Whether you're packing for a weekend city break, a two-week beach holiday, or a trip of a life time, these are all of the tips you'll ever need for stress-free packing.
Take our advice and start your holiday happier! How to organise your packing:
Roll and vacuum pack
Don't arrive at your destination and be faced with a pile of ironing. To save space and stop creasing, roll your clothes instead of folding them, then place them in vacuum compression bags.
To use these bags, put your clothes in, seal the bag, then squeeze the air out. This will leave you with lots more space in your suitcase and will prevent creases more effectively than folding.
Buy a lightweight suitcase
Don't assume that buying the most expensive designer suitcase will get you an upgrade - instead, it's more likely to attract thieves at the airport and on your travels. It's better to be inconspicuous and go for a lightweight option. If you're using a hard-shell suitcase, this can add up to five kilos of weight before you've even started packing.
Don’t forget your paperwork
Before your trip, make photocopies and/or take photos of your documents (front and back) to pack along or leave with someone at home to email to you in case of an emergency.
Don't photocopy a debit or credit card — instead, keep just the number in a retrievable place. It's easier to replace a lost or stolen passport, rail pass, or car-rental voucher if you have a photocopy that helps prove you really owned what you lost.
Consider bringing a couple extra passport-type pictures, which can expedite the replacement process for a lost or stolen passport.
Comfy walking shoes
Walking is, without a doubt, one of the best ways to take in a new city. On foot, you can spot the details that bring a destination to life. There’s no quicker way to shatter the magic of these immersive cultural experiences than an uncomfortable pair of shoes.
Stock up on your meds
If you have pre-existing medical condition, such as asthma, diabetes, high blood pressure or heart problems, it is very likely that you will have to take prescription medication with you so it's smart to make a copy of prescriptions for eyewear and medicine before you set off.
Wherever you are headed, you’re going to have great time! Just make sure you think through your list of activities beforehand so that you’re able to bring everything you need and pick the right luggage. And remember, you are travelling in another country so it’s always great to remember these things:
One of the best bits about travelling is the friends you make. Chatting over cocktails or bonding at the beach won’t just offer some life-long memories, but some good friends too – and you’ll also have the perfect place to stay for future getaways.
We thought we’d give you a helping hand on how to make friends on holiday:
People will be much friendlier in return if you're giving off good vibes. It's also well known that a positive outlook can help to improve your mood, meaning you'll be sure to have an awesome holiday.
Happy people have more fun! Yay!
Hang out in the hotel bar
Taking time out in your hotel/resort bar or communal areas will bring you into contact with lots of people. Take a book and relax, you’ll be amazed at how easy it will be to strike up conversations with others who are looking for company.
Before you know it you’ll be hosting your own ‘Happy Hour’ clubs.
Book a cruise
Holidaying on a cruise ship offers perfect opportunities to make pals. You’ll bump into the same people every day and the ship’s entertainment is organised to create a true community feeling.
Just don’t get too competitive about who’s secured a seat at the Captain’s Table.
Jump off the sun lounger and get active
Be brave and do something new and exciting. Scuba diving or a snorkelling trip, paragliding or even a cookery class – you’ll be learning with other people and you’ll pick up a new skill.
Even better you’ll be able to have a good laugh about how you all looked in those wetsuits over a drink in the bar later with your new mates. Perfect day, indeed.
Start a book club
Whether you’re camping for a few weeks or at an all-inclusive resort, there’s nothing more annoying than powering through your reading list way too early. Pop up a poster on the communal noticeboards and kick-start a reading club with other like-minded bookworms.
Wine-tasting, walking tours, archaeology trips – what’s not to like? Book several excursions and you’ll be spending your days with like-minded people and you’ll all have plenty to talk about afterwards. Hopefully over a few bottles of wine bought from that wine-tasting trip.
Go solo and double your fun
Choosing a specially-tailored holiday is one of the best ways to combine fun with friendship. Approaching strangers can be terrifying if you’re shy, but on a tour you’re guaranteed great times, memories and, who knows, you may be booking a holiday next year with the new friend you bonded with this year.
Learn the language
Brush up (even just on a basic level) on your foreign language skills and you’ll gain a deeper understanding of the locals and may even develop a few meaningful friendships – at the very least, you'll have fun trying.
The most important part of making new friends is to be confident. It's much harder to meet new people on holiday if you're keeping to your comfort zone.
Relish doing new things and find the excitement in learning about other people. As the saying goes, do something now that your future self with thank you for.
Enter your email to get updates straight to your inbox.