Figuring out which items deserve prime real estate in your suitcase can take hours. Multimonth trips, especially, require tedious planning, but even a weekend getaway is rarely a breeze to pack for. It's all about conserving and utilizing space, which group travel company Topdeck Travel knows all too well. Its trip leaders have traveled long enough to know the drill, and they've shared with us seven essential packing tips to get the most room out of your suitcase. Whether you're getting ready for a three-day or a three-month vacation, these rules will save you major space and hassle.
1. Halve it
Lay out everything you plan to wear on your trip . . . now put 50 percent of it back. Don't worry about what you might need because we can almost guarantee that you won't end up wearing all those tops.
2. Replace it
Always opt for travel-size products and swap out space-consuming items for lighter versions, if possible. Replace your shampoo bottles with a tiny shampoo bar or buy a more basic version of your makeup palette, for example.
3. Sack it
Repurpose your sleeping-bag sack as a vacuum pack. Similar to how you'd push the sleeping bag inside, squeeze in up to a week's worth of clothing . . . as long as you're fine with wrinkles.
4. Cube it
Packing cubes are your best friend. Not only do they fit nicely into your suitcase, but they also help you organize your wardrobe.
5. Roll it
Rolling clothes and towels instead of folding and stacking opens up so much more bag space — even Marie Kondo of the KonMari Method approves of this way.
6. Stuff it
Make use of every inch of your bag, including in-between items: stuff your socks into each shoe and underwear inside hats.
7. Wear it
Sport your heaviest jacket and bulkiest pair of shoes to allow for extra room, and/or store all your essentials and travel documents in a fanny pack. It's perfect for easy access, and almost nobody will count that as extra baggage.