Packing Tips for Summer Travel

One of the potential summer vacation headaches is packing. If it’s a family vacation, trying to coordinate everyone’s luggage can be challenging, and it’s often hard to find things you need on the road and once you get to your destination.

To help make packing a little easier, here are some tips that may help.

1. Categorize Items
Some sources recommend divvying up everyone’s luggage into categories. Each person can have his or her category, and within those categories there can be sub-categories. Then there can be a category for shared items. For example, your teen’s list might include toiletries, entertainment (such as an iPod), casual clothes, dress clothes, night clothes, shoes. Dad’s list might look a little different, and might include dress clothes, casual clothes, night clothes, maps and/or GPS, books, and toiletries. For combined items, choose one big duffle bag or suitcase in which you can put your common things.

2. Lists for Frequent Travelers
If you travel often, having a stand-by list can make a big difference. Consider making a list of items you will always take with you, no matter what the nature of the vacation is.

Also for frequent travelers it helps to have specific travel items set aside for travel only. Consider a toiletry case with travel-sized items that includes everything, so you can just grab that case and know you’re covered. The same would go for first aid and other medical supplies.

3. Roll, Don’t Fold
An interesting thing happens when you tightly roll clothes instead of folding them. If you smooth the garments while you roll them tightly, they are not nearly as prone to wrinkling. You may also find that you can fit a lot more clothing into your luggage this way.

4. Little Things
It’s so easy to forget the little things. Here are some suggestions for little items that are easily forgotten, but which can make or break a vacation.

-Antibiotic ointment
-All prescription medications (also, make sure you have enough to carry you through your vacation, and find out if/where you can refill at your destination)
-Insect repellent
-After-bite treatment (such as Cortisone ointment)
-Feminine products

5. What Is Available at Your Destination?
Before you start packing, find out and consider what will be provided at your destination. There may be soap, toothpaste, and towels, for instance. There may also be shampoo and conditioner. It can save a lot of space if you don’t pack what you don’t need!