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Win The Packing Battle: Travel Tips + Hacks

Hey guys,

THANK YOU FOR SUBSCRIBING. So now, here's your secret gift!! 


After 23 countries, I must admit I have really gotten the hang of packing by now! I was recently in India (if you haven't read the article yet, CLICK HERE) and I traveled two weeks on ONLY a carry on and I did not miss one single thing. Want to travel like a pro? Just keep reading! 


I've gathered here some tips and hacks that help me stay sane when I travel and that I hope will help you too. Travelling is intended to be fun, relaxing and uplifting, but can sometimes quickly become stressful and these tips and hacks have helped me manage my experiences better. So let's go through these tips together so you can spend less time stressing about your suitcase and more time taking selfies with the Eiffel Tower ;) 

1. What To Bring ( - Do You Really Need All That?)


  • Depending on the type of trip you will be having, you may not want to carry around a lot of luggage with you. Some trips call for backpacks and others for extensive packing (weather can play a huge impact on this). For my trip to India, it was pretty straight forward, extremely hot and dry for 14 days straight. In this case, I didn't need a rain coat, no wind breaker, no long sleeve shirts and no closed shoes (i.e. boots). But I remember trips to Europe where I needed much more in case it rained, in case it was colder and so on. 

  • Make a list of everything you need and evaluate each item on whether or not you 'need', 'want', or would simply 'like' to have the item. This can help you eliminate some items that will end up taking room and not being used at all. It is important to note that once you arrive to your destination and get a feel of the weather and the culture, you will adjust your wardrobe choices accordingly and you may end up wearing a few pieces more than you had planned. Trust me, you WILL have enough clothing. I brought 6 shirts, 3 pants and 1 skirt to my two-week trip and it was perfect because you might end up purchasing a few pieces along the way.


**TIP: Bring a few items you can rid of along the way to make room for souvenirs and new purchases. For example, I buy cheap tees and throw them out along the way.

2. Make A List of What You Need



  • List of places you are going and of important
    contacts or numbers

  • Passport

  • Cash



  • Shoes/Sandals

  • Flip Flops

  • Bra/Underwear/Socks

  • Short sleeve shirt(s)

  • Long sleeve shirt(s)

  • Shorts

  • Pants/Jeans

  • Raincoat/Windbreaker

  • Hat (for sun)

  • Pyjamas

  • Skirts/Dresses

  • Swimwear (if needed)

  • Sunglasses



  • Eye mask

  • Neck pillow

  • Sample size face and hand cream (under 100ml,
    to hydrate your dry skin on the flight)

  • Hair brush

  • Toothbrush + Toothpaste

  • Earplugs

  • Lip balm

  • Motion sickness pills (if needed)

  • Sleeping pills (if needed)

3. Categorize into Piles + Start This Tetris game

  • Once you have established what you need to bring, make a pile of everything you added to your list and categorize it simply: pants/skirts in one pile, tops in another and delicates in another as well, shoes, PJs, etc. The best way to optimize suitcase space is to TIGHTLY ROLL all your clothes. This trick works because it prevents air from taking up space in your suitcase.

  • Once your piles are rolled, fill in the extra spaces in the suitcase with the rest: underwear, socks, bathing suit, scarves... whatever you need to bring on your trip. You may need to try different layouts for the 'rolls', so don't freak out if you are taking out stuff and putting it back in. It is kind of like a Tetris game. 

  • Now shoes can be tricky so here's my suggestion: bring shoes that you don't mind bending or squishing if you want to travel light. If you can't, fill the shoes with other items to waste the least space possible. For instance, you could fill them with socks, snacks (I would sneak granola bars in my shoes). HACK: Use shower caps to cover your shoes so that the dust and dirt don't get onto your clean clothes :)

**TIP: If you have fragile items to bring, make sure you surround them with clothing to prevent damage. 

4. Medication

  • If you are going to a country, like India, where the drinking water isn't safe and there is a significant risk of getting sick from bacteria and food, don't forget to bring the necessary medication you will need. If you have a few boxes, I suggest opening the boxes and flattening them out to take up less space. Then just put a simple elastic around the medication and its respective box and instructions so you don't get them mixed up! Get informed before leaving and find out what you should bring.  

  • Don't overestimate your body's ability to heal itself. You are in a new environment with new bacteria your body has probably never been exposed to, so when it comes to medication you are better off bringing more just in case. This could be: Advils/Tylenols, motion sickness pills, diarrhea medication, electrolytes (for dehydration), bug repellent, lotion for bug bites, Benadryl, etc. 


5. The Extras

Look, I know the goal is the travel light, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't bring a few extras just for fun :) For me, it was my Polaroid and I had also brought a graduation cap for my friend as a surprise because she was missing her grad for the trip!  You never know when you'll want some cute props for pics or just to have fun! 



  • I know a lot of people here have 5 digit NIPs for their credit cards or debit cards, HOWEVER, in Europe you can only put in 4 digits so automatically your cards won't work! Get your NIPs changed before you leave :)

  • Don't forget to bring flip flops for those hotel/hostel showers!! 

  • If you are going to a hostel, towels are most likely not included, so you should bring your own, BUT you want to keep it light so opt for one of those microfiber towels that dry very quickly and are much thinner :)

  • Don't forget to have fun!! 




  • Shampoo + conditioner

  • Exfoliating scrub (just a little bit, don't bring the whole tube)

  • Q-tips

  • Dental floss

  • Deodorant

  • Nail clipper

  • Hair products

  • Sunscreen + After sun (for relief and repair)

  • Razor + shaving cream

  • Band aids + blister pads

  • Bug repellent + bug bite relief

  • Tweezers


  • Advil/Tylenol

  • Diarrhea medication

  • Electrolytes

  • Benadryl

  • Contraceptive pills (if applicable)

  • Mini first aid kit



  • Camera + battery pack + charger + memory cards

  • Reusable water bottle (that keeps the water cold)

  • Phone charger

  • Earphones

  • SNACKS (if food is new to you)

  • Locks (if going to hostel)

  • Adapter plugs (depends on the country)

  • Watch

  • Ziploc bags (to protect items from water)

  • Toilet paper (in some countries, this is not provided)

  • Some sort of (mini) game (i.e. cards, dice, mini connect4...)

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