Three Essentials to Packing Smart

Whether you are going on a short week vacation with family and friends or taking your first short term contract assignment with a travel agency, packing can be one of the most stressful preparation tasks. Having tested out many of the famous “travel hacks” myself, I have complied a list of three essential tips that will successfully prepare you to hit the road or take flight.

Packing Cubes

Organization is the biggest challenge when it comes to packing. A tried and true must-have is Packing Cubes. Coming in a variety of sizes, they are the simplest way to organize your shirts from your pants and work clothes from your casual clothes. You can roll, fold, or even “Marie Kondo” your items into them, whatever suits your needs.

Need two more reasons why you should make the purchase? (1) You can easily transfer items from suitcase to drawer when you arrive at your destination and (2), if you are traveling by plane and your bags get searched, you never have to fear flying undergarments in the TSA security line!

You can find a variety of colors, brands, and sizes on Amazon!

Capsule Wardrobe

What to wear might be the biggest decision every day. Deciding what to wear for weeks in advance can be stressful! Packing a capsule wardrobe simplifies the process. A capsule wardrobe is a collection of essential items that do not go out of style, which can then be paired with seasonal pieces. These essential items can be as little as 10 pieces, or up to 40 pieces. That is the beauty of a capsule wardrobe, there are no rules!

A few tips I have learned along the way is to first, determine your wardrobe in a color scheme. This way everything you pack matches and you can make a variety of outfits; personally I pack in black and white. It is also a good idea to save some space in your suitcases by not packing belongings you know you can pick up at your new location. An example is if you wear graphic t-shirts as pajamas/lounge wear but also love to get them as souvenirs – leave them at home. This goes the same for baseball caps and sweatshirts. You always want to leave room for souvenirs, so you might as well leave the items you plan on purchasing at home!

A Piece of Home

One of the most common things people struggle with when traveling is sleeping in a new place. The final advice I have is to pack an item that will make your living space feel more like home. This could be a family photo in a frame that you place on the desk in your new space, a candle that smells like your home state, or a mug that you always drink your morning coffee out of. For me, it is a Vera Bradley travel pillow that unfolds into a blanket. It is great to have a pillow on the plane and also once I have arrived at my destination. This immediately makes the new location feel like home. Finding that one certain piece can make the first few days on any assignment a little better.

You can find a similar item here.

There are so many tips and tricks of the trade that can be shared. Starting with a simple three can take you from a packing beginner to a pro in no time! What are your favorite packing tips for taking a contract assignment? I would love to know. Leave me a comment below!

Sadie Denker is a Social Media Recruiter for the Imaging division of Aureus Medical Group.

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