I’ll soon be headed to the NFPW conference. I always look forward to it. This year, I’m also one of the speakers so I have a few extra items to bring. Because I travel frequently (now mainly for recreation), I am often asked about packing. When I was traveling a lot for work and pleasure, I developed a few shortcuts that I continue to use.
The most important thing is to have a list. You can search Google and you’ll get 820M results! One list that I like is Dorie Clark’s business travel checklist, which is here.
I’ve refined my list further and have some shortcuts. Here they are in no particular order:
- I’ve put an umbrella in each piece of luggage that I own. That way I never have to wonder if I have packed it. And you know you have umbrellas all over the house. Instead of having them collecting dust in a closet, put them to good use in your luggage.
- I have two sets of chargers for every device. I keep one set in a to-go back (cosmetic bags that you get for free when you buy makeup are great for this purpose). When I grab that bag for a trip, I know that all of my chargers are in one place. I also keep a remote clicker (and batteries) for presentations in the bag and an extra thumb drive.
- I have one list of household chores that I need to do before I depart. That includes leaving the check for the pet sitter and taking out the trash. At one time, it included leaving the key for the pet sitter. Unfortunately, once, I didn’t follow my list and I failed to leave the key. Imagine my panic knowing I would be gone for a week. I overnighted the key to my sitter and asked her to keep it. One less thing to worry about.
- Minimize what you take. I almost always travel with only a carry-on bag. You have to be willing to forgo multiple pairs of shoes and be willing to accessorize. Wear the same top but with a different scarf and no one will know the difference.
- While I love my technology, I’ve found it good to have a folder with printed copies of my airline, hotel and car reservations. I also always carry a hard copy of my talking points for a presentation.
- Speaking of technology, I have one screen on my phone where all of my travel apps are located. I like having keyless entry at a hotel, and I like to check-in for my airline reservation to avoid getting bumped.