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Travel season is upon us (or maybe you’re like me and it’s always travel season for you :D) and you guys know my mantra: there’s no need to sacrifice comfort for style and vice versa! As I’m preparing for my trip to Canada in late August and September I would love to share with you my top tips on how to travel both light and stylish. Here we go:

Travel hand luggage only

Obviously this isn’t always possible but if you’re going for a week or less consider traveling hand luggage only. This usually means you’ll be allowed to take a small suitcase and a hand bag / small backpack and you can fit quite a lot in there! Even if you have checked luggage be sure to have the essentials (body care products, some clothes, documents, medication…) on you at all times as your checked luggage might get lost on the way and could arrive late.

Instead of throwing half your wardrobe into a giant suitcase you can actually look far more stylish by following the next tip…

Plan your outfits

Make sure you can mix and match all items you’re packing. This will take a bit of planning in advance but it can save you a lot of space in your suitcase and will help you look stylish throughout your trip. Plus, it will become a habit if you do it more often. Try to stick to a color scheme or even to a single color (such as black) to maximize the number of outfit combos. You will always look put-together while having to pack very few pieces. My rule of thumb is to always pack more of the lighter pieces and fewer of the heavier pieces. So I would rather take 2 pairs of jeans + 4 tops than the other way round. Both would give you 2 x 4 = 8 outfits.

Repurpose your items

When trying to travel light I will pack clothing items that are very versatile: instead of packing pajamas I’ll pack leggings and a long shirt that I can incorporate into my daytime outfits as well. Pack pieces that can easily be dressed up or down so they’re suitable for different occasions: one of my favorites are t-shirt dresses that can be worn as a top with pants underneath or as a dress for warmer weather or fancier occasions.

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Skimp on shoes

Shoes take up so much space in a small suitcase so it’s crucial to figure out which ones you’re REALLY gonna need. For example instead of taking sneakers and another pair of everyday shoes opt for a pair of dressier sneakers to cover both occasions. Unless you’re going to a wedding or a similarly formal event try not to pack shoes you’ll most likely only be wearing once (if at all). Flip flops offer great value-for-space as they will easily fit in some corner or side pocket of your luggage and can be worn around your accommodation, in the shower, at the beach or when walking around town. For a more stylish version opt for tiny slip ons that take up equally little space.

Focus on accessories

Accessories such as jewelry, watches, scarves or belts are a great way to give your outfits a more stylish twist. They require comparatively little space but can add instant glam to any outfit or even change the whole look of an outfit. Plus, if you decide to wear a few pieces on the plane already they don’t take up space in your luggage at all.

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Plan your plane (or train or car) outfit

For getting to your destination (and back) I do recommend a comfy outfit as you’ll probably be sitting for a while. However, instead of sweatpants and a hoodie opt for leggings, an oversized top and dressy sneakers (see above) for a look that’s just as comfy but a lot more stylish. I’d also recommend having a cardigan on hand in case they’re going a bit overboard with the air con on board. Not only will this prevent you from getting cold it will also save valuable space in your luggage.

What about liquids?

One of the downsides of traveling hand luggage only is that in most parts of the world you’re only allowed to take a limited amount of travel sized liquids. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t take your fav body care products nor does it keep you from traveling in style! First of all, find out if essentials such as shampoo are provided at your hotel or Airbnb. For everything that’s not provided you can either get travel sizes or choose to fill your fav products into travel sized bottles. Also, there’s no need to pack your liquids into an ugly plastic zipper bag. There are more stylish (and sustainable!) alternatives available that comply with current security regulations.

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Pack the smart way

Be sure to roll your clothes so they take up minimal space and arrive at your destination wrinkle-free. Remove bulky packaging from products you just bought and invest in some suitcase compartment bags+ to avoid chaos and have everything handy. Place your socks into your shoes (there’s room in there anyway) and/or vacuum compression bags to save space (this works very well for underwear too!).

Please let me know – what do you find is the hardest part about traveling both light and in style?

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