Visiting new places, seeing new sights and experiencing new food - in your own country or abroad - is exciting and the great thing about travelling and holidays. Packing the cases and getting ready to leave home however, can be quite stressful.
To help reduce the stress we have developed a packing check list which we hope you find helpful:
- Fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg once said, "When you figure out your suitcase, you figure out your life," so make sure you have the right case for your trip. Size is vital: too large, and your case won't fit into the boot of a taxi or hire car; too small, and you will be sitting on the lid to close it!
- If flying, note the number of bags you can check in. In most cases it is one piece per person. Some airlines charge for checked in luggage.
- Spend some time planning what you want to do when you are on holiday. Where are you going to visit - are there dress codes (restaurants, religious buildings etc.)? Do some research into the weather forecast for the duration of your stay.
- Start the packing process by making a list of the items you think you will need while away.
- Assemble all the items you plan to take. Put them all on the floor and ruthlessly go through them. The size of the pile may shock you! Are you really going to have time to read 4 books in one weekend? Do you need to take all your shoes 'just in case'? Most people travel with far too many things that they end up not using. Be sensible only pack what you expect to wear. Remember that you can always buy some things when you are there.
- Hand-washing. There's no need to pack 14 pairs of socks and pants for your fortnight holiday or to take numerous tops because you are worried about dirt and stains. You can pack extra-light if you take Vanish Oxi Action Pre Treat Spray to help cope with any accidental stains such as red wine, olive oil, chocolate stains, mustard and cola. Just treat the garment and then use a little Travel Wash, for a superb clean and stain free finish.
- Time to pack! There are three popular techniques, folding, rolling and bundling. You will find that if you roll and bundle you will get more into your case. Line your items in bundles. Roll up your small items such as underwear, swimwear, tops and shorts etc. Roll them into bundles and build a clothes wall on the bottom of your case. You will now have a flat surface to lay items such as dresses, trousers and jackets on top. Then place your delicate items on top of these.
- Items such as toiletries should be packed tightly together into plastic sealable bags to prevent leakage.
- Wear your heaviest and most bulky items rather than packing them!
- If two or more people are travelling, split belongings between checked luggage so if one case goes missing, each of you will still have a change of clothes. In addition hand luggage should also contain a change of clothes as well as basic toiletries in case your checked in cases go astray.
- Make sure all your cases are locked.
- Place all travel documents into your hand luggage along with any essential medicines.
Finally - once you reach your destination you can reduce creases by hanging items in a steamy bathroom. It's not instant, once clothing is slightly damp, give it a couple of sharp shakes and pull into shape.
And - don't forget to have a Happy Holiday!