When packing for extended trips, it can be difficult to decide on what to take and what to leave behind. Often, in the confusion, important things can be forgotten.
So here are some helpful tips on how to simplify the packing process and make sure you have everything you need;
Consider investing in packing cubes.
These cubes come in various sizes and allow you to keep your luggage organized while also saving space. You'll never struggle to find anything in the bottomless pit of a bag again! Have a look at these available on Amazon.
Think about the weather at your destination.
It's no use packing summer dresses and sandals when visiting Canada in Winter and you certainly wont need your long johns during an Australian Summer. So take a minute to check what sort of weather your destination has been experiencing and pack accordingly. It is always a good idea to include a sweater or summer dress for those random days where the weather doesn't act appropriately though. But just keep the Just in case pile to a minimum.
Don't pack non essentials.
You don't need to pack your entire jewelry/watch/shoe/makeup collection for your trip. Keep it simple with a few basics that can be used for multiple outfits.
Buy a soap bar instead of a big bulky bottle of shower gel or invest in small travel size bottles that can be refilled as needed. Shampoo bars are also a popular thing now as they save space, are good for the environment and are healthier for your hair. Have a look at these options.
Create a capsule wardrobe.
A capsule wardrobe is a minimalist approach to clothing. The idea is to have a small amount of clothes that can be interchangeable and used in various ways, thus maximizing the amount of outfits you can create. Basics like denim jeans, neutral colored shirts and black shoes are popular options in a basic capsule. When packing clothes, think about what you have that will work with the item, if you can only use it with one look, consider leaving it behind.
Leave sentimental items behind.
We all love our families and pets but we don't need to carry huge photo frames of them around. Your favorite teddy bear from school is also a no-go. If you're the artistic type, consider creating a mini scrapbook for family photos that you can carry easily.
We all love a good book but...
There is nothing better than reading a good book but they can be a bit bulky. Invest in a Kindle and keep your entire library on one simple device. If a Kindle is out of your budget, there are many free apps that allow you to read epub and pdf books directly on your smartphone.
Create a checklist.
Before you start packing, create a checklist of everything you think you may need. This will help you keep track of everything and ensure you don't forget the important things. This one from smartertravel.com is a great place to start.