Is the panic setting in? You have a hard time pulling your look together when you’ve got your whole closet in front of you; how are you going to fare when all you’ve got with you is what you can fit in your carry on? Oh the pressure of packing for a vay-cay.
First and foremost know the restrictions and costs for your luggage if you are planning on flying. Airlines’ policies are changing by the moment right now, so check the Web site of the airline you’re flying for the exact number and size you’re allowed for carry-ons, as well as the same for checked bags. Next, get clear about what sort of vacation you are going on; is it an urban vacation to New York City or is it to the Outer Banks? If you are planning a city break, leave the tunics and floppy hats at home but make sure you bring shorts and wedges. Heading to the beach, pull out the cover-ups and the bikini.
But you’ll need to go way beyond geography in deciding what to pack. What are you doing once you get there? What activities are on tap? The great thing about summer packing is that the clothes don’t take up too much room, but it is still best to be strict with yourself. You’ll want to save some room for purchases you may make on vacation. So consider carefully what you know about your schedule (one fancy dinner, two casual evenings, etc.) and then plan outfits for the days whose itineraries are still up in the air. The key here is layering and extra accessories to take a casual look up to the next level if you miscalculated the formality of one night’s impromptu dinner spot.
It helps to lay out and entire outfit bra and panties included, so you don’t end up at your destination without the proper undergarments. Try to pack items that can do double duty like sarong which can be worn as a beach cover up during the day or wrapped around your shoulders at night. At a bare minimum, wherever you’re going you’ll most always need one pair of jeans, two pairs of undies for each day (just in case! Do you want to be buying underwear in Madrid? Or in Orlando?) and a couple different styles of bras. You can save a bit of space by trying a convertible bra that works strapless and backless. When it’s time for load-in, use zipper-seal plastic bags to keep clothes safe and as a space saver.
Shoes take up tons of room, so work a strategy here. Metallic flip-flops are a dream because they’re perfectly on-trend on the sand, but their silver or gold shimmer send them into the night with ease. Brazilian Havaianas are great because you can even slide a pair into your purse when you are heading out for dinner in your 4 inch heels and know you may be doing some walking later. Also great for day-to-night dressing: metallic gladiator sandals.
Most importantly remember it’s a vacation so don’t stress about it too much because you can always get what you need when you arrive at your destination—unless of course you are going to a deserted island and in that case, what are you worried about? Throw a good book and some sunscreen in your tote and get airborne!
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