NiQi Travel Guides; Pack like a Pro

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I’ve been thinking about publishing a ‘How to Pack for your Holiday’ post for some time now. Much of my writing is often encouraged by my friends, and upon a broader discussion, I realised just how much people value the added insight on what to pack when you travel. I know that I’ve been using the suggestions listed below for most of our holiday’s and also learning alot along the way as I travel. This is merely a guide, and whilst every family, or couples needs differ, I hope that you are able to pick up on something within this post that you too find useful. I also encourage you to share your suggestions and you may do so on Instagram, via email or right here on this post.

FS paris

Once I’ve booked and confirmed everything, do I need to take hard copies of all my documents?

Yes! Documents online might not open immediately on a device, and often, you aren’t allowed to switch on any devices. Remember to print the following:

  1. Air ticket confirmations. This would include your reservation number and schedule of flights.
  2. Hotel confirmation/s. Note to print out the document with a reservation number and the physical address and telephone number for the Hotel.
  3. Copies of your passport.
  4. Copies of your Visa
  5. Any tour bookings, or any additional tickets or excursions that you have booked and paid for online. (this might include transportation tickets)
  6. A copy of your medical insurance
  7. A sheet with contact details of family in SA in case of an emergency

A few important points to note:

  1. Make sure that you check the expiry date and available ages on your passport.
  2. Inform your bank that you are traveling abroad to ensure that they are aware that you will be using your credit card on holiday. They might assume that there is fraudulent activity on your card and block it.
  3. Email a copy of your travel itinerary to someone back home. Ensure that flight numbers are included.

How can I use the technology available to me to simplify how I travel? What are some must-know points when taking chargers and devices abroad?

  1. If you travel often, or are planning on being away for a longer length of time, consider purchasing a portable WiFi modem. It’s small enough to slip into an evening bag (think small phone-size) and comes with a battery. All you do is insert a data card from the country that you are visiting. Purchase the Prepaid plan but purchase the fastest Data to suit your budget and trip duration. This modem allows for multiple devices to be linked so you are able to use your laptop and your partner’s phone/iPad etc. The WiFi is extremely helpful in using Google maps to assist with bus/train routes, which train to get on and times and also indicates what time shops close or open. You can also connect to a compass for Qiblah and most importantly, use your phone to make free WhatsApp calls back to South Africa. This ensures that you don’t need to worry about high data or roaming costs. You can give the WiFi code to other travelers in your group.
  2. Pack all necessary chargers and 2-pin ones because they work anywhere.
  3. I highly recommend purchasing 2 power banks before you travel; a small one which can be used as a back-up and a larger one with 2 outputs. These are obtainable from Autostyle Motorsport www.autostyle.co.za
  4. Consider purchasing a digital scale. It’s available at most luggage stores and are very small to fit into your luggage.
  5. Look online for App’s that might assist you while you travel. Download them in a WiFi zone before you leave.

How do I know what luggage is best to purchase? What are my personal recommendations?

We’ve always sought the assistance of Imitiaz Saleys of Saleys Travel Bags in Ormonde for our luggage requirements. Not only does he offer a personal recollection of his experience with luggage, he allows you to select the luggage that you feel is appropriate for your family and budget. He is well priced and stocks Cellini, Delsey, Tosca, Samsonite and Travelite luggage sets.

Imtiaz advised us on selecting a hard-case S’Cure Samsonite Luggage set which included the medium sized ‘check-in’ bag and smaller size ‘cabin bag’. The medium sized bag is the same size and capacity as that of the largest Cellini – any larger than this and it’s total capacity would be 40kg, which is generally too much on Economy or Business class cabins.

Why did we choose the S’Cure Samsonite:

1) Double wheels for easy manoeuvrability making it ideal for the kids to push around their own bags.

2) Durable and light; possibly one of the lightest bags that I’ve handled, coming in at 2.9kg for the cabin bag (Celinni’s larger size bag weighs around 2.9kg but this is a fabric luggage set with a zip).

3) Fully lined divider in the top which closes and lowered cross ribbons with a large pocket in the bottom shell.

4) 3-point lock accepted by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and NO ZIPS! Apparently travelers to the USA are encouraged to use bags which have the TSA lock so security may open your luggage if there are any security concerns. In some cases, bags are broken and taped up if they can’t get access to it.

