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Your tickets have been booked, your stoke level is through the roof and you’re about to embark on another adventure. Now all that’s left is to pack for your time away from home! Although we can’t put a complete end to last minute packing, as seasoned travelers we can offer some guidance to ease those suitcase jitters and help you on your way to being the most skillful packer you were meant to be:

Backpacks, rolling suitcases, duffels…there are many different bags, each suitable for a different type of trip. Most airlines will charge to check a bag (including those pesky oversize baggage fees), but will let you fly with a carry-on at no additional cost. Before packing, you should establish your needs for the duration of your trip and determine whether or not those necessities can fit in the most cost-effective bag. Factors like comfortable straps and handles, and quality of material will also make travel a whole lot easier.

Things can get messy pretty quick when the contents of your closet are strewn across your bedroom floor, but having an organized list puts the order back in disorder. Start writing stuff down in your checklist days in advance, this will help you remember some easy-to-forget items (like that reusable water bottle). Make it a master list; add and remove items from it once you've returned to make packing for your next trip a breeze! Another tip? Snap a pic of your stuff laid out before you pack it, just in case something goes missing during your adventures.

Pack your bag as you would play Tetris– make all your belongings fit perfectly. Change the game by rolling your clothes instead of folding to minimize the amount of space used. Better yet, take your organization skills up a notch by using compression travel bags and packing cubes. These little trinkets are what packing dreams are made of- they are reusable, airtight and are fantastic for categorizing your belongings. No more emptying the entire bag to look for that pair of shorts you planned for today’s outfit.

Sure we can buy travel sized shampoo and body wash, but why not pack what we already have at home into reusable travel friendly bottles? Refillable travel kits made of sturdy silicone or durable plastic are cheap and can store everything from toothpaste to reef-safe sunscreen. So, feel free to purchase as many as you need and load those babies up! Just don’t forget to store them in an airtight pouch or container in case of unexpected leakage.

Let’s face it, travel is always a gamble and the unexpected and undesirable is always a possibility. As a precaution, always have a backup of your bare necessities in your carry-on. Having a change of clothes and essential hygiene products will bring you some peace of mind. You never know if your luggage could get lost, or if you’ll be left stranded in an airport for the night, but at least you’ll still be looking fresh.

With a little bit of thought and some planning, packing can be the most painless aspect of travel. Simple hacks like these you can help you shift your focus from suitcase stress to what’s really important: all the fun to be had on your upcoming getaway! So happy packing!

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