For some of us, packing is the worst part of a vacation. The outfit planning, the inevitable outfit narrowing down, the game of tetris you end up playing with your shoes—some of it just never gets easier no matter how often you travel. And then there’s the strategy behind how to fold and pack your clothes in a way that will prevent the most wrinkles. Because there certainly can’t be wrinkles—my mom’s voice will forever be in my head, saying that the dress I just picked out simply can’t be worn unless it gets ironed. And who wants to worry about ironing when they’re on vacation?
This is why I hate that traveling with only a suitcase means my nice hanging clothes are almost always wrinkled when I arrive to my destination. When you’re limited to one carry-on item, a hanging bag just ain’t gonna cut it. Traveling with a steamer is one smart solution, but that means extra space you have to carve out in your suitcase to fit it. And if you’re on a trip where you’re making multiple stops along the way, your clothes unfortunately have to get pretty comfortable in your suitcase.
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Here’s where the genius tip that will forever change the way you travel comes in. When you’re packing, put each of your more delicate pieces of clothing (those you’d usually keep hanging up) into a dry cleaning bag. Then fold the bag with the clothing in it as you normally would and place it in your suitcase. Do that for each piece of clothing. The plastic bags will keep sliding against each other and the clothes themselves, preventing your linen pants and silk dress from getting stuck on one another in a way that causes a deep crease.
This solution isn’t necessarily foolproof. You’ll likely still see some wrinkles along the way, but this will definitely cut them down a great deal. If you haven’t yet saved up enough dry cleaning bags for your next trip, trash bags or liners will also work—just be wary of any that are scented. Hopefully this extra step when you’re packing will solve a lot of your packing and traveling woes—and mean less time spent ironing while on vacation.