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Whether it's taking a daily ritual from expected to extraordinary or discovering the wonderment and beauty of anew travel destination, J.R. McCabe elevates the everyday with timeless taste and comfortable confidence.
I enjoy packing. I understand that puts me in the minority, but I find it soothing and love the feeling of adventure that it stirs. We always travel first thing in the morning, so there is no time for last minute catch-up.
Through the years I’ve found that there are five simple things I do that always makes for an ease-filled morning departure.
#1 Everything is fully packed and properly placed no later than the afternoon before.
Instead of waiting until the day before to pack I usually start three or even four days before and put things in the suitcase by themes — bottoms, tops, shoes, etc. The day before we are set to depart I go through everything to ensure I have enough outfits (plus 3 extra) for both of us for each day. Once I’m confident in my choices I zip everything up and it gets placed by the front door. If we are going by air — the suitcases stay by the door. If we are driving they are put in the car the night before. Packing early saves you from having to race around hours or the night before a trip because you forgot something you needed.
#2 Prepare homemade sandwiches, healthy snacks, and treats the night before.
A few years ago the Sergeant and I were catching the early ferry to Nantucket from Hyannis. About thirty minutes in I was ravenous. He pulled out a chicken cutlet sandwich wrapped in aluminum foil from his backpack. The Sergeant always saves the day! Travel makes you hungry, there’s no ifs, ands, or buts about it. Rather than relying on the flat tasting food at airports or worrying about finding a good spot when you are already starving — bring a goodie bag of healthy, wholesome, nutritious and delicious bites with you!
#3 Keep essentials in your travel tote
How many times have you seen people unzipping their cases in the middle of the airport floor? Lots of times. I never pack essentials in my suitcase. The big bags are for clothes, shoes, maybe toiletries. Invest in a sturdy travel tote or well compartmented backpack. Here’s my travel tote essentials list for every trip:
#4 Rely on Printed Itineraries
I’ve never been one for putting everything in my phone. I still use a traditional written calendar and prefer to view all reservations and bookings on paper. I print out all documents related to the trip before I leave. It’s much easier to reach in your bag for a confirmation number, phone number or address than it is to search through hundreds of emails. When you’re looking for it, it’s right there at the ready.
#5 Always Dress in Layers
You know the saying, cold flights lead to warmer destinations. Well I’m not sure it’s a saying but it should be! Temperatures fluctuate rapidly while traveling — it’s cold then hot then cold again. Dressing in layers is the way to go. For me that means a t-shirt with a pullover or sweater and a blazer. For Pat that means a t-shirt, shirt and pullover. It’s always easier to throw your sweater in the back seat or around your shoulders, then it is to be uncomfortable the entire journey.