Imitiaz also advised us to get a bag cover, to extend the longevity of our luggage. He also suggested that we purchase ‘flat packed’ bags. These can be packed into our departure luggage and used when returning back to SA for any additional purchases.

P.S They come in AMAZING colours, so treat the kids to their own choice of colour to allow them the excitement of traveling! We opted for the Bright Pink, Pacific Blue, Dark Blue and Aqua Blue luggage sets. These will also make it easier to identify on the carousels.

It’s been 2 years since we purchased our set and have used them repeatedly since then. We make sure that we put the protective cover over and always wrap our bags in plastic at the airport, not only from a safety perspective but to ensure that our bags don’t damage in transit.

What do I pack in my Carry on?

Usually, the duration of your flight will determine how much additional items you need to pack into your Carry-on. I always pack one full set of clothes that match the shoes that I’m wearing on-board. Make certain that you pack a set of underwear too. Remember to empty just a small amount of your face cleanser and cream into a container. You will definitely use this when freshening up before you land. Most airlines provide basic toiletries like toothbrushes, so it’s not always necessary to pack these.

In addition, take any sort of reading material, your iPad if you’re planning on watching a series, chargers (you can charge your devices on-board while you fly), headphones, hand sanitizer, a pair of socks, writing material and a pen, printed copies of all travel documentation especially your Visa and Hotel accommodation confirmation, travel-sized board games (if that’s your thing), painkillers and Iliadin nose drops.

Remember it’s safer to pack your valuables in your carry-on luggage, which might include jewelry, shoes or handbags and sunglasses and make-up.

Remember, you aren’t allowed to take full sized bottles of make-up so decant what you are able to.

If you are a Muslim traveler, you can purchase a very small, lightweight travel musallah from any Islamic related store. I don’t wear Hijaab and often am not appropriately dressed to perform salaah. To ensure that I am able to pray wherever I am, I purchased a fold-up prayer garment called Pret-a-Prier from Dubai. Find them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PretaPrier/

It’s small and folds up into a little bag. It covers your head and arms and comes in a long length so it is suitable for any height.

Where to begin packing? I like to start with packing my toiletries.

Usually the first thing that I begin to prepare when traveling are my list of toiletries. It is something that I never leave until the last minute and I usually do a proper shop and then determine how much to take. If you’re able to gauge how much product you normally use, this might be one of the best travel hacks that I can share. Depending on the length of my stay, I either take halves of everything, or almost-full bottles, with the exception of face products (usually people don’t normally buy this on holiday, but items like deodorant or showergel may easily purchased, or hotel amenities may be used). I usually prefer to take just enough so I’m able to discard the empty’s before returning. It might seem like a lot of ground work just to determine how much or little baby powder you might need on holiday, but trust me, no one wants to lug around a bottle that has one or two uses left back home. Not to mention all the space this takes up!

Here is a guideline of what I generally take along with me. This list is suitable for a general 2 to 3 week stay abroad:

