Are you going on an exciting vacation? Perhaps you’re visiting family this holiday season? Being comfortable is your number one priority, especially for those long haul flights, but no one wants to sacrifice style just for the sake of comfort, right?
1. Take the time to pack your bag the right way
Depending on how long your trip is will determine the size of your bag, but even if you’re going on a month-long trip you don’t need a gigantic bag. A simple, yet stylish bag like the Hard Sided Carry-on from Saddleback Leather will get you through the weekend and quite possibly a four day trip if you do it right. It’s stylish and classic at the same time and holds a surprising amount of stuff. If you’re going to be adventuring for any longer than four days I recommend a larger bag such as the Filson Weatherproof Leather Duffel Bag that will fit almost anything you’ll need in it.
In order to maximize the space in these bags you’ll need to pack them properly. This can be done in a multitude of ways, but the two space saving tricks I recommend are the “Ranger Roll” and vacuum bags. With the Ranger Roll you’re basically taking your clothes and rolling them together to maximize efficiency. With the vacuum sealed bags you’re sucking all of the air out of your clothes and compressing them. The Ranger Roll, in my opinion is preferable as it doesn’t leave your clothes a wrinkled mess. If packed correctly you can expect to fit 5 standard outfits into a standard backpack with room to spare.
2. Pack the right stuff
Take the time to pack your bag. Curate a list of things you’ll need daily. Try to weed out as many one time items as possible. Take the time to lay out your clothes before packing them up and only bring things that all go together. You want to be able to mix and match, essentially creating a capsule wardrobe. If you need help check out this video series on capsule wardrobes for men.
By doing this you’ll be bringing less stuff and you can fit everything you need into a medium sized bag. You won’t have to fuss over what to wear everyday because everything you have matches. Imagine all that time you’ve saved!
Make sure you look through the TSA’s list of prohibited items and don’t bring anything that could be remotely construed as something you’re not supposed to have. Make sure you know what you can and cannot have in your carryon vs. checked luggage and strictly adhere to their guidelines. The last thing you want is getting forced to go through a more extensive screening because of the pocket knife you carry habitually.
3. Wear the right outfit
By wearing the right clothes you’ll be comfortable no matter how long the flight is. The airport isn’t the time to break out those fancy new shoes or that shirt that looks great on you but is a tad too tight. Pick something you wear regularly when you’re just lounging. A standard pair of dark blue jeans, Tshirt, a blazer paired with a quality leather belt and a comfortable pair of casual shoes will get you through the airport in comfort and you’ll look great!
When picking out your jeans and blazer it’s important to consider the season for both your departure location and your destination. Is it a sweltering summer day in southern Texas or a snowy day in the middle of February? Dress for the weather. If you’re going to a hot climate from a cold climate wear a medium weight pair of jeans and a thicker blazer. Basically dress in layers.
For maximum comfort try to pick fabrics that are natural if at all possible. Fibers such as wool are better at keeping your body temperature consistent, plus they feel better on your skin. Synthetic fabrics can cause skin irritation and they wrinkle far more easily than natural fibers. Plus natural fibers always, always look better than synthetics such as rayon.
4. Get all of your important stuff together
Before you even leave your house make sure you’ve got everything you need. Grab your tickets, your wallet, and triple check that you’ve got your ID, and passport if you need it. You don’t want to be stuck in security because you forgot something as important as your ticket!
Get one of these nifty leather cases for your Ipad. You can fit your cards, charger, pen, passport, and tickets in there with ease. Bonus points for being able to keep your IPad from getting all scuffed up. These are pretty much essential if you’re traveling and have any kind of tablet for entertainment. It’s easy to go through security with and you’ll have all your stuff in one location. Did I mention they’re super stylish? You can never go wrong with leather.
5. Plan your day the night beforeDon’t get caught up in not having your stuff together. Set it by the door and have it all in one place. Your bag(s) and your Ipad case shouldn’t be moved around throughout the evening. Once they’re packed they’re packed. If you’ve got to put something else in the bag then don’t move it, bring the item to the bag. The night before the flight make sure you’ve got your clothes for the day laid out.
Take the time to do a quick inventory of everything so you’re not hunting for your car keys when you’ve got to be out the door in 5 minutes. Make your breakfast an easy one. Plan what you’re going to eat ahead of time and make sure your coffee pot is set to auto brew. I know it sounds extreme, but on the day of the big flight you don’t want anything catching you by surprise.
And last but not least triple check your ticket and your flight time and make sure you leave in plenty of time to get through security. Arrive at least an hour before your flight. I always recommend arriving 90 minutes early... just to be safe.
By following these tips you’re sure to get through security in a breeze and your day will go much more smoothly. You’ll arrive on time and there will be minimal stress. Plus you’ll be lookin’ sharp.