Whether you’re flying locally or overseas, those new to air travel invariably make the mistake of trying to bring too much, so it’s important to learn how to organize and pack clothes and accessories properly to avoid exceeding the baggage weight limits imposed by airlines.
This is especially the case if you are traveling with a budget airline which have lower weight limits than most full service airlines, and are much stricter in monitoring those limits.
A Beginner’s Guide on How to Pack Light
Check Your Luggage Capacity
Before you start packing your clothes and other necessities, it’s important to ensure that you have the right bag for your travels. Many older bags are made of materials that are heavy to make them sturdy, so you might want to consider upgrading to a lighter bag utilising one of the newer and lighter luggage materials.
That will enable you to pack more gear into the bag without exceeding the overall weight limits. You can check out the exact weight of empty bags on sites like Luggage Direct which list detailed specifications of a wide array of travel bags to suit every need. Make sure that you invest in a good quality bag that should last you many trips.
Distribute the weight
Do not pack all your heavy items on one side and then the lightest on another. You should instead distribute the weight of the items you’re bringing by packing the heaviest items on the bottom, lighter ones in the middle and the lightest on top. This kind of weight distribution technique will make it easier to handle the bag.
Organize The Things You’ll be Packing
In order to pack more effectively, lay out all the things you will be bringing for the trip on a bed so you can see what needs to be packed first. You might also want to make a checklist so you won’t miss out an important item.
Pack your toiletries in thick plastic bags with zip sealers if you’re taking items that might potentially spill. You might also want to do the same for electronic items as a second line of defence in case something does leak. For larger electronic gadgets, store them inside waterproof shell cases wherever possible.
Bring Only Essential Clothes and Shoes
If you’re going away for more than a week, you might want to reevaluate the clothes that you will be taking on the trip. Stick to what you only absolutely need to bring because you should be focused more on making your trip hassle-free instead of making sure you look fashionable in every photo.
Instead of packing bulky clothes which take up a lot of space, you should consider layering lighter ones which can also give you more flexibility in terms of fashion and use.
If you’re going somewhere that does not require winter boots or hiking shoes, try to bring just one or two pairs of shoes. Let’s face it, shoes take up a lot of space and you don’t really need different footwear to match every outfit when you’re out travelling.
Before putting your clothes and shoes in the luggage, roll them individually instead of stacking them. This will save you a lot of luggage space and will make your clothes less wrinkly.
Take Advantage of Your Carry On
You can put some travel necessities inside your carry on provided that it doesn’t exceed the weight limit and everything in the bag is allowed inside the plane. You can pack your camera, chargers, a set of changing clothes and even shoes if they take up too much space in your check-in luggage.
If you can’t leave behind a bulky coat or a winter jacket to take on the trip, just wear it on the plane. Sometimes bringing bulky clothes for a trip is unavoidable, so when this situation arises, wear or hand-carry the garments that take up the most space in your suitcase. You can store them in the overhead locker on top of your carry-on bag.
Leave Behind Toiletries
For trips that only lasts a couple of days, you might want to skip packing your 10-step skin regimen products, your electric toothbrush and electric shaver, and the different kinds of perfumes that you put on depending on your mood. Most hotels provide basic toiletries that should last you for at least a few days and you can always purchase anything else you need in small packs at a local store.
Bring Along Compressor Bags
When it’s time to head back home, compressor bags become useful in separating dirty clothes from unworn ones. It’s also a good way to free up some space so you can include some small souvenir items from your trip. Plus, these bags can be reused and are relatively cheap.
Packing can be challenging for first-time travellers but by following these steps, you’ll soon get the hang of how to travel light.