It’s not easy staying organized while you travel, so we put together some ideas to help. Here are five simple ways to stay organized while you travel.
So, you may not be the most organized person. It isn’t the worst trait to have, but perhaps it has caused you some strife at work, in school, or with social engagements. It has likely caused you some speed bumps in your travels, too.
You cannot change who you are, but there are steps that you can take to make life a tad easier while traveling. In fact, following these tips will help you to become the most organized unorganized traveler!
1. Create a Plan Before Your Trip Begins
Make sure to research your travel destination. This is key to know how to pack so that you are prepared for anything you may encounter.
A few things you want to pay attention to are:
- What do you intend to do while you are there? In your research, you will discover the attractions and adventures that spark your interest. Depending on what these are, you will have to plan accordingly. For instance, if you intend to do a lot of walking, you will want to make sure you pack a good pair of walking shoes. Or, if you intend to check out a show at the local theater, you will need an appropriate outfit.
- Learn about the culture. This will help you decide if there is anything that you should leave at home or if there is anything additional you should bring. For example, in some countries, it is offensive for ladies to show too much skin, etc.
- Research the weather trends. This will have to be done closer to you trip, of course. And, you cannot guarantee that the weather forecast is 100% correct, but it will give you an idea of whether you are packing for hot or cold temps or if you may run into some rough weather.
- Find out what you can about the destination, including points of interest, dining options, and neighborhoods or areas to avoid.
2. Make a List and Keep it Updated
List-making is a technique that many either use or they don’t. However, if you are an unorganized traveler looking to be organized this time around, you are going to want to make a list. It can be a simple list – nothing too detailed! Take some time to think of all that you need to take with you and start jotting it down. Although an organized person would likely categorize this list, you just need to make sure it gets written down. Check the items off as you pack.
In addition, since you have researched and planned your trip, take the time to write down a general itinerary. No need to worry about making it perfect and down to the minute. Simply decide what days you would like to go where and make sure you can fit everything in on your trip.
3. Pack Your Luggage – Light and Efficient
When packing for your trip, do not try to over pack. The less you take – luggage and belongings – the better. Consider using these packing tips:
- Take one of each: A suitcase and a toiletries bag. Find each that contains enough compartments to separate your items into sections. This way, everything has a spot. And, you don’t have more than two items to look after.
- Choose a color scheme from your wardrobe for your trip and stick with it. This cuts down on any packing errors or mishaps. Everything in your bag should be able to be intermingled depending on your needs for that day. You will never be left without an outfit!
- Pack light – you can always wash your clothes.
- Pack socks and undergarments in baggies. By doing so, you are keeping them compartmentalized. In addition, once you have worn them, the baggies can be used for other things such as opened toiletries or dirty clothes.
- Choose three pairs of shoes – sneakers, day-to-day shoes, and a pair of dress shoes.
4. Stick to Your Daily Routine
When you are home, you likely have a routine. Perhaps you place your keys in the exact same spot each time you walk in the door. Maybe you keep your toiletries out on your bathroom counter for easy access. Whatever you do, keep doing it when you travel.
When you arrive at your destination and find the room you will be staying in, keep your routine. Place your room key where you would normally leave it at home. Unpack your clothes and hang or place them in drawers as you would normally have them at home. Remove your toiletries from their bag and place them out in the bathroom as you would have them at home.
Keeping the same routine you have at home will reduce the chance that you will find yourself in a confused state when you are away from home.
5. Use Your Smart Phone Wisely
Make use of your smart devices while out and about. A wireless connection is usually found everywhere these days. And, even if it’s not, the cellular data on your cell phone can give you access to plenty of apps that can give you a plethora of information.
- Finding your way around a new place can be confusing. In addition, holding a real map makes you appear lost and from out of town (making you a target in some places).
- Using a map app on your device, you can get yourself from point A to point B without any issues.
- Using your airline’s app, you can track your flight status, check in, or make changes to your tickets.
- Translation apps allow you to easily wiggle your way through language barriers with a little bit of ease.
- A currency converter can provide you with the daily conversion rates.
- Itinerary apps keep all your reservations in one spot. Some even provide you a list of things to do in each city.
- Apps such as TripAdvisor* can provide you with reviews of attractions, hotels, restaurants, parks, etc. at a ton of destinations. It pays to know before you go!
Staying organized while traveling doesn’t have to be difficult – even for the most unorganized person. Happy trails!
* Link to third party site