How to pack everything into one suitcase

How to pack everything into one suitcase

One of the biggest headaches when preparing for a trip begins when you’re not even out the door yet. Packing a bag is such a hassle especially when you’re trying to fit so many things in a luggage that looks like it won’t fit everything.

You think of so many creative things just to make everything fit – including stepping on the things inside your luggage. Some people might say “why not use another bag?” 

It’s the obvious solution, indeed. But having to carry more than one bag on a trip is a big hassle in and of itself. It is much more convenient if you can just carry one bag.

1. Sit down and plan your trip

Take a deep breath. Now think about your trip. Where will you stay? What’s your itinerary? How long will you be on the trip? Also, is the trip for business or for pleasure? One great tip: write down your itinerary and in the next column, what you would wear.

This will let you avoid overpacking for possible scenarios that, realistically, you’d never have time to do. You can also see which clothing items you can reuse, and just have your laundry done at the hotel.

2. Look at your carry on bag

If you are getting a new carry on bag, go to the internet first and check on the size limitations for carry on bags when you board a plane. The exact specifications of how large a bag should be to be considered a carry on is available online.

Remember that a bag that does not meet the requirements will be required to be checked in. Try to get a bag that has a waterproof lining to ensure that everything stays dry whatever the weather is in the place you’re traveling to.

3. Make a list and cut it down

Clothes is just part of the things you need to pack. Sit down and make a list of the things you need to bring. When you’ve finished listing everything down. Look at the list again and try to cut it in half — yes, half! Think about what you absolutely must bring and those that are not really required. Some of the absolute necessities when you travel include underwear and prescription medicine.

You won’t need to bring toiletries (liquids aren’t allowed in carry on bags and you can buy these anywhere, plus hotels often supply these to guests). And you’ll soon realize that you can skip the book or load an e-book into your iPad, or leave the heavy business documents and just email yourself a soft copy to print when you reach your destination.

4. Pack in order

A good way of maximizing space in your luggage is by packing things in order. Pack the clothes first because they should be at the bottom. Put the medicines in the side pockets so it is easily accessible. Electronic devices should be put in the middle so it can benefit from the cushioning provided by the clothes. A crucial reminder is not to put your travel documents like your passport and your valuables in the carry on bag. Make sure that it is always with you to make sure it won’t get lost, misplaced or stolen.

James Gray has a life-long interest in politics, travel, the environment, and global affairs. He works in IT but his heart truly beats for the written word.