As beautiful as the feeling of going on a trip is, many are anxious to prepare for it. One of the biggest concerns is how everything will fit in one suitcase. Over the years, we have learnt from our mistakes. One of them is how to pack in such a way that everything fits in a one hand luggage. (unless the trip is for more than a week).
Having perfected my method (Aliki) in packing my suitcase and feeling proud of it, I met Stratos, with the infinite gadgets – accessories – cables. I had to start from the beginning, taking care to place his things carefully, to avoid any damage during the move.
Read about the role of action cameras while traveling in our article here.
However, after some traveling and a lot of research, we created the system of 5 steps, which we now follow in each of our trips faithfully. By sharing this system with you, we hope to help you pack without making it look scary.
Step 1: The List
We have all had the bad fortune of taking extra clothes, shoes or various other unnecessary things with us. The rationale was that we might need them, and we ended up not even taking them out of the suitcase. The mentality “better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it”, has led us 9 out of 10 times to the wrong estimation of the weight of the suitcase.
So we make a list of everything we will need for our trip. This list helps us to put in the suitcase only the things we will need. We also remind you that in case you need something and you have not taken it with you, as we constantly forget shampoo, hair brush and sunscreen, you can buy it at your destination.
Step 2: The outfits
In this step, we match the clothes we plan to wear every day of the trip. A prerequisite for this step is to have organized what you will do on the days you will be on your trip. So you can think of which outfit best suits each attraction-activity.
Once we think about what to wear, we lay out the outfits in a place that will be visible, such as on a bed. This way you can see if the clothes fit, choose some accessories and shoes.
This step helps a lot in not taking extra clothes and shoes with you. For the shoes, that are the most “difficult” in the packaging, we choose only the essentials and the ones that we can combine with many outfits.
Step 3: Rolling and not folding
A very useful technique is to roll the clothes instead of folding. This way, the clothes take up much less space in the suitcase, after you have placed them in order. It is also easier to see your clothes when they are rolled next to each other than when they are simply folded into stacks.
However, this method is not recommended for the most delicate fabrics, i.e. those that are easily crumpled. We fold these clothes and place them on top of the other clothes we have rolled.
Step 4: Tetris Method
Classic and favourite method. Where there is free space in the suitcase, we cram things. More specifically, between the clothes and the suitcase lining, there are gaps. There are also gaps between the clothes, and these points are suitable for putting the toiletry bag and the hair dryer. In this step you manage to take advantage of the gaps of the suitcase, you do not stack them all in one side, and so the suitcase closes much more easily.
Step 5: Fragile Objects
The fragile objects that we don’t want to break, are the ones that we must pay more attention to. The convenient location is in the center of the suitcase. Avoiding the suitcase walls reduces the chances of them being broken by a blow to the suitcase. Wrap them inside a thick garment, such as a sweater, to protect them.
So we use the above steps before each trip and they have helped us to pack our suitcase efficiently. Although we have found this system effective, we are open to reading your tips in the comments, and the ways they have helped you pack your suitcase.