PACKING 101: BE PREPARED!
by Celece Seegmiller
With the summer travel season just around the corner, I decided to share some packing tips and ideas for your next vacation. While you hope it never happens, flights can be delayed due to weather, mechanical issues, and a variety of other reasons. When this happens, passengers may be re-routed to various cities, and sometimes forced to stay overnight in a hotel. Often, bags are checked through to the final destination and passengers do not see their luggage until the following day. In rare circumstances, luggage may show up a few days later, or not at all. What does this mean? Like the Boy Scout motto says, “Be Prepared!”
Most flights allow one carry-on bag and one item, such as a backpack, to be stowed underneath the seat free of charge. Your carry-ons should contain anything you will need for two or three days, just in case your bags don’t arrive when you do. While it may vary on the destination, I have learned to put the important things in my carry-on such as:
Passport, credit cards, and money
Travel documents: Vouchers, tickets, travel insurance policy, etc.
Any valuable items
Toiletries: one quart-size zipper bag for liquids (liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes must be in 3.4 ounce or smaller plastic bottles placed in the zipper bag) visit: www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/liquids-rule
Travel hair dryer and curling iron
Comfortable walking shoes
Light rain jacket and travel umbrella
Three or four complete outfits
Telephone, iPad, and noise-cancelling headphones
Power bank to charge electronics
Travel pillow, blanket, and eye mask for long flights
If you are traveling with a companion, split your packed clothing into two suitcases. This way, you will have some clothes and shoes if only one bag arrives.
I was prepared for the worst-case scenario on my trips to Europe last year, all thanks to the help of a few purchases.
I bought a new rolling bag that fits under the seat, and packing cubes for my carry-on and checked bag. The rolling bag has several compartments and provides access to anything I need during the flight. It also connects to my carry-on making it very easy to move from place to place. The packing cubes created space in my overhead carry-on. They were wonderful, especially in my large suitcase when we were moving between several hotels and our ship. They managed space and kept things organized. Both of my items were purchased on ebags.com
I was happy to see my bags upon arrival, but I was ready just in case they were not there. Although you may not need all of the above items for your vacation, remember to keep your essential items with you – just in case your bags arrive after you do.