Top Tips for Packing for Airline Travel

Packing efficiently for air travel can make your whole journey go easier. You can take more, clothes will wrinkle less, and dressing will be less of a headache, especially if you are living from your suitcase. 

Good packing is all about good planning. There are several things to take into consideration when you are traveling. Here are some great tips for getting your journey off to the right start by packing well. 

1) Make a packing list.

Before you even open that suitcase, make your packing list. Grab a pad of paper and a pen and start writing down what you will need, checking off items as they are packed. This list will let you know the quantity of what you are taking, and keep you from over-packing. Many phones have a list application where you can store your packing list, check off items as completed, and resurrect as a perpetual packing list for future journeys. This perpetual packing list is especially helpful for those little recurring items that are easy to forget, such as prescription medicines or charger cords. 

2) When making your list, consider the destination.

It may seem really basic, but where you are going and for how long can make a big difference in how and what you pack. Be sure to check weather at your destination for all the days of your travel. Take into account how many days will you be away and if going for business or personal travel or both. For longer trips, choose items that can do double outfit duty.

3) Choose the best bag for the trip. 

The type of suitcase is critical, because no matter how luxurious the travel is, at some point you will be toting it. A suitcase with wheels will save you time and your back. Soft-sided luggage stores more easily, and hard-sided luggage is more protective of your items. If you are planning a journey where you expect to bring back more than you take, pack a soft bag into your regular luggage. If you are taking suits, a garment bag or a suitcase created specially to accommodate suits is the best choice. With so many ingenious and affordable bags on the market, make the time to check them out and find the best one for you. 

4) Wear your biggest items on board.

From boots to coats, if you can wear these heavier items on board, you will allow more packing room and avoid the dreaded over-limit fees and hurried repacking in the check-in line. For instance, pairing a blazer or sports coat with boots or dress shoes and jeans is a comfortable travel outfit that keeps the jacket unwrinkled and heavy footwear out of the suitcase. Carry that winter coat on board, even if you are starting out in warm weather. It can double as a blanket in chilly airline cabins. 

5) Invest in a luggage scale

A simple scale that hooks onto your bag and measures its weight will be invaluable, especially if you are trying to pack as much into your suitcase as possible without paying excess baggage fees. Note: Always check the weight limits and fees of your airline, as they vary.

6) Choose your weapon wisely when packing.

Opinions vary widely on the best way to pack, and a quick look online will provide you with dozens of ways to pack your bags. Common methods include folding, bundling, rolling, or a combination of all three. Folding, just as you would fold laundry, is easy to do and can keep wrinkles somewhat at bay, but isn’t as space-efficient. Bundling, where you wrap larger, wrinkle-prone items (pants, shirts) around items less likely to wrinkle (socks and underwear), is best for keeping clothing from getting rumpled. Rolling items individually in the same manner you would roll a towel is great for conserving space and packing knit items such as T-shirts. Some favorite tips include packing your shoes around the perimeter of the bag, with heels against the bag and socks and underwear tucked inside.  

7) If you are checking your luggage, always take a carry-on.

Pack an outfit and your toiletries in your carry-on, plus some extra undergarments and socks. If your luggage gets lost, you won’t have to worry about wearing the same clothes to a business meeting or shopping for new resort duds. Hot tip: Always throw in bathing suit in your carry-on, even if you aren’t on vacation, and remember that knits are your best friend when travelling—wrinkle-resistant and space-conserving!

8) Take along a pre-packed convenient toiletry kit in your carry-on. 

Now that you have your bags filled, take the headache out of packing your toiletry items, by putting a pre-packed convenience kit in your carry-on, such as the Women's and Men's Premium Travel Kits from Convenience Kits International. Kits are filled with the best toiletry necessities from premium brands and are completely TSA compliant. No more worrying about getting the right size bottles and containers. And if your bags get lost, you can rest easy that your toiletries (and a change of clothes) are with you. Sit back and enjoy the journey.