Packing for a Pleasant Experience

packvsship2What if I told you travel doesn’t have to seem so hectic? It doesn’t have to feel rushed, and it can be rather enjoyable. Like your best planned meetings and events, a little preparation will go a long way.

Below are some tips to consider when you are packing for your next trip.

Carry-On Items:

  • Overhead bins are only so big, and each aircraft has different space allotments. If you can manage to carry-on a small bag and personal item that together will fit under the seat in front of you, you will save yourself the hassle of having to reach high to move your bag in and out of the bin.
  • Your carry-on should include any must-have items. Medication, travel credentials, identification, money, and some of your favorite snacks should be easily accessible throughout your travels.
  • If you travel with a laptop, tablet, or other device, be sure to pack the charging cables with them in your carry-on. Work-related documents should be kept accessible as well – digital formats are great when you’re on the road, but if you must have a hard copy plan to keep it in your carry-on for easy reference.
  • Avoid carrying-on items of an odd shape or size that may not fit in the aircraft as easily as you imagine. Instead, consider shipping those items to your destination to avoid frustration and worry when the airline attendants ask you to gate check your fragile or unique belongings.

Checked Luggage:

  • Keep your checked luggage to a minimum so you can easily manage all of your belongings on your own. It can be extra stressful when you’re pulling too many bags and one tips over or you drop items before you even make it inside the airport.
  • Be sure to pack appropriately for your events. Consider whether they are outdoors, if you need closed-toed shoes, layers, sunscreen, a bathing suit, or other specific items. Check the local weather before you pack so you are fully prepared. If laundry options are on site, you can pack even less and clean outfits as needed.
  • Always tag your bags with your contact information, and also include your contact information in a front pocket. If your bag tag comes off or your bag gets lost during your travels, the airlines will be able to find it more easily.


  • Consider shipping your excess luggage to your destination instead of trying to manage it at the airport. It may be more beneficial to ship it in advance of your arrival and not have to worry about fitting it in your taxi or small rental car.
  • If you like to have event essentials on-hand when you land (your standard office supplies, extra personal hygiene supplies, etc.), ship them in advance so you can track their arrival and not risk losing them if your luggage doesn’t make your connections.
  • Ship any special items that you cannot fit under the seat in front of you and you do not want to gate check. Even if the item is the appropriate carry-on size, you may be asked to gate check if it doesn’t fit properly, or if there is not enough space left when you board the aircraft.

When you’re packing, be sure to specifically include items that will make your trip more enjoyable. A good book, your favorite snacks, a light jacket, and some headphones can all add to your comfort during your travels. As planners, by nature we are so focused on others and their experiences that we sometimes forget to take care of ourselves. Flights can provide great uninterrupted time to check-in with yourself, and appreciate your experience, relax and recharge, even if just in your airplane seat. Pack accordingly to get the most benefit from relaxed, care-free travels!

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