BlogHer ’12 is nearing! Are you ready??
As a former flight attendant, I’ve got a few inside secrets on how to pack. Back in the day, my largest allowed bag (a.k.a “crew kit”) on any given flight was only marginally larger than a thimble. No matter if we were scheduled for a short overnight turn, or a 10-day International trip, we were allowed the same single crew kit.
In a word, we learned to pack light.
Many of today’s frequent flyers avoid checking a bag at all costs, literally, and opt for carry-on bags, which certainly limits the size of the suitcase. (Rest assured, the suitcases used as carry-on’s today are much larger than my standard issued crew-kit from the late 80′s!)
Former Flight Attendant-Turned-Blogger Keys to Packing for a Trip:
1. Begin with the End in Mind – OR – Start from the Bottom Up
It all begins with the SHOES. Since they take up the majority of the real estate in a suitcase, they get first dibs. This is most important when using super-small suitcases. Trust me, I know from experience.
Of course, try to pick shoes that will allow “double-duty” from day to evening or a more versatile option.
2. Use travel-sized everything, when possible.
I’m not always a fan of travel-sized toiletries, and when space allows, and I know I will be checking my suitcase (case in point: BlogHer’11) I pack my full-sized lotion – an item I simply cannot live without – in a gallon zip-lock bag. Every single toiletry item with the potential to spill, explode, leak or otherwise wreck havoc inside the suitcase, gets sealed in a ziplock bag.
Trust me, I’ve learned the hard way on this one.
3. Travel Space Bags.
Yep. You heard correctly. Travel Space Bags.
A few trips ago, while visiting my family in California, I “over-shopped” and discovered I had too much stuff and was frantic on how I was going to get my goods home to Montana.
My mom had a clever idea – and I’ve used it ever since. Travel space bags, the kind you roll up (it sucks the air out from the other side of the bag.) No vacuum necessary. I must admit, I was skeptical at first, but it works like a charm! And I got all my “extra” items in my suitcase with no problem!
Since I always roll all my clothing items, and tend to travel with non-wrinkle items, by using a space saver bags, I practically double the usable suitcase space. In fact, on our recent Florida vacation, Sexy Hubby, The Junior and I all “shared” one large suitcase.
No, I’m not kidding.
Granted, we had a few “over-flow” items (flippers, fishing reels, extra shoes) that needed to fit into backpacks or carry-on’s but three people packed for 7 days and used one large suitcase.
And all under 50 pounds (just barely!)
Pile – Before
Pile – After
Sample daytime outfit
Sample evening outfit
Sample party dress
Sample crazy party shoes. Sparklecorn anyone??