Spring break is finally here (though I’m not so sure it’s spring in Canada yet…) and whether you choose to spend your break relaxing at home, binge-watching How I Met Your Mother or soaking up the sunlight on a beautiful island, you definitely deserve a break! For those of you who choose to travel during this wonderful time of year, the entire idea seems wonderful and exciting until it’s time to pack. Yes, pack. That four-letter word we all dread. Packing is a really important process when it comes to traveling because no one wants to find out they forgot to bring a pair of sneakers right when everyone wants to go hiking! Here are some packing essentials and tips you should consider:
1- Clothing: Pack your clothes according to how long you plan on staying at your destination. Spring break is usually a week long so you shouldn’t worry about taking all your wardrobe with you. There are two methods you can use to pack your clothes:
- Ziploc Bag It: Get a big Ziploc bags to store clothes, shoes or toys and neatly pack an outfit (top/bottoms/accessories) in each one, empty the air out, and lay it in your luggage. Not only will you save a whole lot of space for other things like shoes, books, etc. but you’ll also save time in your room deciding what to wear! Throw in a dryer sheet if you’re worried your clothes will smell funny.
- Roll Vs. Fold: Roll clothes that are stretchy and are unlikely to wrinkle like knit fabric sweaters, jeans, and t-shirts. You can even roll tote bags and towels as well. Folding, on the other hand, can be saved for silks, linen, and rayon items as they are much more likely to wrinkle. You save more space by rolling that can be used to fold the more delicate items.
2- Shoes: If you’re going away for only a week, don’t take 80 pairs of shoes with you. Take two pairs of casual shoes, a pair of sneakers (or travel in sneakers!), a pair of flip flops and one “formal” shoe if you think you need one. Pack your shoes either at the base of your bag and build on them or pack them on the corners of the bag. You can also stuff your shoes with socks or jewellery boxes if you have very limited space.
3-Electronics: Always make sure you pack an extra charger for your camera/phone just in case you lose them or they get ruined. Speaking of, bring a camera! This goes without saying but a camera is a must-have when you go on vacation to capture all the memories and beautiful scenery. Another MUST have is a power adapter converter– I had to learn the hard way that not all countries use the same power sockets! So, do your research and find out if you have to buy an adapter converter or else you will not be able to charge your phone/camera/laptop. You can find them at ebay for as little as 5$, or any electronics store in general.
4-Toiletries: Pack all your face washes, creams and other toiletries in a big Ziploc bag so they don’t leak over your clothes, shoes or luggage and make a mess. Make use of the zipper compartments in your luggage and store your bag of toiletries in (one of) them. For the ladies, if you are only taking one bag and no carry-ons, pack your makeup carefully in a well supported makeup bag — make sure it has some sort of cushioning inside so that your makeup (and heart)doesn’t break. You can always pack some of your makeup in your luggage but delicate items like palettes and small brushes should preferably be in your purse or carry-on.
The struggle in packing is to figure out whether you packed too much or too little, and that is why you must plan and go through a list of all the things you should bring before placing them in your luggage. Always consider the duration of your trip because you can make adjustments of how much/how little you should pack. Leave some space in your luggage for souvenirs and anything else you might buy during your visit, and don’t forget to have fun!
About the contributor: Dania Faidi is a Professional Communication international student at Ryerson University in Toronto,ON. Her interests include fashion, photography, and the Media. You can find her on twitter @daniafaidi.