  1. Face products (this would include your cleanser, moisturiser, any serums/additional face products and eye cream + sunblock for your face. Remember it is generally best to take a full size product of this, as you might shower more than you usually do when you’re on holiday especially if spending time at the beach. Remember to also take along an exfoliator specifically if you’re doing a congested city-holiday. If you’ve forgotten to pack this, resort to using hotel sachets of brown sugar mixed with honey, it is safe on your skin and it’s a quick fix if you’re feeling a bit congested or dull. If you generally use a sponge or Buff Puff (available at Clicks or Dischem), remember to pack that too in a little Ziplock packet so it doesn’t mess the rest of your bag if moving from place to place.
  2. Body bath products: Depending on the type of hotels that I’m staying at, I don’t usually worry too much about taking along full sized bottles of bath or body wash. The better end hotels usually provide larger bottles of showergel or soap, but with that said, it might not always agree with your skin. Pack a half bottle worth (depending on the frequency of your shower) so you can try out the hotel products in-between showers. I was recently gifted a full sized bottle of Ted Baker bath products by online store Laboutique which I’ve packed away to take along with me on holiday. If you love to associate a smell to travel memories, purchase something different and distinctive to take with, it will change your whole travel mindset! Remember to pack a sponge if you usually use one. Bath products might include: Showergel or soap (remember to pack each of these in a ziplock bag if possible), exfoliator and sponge or facecloth (whatever your preference is).
  3. After shower products: I like to use talcum powder after a bath. If you haven’t tried it, you might or might not like the dry-like feeling of it against your skin. I feel that this prevents me from sweating. Take the smallest bottle that is available so you don’t have to lug around a very large container. Take your usual body cream, but try to determine how much you might be using. It’s almost impossible to decant this for a longer stay, so rather take what you need and throw the empty bottle away before returning. After shower products might include: Baby powder, body cream, roll-on, deodorant and sunblock (always look for the highest SPF on holiday.
  4. Foot care products: I have naturally dry skin on my feet and hands. I find it very difficult leaving my hands and skin without maintenance. I usually have to scrub and moisturize daily to ensure that they are smooth. I always remember to pack my essential list of foot care products but I also need to help my feet before I travel by doing a pedicure and manicure to get them holiday ready. I have been visiting My Skin Lab at the Blubird Center in Athol (contact: 011 786 3222) for a few months now. I have done two course of their Medi Heel treatment which literally scrubs away all of the dead skin on your feet. They recommend 3 treatments with a three week gap between them. I planned them in such a way, that I would have my final treatment just before I travel. My skin didn’t require much other maintenance after this, other than daily moisturizing. To ensure that they stay smooth and presentable on holiday, remember to pack the following: Foot scrub/file (always available at Clicks or Dischem), foot care creams (I usually find that Zam Buk works well. You may also try Epimax foot cream), a nail file and nail clippers just to shorten and neaten your nails if you’re away for a longer period of time.
  5. Perfume: This is one product I wouldn’t usually skimp on. I love to take my best perfume with me on holiday. Often, we purchase a bottle or two whilst abroad, but rather take along a scent that you’re comfortable and familiar with. The safest way to transport this is by wrapping it in a cloth or cushioning it with something. For the airplane, I use a Travalo atomiser. You simple refill your spray directly from any standard perfume bottle which is ready-to-use, convenient and elegant, it is indispensable for your modern on-the-go lifestyle. Its 5ml engine bottle contains up to 65 sprays of your favorite fragrance (single use). The level indicator window allows you to see what is left inside. The atomiser is totally free of glass, leak proof and aircraft approved for carry-on baggage. You may purchase this on any Emirates flight for around $20 (I’ve used mine on at least 5 trips abroad already).
  6. Pocket sized wet-wipes and tissues: I like to take a few packs of Dettol wetwipes (the smaller packs work better as they’re not bulky in your handbag) and travel sized tissue packs. I usually take at least 4 to 5 packs of each along (and usually the larger packs if my kids are traveling with us).
  7. Extra hair bands, grips, and clips and hair-related products: These are off-course very useful and sometimes tend to get forgotten. Make a note to pack it in when packing your hairbrush and other hair-related items. I never take a hairdryer with me, because I know that most hotels supply one. They’re aren’t always the fastest but they do the job sufficiently. Remember to pack in your basic hair washing products and any heat products if you’re planning to take along a flatiron. A showercap is not a must, as many hotels usually provide this. Hairspray isn’t a necessity, but I usually like to take a bottle along especially if I know that I’ll need it to settle curls. Many people prefer a fuss-free, maintenance-free holiday, but I usually can’t get by on that. Especially if it’s a city break. I also take this opportunity to take along a few flower crowns or other prettier hair accessories that I wouldn’t normally wear back home. Try Lovisa for these, plus they’re on Sale currently (July 2016).
  8. Feminine products
  9. Dental care
  10. Razor blades, wax strips or other Hair removal products: Until recently, I have begun pain-free laser hair removal. I’m glad that I waited this long (laser is often interfered by hormones, pregnancy and other factors), which might have meant that it would have all been a waste earlier on in my life. With that said, I began ‘prepping’ my body a month ago, which allowed me a session of laser before I leave for my travels. In the event of a patch of hair growing back, your therapist should recommend simply shaving it off. I was prompted to start Laser removal after seeing the incredible results on my husband. I am so impressed by the stumped growth and general smoothness of my skin, that I think it should be a must-do for any woman, or young girl at some stage in their lives.

