women's assorted clothes

Bundle Your Outfits

"We find it is easier to pack outfits together," Martha Villroman, family travel blogger of Go Places with Kids, tells SELF. Roll your underwear, shirt, pants, and socks together to form one bundle. When at your destination, you can quickly grab your whole outfit in the morning. Rolling your clothes prevents wrinkles and help you identify clothing quicker when on vacation.

Packing Cubes

Get packing cubes to compress your clothing in your suitcase. Organize your clothing and other items into packing cubes according to your itinerary. This will help you keep your suitcase neat and keeps you from having to unfold and displace everything to find an outfit. If you are trying to save even more space consider vacuum-sealed compression bags to compress even further and protect your clothing during transport.


Buy Solid Toiletries

Liquids always take up space and tend to spill no matter how many zip-lock bags you put them in. They are also a little annoying to pack and can be challenging to be TSA compliant. Opt for solid bars and soaps instead. You can buy solid perfume, makeup remover, bug balm, sunscreen, and even solid toothpaste tabs. If you are carrying liquids in your luggage, try putting plastic wrap under the lids and then twist the cap back on.

Pillow Hack

Use the pillow hack by Nina Ragusa of Where in the World is Nina. Grab a pillowcase, one that has a zipper and one that doesn't. Stuff clothes into the zippered pillowcase and then cover it with a regular pillowcase. Most airlines don't count a pillow as a carry-on. Now you have more outfits to wear on vacation.

white bed pillow on bed
girl, fashion, portrait

Wear Your Bulkiest Clothing In Transit

Instead of packing your jacket inside your suitcase, wear it on the plane during transit. This will save you valuable storage space and don't forget to put some of those heavy items like your camera and batteries in your pockets. This will further lighten the load in your luggage. Most of the time you can stuff your jacket into the overhead bin while on your flight.

Bring a Lightweight Foldable Backpack

Running around the city or resort that you are staying at is not fun with a bulky luggage bag. Pack a lightweight foldable backpack to the essentials in when you are out and about. These take up extraordinarily little space in your suitcase and will make it easier for you on vacation.

person in black jacket holding black backpack
a row of washers and dryers in a laundry room

Wash Your Clothes While On Vacation

Another tried and true tip is to plan to do your laundry on your trip. It’s necessary for trips longer than two weeks, as it’s hard to pack a separate outfit for each day beyond that. Depending on where you’re traveling and staying, it might be easy to visit a laundromat or get laundry done at a hotel, but if not, a good ol’ hand washing will do the trick. Earth breeze laundry sheets work great, and you can get them on Amazon for $17.

Keep Track of Your Stuff With Photos

Jason Metz, writer, and travel insurance expert at Forbes Advisor, recommends taking photos of what you pack before you go. “This can save time if your baggage is lost, and you need to file a travel insurance claim. If you really want to get techy, get Apple AirTags or Samsung SmartTags and put them in your luggage to track their location. Make sure you make a mental note or physical note of where you put your keys, parking ticket for when you return home.

Packing for New Zealand