Monday, February 10, 2014

Basic Travel Tips Part One: Packing

      So, I'm a little bit bored and decided that since I'm writing on a travel blog, maybe I should share some of the madness that goes through my mind when I'm getting ready to leave home for any overnight sort of trip, or even just an extended day trip that will take me further than about and hour and a half from home. The first thing I will tell you is that a packing list is important, but generally only for trips lasting more than one night, and even then only when you are traveling further than about an hour from home. To make these lists (or just to make sure I have everything I need), there are several questions that I ask myself, and these may be helpful to you too.

  1. How am I traveling? These may seem like an oddball question, but what I mean is what mode of transport am I taking? Am I going by car, plane, bus, or train or some combination of the four? This determines how you are going to pack, in terms of the number of bags you can take, what you can take, and perhaps most important do you need to leave room in your suitcase for toiletries. 
  2. Where am I going? This determines what all you will have to pack, and also what you will pack for clothing. For instance, if I'm going to spending the weekend off the grid, then I am going to need to pack absolutely everything, from shampoo and conditioner to food as well. This is what I have to do when I go to State, as the hotel food is expensive and questionable, and it's just generally easier to pack most if not all the food I will need; I also have to make sure I don't forget toiletries as I can't just go somewhere to buy things I forget. However, if I'm going somewhere like Orlando with my parents, forgetting something isn't quite as big a deal, simply because I know my mom will have a replacement. 
  3. How long will I be gone? This is another what will I pack question. However, for this question it is a matter of am I going to be packing one outfit per day, or will I be packing a few essentials to mix and match to create new outfits for an extended period of time? For something like State, there are certain things I have to wear each day, and it is in April so I have to pack a pair of pants for each day as well. But if I'm going somewhere for, say, three weeks like I did last summer, I pack generally five bottoms, five tops, a dress, and five sets of pajamas (or three, depending on if it is cold or not). 
  4. What will I be doing? This is simple. If you're going for business, pack a majority of professional clothes with some casual pieces mixed in. If you're going for pleasure, vacation clothes and maybe a nice piece or two just in case a fancier occasion (like, say, Christmas). In terms of shoes, if you're going for business, nice shoes are a must; if it's pleasure you seek, comfortable footwear is a must.
     And that's it! These four questions are the basis for packing my suitcase for all my adventures. Stay tuned for part two of my Basic Travels Tips series. Until then,

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