I often wonder where do woman find space in their luggage to store those large, top-zip structured cosmetics bags, when all I can think of is how many shoes I’m able to fit in it’s place! I like to use a fold-up bag with two zips to keep all the liquids contained. I take 2 bags with, one for bath and face, and one for body. Those bags can either roll up, or be left opened and placed flat on top of all the items below it in a bag.

The other bag that goes along with the toiletries is your make-up bag. On holiday, I keep my look fairly simple. I stick to a foundation, translucent powder, blush, highlighter, bronzer and Evian mist for face-prep. I take along 1 Urban Decay Naked Palette, a liquid liner, mascara, eye pencil and 3 to 4 lipsticks. These usually fit into one small make-up bag, along with my essential brushes. I know that I’ll likely buy a few make-up products abroad, so I try to keep this bag fairly minimal, with just the basics that my skin is used to. In addition, I always pack a pack of Nivea or Johnson facial wipes. These come in super handy when you’ve returned back after a night out and really can’t bring yourself to wash your face (there are those nights!).

The lists above would likely apply to most females. Of course, there are items that you might feel are more necessary than others and prefer to include those into your bags. I tend to stick to these and again, only take enough to last for that particular time and discard the bottles once empty to avoid bringing them back.

Surely there is a pharmacy around the main areas of where I am going, is it necessary to pack any medication?

The worst feeling is being ill late at night with no medication available to pull you through until the morning. It’s something that I highly recommend packing, even if you never use any of it. Aside from packing chronic medication, remember to pack your daily medication that you have to take. I like to pack the following, as a precautionary measure. Remember you don’t need a full card, so take whatever you have in your home, even if it is only 2 or 3 left in a card or container. You might need to get a script if it’s items that are scheduled drugs.

  1. Painkillers; usually the lower dosage items like Panado, Grandpa and Stilpane. Anything stronger like Myprodol might require a script.
  2. Nausea and vomiting: Valoid usually works well. If you have kids, these is a must-add onto your list. Get the Valoid availble in liquid form for them. If you are prone to motion sickness, Valoid will work just as well as Stugeron in this instance.
  3. Diarrhea: You can never be too certain! Smecta works very well, and doesn’t have an awful taste. Remember to pack a few sachets of Rehydrate which restores moisture or fluid if you’ve been throwing up or have had diarrhea.
  4. Medication for hayfever, sinuses or allergies: Consult with your medical practitioner, or use what suits you and your family well, eg. Demazin or Sinumax.
  5. Anti-inflammatory medication: these are especially useful for long bus rides, or most especially on Hajj (when you sleep on the ground in Muzdalifa)
  6. General flu medication: Flusin, Corenza or similar.
  7. Throat lozenges.
  8. Iliadin nose drops (not spray): This is extremely useful to take upon ascent/descent. Taken 30 minutes before both, it prevents that dry nasal feeling and ensures that you don’t get ill during or after flight or ear problems when flying. This was recommended by a trusted ENT, Dr Preba Pillay based in Forsdsburg, Johannesburg.

These usually fit into one very small bag which get left in the zipped section of my check-in luggage. It doesn’t take up much space but might be really useful if and when the need arises. You will need to adjust the list if you are traveling with the very elderly or younger kids.

How much of underwear and sleep-wear does one usually take, and how do you pack them?

To be totally adult about this, this depends on whether or not you’re taking kids with you! If you’re packing for a honeymoon, your necessities might be far more different than doing a trip to Disneyland with 4 children. Either way, pack your most comfortable underwear, and most preferably those that are easier to wash. The padded bras take far longer to dry, which tends to become problematic. Also remember to take a few sets of nude-colour undies as these generally are easier to interchange between outfits (without having to change an entire set of underwear or an outfit to match what’s underneath). I like to take a very small box of hand washing detergent and softener and wash my underwear daily (I buy theses here as it’s a pain to have to go out on the second day of your trip looking for detergent!). Not only is this cleaner, but it also limits the amount of extra weight it takes lugging around underwear to last you for 3 weeks. A great tip is to wash them in the evening, attach to a hanger and leave to dry in your bathroom overnight facing the air-conditioning. They’re usually semi-dry in the morning, and you can move it to your room while you’re out at breakfast. I purchased these drawstring canvas bags from Macaroon last year, and I usually store them in there when I travel. It’s easy to grab what I need and they look neater in my luggage. (Contact Macaroon: www.macaroon.co)

Remember to pack one or two long pants and long tops as sometimes the air-conditioning in rooms tends to get much cooler. For a 3 week trip abroad, I’d say it’s fairly safe to pack 5 pairs of shorts with 6 to 8 tops or vests, 2 pairs of long trousers and 2 long-sleeved tops. Remember to pack a few pairs of socks even if you wouldn’t necessarily wear them at night. If you are traveling to a country that is experiencing Winter, you might need to re-look the list above and dress warmer and more appropriately.

