Travel | Why is packing light for travel so hard?

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Whether it’s a two-day trip down the country or two weeks to the sun abroad, packing light can seem like an impossible task. So, what are we doing wrong?

Yes, I will need that extra pair of jeans in case the evenings are cool. The runners are a must, just in case we go on a hike. And the four pairs of heels are required to coordinate with my seven dresses.

While we know we end up wearing the same outfits when away, it does not stop us packing our suitcases to the very brim. And there is no escaping the fear when the airlines put the bag on the scales, or attempt to squeeze the hand luggage in their makeshift measuring boxes.

First, you need to pack according to your trip. If it’s a weekend in a hotel, you will obviously only need a few things to tie you over including something to wear for dinner, swimsuit if there are leisure activities and casual wear during the day. A ski trip, on the other hand, requires very little other than your skiwear essentials and a few things to wear during the night. Always remember that you can buy extra items if you get stuck.

Regardless of where you go, aim to bring only lightweight, washable fabrics that you can try to wash yourself in the hotel room.

To avoid the drama at check in, wear your heaviest and bulkiest items of clothing on the plane. They obviously have to be comfortable but you can always layer up and take them off when you land.

Think versatility when choosing clothes to bring. Jeans that can be rolled up during the day, and night with a pair of heels. A sarong that can double as a towel is another popular option.

Packing the right way allows you to clearly see what you are bringing. Roll, don’t fold clothes. This also prevents creasing. Stick your underwear and other small garments in any shoes that you have is another way to maximise space. Indeed, bring no more than two pairs of shoes. One for daytime walking around, and one for dressing up at night.

Travel light, and travel well!