Packing can sometimes be a difficult task, especially if you are going for extended vacation trips. Before I finally got my way around it, packing used to be one hell of a challenge for me. Over the years, however, I have managed to learn some of the things I should avoid while I’m packing for my trip. Here are my 8 biggest packing mistakes.
1. Not packing enough layers.
It is easy to be caught up in the excitement as you plan and pack your outfits and, in the process, forget to include a cardigan or two. I’ve learned the hard way to always add at least two layers; a light and heavy one. I remember there was this time I went to Mombasa Kenya, and since it’s a hot place, I did not bother adding any layers. You can imagine my shock after I started feeling cold at night. I had to buy a sweater.
2. Unprepared for the rain.
Again, for me, packing other clothes seemed more critical than rain essentials. You remember about not carrying layers, I also did not include any rain gear. I remember that day, my BFF and I were enjoying the coastal city when the rain decided to surprise us. Being new to the place, we could not shelter ourselves as our brains immediately thought of going back to our hotel rooms, and we started ordering for an uber ride. Long story short, I just wished we were a little prepared. Trust me, walking around looking like a rained-on chicken is not fun.
3. Packing bad shoes.
Traveling involves a lot of walking, and if you are not in the right pair of shoes, you’ll regret it. Always experiment on your shoes before taking them with you on your trip. Choose comfort over style though you can always strike for balance.
As for me, comfort will always win my day.
4. Packing new clothes.
DO NOT BUY NEW CLOTHES for your trip, please. Why? Sometimes clothes may not look like how they did in the store’s changing room before you bought it. Other times, you may think you are comfortable in the clothes until you have to be in them for many hours. It is not worth it and may make you feel very uncomfortable during your trip.
On the other hand, packing your usual clothes gives you some sense of security since you’ve probably been in them for long hours before. There’s also that familiarity and comfortability that your ordinary clothes bring you, especially when in a new environment.
I consider this as my most significant packing fail so far. I had bought a crop top with matching pants. However, while exploring the museum, the pants, for some reason, decided to sag and expose my belly. I’m not big on showing out my tummy, and this was by far the most uncomfortable I’ve ever been while on a trip. Please don’t make this mistake.
5. Packing bad snacks.
Snacks are an essential aspect of any trip and will come in handy when you’re hungry, and food isn’t readily available. However, it is necessary for you to pack what you like.
I’ve also made this mistake once and learned the hard way. I’m a massive fan of white chocolate, but for some weird reason, I packed some dark chocolate because ‘I thought I might like it, and I wanted to experiment.’ Bad news, I ended up not even finishing one pack. Just the thought of eating dark chocolate made me willing to persevere the hunger until I could finally eat a proper meal.
So while I’ve also had some lousy packing tips, some useful tips have proven to be essential during any packing process. You can also check out some uncommon things I’d recommend you pack as you travel during the coronavirus pandemic here.
- Always carrying a day bag. I always travel with the main bag which has everything, then, a smaller bag that I can comfortably carry during the day. If you don’t take a day bag, where will you put your stuff as you move around during the day visiting different places?
- Write and maintain your packing list. This will help you pack everything that you will need for your vacation. I also keep mine and use it as a checklist before I leave a hotel just to make sure I have everything.
- Do not pack anything you feel doubtful about. If you are unsure of whether to pack something, you probably won’t need it.
- Pack less. This is especially necessary if you’re going for long vacations. One thing I’ve learned is you can’t possibly carry your 1-month outfit. However, you can bring some few clothes and yes, do laundry.
- Always try coming up with outfits before you leave. Try on different outfits to see how many tops and that shoe matches with. If it ends up matching with only one, trust me, don’t carry it. Maximizing your packing space is essential, and taking clothes that can only be worn one way is not worth it.
- Don’t leave home with a full bag. I wouldn’t advocate going on a trip with a full bag because I always buy stuff around during my trip. I love thrifting and will most likely go for a thrift session during a trip.
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