Packing Tips

As we enter vacation season, here are some of my favorite packing tips along with a little schedule I often follow!!

  1. Envision what you will spend doing on your trip – relaxing on the beach? Sight seeing? Hiking? Spending every day at the pool? Think through your days and what you’ll need to wear where.
  2. Pack APPROPRIATELY. If you’re going in the woods, you don’t need a sundress.
  3. Pack clothes that fold up well, don’t wrinkle and don’t take much room.
  4. Be realistic – remember the number of days you’re going to be gone and realize you might wear things more than once. You don’t need 3 pairs of jeans!
  5. Don’t pack more than 1 “just because I might need it” (if it’s a beach vacation – you don’t need 3 sweatshirts for cool evenings, one will do in addition to a light sweater you can wear over a dress)
  6. I totally blame this on my mom – always pack extra socks and underwear
  7. Pack BASICS – For example, on a beach vacation: 3-4 swimsuits, cover up, 2 pairs of shorts, 1 pair of capris or pants, 1-2 summer dresses, 2 light jackets/ cardigans, 2-3 nice tops, a couple tees.
  8. Once you’ve got the basics, you can bring a couple bold pieces (like a fancy top) and fun jewelry to spice things up. Even if you have particular “set” outfits it’s nice to be able to mix and match. It’s easier to choose to stick with brown or black basics instead of bringing both.
  10. Write a list and CROSS THINGS OFF as you pack them. Write down EVERYTHING – shoes, books, electronics, chargers, PLANE TICKETS, gps, etc. This is THE MOST important tip. Nothing is too small!! Don’t forget things like your wallet, camera, ipod, beach towels, etc.


(note – please remember I LIKE to prepare… for some of you this is more beneficial to read “weeks” as days or even hours!)

4 weeks before:

  • Think about what you’re going to do (moot if you’ve been to the vaca spot before)
  • Make a basic packing list
  • Set aside items you won’t need in the next few weeks in a special spot like a guest bedroom or on top of a chest of drawers (ie – swimsuits, hiking boots)

3 weeks before:

  • Decide outfits you want to bring (remember to bring basics and try to mix and match)
  • Update your packing list with particular types and numbers of things (i.e -3 swimsuits, pink ruffled top)
  • Plan any food/ snacks/ baked goods you want to bring

2 weeks before:

  • Do laundry
  • Grocery shop for any food/ snacks/ baked goods you want to bring
  • Set aside outfits in your special spot – try to plan for every day
  • Set aside shoes (No more than 4 for a week. Maybe a pair of tennis shoes, pool flip flops and comfy flats OR hiking boots, house shoes and flip flops for around town)
  • I always like to begin straightening my house now. It’s so nice to come home to a clean house and sometimes the week before it’s a little too busy!
  • Download any particular sermons or music you want for travel

1 week before:

  • STOP wearing clothes you want to bring on your trip
  • Look through clothes you have already set aside- REMOVING anything you don’t think you’ll wear. Be resourceful! Pack basics and accessorize!
  • Begin baking/ making food you plan to bring. Package and store well (sometimes freezing is best)

3 days before:

  • Get out bags. (I usually try for a suitcase, a food bag and a fun bag)
  • Do last minute laundry
  • Finalize clothes that are set aside, ready to be packed

2 days before:

  • Clean car if driving (thanks hubby!)
  • Set aside any books, movies, entertainment or pantry foods you want to bring.

Day before:

  • Pack clothes into your bag. Pack socks and shoes.
  • Pack “extras” like your bible and journal, books, movies, toiletries, sunscreen, etc
  • Get some cash if that’s the way you fly

Day of:

  • Pack last minute toiletries
  • Pack electronics, cell phone, CHARGERS
  • Pack food, especially perishables
  • Set sail and have fun!! Once you leave the house – it’s fair game. If you forget something – no worries!! You can always pick something up on the road or once you get to your destination or if it’s expensive, don’t fret:) You will still have a blast on your vacation even if you forgot something!
I know some of these are basic tips, but I hope it helps streamline vacation preparation a little! What are your favorite packing tips that I forgot to mention?

About jackielopina

Follower of Jesus, Pastor's Wife, Cookie Baker.
This entry was posted in Domesticity, Home Management, Vacation and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Packing Tips

  1. emily w. says:

    is it normal for people to have three swimsuits? i’m not saying you’re NOT normal. maybe it’s me! :)

    • jackielopina says:

      Not completely sure. In my family we grew up having a boat, spending weekends and our vacations on the lake. AND my mom usually had 15-20+ swimsuits. I don’t think I’m exaggerating. So I usually have about 6-8 at any given time:) We buy new swimsuits like most people go back to school shopping!!

      And it probably is a strange Douglas thing… because at the lake you could wear up to 3 swimsuits in a day!! So maybe the rest of you normal folks would just pack your one swimsuit… Forget my family’s craziness:)

  2. Pat says:

    This made me SO EXCITED FOR FLORIDA!!! :)
    Can’t wait to pack! Hehe :)


  3. Kate Titus says:

    I always make a packing list and cross things off, and I still almost always forget one thing. If I didn’t have a list, I’d probably forget a lot more. :)

    Also, I don’t think I’ve ever owned more than one swimsuit at a time. I didn’t know people do that!

  4. steph says:

    I always have at least 2-3 swimsuits a season. I’m with Jackie on this. I grew up with a pool and now we go to one almost every day during the summer months, so it seems almost necessary.

  5. Pingback: How Many Swimsuits?!? « Hoping in God

  6. Lorettio B. says:

    I have two bathing suits. A two piece to get a tan, and a one piece when I have had too much sun. But when I am on vacation I will go shopping for another top to my two piece. This way if i mix and match it looks like i have lots of bathing suits.

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