7 essential packing tips

Imagine you are in Venice (pretty nice, eh!).

You have spent the day taking beautiful shots of the city and have run down your DSLR battery. You reach into your bag only to find nothing. You forgot the charger. What a shame!!


Now imagine again that you are in Venice (still pretty good, yeah!).

You are going to move your base to Florence (good choice!!). But first you would have to pack your bags and drag your big heavy bag down the cobbled streets of Venice. What a pain!!


These are just two of the many pains you could end up feeling if you don’t pack right. Hell, we have faced some of them when we started travelling (read about that here and here). But we learned quickly to pack correctly. We started making a handy list of some packing tips. People may not realize, but this could change your travel experience drastically. Small things add up to big bonus in the end.

Here are the tried and tested packing tips that would help you pack right and enhance your travel experience:

  1. Remove the non-essentials to pack light

The first and most important thing to keep in mind is to travel light. This nugget has been repeated time and again across forums. Light bags mean more flexibility. You could move around easily (even lugging them across the cobbled streets of Venice wouldn’t be a challenge. Added bonus is that you would have space for all your shopping.

Before cramming everything in the bag, laydown all you are going to carry in front of you. All the clothes, all the electronics and other shenanigans. Once you have everything laid out, you would get a fair bit of idea where you are going overboard. Start cutting the extras now

Why have I packed 3 pairs of pants for 5 days? Chug 1 out.

Do I really need a dress suit for this beach trip? Not really.

What are these heavy speakers doing here, when I won’t really play them? My phone speakers are good enough.

  1. Remember to pack the chargers

We are all so dependent on technology these days. Sure, we cannot live without the phone, camera, kindle etc. etc. So it is quite obvious that we should pack the chargers. But remember to pack the chargers for all your electronics. As a bonus, carry a small power bank for that urgent need when you do not have access to a plug point.

  1. Carry extra storage for the cameras

Our travel tastes might be all so different but one place where all (or most) of us are alike is clicking photos. You might be into landscape photography, selfies or any other mode, we click tons of photographs when we travel. So, before you travel, check if your camera storage is empty. Even then, we like to carry a spare empty memory card for our DSLR just so that we do not run out of memory at a crucial moment (like the setting sun over Havelock beach). Also, on the longer trips we carry a pen drive to transfer the photographs in case our phone memory is full (some mobiles have limited memory, duh!)

  1. Compartmentalize your bag storage

This one is to reduce your headache when you travel. You don’t want to spend half your morning scourging your bag to find that perfect shirt.

We split the bag space with specific place for all our stuff. The shirts are on left side and the jeans/shorts on the right. The chargers are crammed in the top and the innerwear is on the bottom. This way you only have to search a part of the bag when you need anything.

If you are going fancy, check out the bag organizers.

  1. Carry some medicines for your first aid kit

A first aid kit is must have anywhere. Especially when you are travelling. You do not want to be stuck in a remote village in Ladakh at night with a scraped knee and no medicine center in sight. Carry a first aid kit with the essential medicines: Antiseptic, bandage, headache medicine, nausea medicine etc.

  1. Split the luggage into small bags

Now that you have all you need to pack, chug off that big strolley bag. Always advisable to carry small bags. Even if you have to split your stuff into two. It always worked better for us when we carried two smaller bags than one big one. This way it becomes easier to share the load and to carry them around as well. No one gets tired lugging a heavy bag around.

And, you could keep a foldable bag with you to add on later for the extra stuff. You don’t always need to have space in your bag for the shopping. Most airlines allow 2 bags: 1 for carry on and another for check-in. Plan accordingly.

  1. Create a master list of things to pack

If you are going for a long trip or are a frequent traveler, create a master list of the essentials you would like to pack. You do not want to leave for the trip and then remember something you should have packed in. You don’t have to think about this at the last minute. Plan ahead so that packing becomes breezy.

Do you have some words of wisdom? Share your packing tips with us. Drop in a comment or send us a mail. We will definitely reply.


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2 thoughts on “7 essential packing tips

  1. My packing has got lighter and lighter as I’ve got older and wiser. A couple of years ago we reduced to one roller bag for a 6 week trip and then made regular ship-home stops for purchases, artwork and fabric etc. I still felt we had too much stuff so last year we did 3 months travelling in Thailand, Australia and Malaysia with one carry-on each. We are retired old people and like to keep tidy and smart but without the hassle of big luggage. I worked with the idea of everything matching or co-ordinating or doing several duties.(e.g. long skirts that could be worn pulled up and belted as a dress) I stuck to a colour palette of navy blue, red or coral and white. Shoes were limited to a pair of flats and a pair or flip,flops and I wore a light pair of tennis shoes for walking. Undies kept to a minimum., even down to taking only non-underwired bras so they squashed down smaller! Basic toiletries were decanted in small containers and all the clothes went into packing cubes – these are brilliant for keeping everything together and rolling each garment really tight prevents creasing and you can cram an amazing amount in. We arranged our stops so that we had laundry facilities and we even managed to look well enough put together for Christmas day and a New Year’s Eve party. I’m a dressmaker and I finally let my hair down in our last stop in Penang where I bought another case to ship home the fabric purchases from Georgetown. This year we plant to visit India and Australia again – such a huge continent – so the plan will be the same.

    1. Hi,
      Great to hear from you and thanks for sharing your travel wisdom.
      Your experiences and tricks resonate with us. It is like talking to ourselves. More we travel, more tricks we gather up our sleeves. And even though the mix-match packing is utilitarian, it need not be shabby. You could still look great.
      Do keep us posted with your India travel plan.

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