Packing for a Trip: How to Pack Your Suit Case

Louise Roy

If you’re traveling for business for a few nights or taking a two-week vacation, the last thing you want is to be bogged down with extra suitcases and bags to check and worry about. Fortunately, just a bit of pre-trip planning with the right travel packing techniques can get your whole trip’s gear into a standard carry-on most of the time.

While there are many different styles of suitcases and just as many ways to pack them, certain tips and tricks can help you minimize wrinkling and creasing, as well as ensuring maximum use of space in a travel bag that fits nicely and neatly into an overhead compartment.

It sounds obvious, but before you even start packing for a trip, think about what your really need. Over-packing for the time you’re about to spend can quickly get out of control and turn your free carry-on into a $25 to $50 checked bag.

Certainly, business meeting and formal event attire may require garment bags. But for day-to-day activity, the key is to minimize your wardrobe to a week’s worth of travel wear. Think practically. One great idea is to wear the same outfit on the flight back as you did on the flight out, which will save you two days worth of clothing. In addition, your hotel or rental will surely have laundry amenities, so you can always run a load if you’re in a pinch. With the extra space you’ll have, you can even grab a souvenir shirt at your destination if you find you’ve under-packed an item or two.

Depending on how formally you’ll need to dress and type of weather expected at your destination, you can adapt your version of a packing list to these necessities:

Undergarments: You’ll want to pack a clean pair of socks, undershirts, and underwear for everyday.

Shirts or dresses: two fewer than the total number of days in the trip.

Pants/shorts: a pair for every other day.

Shoes: One or two casual and one formal pair.

Toiletries: If you are carrying on make sure you have everything in travel-size bottles sealed in zip-lock bags according to TSA regulations.

Once you have your week’s clothing set aside, you can open up your bag and get going.

For your first layer, start with your shoes. Fill your shoes with the socks you were packing; this will prevent your shoes from getting crushed and it will save space. Next neatly pack your undergarments and toiletries to fill the bottom layer of your bag.

For your second layer, tightly pack a layer of bulkier rolled items such as jeans, dress pants and sweaters. You’ll save space by rolling these articles of clothing and by tightly packing your items you can be sure the items will not unroll during your trip. Roll up your shorts, and place them in the spaces between your pants and shoes. If you have any fragile items, pack them on top of the heavy-roll layer for added protection.

The next layer should consist of lighter rolled items like t-shirts and undergarments, also tightly packed. On top of that, stack neatly folded items like button-down shirts, which should be pressed down tightly. This will prevent most wrinkles and will give you easy access to unfold and hang them once you arrive. You can also place these items in a dry cleaner bag to help prevent wrinkling.

A good idea is to pack a garbage bag or a compressor bag to separate your dirty clothes; compressor bags will reduce their content’s volume by up to 80 percent. As mentioned, you can always leave your destination with the same clothes you’ve arrived in, which will have saved you much needed room for all the souvenirs you acquired on your trip!

So there you have it — how to pack your suitcase efficiently for a trip! Why not put your packing techniques to the test by booking a stay in one of beautiful furnished apartments rentals in Montreal today?