Today, I've got the adorable Whitney from Between the Lines giving you some words of wisdom on how to pack lightly on vacation! ;)
So, who else is jealous that Tiffany is going on a cruise? I know I am!
Have a great time, Tiffany and be safe!
While Tiffany is away, she asked a few of us to substitute for her. I know that there is none like Tiffany and you will all miss her, but I thought I’d jump in and talk about my vacation experiences and my inability pack lightly (I call it OCOD – Obsessive Compulsive Overpacking Disorder. I think it should be a serious diagnosis. You would think so too if you could see my suitcases).
As a teacher, my only options for vacations and travel are in the summer…or if I am feeling particularly adventurous spring break. I’m never that adventurous. When I do get the chance to vacation, I go all out. My last vacation was an eleven-day adventure in the Baltic Sea. I visited six countries in nine days.
The week before we left, I checked the weather—and the countries varied anywhere between fifty to eighty degrees Farenheit. With chances of rain in three of the countries.
We also planned to do everything from tours around museums and palaces indoors and outdoors to watching a performance of Swan Lake by the Russian Ballet. Needless to say, I had to pack with all of these events and the weather in mind.
HOW DO YOU PACK FOR THAT without over-packing?
Answer: Pack layers.
Layer. Layer. Layer. That’s my biggest piece of advice for packing.
Obviously, you can’t wear the same thing every single day
I knew that I would need at least one formal dress for the dinners and ballets – and I knew no one would mind if I outfit-repeated. I packed only one pair of nice dress shoes and a blue dress that wouldn’t get too wrinkled in my suitcase (we actually wound up playing ping pong in our formal attire before dinner one night. Don’t judge).
For the other days, I packed several cardigans of varying sleeve length and three scarves that would go with any of them. I packed a white v-neck tee that would work under any of the cardigans, along with a few other short-sleeve tops that would easily layer with my a-line skirts. I brought one pair of sandals (for walking around the ship) and I wore TOMS everywhere in Europe.
I also packed a light trench coat and a heavier scarf just in case.
As for the things I learned from this experience, I was right to pack one formal dress and dress shoes, but they took up quite a lot of room in my bag. Next time, I will probably exempt myself from formal activities—as they’re truly not mandatory—and it will save some space in my bag. I used a majority of my clothes. The trench and heavier scarves/cardigans took up more room in my suitcase, but I never used them. They would have come in handy had I needed them, of course, but I would suggest travelling at a more predictable time of the year (apparently June is not predictable?).
I also learned that men have it so much easier. Husband packed four or five long-sleeve dress shirts, and rolled up the sleeves when necessary. He only packed one pair of shoes that doubled as dress and walking shoes (how do men’s shoes do that?!) and one jacket that he could wear in all weather.
It worked for him, though.
I also learned that women can’t pack like men, and we shouldn’t feel guilty for packing just in case items. Just not an extra-suitcase-full of them.
Ha, I love that she said "substitute." You can totally tell that she's a teacher. =) Isn't she adorable?!? If you don't know Whitney, stop by her blog and say hi!