When is the Best Time to Start Packing for a Trip?

When it comes to packing for a trip, it's best to start early. Procrastinators will find themselves falling short when it comes to packing, so it's important to begin the process days or even weeks before your departure date. This gives you time to draw up a complete list of items you need for your vacation, as well as purchase any additional items you may need. Creating a packing list is a surefire way to ensure that you never forget to bring something important with you.

I recommend writing a list two or three days before and then packing up the whole day before (or sometimes in the morning if I go out at night). Not only will you realize that you need to pack a lot less clothes than you thought you needed, but you'll also relieve a lot of stress by planning outfits that will look great in photos and in real life. Its goal is to identify a limited number of shoes that you have (or need to buy) that go with everything you carry in your suitcase (the same goes for bags) and that work for each activity on your itinerary. If you need to stop thinking about this situation for a while, a two-week packaging strategy gives you space to do so.

Packing hastily or frantically is never going to do well, so it's important to start early. If you've planned an upcoming vacation, don't wait until the last minute to pack your bags. You have time to fine-tune your outfits, leave out unnecessary items, and also help others pack for their travels. Travelers often make excuses as to why they can't start packing early, stating that they need certain items for their daily routine and therefore can't pack those items in a suitcase ahead of time.

Pack your carry-on baggage with care, including the essentials you would need in case your airline loses your checked baggage. It's crucial that your shoe collection is drastically reduced to a minimum when you're packing for a trip because, like books, they're heavy and take up a lot of space. Trying to carry very light luggage, in order to be able to travel only with hand luggage, is often a big mistake. Packing little is especially difficult for women, who have extra things to think about, such as makeup, hair curlers and high heels.

That way, you can see exactly how you can mix and match and how many outfits you can do with what you've packed. Many of you have probably become even more stressed, and you have made your packing anxiety even worse by trying to put everything in your carry-on baggage. I use a classic Moleskine diary and write everything by hand, although I've heard good things about Packr, an app that offers suggestions based on your itinerary.

Polly Amescua
Polly Amescua

Food nerd. Social media ninja. Unapologetic pop culture lover. Wannabe web maven. General pop culture advocate.

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