7 Pro Carry-On Packing Hacks for Your Next Weekend Getaway
Experts share their tips for organizing a suitcase for a short trip.
Reduce headache and hassle with these expert-approved techniques.
Choose the right carry-on.
Meanwhile, John "Johnny Jet" DiScala, editor in chief of the site JohnnyJet.com (and married to Natalie), prefers to travel with duffel bags. "I think the four wheels actually take up too much space," he says. His trick: carrying a light, leather duffel bag from the company Roots and using a device from TravelSmith called a bag bungee (for $15) to strap his leather bag on top of a roller bag to keep his items in place.
Pare down your wardrobe.
Natalie DiScala echoes similar sentiments. She prefers to pack in color schemes to easily mix and match everything, and likes to include versatile pieces that are easy to pack. "Bring sensible choices," she cautions, noting that while there are three pairs of shoes she wants to bring with her – a pair for running, a pair for walking and a pair of heels for fun – these are often the heaviest items, so it's best to make sacrifices where you can.
Take out nonessential items.
Apart from toiletries, assess whether there are accessories that can be stripped from your suitcase to maximize space. While adapters, cords and headphones are necessities, swap heavy headphones for lightweight earbuds, Stallings says.
Fold or roll?
John DiScala, on the other hand, prefers to fold most items to maximize space. Stallings rolls tees, but folds button-downs and keeps them flat to ensure they're wrinkle-free. He also wears jeans, as opposed to packing them, to consolidate space.
Use the right apps.
Before leaving home, it's a smart idea to plan with the right packing tools. Packing Pro ($2.99) offers an easy-to-navigate tool for creating a packing checklist. You can easily discover new packing suggestions, monitor and sort your items and filter items based on person or category. The free app TripList ($2.99 for the pro version) also enables you to build tailored lists with items by category (think outdoor gear vs. photography). The pro version allows you to share your lists across different devices, and with friends and family members.
Get your carry-on through security faster by enrolling in TSA PreCheck.
"If you don't belong to Global Entry or PreCheck, wear slip-on shoes" for a quicker screening process, Stallings suggests. And if you don't fly often, he suggests familiarizing yourself with the carry-on baggage requirements imposed by your carrier to avoid paying a hefty checked-baggage fee.
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