Even for the most excited traveller, packing your suitcase is a pain in the proverbial. That’s why we’ve combined our vast travel knowledge and our stealth packing skills to come up with twenty hacks to take the pain out of packing.
1. Always roll, never fold
2. Utilise every inch of space – tucking socks and underwear into shoes and handbags will not only make the most of every inch of your case, it’ll also help your accessories keep their shape
3. Store your shoes in plastic bags. Mixing dirty soles and clean clothes is never going to result in anything but mucky marks and astronomical laundry bills.
4. String necklaces through straws to avoid tangling
5. Fasten earrings to buttons to keep pairs together
6. Place cotton wool pads inside powder make-up compacts. This will stop breakage and avoid broken blusher throwing itself all over every other thing in your make-up bag
7. Roll belts and slip inside shirt collars to keep them stiff and save space at the same time
8. Roll jackets inside out to avoid creases
9. Pack fragile items in the centre of your case so they can be protected by the clothing around them
10. Mark your case as fragile, even if it isn’t. Baggage handlers will automatically handle your case more carefully and it will be first onto the baggage carousel at the other end
11. Luggage tags are easily pulled from the outside of your case. Always write a second tag, with name, destination address, email address and phone number, and attach it on the inside of your case
12. Take copies of your passport, bank cards (back) and travel documents. This will save you precious time and even money should you lose the originals while away
13. Invest in a round the world plug adapter, rather than one specific to your destination. This is especially true if you are travelling to more than one country and you’ll never need worry about not having the right adapter again
14. Always pack a long scarf. It will act as a pillow for the plane, keep you warm on evenings that aren’t warm enough to warrant a jacket and provide coverage on visits to sacred sites.
15. Don’t pack a guide for each destination you will visit. Instead, save space by photocopying the most interesting/relevant sections. Better still; download multiple guides direct to your mobile phone (Time Out City Guides, Trip Advisor and FourSquare are some of the best and are all FREE for iPhone and Android)
16. Always wear your heaviest clothes on the plane. It’s often cold once you’re in the air, and that heavy hoodie or cardigan will double as a pillow if you do get too warm
17. Always pack your swimwear in your hand luggage. Few remember to do this, so you’ll have the pool to yourself while everyone else waits for their cases to be delivered to the room
18. If you’re on a longer holiday, take extra coat hangers. Hotels and cruise ships often only provide around 8 per room, so you’ll be short on space for a two-week holiday. Metal hangers are the lightest and take up the least space
19. Reduce creases by hanging items in a steamy bathroom while you shower
20. Always pack a jacket. Even the Caribbean can get cold at night and it can get pretty windy in the middle of the ocean on a cruise holiday. Pack a lightweight jacket just in case – you’ll appreciate it when you get off the plane back in England too!