|Carolyn in Torun, Poland, circa 2005|
Having left a corporate career in sales and lived overseas, I have traveled a lot. My last trip as a corporate road warrior had me off to Japan with all of four days notice. When I showed up at the airport my male counterparts were surprised that my only luggage was an 18 inch Travelpro carry-on and a purse large enough to hold my computer.
With a little bit of organization, you too can be jetting off to far flung places at a moment's notice. Here are my tips for packing light and enjoying the ride:
1) Pick your bags---Try to limit yourself to one small sturdy bag per person. This can even save you money with the airlines’ nickeling and diming for baggage charges these days.
2) Pack your bags---If you travel frequently, keep small sample sized toiletries in your travel bag at all times. This saves packing time and avoids forgotten items.
3) Start with your itinerary---For business or pleasure, you should have an idea of your daily travel plans. This will help you pick out the necessary clothes and shoes.
4) Get back to the basics---When traveling, stick to easy care mix and match separates or suits in the same color palette. I always try to limit myself to two pairs of shoes of the same color: one casual and one dressy.
5) Use every nook and cranny---Rolling knit items can save space. You can also pack socks and undergarments inside of your extra pair of shoes that are covered with plastic bags. Neatly folding dirty clothes inside of plastic bags saves space on the way home.
6) Relax---Don’t worry if you forget something. Unless you are traveling to a very remote part of the world, you can almost always buy what you need or wash clothes at your destination.
Carolyn Anderson-Fermann is a public speaker, organizing expert and founder of Simply Organized Life. To receive a free copy of Carolyn's "Secrets of a Simply Organized Life"and a monthly subscription to the e-newsletter "Your Simply Organized Life" sign up here.