Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Packing for the trip home!

"I'm great at packing up to leave on vacation. However my suitcase coming home is usually a giant MESS!
Is it just me who shoves everything back in their bags at the last minute and then can't find anything when they get home? How do you pack for the return home? Do you have any tips or tricks that you use on vacation to make the experience easier once you're back home?" (source)

The last thing we want to be thinking about is the end of our vacation but no matter how much we try and put it off it always comes about and we have to start the journey home. 
Packing is a pain, I'll admit it, especially when you're trying to squeeze in those souvenirs, over-sized teddies, that must have obscurely shaped and over sized mug - how do we fit it all in whilst trying to squeeze out every last second of magic? We don't want to risk forgetting to pack our super-comfy-had-them-for-five-years flip flops, but do we really need to repack our toothbrush and half used toothpaste? I know quite a few people who end up leaving so much behind because they can't fit all their new goodies in the suitcase  - only to regret it once they get home.
Here's a few of my top tips for re-packing your suitcase on the return journey so you're faced with less loss and hassle once you get home!

  1. Pack light on the outbound journey. The less you take to begin with the more space you already have for bringing things home!
  2. Use the laundry facilities at your resort. Don't look at me like that, I don't enjoy doing washing whilst I'm on holiday either but if I'm packing less to begin with them chances are I'm going to need to do at least one if not two loads of washing just to make sure I've got something clean to wear! Also, the more I wash over there means I have less to wash when I get home. Throw the washing on and grab that book you brought along, or take a quick dip in the pool - you don't have to watch those socks go around. I've never spent more than 90mins washing/drying clothes. Do the washing whilst everyone else is getting ready then leave the clothes on the backs of chairs in your room to dry whilst you go out for the day!
  3. Mail home anything that is oversized, heavy or just too awkward to pack (things like artwork that's pre-framed, snow-globes etc). If you use a post office off Disney property it will be a lot cheaper.
  4. Roll your clothes! This saves so much space and is also a great way to protect the more 'breakable' items in your case. Your clothes won't crease and you'll create a lot of space!
  5. Utilize your hang-luggage for small souvenirs, breakables and bulky clothes like jeans and jackets. Just make sure you don't put any snow-globes in there or liquids over 50ml!
  6. Space savers or packing cubes are a great idea for compartmentalising your things. They come in all kinds of sizes and some suitcases are even specifically designed to be used with packing cubes. I prefer cubes to space savers as you will need a vacuum with a hose to suck the space out. 
  7. Leave behind the essential non-essentials like toothpaste and toothbrushes, mouth wash, shampoo and conditioner etc. I always take a travel sized toothbrush and smaller/cheaper toiletries knowing what doesn't get used will get left behind! 
  8. What didn't get used last time? We all have those items that don't even leave the suitcase for the duration of the holiday! There's always something we pack with intention in mind but it never quite sees the light of day once we reach the other end. We've saved so much space over the years by making a note of things we didn't use on a previous trip.  
Keep in mind that you might want to start packing around 2 days before you're due to go home. You're not rushing the inevitable but it will make for a more relaxed last day if your not frantically trying to pack everything and anything in your suitcase!

Are you a stuffer or a meticulous packer? 

Until next time,
Sarah

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