While traveling, you have an opportunity to simplify your life if you follow these seven little tips.
1. Spend time packing. So often, packing is the last thing that gets done and we end up tossing everything in the suitcase—just in case we need it. Give yourself time to think about what to bring, and more importantly, what not to bring.
2. While packing, think multi-purpose. Pack items and clothes that have more than one use. Bring one hair dryer for both you and your spouse. What other commonly used items can you share?
3. Pack an empty duffel bag or a similar collapsible bag. Put it on the bottom of the suitcase to have it if you need it. Just in case you go over the weight limit when checking your bags for your flight, or if you buy items to bring home.
4. If it’s unopened/unused, leave it in the hotel. Don’t fill you suitcase with all those little bottles. If you opened it and only used a portion, bring that one home. You don’t want your home to be a replica of a hotel room—do you?
5. Know what you would do if you forget something. Having a back-up plan makes life easier. My husband has said, "Go
shopping!" If you’re planning on buying something at your destination, don’t pack that item. If you need a new sweater and you’re going to Ireland, you’ll be able to find a sweater there.
6. Grocery bags make great dirty laundry bags for traveling. Pack a couple of grocery bags and as your clothes get dirty, toss them in the bag. At the end of the trip, tie the handles together and toss it in the suitcase. When you get home, just grab the grocery bag and toss the dirty clothes into the laundry.
7. Pack clothes that are nearly dead. For instance, that pair or two of holey underwear that you keep wearing and washing. Pack them and instead of bringing them home, toss them in the trash. I do this with my ugly favorites. I just can’t bear to part with it because it has been such a reliable friend, but after leaving it in the hotel, I can’t look back.
8. Remove their advertising material from the counter tops as soon as you enter the room. Gather the coffee pot, ice bucket, room service menu, etc. and put them in the bottom drawer. Now, you have room for your items on the counter.
Consider traveling light. With over-weight baggage now $50 per bag, items that were considered essential now become expensive.