Doing summer travel rightAsk Anna / Travel categories: Ask Anna Travel
Oh baby we are back! Tim and I had an incredible European holiday and every moment of it was sun kissed summer bliss. We went between Italy, France and Greece … One of the highlights was being with my family and friends at a wedding in Bordeaux. We also jam packed the weeks with heaps of beaching, eating, drinking and moving around.
I could write all day about the best Aperol-hour spots and how to suss out the yummiest dish on the menu but I’ve had an overwhelming number of DM’s about what to pack and asking for tips on how to fit the NECESSARY gazillion outfits into one small bag.
So here we go, this is how I like to do it and how I recommend getting it right!
To begin, try everything on before you pack. Yes, you read it right; I mean put on your full outfits before you leave so you know you’ll wear it. This is the best way to know that the special dress you brought all the way over, has a bag and shoes to go with it. Best of all, you avoid that unpacking pain where you realise you have six tops and zero skirts that will match any of them.
So, when it comes down to the details, what actually needs to go into the suitcase? These are a few of my cheeky sneaky tips.
- Texturising volume spray – this miracle product gives you sexy hair in seconds and is so useful between washes (especially in such hot climates).
- Invest in a good hard case suitcase. I would always opt for a midsize suitcase unless you’re flying Business or First Class everywhere. All the planes these days usually have a 20/23kg limit, so unless you want to pay the big bucks weigh your luggage before leaving and keep it within the suggested range. Your ticket should say exactly how much checked-in and carry-on luggage you can take with you.
- Bring lots of cute and colourful summery dresses. Dresses are usually pretty versatile and you can dress them up or down depending on where you’re headed. Light cotton fabrics are so easy to throw on when heading down to the beach, sipping on cocktails and even exploring the sights.
- Pack a pair of plain beige and black sandals. You’ll wear them interchangeably and basically every day. Make sure they are comfy enough for walking but also something which you can wear out to dinner without feeling under dressed.
- Add in pair or plain chunky black and beige heels. I always seem to find an excuse to boost my height and pop on some heels in most summer places I go. I find it way too hard to walk in stilettos so a chunky heel is the way to go.
- Pack some plain black/beige flat/thin clutches that will go with everything. I find I usually can fit everything I need into a clutch and this gives me way more freedom than carrying a handbag around. If you don’t want to pack a clutch for every occasion, just stick to the safe neutral colours or black and it will work in with all of your outfits.
- All toiletries should be in bitesize so that you are not lagging around a yearly supply of shampoo. If you can’t find your favourite toiletries in small sizes, purchase some mini containers and fill them up yourself.
- Bring eye drops. I can’t live without them. The plane ride and air con in the hotel rooms easily dry your eyes out and make you feel extra tired. Packing eye drops makes the flights and long car trips so much more bearable and saves time trying to find a pharmacy or convenience store.
- It’s all about the lip balm, lip balm, lip balm. I have been using Blistex pearl lip balm every day/night and am so grateful for it. My lips dry out just as much as my eyes do!
- A white pair of sneakers that go with dresses and a pair of shorts. Holidays for me always include a TONNE of walking around and you need to be comfortable for this. Sneakers have become my go-to shoe with dresses, skirts and shorts so I obviously packed in my fave pair. Wearing some mini cotton socks with them makes them a whole lot easier to wear all day.
- Add in a pair of denim jeans will become your best friend. I’ve worn mine to death. Jeans are so useful especially as they do not take up a lot of space and will keep your pins warm if there is a cooler change in the weather. When visiting a lot of cultural sights, you need to have you knees covered so jeans are a saviour.
- If you’re travelling in Europe and you have one at home bring a mini iron. A lot of the hotels we stayed at didn’t have them in the rooms as it was a “fire hazard”. You were to pay up to 30€ to get someone to iron one piece of clothing. Of course it really depends on where you stay – if you will need one or not. However it is totally worth it if you can fit a compact iron into your suitcase. On a few occasions we hung or clothes up in the bathroom, while we were having a shower to steam it out – Genius huh? 😉
- Get your nails done with SNS/Shellac right before you leave. If you are lucky, it will hopefully get you through the entire trip. Otherwise pack a small colour which is similar and touch it up while you are abroad. I find that I don’t have time to get my nails done overseas so I always make sure I squeeze this in right before we jet off. Of all the options out there, SNS and Shellac last the longest on my nails.
- Take a light towel with you. Even though hotels usually supply towels, I always find there is some occasion where you need your own or end up having to buy one. I carry a light Turkish towel with me.
- For my shopaholics, if you need to update you wardrobe while away, make sure you leave room in your suitcase. Secondly, I have loved going to all the big stores such as Zara and H&M over here as they are a lot cheaper in Europe. I’ve bought some really cool pieces – swimmers, shirts and hats (and best of all, they didn’t cost a fortune).
- Dress up and doll yourself up. Us girls know that there is nothing better than feeling fabulous in a tropical place and getting that picture perfect Insta shot ;). Admit it, we all want it, so don’t be afraid to pack a few ‘fancy’ things so you have a few fun options for those spontaneous dinners and the Aperol o’clock meetings.
Let me know how you go with these tips and bon voyage for anyone about to embark on an exciting vacay outta here.