packing list

Happy Trails To You...My Top 5 Travel Tips

It's summer time, and if you haven't taken your annual holiday, then you may be embarking upon an adventure soon. This year I will be savoring a stay-cation. San Diego is one of my favorite destinations. And it makes sense for my family this year. But, whether traveling a long distance or close to home, it is the  planning, preparation, and anticipation prior to leaving that jump start my adventure and influence my joy while traveling. Here are some of my favorite organizing pearls of wisdom:

  1. Check the weather forecast.

Taking items of clothing for comfort is crucial to your enjoyment. Taking a sweatshirt or sweater along just in case is never amiss. Even if the only chill you feel is on the plane ride, you will be glad to have a cozy sweater or wrap for that leg of the journey.  Bringing a travel size umbrella if there is a chance of rain and a sweater and light-weight wind breaker for when the air temperature changes add layers that can be easily added or subtracted and are simple tools for success.

 2. Take only clothing that mix and match well.

Taking basics streamlines your packing, keeps your suitcase lighter, and makes getting ready for your daily adventures a piece of cake! Putting outfits together that you love and make you feel like a million bucks will give you that glow every day. There is a reason we call them comfort clothes. It IS possible to feel comfortable and to look put together. Taking accessories to change the look of your outfits, takes up little space in your luggage, and is a simple way to add a pop of color and a fresh look. You may even come home with some new ideas after wearing your basics for a week.

3. Know events and activities that you expect to enjoy.

A pair of comfortable walking shoes is a must have no matter where you are going. If acknowledging your penchant for horse back riding means that you will pack your short boots because you love your experience all the more for it, then by all means make room in your suit case for boots. If you will be attending a wedding while on vacation, be sure that you include accessories and lingerie to make you look and feel your best. If water sports are on the agenda, it is likely that all the gear will be available for rent. Consider renting your gear rather than hauling it through the airports and leave room in your luggage for something else. If you are traveling by car, then you have the luxury of taking boogie boards and fins. Remember that the less time you spend packing and unpacking the more time you will have for fun and frolic!

4. Take only what you need.

Toiletries can really add weight to your luggage and there is the obvious risk of spillage if you overload your luggage. Taking only what you need limits your daily routine and adds to your sense of vacation freedom. Be sure that in your haste to limit what stays and what goes, that you remember to take sunscreen and prescription medications. While it is not impossible to obtain replacement items, taking what you need limits the time spent chasing around town for the all night pharmacy or suffering from a bad sunburn, which we all know can make even our most comfortable clothing feel like sand paper. Knowing that you have access to a washer and dryer makes taking less a no brainer. It is a simple task to start a load of laundry to freshen up clothing items mid-vacation.

5. Use a list.

I cannot stress the importance of making a list and using it to keep you organized. It reduces the fear of forgetting the obvious items that you cannot live without. It keeps you honest about what you really need. And, it is an obvious safety net as you are checking one last time before you leave. I suggest you make a list that you keep in your computer and then tweak it before each trip. What you take with you will vary depending upon your mode of transportation, your destination, and the length of stay.

No matter where you are going,  your preparation time before leaving will be time well spent. Happy travels!!