Packing light for travel is not only convenient, it’s easy. Traveling with heavy baggage can be a real bummer. It’s heavy, bulky and tough to manage at times. Then there’s the fees that most airlines impose for your bags, as if they were passengers. It’s time to rethink how you pack your bags for a trip. Save yourself some headache and cash by learning how to pack your bags the right way: lightly

Footwear First

Think feet before you pack anything. Sadly shoes tend to not only take up a lot of space in your suitcase, but they also tend to be the heaviest. Having the right footwear available to you is important, of course, but how many pairs of shoes will you really need on your trip? The answer: probably not nearly as many as you plan to take with you on your next trip. Scale it back by taking a minute to think about the most appropriate footwear for your trip. If you will be exploring Kilauea and Volcanoes National Park, you’ll need sturdy and comfortable shoes that will keep your feet protected. If you are beaching it, you can easily trim down the footwear. Think necessity. If you will need a pair of bulky shoes, save the space in your suitcase by wearing them while traveling to and from your destination.

Pick the Right Suitcase

Don’t bog yourself down by choosing the wrong suitcase. Your baggage doesn’t have to become your “baggage”. Slim it down by using a smaller and more lightweight bag. It will not only be lighter, but it will also be easier to manage and maneuver through busy airports and tight airplane aisles. A smaller suitcase will also help you minimize and be more selective about what you actually put in it. If you take the biggest suitcase available, you are likely to fill it with items regardless of whether you need them or not. The key to packing lightly is to not overpack.

Cosmetics and Toiletries

When packing for an upcoming trip, analyze your collection of cosmetics and toiletries. Though small, you really don’t need to bring every tube of lipstick you own for your five day getaway. And you probably can skip a few steps in your daily beauty routines, especially if you will be spending time in a rainforest or hiking. You’re on vacation, lighten the load a little by leaving a few of those bottles behind. If there is something that is already provided by the hotel, like a hair dryer, then don’t bring your own. It deserves a vacation too.   


Electronic devices can be invaluable, especially when traveling. You can have one device that is multi-functional. Take along books, movies, travel apps, event tickets and itineraries all on a single device. But don’t forget that traveling lightly does not mean packing a tablet, laptop and an e-reader. The key here is to bring just one device.    


When you are packing, lay out all of the clothes, shoes and other items that you think you will need to take with you. Now ditch anything that cannot be used more than one time on your trip. Unless it’s for a special occasion, you can get away with repurposing a couple of pair of shorts. Pair them with a different top the second time around and no one will know the difference. Eliminate anything that is similar to another item. Are half a dozen bathing suits really a necessity for a 5 day trip? Nope. You can also wear some of the bulkier items, like a sweater, while making your way to your destination to also help free up some space.