If you don’t have access to bags, simply put them into very large plastic bags that seal at the top. Being able to see your items makes it easier to get them out in the morning with minimal fuss. I usually purchase the very large size from Stashy in Fordsburg (Contact Stashy: 011 492 0033). They also work well to separate your vests, shorts, inners, socks and any other smaller items which might generally get a bit ‘lost’ in your luggage. This also avoids any mistakes that might happen if any liquid leaks out in your luggage.

Also remember to take a pair of comfortable bedroom slippers, or sandals (one that you usually wear at home) to walk around the room in. I love the Flossy range, and I’ll be packing these into my shoe bag (Contact Flossy: www.flossy.co.za)

What to pack? Surely I can’t possible look stylish every.single.day?

If you pack wisely, you can interchange many outfits with very little fuss. I like to keep some room for new purchases, so instead of packing bulky pieces of clothing (like boots, or longer, heavier jackets) I try to keep it lightweight and simple.

I try to avoid taking just-the-basics. I still want to look chic on holiday and that doesn’t necessarily mean dressing up everyday, it just means putting together an outfit well enough that you look and feel great. I’ve begun packing aside what I’m taking with on my trip. It follows these suggestions and try to make a mental note of it, so I don’t fuss around too much every morning deciding what to wear.

One pair of black culottes. Culottes are still very much trending from last Summer. If you managed to buy a pair, now’s the time to take it out and pair it with 2 to 3 blouses that can shift from day to night without much hassle. Culottes work well with sheer blouses with sandals, t-shirts, jackets and sneakers or formal shirts tucked in with a belt, chunky jewelry and heels. If you’re wearing them at night, consider a high neck lace top tucked into the culotte with a belt and heels. Try to pack fabrics which require less maintenance, preferably no or light ironing and don’t crease as much. I like culottes as it’s neither formal nor casual, and if it’s black you can wear it at night if you’ve run out of formal options.

These were taken off Pinterest  as style inspiration:

culotte inspiration

* Never rely on packing one white shirt – make-up and environment factors can ruin it so easily. It’s not the most practical colour or outfit to pack on holiday, but it’s so chic and if you’re willing to take that chance, toss one in for a special day out! Remember to pack nude/skin tone underwear or a vest to wear underneath.

holiday3

A pair of skinny jeans. Not just any pair, your best pair. Try to avoid ones with any rips or colour variations (faded jeans). If you want to wear them out at night, the ripped look will just make you look trashy. I’ve decided to wear mine mostly casually, and I’ve styled them with longer length shirts to wear with sandals.

  • An olive front zip top with sleeves that roll and button up (River Island 2016) with tan sandals (this top may be worn with the culottes above with a white vest inside)

holiday2

  • An off-white linen shirt with gold eyelets in front with sleeves that roll and button up (Zara 2016) with tan sandals

holiday1

  • A light blue unbuttoned denim shirt with a white vest inside with tan sandals and a straw midi length hat

Each of the shirts above may be worn again if still in a good condition with a pair of shorts.

A pair of tights could work equally as well, but if you’re thigh heavy or the temps are nearing the upper 20’s, you might feel uncomfortable on holiday, so stick to what you feel great in.

Should I pack resort-wear?

Resort-wear need not necessarily mean wearing pool-side clothing. It could translate into soft flowing dresses, jumpsuits with floral detail or even shorter length dresses that are mainly worn with tie-up sandals.

holiday4

I recently purchased a white jumpsuit from H&M with longer length sleeves with appliqued flowers throughout the jumpsuit. I want to keep the look simple by wearing it with a pair of white and gold sandals for the evening with gold earrings and a bracelet, or a pair of tan tie-ups for the day with a structured hat and beaded chains. I’d likely keep my accessories minimal and fuss-free as that often adds bulk to your luggage.

