What Are You Putting In That Suitcase?

The Mission: celebrate your special occasion, I DO, special day and explore destinations without running out of clean socks (do you really need socks?), to fit your suitcase in the overhead bin (without having a heart attack or hurting your back – a lame excuse for an injury when you get home) and without causing a showdown with fellow travelers (while they line up behind you watching you push, shove and tuck your luggage into the overhead bin.) Packing for a wedding and celebration doesn’t need to be a struggle between good and evil: what we want and what we need to bring.

I know, we’re forced to choose between our favorite things. It’s tempted to bring it all and to hell with it, but overpacking costs with luggage fees and bag fees like checked bag, exceeding weight limit, bringing wedding personal touches, can cost you.

Bringing home souvenirs, the challenge becomes nearly impossible when you can’t remember how you packed your bag in the first place. Don’t give up! Remember the 3 ounces, don’t try to carry more on, otherwise you’re giving gifts to airline employees and their friends!

Weigh the value: what you’re pack and how you pack. Let me count the ways to pack, you’ve seen them on television comedy shows and in cartoons! I’ve personally accomplished amazing things with a suitcase. And, I’ve seen frightening things done with suitcases! Personal preferences and personal needs aside, we’re not picking on anyone, but here’s some ideas to consider! Reconsider what you pack on your next trip – see if you survive and you might even have a great time!

Ladies: Your Beauty Routine: We’re all beautiful on the inside, repeat this to yourself. Going where there’s sun? Consolidate foundations, blushes and about that hair? Use your tricks, pull it up or back and many resorts include hair dryer and flat iron. A curling iron or flat iron for frizzies – pick one. The heat and moisture, tequila and rum will have you pulling it up and feeling sexy anyway.

Personal Amenities: Major resorts and hotels mean complimentary amenities! So you can leave some of your’s home. Especially at Palace Resorts, Real Resorts, Hard Rock Resorts, Secret and Dreams Resorts, Sandals and Beaches Resorts, Iberostar Resorts, Karisma and Azul Resorts, Barcelo Resorts and others. From shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, sunscreen, body lotion, shave kits, tooth care kits, bath salts, shoe polish and any combination! Leave the large bottles home, buy travel samples or use 3 oz containers. Based on hotel brands and ratings (yes ~ its usually true, you get what you pay for), expect the basic soap, some kind of hair cleanser. I did say Expect not Receive. TIP: body wash in most amenity kits doubles as shaving cream.

Lose bulky, hard containers, switch to zip-top, plastic for less wasted space. Avoid spills or explosions in your luggage, baggies are a jack of all trades when traveling (stuff those shower caps in your bags, you’ll be glad you did!) From wet swimsuits to the unmentionable stinky pieces of clothing, or welcome chocolate or tuxedo strawberries welcome amenity you’re saving! Separating means less emergencies within your suitcase.

Packing jewelry and valuables. This is preaching. Keep them in your possession, in your carry-on NOT in your check-in bags. Seriously, you read the articles, delayed luggage, lost luggage, luggage sitting at the front desk, swat team arrests airline employee. Don’t make yourself a target. Luggage does get lost, thieves do exist, don’t add to the temptation. Don’t behave like a tourist. And who’s to say what you hold “of value”.

No Brainer: your safe or you may be tweeting or blogging what you found missing before or after you got home. There’s jewelry insurance if it makes you feel better and there are separate policies you can add to your homeowners’ policy. Carry what you can’t live without, carry what you cannot replace. Even replacing costume jewelry and the great deal you found may cost you more. Keep your perfect bargains in your possession. If you love it don’t let it getaway like a butterfly because it most likely will not come back.

Documents and Guidebook: Use a kindle or smart phone! Choices: electronic documents, paper, leather, travel vouchers, keep them on your body or in your carry on. Pick one guidebook if you must, make copies ALL medications you take or could need.

Are You Relocating? Are you Running Away? Planning to be stranded on a small island somewhere in the world? We know clothes and shoes take up the majority of suitcase space. Lightweight, cotton, wash, rinse and run is smart packing. Most hotels offer laundry service, staying at more than one resort, wear it again, they’ll never know! Match accessories, change combinations, adapt the “wear it at least twice or leave it home theory.” A great pair of pants, shorts or capris mixed with tube tops, tank tops, halter or t-shirt. Try This Tip: get into the shower dressed, wash and rinse off, hang up to dry and wear again. Yes I am serious, along with other small items! Ladies, that goes for underwear and bras – leave the floating device’s home with the big pads that steal suitcase space. You going to be in a swimsuit most of the time anyway!

No Brainer: . start early, make your list, make it work! Yes shirt with collar: you’re going to need one for resort dining at night. Make it light cotton, enjoy the breeze with outdoor dining and beach bar. Dresses, match one or two pairs of shoes for all? (my biggest challenge)
. Mix and match, pack shoes that go with multiple outfits
. Check the dress code for restaurants, your travel specialist should know these
. Tuck a t-shirt in or use your partner’s for comfort when it comes to agreeing to disagree on room temperature. Some like it warm, some want to hear the waves, others are hot blooded all the time!

The Gadget Syndrome – Yes you: Have you ever packed nightlights, shoe horns, portable this and that, coffee makers, hotel-door alarm system, toothbrush sanitizers, electronic language translators, more than one lap top? Batteries and chargers galore! Today everything has a battery charger and support items, drive a hard bargain, take what you just can’t life without.

No Brainer: If you are a gadget addict, lay them out and let’s separate the men from the boys, women from the girls here. Pick one or two then enjoy your adventure without the rest. Check your partnerd packing, trade off who brings what. Share, don’t double up. They are weight and extra space takers.

Don’t Pack Things You Can Buy There: they may cost a bit more, but convenience comes with a price. Seriously one example: Robitussen, $3-5 here, $23US in Mexico. No one was serving Robitussen on the rocks. Compare the cost of bags fees and extra weight luggage fees. Consider the trade off on bag cost vs sunscreen cost. There are convenience stores & airport options. Don’t forget to check the ounces in liquids you carry-on.

No Brainer Travel Facts:
. what you buy or take does not have to come home with you
. leave it, give it to the maid (leave a note so she knows its gifted so she doesn’t get into trouble)
. deliver pencils and paper to schools in the area, use that space for goodies you bring home
. sample-sized items go one way, more space for goodies the other way
. finish reading that magazine or book you brought and leave it to someone there!
. Going roundtrip, it doesn’t mean everything has to!

. A small mistake packing a prohibited item in your carry-on bag can snowball into a messy chain of events. Dealing with confiscated items at security, a surplus of souvenirs, a nasty spill or broken bag
. a bit of packing emergency know-how means the difference between a disaster and a worry-free getaway.
For all your travel planning call Wild Side Destinations and Destination Weddings Travel

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