10 Brilliant Packing Hacks
I am a packing nerd. I quite enjoy the challenge of getting everything I want to take away into the smallest bag possible. My husband always tells me that it won't all fit, and I take great pride in proving him wrong (don't tell his mates, but hubby and I share toiletries when we're travelling, uses less space!). These are my top 10 brilliant packing hacks to ensure that all my stuff fits in my bag, survives the journey and still looks great when I arrive (check out our guide to hand luggage regulations if you're flying).
ROLL DON’T FOLD!
I have long been a roller, not a folder. My husband is a folder (and not a very good one!) So I do all the packing when we’re going away, else we’d only ever have room for 2 pairs of pants and one t-shirt each.
Pack a tumble dryer sheet (or 2) in with your clothing to keep it smelling fresh. I read this on-line somewhere, and I’ve gotta tell you, it’s GENIUS! Especially if you’re going on longer trips or have multiple destinations. Your clothes will never smell like the inside of your shoes again.
- Pack shoes in a draw-string bag or stretch a shower-hat over the soles so they don’t mark your clothes
(and you don’t get grit and dust in your smalls!).
Roll socks & underwear and pack them inside your shoes.
If you’re only packing a carry-on case, then you need to use every single inch of space, don’t go wasting a whole shoes’ worth!
Pack the heaviest items at the bottom (closest to the wheels). Sounds obvious doesn’t it, but I can honestly say it had never occurred to me until someone told me to pack this way, I’d always been a ‘shoes first, clothes on top’ kinda girl, but your suitcase spends almost no time lying flat, it’s either on it’s side or you’re pulling it along behind you.
Fold items that wrinkle or crease easily with an old (plastic) carrier bag. This helps stop creases from setting in your garment, but do hang it up when you reach your destination.
- Get an old plastic carrier bag and slice down the sides, then open it out flat.
- Place the item you want to fold on top, ensuring it’s totally flat
- FOLD using the plastic bag (you might want more than one for larger items).
Use a bulldog clip to protect your razor blade (and your fingers!)
Ever found that the silly little plastic covers that come with your razor detach themselves in transit? Yeah me too. What do you get? Blunt razor and a wash-bag of potential death. You try shaking a bulldog clip loose though!
- Use another bulldog clip to store your headphones and prevent tangles. I actually use this hack all the time, not just when traveling. I HATE tangled headphones.
Pack cords and chargers in a small wash bag, or a pencil case
You’ll never have to empty your whole bag to find your phone charger again! The origins of this actually suggest an old sunglasses case, but I didn’t have one, and UK plugs are too bulky to fit into any I’ve seen anyway. I just took a plug with me to a stationary shop & tried it in the pencil case I liked, to make sure it fit.
- Invest in a great multi-way adapter with USB sockets, so one plug will charge MANY things - do check the power ratings on your phone/camera/tablet though, and make sure you get one that is compatible They can be a bit pricey, but these things are BRILLIANT, especially when accessible plug sockets are often a premium. One charging station for all your electrical items, amazing! It's chunky, but I like this one from Maplin