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5 Packing Resolutions to Make This Year

The beginning of a new year is the perfect time to change bad habits and make resolutions. This year, why not make a few travel-themed pledges—specifically, packing-focused ones? 

Committing to these five packing resolutions will help make your next trip easier and more enjoyable. 

Stop Overpacking and Go Carry-on Only

Overflowing suitcase on a couch
auremar | Adobe Stock

Skip the stress over whether your bag will make it to your destination and learn how to become a carry-on only packer. Not only will you not have to worry about losing your bag, you’ll also have to drag less stuff around with you to/from the airport and in between hotels, which will make for a more enjoyable travel experience.

If I can’t convince you to go carry-on only, at least put an Apple Air Tag in your bag so you can track its journey to baggage claim.  

Take Better Care of Your Gear

You’d never unpack without putting your dirty clothes in the laundry, but when was the last time you actually cleaned your suitcase? To keep your bag (and the contents inside of it) in good condition, you’ll want to start giving your luggage a good cleaning every few trips.

Follow our easy guide here to learn exactly what you need to do to keep your suitcase in good condition. 

Make Packing Easier on Yourself

Woman with packing list packing a suitcase
Charlie's | Adobe Stock

Packing is second only to long-haul flights as the worst part of travel, in my opinion. To make the process less painful, try keeping your bag partially pre-packed. I like to replenish my travel-size toiletries after each trip and keep my toiletry bag fully stocked ready to go in my suitcase, which means I have one less thing to worry about packing for my next trip.

Having pre-populated packing lists can also be a big time-saver. Use our downloadable checklists for a variety of trip types (including beach vacations, cruises, and more), or create your own custom version in the notes app on your phone.  

Stop Last-Minute Packing

Woman kneeling on top of full overflowing suitcase, trying to close it
Nomad_Soul | Adobe Stock

If you’re panic packing hours before you leave for your flight, you’re more likely to leave something important behind or overpack. Take out your suitcase a week before your trip and slowly pack as you come across items you’ll need to bring. This allows you extra time to do laundry or buy anything you might need on your trip.

Invest in a Quality Suitcase

Man wheeling suitcase down airport hallway
Prostock-studio | Adobe Stock

A quality suitcase makes packing (and travel) just a little easier. A good suitcase has features (like pockets and compartments) to keep you organized, zippers that will hold even if you’ve overstuffed your bag, and smooth-rolling wheels that make walking to the gate a breeze. 

Some investment-worthy suitcases the SmarterTravel team likes include Beis Travel’s Carry-On, Roam’s Carry-On, and Samsonite’s Under-Seat Carry-On Spinner.  

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