a stroll through town. Besides who wants to turn up in Birkenstocks in a fancy restaurant.
3. Number of outfits: Don’t just randomly pack your clothes but create outfits in advance. I usually choose three tops for a pair of pants. In the end, count all your outfits. If you have 10 different outfits for a 2 days trip, maybe you can cut some.
4. Check the weather and place: Yes, I made my lessons. Flip Flops on a 4000 m mountain is not the best choice. I always try to pack for a weather range. If temperature is forecasted at 20 °C, I pack for 15 °C to 25 °C.
5. Make a list: Lists are great, especially when you are in a hurry. Make a list with all the items that you want to take along. Divide the list into different themes e.g. carry-on luggage, clothes, shoes, personal care products, high-tech. Take the list from your last vacation and update regularly and adjust per season.
6. What to wear on the journey: Don’t forget to put ready your clothes the night before you leave. This makes it less stressful in the morning.