A Guide For Stress Free Packing


The summer holiday season has arrived filling us with excitement and anticipation! What can be more enjoyable than the thought of whiling away the hours basked in warm sunshine, kicking back and relaxing, sightseeing and being away from it all? Well, the thought of packing! Nothing can zap away enthusiasm for the main holiday of the year quicker than that I find. It's not so bad if you've only got your own to do but if you're packing for a family then herald major stress alert. So what's the answer to this perennial problem? Planning and preparation (unless of course you thrive on unbridled chaos).

I once say a feature on breakfast tv which suggested arriving at the airport with an empty suitcase and subsequently buying your entire holiday wardrobe there and then. Apparently this would cancel out the need for packing. I tend to find that once you've checked in with the airline you can then relax and unwind be it with a celebratory coffee, drink, meal or leisurely saunter around the shops. Imagine having to rush around the somewhat limited choice of retail outlets trying to find your size in swimwear, sandals, dresses etc. The concept behind this unorthodox approach was to probably encourage us all to travel lighter whilst making sure we have the key items which are essential to a successful holiday wardrobe.

So let's get started. Of course, it's easier for a female to pack only for herself but you can roll out the general principles to other members of the family. Remember unless you own the ultra light suitcases now available on the market which weigh next to nothing you might be contending with a baggage allowance of between 15-20kg so coupled with the existing weight of the suitcase bear this in mind whilst you select what's going in.

If your holiday is beach/pool scene based then most of the day will be spent in swimwear. For two weeks up to five pieces of swimwear is ideal. These are the lightest things after all. Then cover ups such as shorts, camisole tops/vests, sundresses, sarongs etc. Try to select a variety of shorts- denim, silky, khaki. Lighter, flimsier materials are more suitable for hotter climates, they hardly weigh anything and by packing separates you can mix and match creating an array of different outfits. For evenings, a jumpsuit, dress, skirt or light weight silky trousers can all work well and can be accessorized to look different each time.

Don't take too many shoes! They weigh down the case and you never end up wearing them all. If you're intending to take part in sporting activites such as tennis you'll need trainers so it's best to travel in them as they're bulky. Also it's safer for your feet in the airport . It's going to be hot when you arrive at your destination so pack flip flops in your hand luggage so on route to the hotel you can change if necessary (I like Havaianas). Include one pair of heeled/wedged sandals of your choice which will elongate legs in the evening (Two max if you really can't decide) and a pair of flat comfortable sandals such as Birenstocks.

Remeber that tolietries weigh down cases like nothing else. Although many establishements provide toiletries in your room upon arrival they may not be replenished during your stay and they may not be to your taste. Decant into travel bottles (one of the most boring tasks ever) or buy travel size toiletries (quicker but more expensive option).

Hopefully my ideas might be of help to you. I'll certainly be practising what I preach. Just got to book that holiday now. Bon voyage!

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