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Pack Like a Pro

I pride myself on being a light packer, but there's really no great mystery behind traveling light. The secret is simply good planning: If you decide what to wear before you leave, you'll have no reason to overpack. By employing a few smart strategies, you should be able to fit everything you need in one small piece of luggage—such as this Roxy Van Karmen 22-inch Roller, available for $135 here—whether you're going away for two days or two weeks. Here are some tips to help you become a super packer.

  • Before each trip, make a very detailed packing list where you plan what outfit you will wear each day and how you will reuse each clothing item. The web site OneBag has lots of great tips, as well as a downloadable packing checklist.
  • Get lots of mileage out of each clothing item. A nice blazer, for instance, can double as a daytime jacket and a going-out essential when paired with a dressy camisole. And though you'll probably want to switch out your t-shirts and camis daily, you can wear the same two sweaters for a number of days.
  • For more tips,

  • Don't bring too many shoes. This is one of the biggest—not to mention heaviest—mistakes that female travelers make. On most vacations, you'll need just two pairs of shoes: One comfy pair, and one dressier pair. Save the perfect accessorizing for home.
  • But do use lightweight accessories, like scarves and necklaces, to keep your outfits interesting.
  • Launder clothes as you go. At night, wash lingerie and other lightweight clothing items in the sink with Woolite; they'll easily be dry by morning.
  • Ditch stuff along the way. Travel with older socks, undies, and paperback books that you can get rid of as you go. That way, you'll have room in your suitcase for things you buy on the trip.
Join The Conversation
Aura1 Aura1 9 years
Shoes are my downfall. I always end up with at least 2 pairs not getting worn. I'm trying to move into the world of light packers.
JK-Boogie JK-Boogie 10 years
apart from queuing and people who are late my pet peeve is packing.
JennaV JennaV 10 years
These are great tips, FAB! You get this professional traveler's thumbs up :)
caroline_1 caroline_1 10 years
the whole "fit everything into a carry-on" idea seems great... until you get to the airport and security makes you unpack and throw away all liquids, gels or foams. gggrrrrrrrr.
t0xxic t0xxic 10 years
Heres how I pack. STUFF IT ALL IN> IT WILL ALL FIT lol
audreystar audreystar 10 years
i do the roll thing with my clothes. that definitely saves space. just make sure you have an iron where you are going or some of that great wrinkle reducer spray.
kitty805 kitty805 10 years
great tips, but i like to bring practically everything when i travel.
Adriana42 Adriana42 10 years
great tips..will keep them in mind for my winter vacation..
jennifer76 jennifer76 10 years
These are great tips! My extra recommendation is to marry a super light packer, and use some of his space, too. :)
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