I recently went to Mexico City (so good - highly recommend) and took some notes on my packing experience. I thought I'd share them below.
Packing for a big city trip is such a different thought process for me than packing for other types of trips (ex: ski trips). My big city trips tend to be shorter, I can usually get by with a few quality basics, and I always want to leave room for new shopping purchases. I like to plan pretty closely what I'll be wearing each day so I can get maximum enjoyment out of my time in a new place. There's nothing worse than bringing the dreaded "getting ready angst" with you on a trip.
Here's what I do:
- Grab a piece of paper (law school made me obsessed with neon brights).
- Write down each day you'll be there (MONDAY, TUESDAY, WEDNESDAY, THURSDAY), leaving plenty of room for notes underneath.
- Look up the weather and write it down for each day (what's the high/low; will it rain?).
- Write any itinerary items under each day (ex: nice dinner out; museums; walking around).
- Start pulling things from your closet, focusing on those things you wear constantly. Hint: avoid the temptation of thinking you'll be this new and different person when you're on vacation - stick to what's currently working. Hint #2: check your laundry bin and dry cleaning bag for your favorite items that may be in hiding.
- Actually try on the combos you pulled to make sure they feel good on. The idea here is to minimize the amount of time you spend getting dressed while you're on your trip. Find out in advance if that top and those pants just don't work together.
- When you find a good combo, write it down on your page and/or take a picture for reference.
- Then, start packing. Laying items on the floor and rolling up tightly consumes the least amount of space in your bag but tends to take the longest amount of time. It's worth it in some cases.
Last tip: make a "don't forget" list that you can refer back to. Mine includes things that I've forgotten in the past and had to buy. Examples: underwear, phone charger, computer charger, contact solution, tylenol, headphone splitters. I glance through my list before every trip just to give myself peace of mind.
What about you? What helps you pack efficiently? Would love to hear your tips in the comments below, Happy travels!