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Learn2 Pack for a Business Trip (continued)
Step 5: Loading

Take a look at your rolled-up clothes and bagged-up toiletries and ask yourself: What size bag do I need? You may be able to put everything into one large carry-on bag, or use a hanging garment bag. Check with the airline about the size and weight allowance for carry-on bags.

The advantage of a single carry-on bag is that you won't have to check your bag or worry about it getting lost or redirected. And you don't have to wait for it to come down the conveyer belt. The drawback is you'll have to take less.

If you decide you'll need two bags after all--one to check and one to carry on the plane, place your toiletries, passport, money, credit cards and itinerary information either inside the carry-on bag or on your person.

Be aware that toiletries are the items most likely left behind--precisely because they're used the morning of the flight and never packed. Consider buying little versions of everything--shaving cream, toothpaste, hair brushes--so you can go ahead and pack your toiletries the night before your flight. You won't have to worry about rescuing anything from the bathroom on your way out the door in the morning.

If you opt not to buy travel versions of toiletries, mark the toiletry items on your list with a red pen or marker. Hang the list on the bathroom mirror or another place where it'll be easily seen the night before. The next morning you'll be greeted with the list and you'll have less chance of forgetting those essentials in the shower stall.

Pack it!

Packing suitcases or any bag besides a hanging garment bag:

Place belts around the walls of your bag, instead of rolling them up, to save space and save the material of your belt.

Many people say shoes should go first, but shoes might be crushed if you're placing many clothes on top of them. See if there is a side compartment of your bag and stick the shoes in these upright holes.

Stick appliances and any electrical things you may have at the bottom.

Next, place a layer of clothes that don't matter as much if they are wrinkly, such as bathing suits, underwear, socks and woolly sweaters and pajamas. If you only have one bag, you may want to place your zip lock bags of toiletries in between this layer of clothes, or at the bottom of the bag with the appliances, but make sure that nothing can poke a hole through the bag. Otherwise, stick your toiletry items in side compartments.

Next is the layer of work-related gear. Carefully place previously rolled work gear on top of the recreational clothes. Cover with an old dry-cleaning bag, if you have one, to seal them into place.

Packing a hanging garment bag:

Hanging garment bags are great because you can hang up some of your clothes, they have lots of little organizational pockets, and some of them are allowed as carry-ons.

Keep outfits together, on one metal hanger. Use metal hangers because they take up less room than any other type of hanger. Suits should be kept in dry cleaning bags (if you don't have a dry cleaning bag, use a trash bag--clean, of course) to keep anything from rubbing against your suit. Insert rolled clothes and hanging clothes first.

Next, start stuffing the side pockets and organizational pockets. If this is your carry-on, you'll want to make sure your toiletries are in an easily accessed compartment (perhaps a compartment outside of the bag). Place shoes in a separate section of the bag, and make sure that the items that are directly across from them are lightweight. Otherwise, you'll be unpacking smushed shoes.

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Step 1: Prepare yourself
Step 2: Make a list
Step 3: Get going
Step 4: Roll it and protect it
Step 5: Loading
Step 6: Secure yourself
Step 7: Do it right


Confirm Hotel Reservations
Take Precautions During Holiday Travel
File a Baggage Complaint
Make the Most of Being Bumped from a Flight
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