Packing Tips

Packing Light: Clothing List for Women

By on November 12, 2012

Do you belong to ‘OverPackers Anonymous’? The answer is most likely yes, considering the airlines are making millions of dollars in checked & oversized baggage fees each year. Packing presents a particular hurdle for women. Jenna Marbles posted a pretty funny YouTube video on how women really view packing. The chaotic frenzy of this way of packing and the “everything plus the kitchen sink” mentality doesn’t really surprise me as most people don’t travel regularly enough to develop a system of packing. While most women belong to ‘OverPackers Anonymous’, there is a way of trimming down the bulk and taming the chaos inside your luggage. So even though I’m a guy (but so are Christian Louboutin, Manolo Blahnik and Dolce & Gabbana), I dare to delve into the world of women’s packing issues. There are plenty of examples of great women in my life who are excellent packers. They share my philosophy that travel is a journey of personal self discovery and not curling irons, heavy luggage or the outfit of the day. So here is a compendium of great packing tips for women I’ve collected.

Pack a versatile closet
Stay with a color scheme that works for you and try to make 9 outfits out of 3 tops + 3 bottoms. It’s no secret that women dress with their emotions. Therefore, make your travel closet limited in size but flexible in quality.  

Smart Accessories
Use simple accessories like scarves & inexpensive jewelry to dramatically change an outfit. They are lightweight and take up no space.

Bad Weather
Layers work best when dressing for bad weather.

Shoes, Shoes & More Shoes
When packing shoes, categorize each pair. Packing a walking shoe, an evening shoe and a pair of flats prepares you for most basic situations. Remember the shoes you wear on the plane count too

Smart Packing Aids
Packable Totes are great for shopping at local markets or for packing souvenirs on the return journey. 
Compressor bags maximize space. Use them for bulky items or for packing dirty items on the return journey to make room for shopping & souvenirs.

If your hotel has a good hairdryer, leave yours behind. For hair appliances, make sure they are dual-voltage so you can leave the heavy and bulky converter at home. 

General Packing list  

  • 5-7 pairs of undergarments
  • 2 scarves
  • 2 pairs of silk pajamas
  • 3 tank tops (2 for layering, 1 for sport)
  • 4 day tops (2 t-shirts, 2 tops)
  • 1 skirt
  • 2 pants
  • 2 dresses (1 black evening dress, 1 short sassy dress)
  • 2 jackets (1 lightweight for day, 1 longer heavier jacket)
  • 2 nice tops
  • 1 pair of flip flops for staying comfy & clean in the hotel room

Wear your thickest or heaviest items on the plane:

  • Jeans or Yoga pants 
  • Long sleeve top
  • Fleece
For a more detailed packing list, please click here

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Angel Castellanos
Pasadena, CA

I'm a US based travel expert and spend my time teaching people how to travel well, smart and often. I'm passionate about travel and helping people save time & money. This blog, or travel lounge, is a collection of my practical travel advice and experiences from traveling 8-10 weeks internationally each year. I believe that travel has never been easier and that everyone can achieve their travel dreams. Happy Travels!


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