For the last year, airlines have been cracking down on the use of overhead storage on planes. Only one overhead small carry-on is the rule for each passenger.
TravelSmith's Kara Parsons addresses a few basic packing mistakes, offers clothing suggestions, and finally shows you how to pack.
The traveler's first concern is how the clothes are going to look when they are unpacked, Parsons notes. A basic mistake is to take clothing made of the wrong fabrics. The clothes you wear to work are not the clothes you want to wear on a trip. For traveling, choose fabrics that have the comfort of cotton but don't wrinkle.
Here are some fabric suggestions:
- Sub-plex lycra fit. This is a fiber that has a knit construction accommodating many different body types. It stretches where you stretch. Virtually wrinkle proof, even a dress made of it can be rolled up.
- Treated cotton. A new chemical process produces a wrinkle-free cotton that is a better alternative than a poplin suit or shirt. Avoid 100 percent cotton that is not treated.
- Tropical weight polyester micro-fiber. Polyester fibers are very tiny and very wrinkle resistant.
- Prospin. This blend has fibers that are cotton wrapped around a polyester core so you get the benefits of wrinkle resistance but you don't feel the polyester on your skin.
Versatility in clothing is important, so here are some do's and don'ts:
- Don't take a different pair of shoes for every occasion. Shoes are space consuming. Take a pair of comfortable casual shoes that are good for walking and can be paired with a dinner outfit.
- Don't bring outfits that are good for only one occasion. Think simple, solid, separates that are easily mixed and matched. This way you can get a lot of wear from a few pieces.
- Do find supplex shorts that double as swim trunks, two-in-one garments, reversible belts and reversible wrapped skirts.
- Do think of things that can be worn for daytime and nighttime like wrinkle-free khakis for dinner and day wear.
Think in terms of "packability."
Clothing can be warm without being bulky. Garments made out of micro-fleece, an ultra-light version of Polartec fleece with high warmth-to-weight ratio, keeps you warm without being bulky or heavy.
Weatherproof micro-fiber polyesters are good fabrics for jackets. They have a lightweight waterproof shell
And did you know that pants made out of woven Supplex use half the packing space as conventional cotton pants like jeans? Tencel is another natural fiber that packs small. And it can be combined with cotton to make a tencel cotton jean.
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