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two wolves roam 10 Pinterest-Worthy DIY Packing Hacks Every Traveler Needs To Know
Travel

10 DIY Packing Hacks Every Traveler Needs To Know

 With the decision to travel, comes many a consideration, and what was once only a pipe dream swiftly shifts into very real logistical coordination and packing hacks! I’m not sure about you, but the thought of packing leaves me a little apprehensive. Just the thought of what to pack and what NOT to pack leaves me with a slight tightness in my chest. Silly for some. But what if you forget something? Or take too many things? Or just get is all buggered from the get… The fact is, it can go really wrong either way. This makes research and preparation key. Because, let’s be honest, knowing how to pack light is as important as carrying travel insurance for any traveller. At least those of us who don’t want to (or actually can’t afford to) lug our entire wardrobe around with us. But then balancing with also not wandering around in the same pants for a week, or if you’re planning on visiting a humid climate like Thailand or Indo. If you are totally comfy with the idea of *same-pantsing though, your welcome to skip to #8 which may help with inevitable odour-de-body…

But I digress…

What prompted this very post is that I have committed to and am thus currently planning my own (and very first solo trip) to Bali. And with only a 44l and a day bag for at least 3 weeks I was keen to find – and subsequently, share – the most valuable packing hacks I found! And truth be told, even though I am the kind of girl you could phone up at any time of day, or night for an impromptu adventure to pretty much anywhere, I do also like knowing a little about a little. Even the most spontaneous of us need to prepare some. A little like knowing to wear closed shoes on a hike versus flip-flops, you dig? So being the geeky type I’ve done a little (a lot) so you won’t likely need to. This could be the final and only travel packing hacking page you ever need to visit again. Yaya! 
Two Wolves Roam - Pinterest- worthy DIY travel packing hacks - make a packing list

1. Make a packing list 

My friends call me Dory. And as you may well imagine there are a few reasons for this. First, I get distracted by shiny objects. And second, because I (more times than most) have the memory of a Goldfish. But to combat this lapse and obvious annoyance I have been inclined to make notes (and yes) lists. Rather blah, but it does mean that I don’t forget my toothbrush, underwear or chargers! And if you’ve ever done any of the latter, you understand the value in the unromantic but necessary packing list and the first – and I feel most important – of packing hacks.
Two wolves roam - travel packing hacks DIY solo travel - roll your clothes

2. Roll your clothes to save space

Before I found out about rolling, I, like most would simply fold (and then proceed to sit on my suitcase or backpack to try and get what I knew should fit, in, in! I’m not sure when exactly I learned this trick, but if you haven’t yet been introduced to the art of rolling, welcome! Your life will never be the same again. I’m not sure on the intricacies of said act, but rolling saves you space, leaving you room for extra (yay), and for some unknown reason, you get fewer wrinkles in your clothes! Still can’t work this one out.  But, if you can’t really get into the thought of rolling, then try the Kon Mari method of folding. It involves folding each piece of clothing into a square and packing them in an upright in place of the roll. This then means that instead of unpacking your entire suitcase, you’ll get to just skim over your stuff and pull out whatever you need without the sweaty brow.
two wolves roam DIY travel packing hacks packing cubes solo traveler

3. Use packing cubes

Next to rolling, I think packing cubes may be my favourite discovery. True story. The best thing about these cool zip-up compartments is the fact that you can group and keep like things together. I know, right?! So for example, your clothes, toiletries, underwear (if you want them separate), shoes all have their own cube.  If you’re like me and like to have things organised but without becoming overtly organised, these cubes not only help you stay organized but also save loads of space in your suitcase or backpack. Indirectly saving you loads of time and money with minimal effort. AND they allow you to make use of every inch of your suitcase. They can also be labelled, just in case you’re needing that extra bit of identification. Then, when you get to your destination, your stuff simply goes from your backpack or suitcase and onto a shelf – or whatever may be available – without the need to unpack! They really make unpacking a breeze! I’m a personal fan of the CabinZero packing cubes or these really cool ones from Amazon which come with a free laundry bag, but you could pick them up at pretty much any other online store or shop of your choice nowadays.
Two Wolves Roam use an old sunglasses case to store cords DIY travel packing hacks solo travel

4. Keep cords together in an old sunglasses case

Maybe I should have called this post, “10 of my favourite travel packing hacks,” because this was another game-changer for me, and it’s a ridiculously simple one too! You only realise how many electronics you have once you need to pack everything somewhere! And if you’re not forgetting one or the other, it’s just the quantity of cables and OMG just the idea of the potential entanglement which may come along with your phone, tablet, laptop, camera and whatever other cords you’ve got along for your trip. You can decide to invest in one of those fancy cord organizers (which are super cool btw), or you can try this really cool – and super simple – travel hack which I have employed with much success, as follows: roll up your cords and put them into an empty sunglass case. Voila! Two bonus points is that all your cords stay together limiting loss of said cables and stay untangled for the trip! #winning
Two Wolves Roam DIY travel packing hacks use a pill box to pack jewellery solo travel

