Hubby and I just celebrated our 15 year anniversary in Las Vegas.. I put this post to the test!
I admit, I packed the wrong shoes! And I forgot my contact solution, easily picked up at CV in Treasure Island (at normal prices)
Air Canada also damaged my suitcase on the way to Vegas, but we were able to find a reasonable replacement at Ross (thanks to the bus driver who told us the best place to go) and have been refunded the cost, so I am happy! Just something to remember... if you can avoid checking your bags, do it!
1. Check the weather
Get details about the area you are going to. I just do a Google search.
I like to check what the forecast is calling for, but I also check my destination’s weather has been like lately. This way if the area is having an unusual heat spike, I can pack for that.
That heat streak may end, and I want to know I have packed extras (layering) that I may not have otherwise thought of — a must for those of us that are temperature-sensitive.
I normally use The Weather Network.
2. Start early
Unless it’s a last-minute trip, take the time to get organized and start packing early. I don’t want to try rushing around at the last minute. It causes unwanted stress on my bodies and mind.
I try to pre-pack what I can on a better day, even spreading it out over a few days if needed. This helps keep the last-minute packing easier to handle, giving me time to rest before I leave.
3. Use a packing list.
Check it off as it goes into the suitcase, then just use it in reverse to remember to bring everything home.
I know, for me, getting ready to head home is hard. I am usually exhausted and in extra pain, a perfect recipe for fibro fog. With my packing list, it is one less thing I need to worry about!
I really like this free downloadable packing list on Pinterest. I used it last time I travelled.
4. Roll clothes.
For more space and less wrinkles. More space means you might be able to fit everything in a smaller, lighter suitcase. Pack layers and pack comfortable clothing (especially for down time).
I always use the smallest suitcase with wheels that I can fit all my things into, making it easier to handle myself, in case there is nobody available to ask for help.
5. Pack smarter.
Packing smarter means things take up less “real estate” in your suitcase and helps to keep the bags easier to handle.
Try space-saving bags to save space (sounds obvious, but I only recently learned this trick). I like the ones you can roll to reduce the air.
Pick up some travel-sized bottles for things like shampoo, conditioner, mouthwash, etc. You can get these at any drug store, big box store, grocery store. Or pick up small reusable containers and just fill with products from home. I bought some at a dollar store, and they have worked well.
Pack things in shoes (socks? something fragile?)
Use contact cases or prescription medicine holders to pack smaller things like earrings, smaller amounts of makeup, smaller bottles of OTC medication (but pack what you think you’ll need, plus extra just in case.)
Pack charge cords and headphones in glasses cases (you will thank me for this one!).
6. Comfortable shoes.
Pack comfortable walking shoes because chances are you will be doing more walking than you would on a typical day.
Yes, shoes take up valuable space in your suitcase. By packing at least two pairs lets you be choosy depending on the activity.
Pack on a pair of slip ons (flip flops? slippers?) for when you are not out and about — especially if going to a beach or pool destination.
7. Remembering the extras.
Consider taking items you use to control specific complaints. These things will be different for different people.
Dark sunglasses or an eye mask for light sensitivity or migraines.
Ear plugs for noise sensitivities. Also to help get some extra rest when sleeping (will it be noisy where you are going?), I never forget those.
Other ideas might include...
8. Pack “down time” activities (or pick some up).
There may be times where you are not up for an activity and choose to spend the time relaxing. You may have some hours to fill when you are on your own.
If it doesn’t take up a lot of space, take it with you!
9. Remember all your medications.
Trust me, there is nothing worse than getting to your destination and realizing you forgot a crucial medication!
10. Plan for the best, but prepare for the worst.
Traveling with chronic pain sucks, and no matter how prepared you are, you are probably going to trigger something. Knowing you are prepared to deal with these situations is such a relief when you need it!
Traveling is stressful for “normal,” healthy people, so it is only a given that it will do the same to us. It is hard on the body, it is hard to rest, eating healthy can be a challenge, but packing doesn’t have to be…