You did it! After months of research you finally decided to take that trip you have always wanted! You have been notified 50 times at all hours of the day and night on numerous apps about flight prices to get the best one and found the perfect flight with a notification that came through at 3:17 am!  

Months pass and you’ve budgeted like a pro and told everyone how excited you are! You logged onto the site to check the baggage requirements and found out the your perfect flight is going to cost you more than you thought due to the size luggage you have. EEEEKKKK!

Don’t fret, we can help you! If you know Michelle and Keith, less is best! We always encourage our travelers to try to put it all in your carry on for a number of reasons, including paying less! We’ve put together some of our favorite tips that help us stay organized but allows us to bring everything that we need whether it is a long weekend immersion in Arizona or an international adventure to Italy!

If you are joining us on an adventure, be sure to check out your Adventure Planner Page for any specific luggage restrictions.

First thing first, let’s figure out the suitcase that your going to take. We always will try to get a carry on whether it our favorite Osprey bag or an actual roller suitcase. This comes down to a personal preference. We prefer the backpack type carry on to be hands free. 

Folding or rolling, that is the question! On most of our adventures we keep it comfy causal meaning that it’s mostly workout attire, yoga pants, tank tops, base layers, and a light weight coat. Of course there is sometimes an exception  that requires us to “dress up” a bit more (nice shirt and bottoms for a dinner). A little tip we have learned is that if you fold your clothes along the seams, smooth out any wrinkles, then roll, it helps us stay wrinkle free! In additon to avoiding 100% cotton and linen which both wrinkle easily. If you’re not sure if something you are taking is going to wrinkle, test it. Take a corner of the fabric and squeeze it in your fist for 30 seconds. If the area didn’t wrinkle or the wrinkles came out after a minute, you found a winner! We then take the rolled clothes and pack them into packing cubes. This helps keep everything organized and rolled. Use cubes to organize clothes needed for each day, dressy clothes from workout clothes, outdoor wear, etc. These are great for also keeping your dirty clothes away from your clean stuff. 

Wear the bulky stuff- Don’t waste space! If you ever see Keith and Michelle at an airport you will  almost always see them in hiking shoes, pants, thin shirt and a jacket of sorts – the bulky stuff! Don’t use your limited space for those items, it fills fast and also makes your bag heavier to carry. You would be amazed on how much space we used to waste while packing. Utilize the space inside additional packed shoes by placing small items like socks, underwear, or accessories. Use the perimeter of your suitcase for long items like belts. 

You have everything laid out for your trip. From that decide what is the bulkiest and wear that. Then take your next heaviest items and start placing those at the bottom of the suitcase or backpack. This helps to keep the weight by the wheels and avoids being top heavy in your pack. Again, this would be items such as shoes, additonal jackets or sweatshirts (items that can be a little wrinkled). Be sure to try to mix and match clothing as well to create more outfit options!! 

Nice, the big stuff is packed and now you have your lighter items! Place lighter and more delicate items on top of the heavier ones. This can help prevent wrinkles and keep your clothes in good condition. Use your cubes to divide your suitcase into quarters. From the top, your lightest items. Sundresses, nice shirts, tank tops, etc. Then leave a space for your tolitery bag (more on that next), followed by your cube of additonal clothes, and finally your shoes (remember to stuff them with items too!)

    For the most part, men have this next part easy. For ladies, this is the ulimate game of Tetris- the TOILETRIES!!! Use leak-proof, TSA-  travel-sized containers for liquids and toiletries. Place items in Ziploc baggies for added leak protection! Some toiletry bags offer clips that can hook onto a door so you can leave all your items in the bag and free up limited space in bathrooms. If you’re taking jewelery you can lay the items on tissue paper and and fold after each item until they are all rolled up. Then place that in to ziploc as well. This helps items from getting tangled or broken. 

      Many suitcases have outer pockets and travel chargers connectors. These pockets are great for items that you may need to reach easily during flight. They are also great to store an extra outfit so you do not need to rifle through your nicely organized bag! As mentioned, some manufactures also include an easy to reach external charging port. Yes, you do need to connect this to an external charger, however you can avoid the digging if you have this! 

      Of course with your trip you will want to bring home a few souveniers so make sure you leave a little space for these items!

      Remember that efficient packing varies based on your personal preferences and the type of trip you’re taking. The goal is to make the most of the available space while keeping your belongings organized and protected.

      Happy travels!!