Taking a Trip? How to Pack Properly

Are you headed on a dream tour of New England in the fall when the leaves are ablaze? Or maybe going to Washington D.C. during Cherry Blossom season? Perhaps you love history and plan to head to Colonial Virginia, or want to experience the joys of Disney? Wherever your destination, packing the right items, in the right way is key to making your trip go smoothly. 

Gone are the days of taking everything with you, but the kitchen sink. Packing, for seasoned travelers, is very much a science of knowing what you’ll need and how to organize it so that there is minimal luggage. Streamlining and minimizing hassles at airports and check-ins is key to making a trip a happy and fun one for everyone involved. 

Here are a few packing tips that will keep you focused on the mission at hand – having fun and enjoying your destination. 

Get the Right Luggage 

There’s really nothing worse than getting to an airport and discovering that your carry-on luggage is too wide and needs to be checked or finding that your backpack is too heavy! 

Start your trip on a happy note by ensuring that you have a regulation-size carry-on bag, especially if you plan to try to make the adventure without checking any luggage. 

According to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA ) “Carry-on bags must weigh less than 35 pounds and must not exceed 10 inches deep, 16 inches wide, and 24 inches high. Bags must fit in the overhead bins. Checked bags must be no longer than 62 linear inches (length + width + depth) and must weigh under 40 pounds.”

Keep this sizing in mind when buying your carry-on so you are not met with any surprises when you arrive. 

Check the Weather 

It’s a smart idea to keep an eye on the long-term weather forecast for the area you are visiting. Install a weather app on your phone so that you can monitor as you approach your travel dates. 

The temperature and forecast will determine what type of clothing and footwear you’ll want to include in your pack. 

Organize Your Clothing and Trip Needs 

Depending upon your destination and the type of adventure you’re taking, the items you pack could be wildly different. If you are heading to a warm climate where you plan to head to the beach daily, some swimsuits and coverups should be a top priority, whereas if you plan to head to a cooler climate where you plan to do a lot of walking, sneakers and comfortable layers may be a good idea. 

Organize all the items you will need for your trip including sunscreen, shoes, bathroom items, medicines, and clothing – all on your bed or another area where you can visualize it. Some travelers swear by organizing similar items together and others like organizing by outfits. It doesn’t matter how you do it, just that you ensure you have all the things you’ll need. 

Packing cubes that can help you keep your clothing compressed and organized are a hit with travelers right now. Additionally, seasoned travelers tend to use the idea of a capsule wardrobe. This idea embraces having interchangeable minimalist clothing choices instead of overpacking.

If you’re planning a trip through Wolfe Tours our team can guide you on what you’ll need to pack and what you can leave at home. Talk to our experienced guide and get started today.