Packing your suitcase for a trip away is an exercise in fitting a large amount of clothes into a very small space and complying with the increasingly restrictive luggage allowances imposed by airlines today. Here’s how you do it.

Plan Ahead

Plan your packing. Take only what you’ll really need. Think about the activities you have planned, how long you’ll be away, what the weather is likely to be. All these things can help you define your requirements and eliminate unnecessary items.

Only Take What You Really Need

Select your clothes and pile them on the bed. No matter how well you’ve planned, you only need about 60% of that pile. What can you get rid of? Have you chosen clothes that can do double duty? Can that sundress be dressed up with a pair of heels and worn in the evening too? How many pairs of knickers do you really need? Will there laundry facilities where you’re going?


Begin your packing by rolling softer, wrinkle-resistant clothes (t-shirts, jeans etc.) into tight cylinders and placing in a layer along the bottom of the suitcase.


Fold long items like slacks, jackets and dresses in half along their vertical axis and then drape flat over your cylinders so that half the length of the garment lies outside the suitcase – you’ll see why later.  Position hems and waistbands at alternate ends of the suitcase to avoid stacking them over each other.


Fold lighter, wrinkle-prone garments into flat rectangles and place on top of the slacks, dresses etc.

Protect those Toiletries

Place toiletries in a sealed, waterproof bag. Create a space for this toiletries bag in the centre of your lighter garments – this will afford delicate containers the greatest protection.

Drape Again

Now, take the ends of those garments hanging outside the case and drape them one by one over the lighter clothes. In this way you’ll make a neat, stable parcel that won’t shift so much in transit. Less shifting means less wrinkling.

Maximise Space

Stuff small items like socks and underwear into any available nook and cranny.

A Stable Parcel

Take a plastic dry-cleaning bag, place over your clothes and tuck in firmly to further increase the stability of your clothes-parcel.


Place your shoes in the crevices at the sides and ends of the case.

Enjoy Your Holiday

And you’re done! Breathe a sigh of relief, close and lock your suitcase, and get ready to enjoy your holiday.

Learn how the experts do it in this video.

Tags: , ,


  1. Bonni Wilde says:

    In general, it is great advice on packing a suitcase, but putting a toilet bag at the bottom of your carry on will not work well for international flights, when security restirictions require that LAGs be produced to security staff in a clear bag.

    VA:F [1.9.17_1161]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)