How to Pack for a Trip

Travel Clothing Expert’s Recommendations

  • Start with fabrics that resist wrinkling and dry quickly mainly synthetics such as polyester and plan on mixing and matching.
  • Make sure every top you take goes with every bottom. Chose neutral colours for below the waist.
  • Khaki is best. Navy blue or black also work, and hide the dirt.
  • Add several tops in brighter colours or patterns.

“It’s where you get all your life,” says Barbara Rodriguez,, head of design and production for Tilley Endurables. No one will notice if you’ve worn the same black slacks three days in a row, they’ll pay attention to the top.

Prepare for the Unexpected Weather

For the tropics, take something warmer for a windy, overcast day, or to don when you’ve stayed in the pool too long. If it’s supposed to be cool, throw in something light in case it turns hot.

Packing List for Spring/Fall Weather

For Men:

  • Three pairs of socks.
  • Three pairs of underwear.
  • Two long-sleeved shirts for daytime; two for evening.
  • Two T-shirts (one often doubles as a pyjama top).
  • Two pairs of slacks, casual for daytime, a navy pair for evening. (A second pair of daytime slacks for a trip of two weeks or more).
  • Light hikers for daytime, black dress shoes for evening.
  • One black belt.
  • One item for extra warmth (usually a cotton turtleneck), and a short-sleeved shirt in case it’s hotter than expected.
  • One waterproof windbreaker, either worn to the airport or rolled up and packed.
  • One broad-brimmed hat or baseball cap, depending on how much sun protection I think I’ll need.
  • A plastic clothes hanger, for wash-‘n-wear stuff.

For Women:

  • Four or five tops.
  • Jeans, daytime slacks, dress pants and a kilt.
  • St least one cotton turtleneck.
  • One long-sleeved white blouse.
  • One sweater.
  • One large white T-shirt.
  • Socks, pantyhose and knee-highs.
  • Undergarments.
  • Pyjamas.
  • A dress jacket
  • Raincoat or rain jacket.
  • One pair of runners, one pair of dress shoes.

These lists include what you will wear on the plane. The rest will fit into one carry-on bag each.

For Cruise or other Jacket-and-Tie Occasion

Put your dressier clothes into one suitcase and check it.

Plastic Bags

There are several methods of packing some involving plastic bags and tissue paper and one that advocates wrapping everything into a huge bundle. These appear to be aimed at reducing wrinkling, something you needn’t worry about if most of what you take is microfibre.

Lay each matching top and bottom out flat and folds them into layers.  These are then stacked in the carryon bag.  You can easily reach down one side, find the appropriate “package” and remove it.

No Gaps

Make sure every space in the bag is filled. Stuff socks and underwear inside shoes. Fill an empty corner with a rolled-up T-shirt. Put pyjamas in last.

Remove Old Airline Tags

Finally, remove old airline tags from luggage you intend to check to avoid confusion at the airport.

Bon voyage!

Credit: Doug English

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Published in: on March 7, 2011 at 5:12 am  Comments (1)  

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  1. […] How to Pack for a Trip « Black Belt Review Two long-sleeved shirts for daytime; two for evening. Two T-shirts (one often doubles as a pyjama top). Two pairs of slacks, casual for daytime, a navy pair for evening. (A second pair of daytime slacks for a trip of two weeks or more). […]


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