5. Use a pill box for your jewellery

I’m not a massive jewellery girl, maybe because I’m always losing things (another story for another day). So knowing I’m in the minority here, this one is especially for those of you who love jewellery, know how hard it is to pack but can’t leave your favourite pieces behind!  The perfect solution (and a rather brilliant one at that), is the super simple pillbox! Say goodbye to tangled necklaces and misplaced earrings. Now all of your jewellery stays separate, and just a pillbox away! If you want to get really into things you can even plan each piece with your #ootd. Pillboxes can be picked up from pretty much any store, and they’re super cheap too. For the gents, you’ll never lose another cuff link again! I really like this one, for the fun of it. But just in case (excuse the pun) you’re looking for an actual Pill Box, this is one of my favourites.
two wolves roam - travel packing hacks bundle outfits together solo traveler

6. Plan and bundle outfits together (Ziploc-ing optional)

The reality is most of us still pack our bags on autopilot. Possibly grouping together bottoms, tops, longs, shorts etc. the way we would organize our clothing in our closest. But when we’re out travelling it doesn’t make that much sense does it? But rather than – and here’s where the packing hack comes in – continuing on the ways of frustration and inevitable angst, I say no more! Instead, we should think about grouping our clothing into outfits… What an ingenious revelation, no?! That means as opposed to rummaging and disheveling our entire backpack or suitcase, we now simply pull out our #ootd. Just. Like. That. Of course, this means a little bit of forward planning, but let’s be honest, most of us have a favourite outfit for each item we own anyway so this forethought not only means time saved but also makes sure you don’t overpack!  If you’re wanting to get even more organised add the Ziploc freezer bag! The cool thing about these bags? Side note, please recycle said plastic once it has lived its purpose. But the cool thing about these bags? You, dear human, are able to label them and thus keep a note of the contents! Even when you’re planning to wear what. And the added bonus? You’ll be saving even more space, as any extra air can be squeezed out of each bag!   
parry lane wool dryer balls DIY pinterest-worthy travel packing hacks solo travel

7. Keep your clothes fresh with this dryer sheet alternative

When you’re travelling the last thing you want to think about is laundry (or laundry-related anything). Well, that was the general consensus, not dismissing all the laundry-doing-lovers out there! But for the masses, *wink, nudge* there is one laundry-related thing you may want to think about packing in. Because we all know that funky smell clothes get after a long haul flight, crammed together with shoes and everything else, or after wearing them several times over. Well, there’s a solution to that!  Most people will recommend dryer sheets, and no doubt they do really do the job, but I’ve found my own (more eco-friendly) packing hack to keeping clothes smelling like they just got out of the washing machine, or whichever other scents you may be in the mood for.  This is done by putting a few drops of essential oils on a soft cloth or using these really cool wool dryer balls, from guys like Parry Lane. You simply put a few drops of essential oil onto the ball and pop it into your bag.  Einfach! These balls can be used a thousand times over and once you’re done simply drop them into the ground to decompose naturally. 
Two Wolves Roam DIY Travel packing hacks solo travel how to hide money

8. Hide your money and valuables in empty bottles and tubes

When you find yourself in a crowded space like an airport or well-known tourist attraction in a foreign country, you become an easy target. The reality, especially for us girls. And the reality is some opportunist may try to pickpocket you. The first line and the best line of action is to firstly, avoid the worst case scenario of being robbed and that is to remain inconspicuous. This means: don’t flash your cash or expensive jewellery. Say no to bling, bling. You’ll be okay, I promise.  Then, the coolest little tricky-trick is instead of carrying your cash in your back pocket or in a purse with no zipper, you use an empty lip-balm or similar container for your money. And it’s as simple as rolling up your cash and popping it in. If you have larger valuables, use something like an empty sun-tan lotion container to keep things safe from long fingers. Stashing has never been more smashing, no?!
Two Wolves Roam - travel packing hacks rubber band to protect your books while travelling

9. Protect your books with a rubber band

The – arguably – easiest, and most efficient thing to do when travelling is to take an e-reader or your tablet. Which I fully concur with. But for those of us who still love the feeling of a real paperback book, and can’t deal with the loss of battery power during a read, this one’s for you!  There’s nothing quite as traumatic as a bent and damaged book. But it’s a very real part of the collateral damage to travelling. You’re late for your bus, plane, train or taxi and in the rush you shove our book(s) into your bag without thinking. Only to find the pages all bent, the cover damaged or some long leftover food has made its way onto the last page you were in the middle of reading. I know!  But wait, not all is lost! A simple and no less life-altering solution lies in wait. It is called the rubber band. Yes! To outwit and outlast ruining another of your prized books, simply wrap a pair of thicker rubber bands around the cover, and Bob’s your uncle!  
Two Wolves Roam - 10 DIY travel packing hacks airport luggage tips

10. Know your limits

The fact is that baggage size has a lot to do with how much, or how little you pack; and whether you’re set for an easy or challenging time at the airport. Knowing that baggage allowances vary from airline to airline and checking limits BEFORE you reach the airport will go a long way in relieving unnecessary stressors.  Some carriers do allow you to check in two bags. But not all of them. And the weight allowance can vary from airline to airline. To combat this, I suggest two courses of action: First, try and buy a lightweight suitcase or backpack. Hardshell suitcases can add up to 4kg (8.8lbs) to your weight. Not great. Next is to try and go for a smaller bag. The less space you have available, the less you’re able to pack. But if you’re not keen on either of those options, I recommend making sure of the hand luggage allowance at your particular departure points prior to your departure and buying a luggage scale. If anything, at least you’re able to face the possible over-weight prepared. You’ll thank me later, I promise.

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