Depending on your style of holiday, you could get away almost entirely on wearing dresses and skirts. I like to interchange between the city and coast and play around with a few options. With it being Winter in SA, it’s really difficult to find really stand-out resort wear. If you have a few pieces that you would love to take with on holiday, keep it lightweight if you’re only intending on wearing it once or twice.

We’re traveling as a couple, should I pack evening wear?

Yes! I’m a mum of 4, and dinner dates usually only ever happen twice a month if we’ve planned it well enough. I’ve decided to skimp on a lot of day-wear in order to fit in a few nicer dresses and outfits. None of these would actually ever be able to be worn during the day (well, one might in Monaco! ;)) and that’s okay!

I’d recommend one or two nicer dresses with heels to match. Usually, the play-safe options include black and/or nude, but I am loving white heels at the moment and simply adore how they transform an outfit.

TIP: If you’re traveling to Europe, you might need to pack a pair of sandals in your handbag, just to enjoy an after-midnight stroll on the cobbled-stoned streets, which shouldn’t necessarily be problematic.

If you’ve packed a pair of travel-safe black pants, you could wear it with a formal shirt or smarter blouse with heels for the evening. This would mean not needing to pack a few separate pieces of evening wear just to get one wear out of it. Your black culottes and lace top would easily be utilised as night-wear with a high ponytail and statement earrings.

On to shoes. I’ve spoken about wearing heels on holiday – who does that?!

I’ve learnt to take a pair of heels on holiday because you.never.know.

Often, if the mood arises, and you’ve exhausted all other sight-seeing options, you and your partner might want to just do dinner at one really nice restaurant. A pair of sneakers, or sandals might not always be appropriate. If you have to, and it’s the only pair that you take, pack a pair of nude heels, or black, if it’s the only other colour you own.

TIP: The best way to pack them when traveling is into separate shoe bags. Perhaps try wrapping tissue paper around the heels so they don’t damage or dig in to your clothing, and pack them away from the sides or top of your luggage to avoid the heel breaking with mishandling of luggage.

What shoes should I pack? I’m not really into high heels or fancier shoes.

  1. Two pairs of nicer sandals are a must. I’d recommend black with some detail and a tan. Both of these may be interchanged with outfits and are small enough to be pushed into any available space in your luggage.
  2. So are a pair of chic sneakers (I’m not talking about neon Nike’s) – think neutral lacey Superga’s or white tennis shoes which can we worn with skirts and shorts. Again, Flossy’s are great options here and are super comfortable to walk around in. They slip on and off easily which is a plus. I’ve found that my Adidas Stan Smith’s are amongst one of my most comfortable sneakers. You might want to consider this if you can plan a few outfits around it.
  3. One closed pair of loafers or pumps.
  4. A pair of sandals or flops which may be used at the poolside or beach.
  5. A pair of tie-up or fringed sandals which are so on-trend right now. This is a nice-to-have and not a necessity.

I wouldn’t recommend taking any more than this. You’re likely to buy a pair on holiday, and even if you don’t you will get just enough wear out of all the shoes listed above. The most important thing is that all the shoes above must be worn in and comfortable to spend time walking around in. If your feet aren’t comfortable, you are guaranteed not to have a good time.

TIP: Remember to take care of your shoes in order to prolong the wear and give them a wipe down after every second use. I’d suggest packing all your shoes in one section of your bag, and you may want to store them in shoe bags or in ziplock packets.

Depending on the style of holiday, and the country that you’re visiting, you may want to pack a pair of Nikes sneakers.

Do I need to take a handbag or should I rely on walking around with a napsack?

Er. Yes. And No to the napsack.

Given the high rate of gypsy activity and petty crime in most European countries, make certain that your handbag closes. It should be large enough to keep your camera, a few snacks, a wallet and a light jersey. It should feel comfortable on your shoulder and still look chic if you want to take it out for the evening. One hangbag usually suffices (I’d suggest black or tan) just because it takes up so much space in your luggage. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend taking more than two handbags as it tends to get cumbersome and rather unnecessary. If you must, rather take an evening bag instead. You won’t be able to fit much into it, but it will be a break away from carrying around a larger bag.

How do I pack my luggage?

As I recommended earlier on in this post, purchase larger sized bags that seal at the top using a ‘zipper’ like mechanism. Pack similar items in it, i.e all your bras, panties, vests, pajama sets or shorts, long sleeved tops, socks, jeans, white shirts/tops, etc.

Try to pack all these items as flat as you are able to. Don’t mix shoes in this section of your packing. A lot of online suggestions recommend rolling your clothes to prevent creases etc. Having to iron your clothes on holiday is almost a given, so rolling clothes doesn’t attract me that much. I’d rather have everything neatly separated so I’m able to gauge how much of clothing I’m left with to wear.

And one of the most useful tips that I can impart is to store all dirty laundry into one bag so it’s easier to empty out at home. If you have packets or the laundry bags that are available in hotel room cupboards, utilise those to keep your bags look neat even when returning home.

I hope that I’ve been able to share with you some tips on making your packing for a holiday abroad easier. We leave for France soon and I look forward to sharing my destination profile with my readers. Do follow me on Snapchat and Instagram for a peek into my travels.

Snapchat: naqiyahmayat

Instagram: theniqipassport

11 Responses
  • Aadil Hassim
    July 31, 2016

    Slmz. Great post, lots of great useful tips that many will benefit from… I often travel to the U.S., mainly west coast (San Francisco, Silicon Valley, Vegas) so if there’s anything specific you need to know about those regions, I’d be happy to share!

    I have to admit, as a guy my packing experience is very different… but that may be due to the craziness of the corporate world. I usually pack an hour or two before I leave for the airport – so packing for business travel is something I can do like a pro, lol! 🙂

    Again, happy to share any of these experiences with you.

  • Aadil Hassim
    July 31, 2016

    Great post, and many useful tips, thank you NiQi. I travel more for business than I do for pleasure and I completely agree with all of these valuable tips, they’re spot on!

    Money (preferably not cash), passports and your mobile device are the key things to never let out of your site!

  • Laaiqah
    July 31, 2016

    Love the article! Would you recommend using garment savers? I recently bought some but thought perhaps it would be too bulky to use for my packing.

    Also the clothing picture with the black pants, peach, white and black tops where can they be purchased?

    • Naqiyah
      July 31, 2016

      Laaiqah, I’ve never used garment savers and I tend to steer away from anything that adds any additional weight to my luggage.
      The Black Culottes are from River Island.
      The white high collared pleated top is from H&M.
      The peach top with cut-out fabric is by Ted Baker.
      The long sleeve, high-collared top with shoulder detail is from Forever New.

      Most of these items were purchased between 6-8 month ago (when we were still in Spring!)

  • Tasneem
    July 31, 2016

    Excellent post!!You have thought of everything:)

  • Rubina
    August 1, 2016

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading this post. As always, Naqiyah, your attention to detail is unparalleled! I’m in hijab though, so naturally longer length pieces tend to bulk up the suitcase. However, I find that fabrics like silk (which fold up really small, thereby taking up far less space) and cotton, which are lightweight, comfy, and low-maintenance work really well when on holiday; and for headscarves I pack one or two Amirah-style burkis in black, as well as a couple of fancier (again-silk) scarves.

    • Naqiyah
      August 1, 2016

      Thank you so much for taking the time to share your advice on packing for a Hijaab-friendly wardrobe Rubina.
      I always appreciate the feedback from readers, so your comment is highly valued! Do keep well.

  • Rezina
    August 3, 2016

    Great post and very detailed. I find the app ” Worldmate” very easy to navigate and user friendly to store all your flight details and hotel reservations.

  • Fatima Hajat
    August 4, 2016

    Thank you for the lovely article. You have thought of absolutely everything and the tips are very much needed 🙂 I would like to share my findings with you as well as I am a frequent traveller to Beijing so if anyone is traveling to China note that your portable modem from SA won’t work it isn’t compatible with the network in China the best bet is to get a SIM card in the country there are free wifi spots all over the country you can hook up free of charge , also power banks have to have the voltage on it or else it gets trashed on your way out of the country so make sure the voltage is written on the power bank before purchasing one. Once again thank you for the awesome article keep them coming 🙂

    • Naqiyah
      August 4, 2016

      Thank you for sharing this valuable tip! I didn’t know this, so I’ll make a mental note to remember it if I travel to China.

  • Rehana
    August 5, 2016

    Salaams Naqiyah, I always pack my favourite tea and sugar sachets not forgetting the Nandos sauce 🙂 Your post is right on points.

    Shukran for always Sharing <3

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