Packing It In (For Holiday Travel)

It’s no news that holiday air travel isn’t what it used to be.  Gone are the days of carrying on gads of beauty products or the extra 10 outfits that might come in handy. Security restrictions (a friend claims that TSA is an acronym for Take Stuff Away) and luggage fees force us to critically think about what to take and what to leave home.  Bookmark this posting so you have all these resources are at your fingertips when it’s time to pack.  Please feel free to post any other links you like to help fellow readers 🙂

Challenge: How can I travel light and legal yet still manage to look put together and fresh every day of my vacation?

Solution:  Know flying rules, pack according to your destination’s culture and create a “capsule” of clothing and accessories.

Know Before You Go.  Flying rules can get you every time, mainly because they change on

Check security wait times, airport status and more with the TSA app.

[it seems] a daily basis.   To get through security quickly, check the TSA Travelers web site before packing to be sure you’re in compliance.  Traveling internationally?  Then you’re subject to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security do’s and don’ts as well.  It’s also a good idea to understand what’s legal and illegal to bring into a foreign country.  For example, it’s illegal to bring sex paraphernalia or adult mags into Turks & Ciacos Islands.  How embarrassing would it be getting those items tossed in front of your mother-in-law!!

“Oh Yeah, You Blend.”  Mona Lisa Vito said it best in My Cousin Vinny. Dressing appropriately is just as important as comfort and style.  You need to pack necessaries for the climate and planned activities, which may end up dictating your definition of style.

When going to the airport, make sure you have shoes that slide on/off easily for quick security clearance.  A cardigan or blazer helps keep you warm and is easy to remove when seated in the air.  Keep your carry-on luggage to a bag that you can easily pick up and carry on your own.  Two years ago, I started checking in everything but a laptop tote with a small purse, a book and important travel docs in it.  It fits easily under the seat in front of me, security clearance moves fast, and there’s no more fear of having to check in my bags at the gate because overhead bins are full.  Not to mention, I look and feel better not dragging around all that extra, unnecessary weight.

Here are some great sites to visit for packing depending on your destination:

Tropical Vacation

Golf Vacation sells luggage & other travel accessories

Cruise Vacation

Urban Jungle Trip

Spa or Wellness Getaway

Disney Vacation

Snow Mamas Ski Trip

Family Ski Trip

Backpacking Europe

The Universal Packing List

If you’re staying at a resort, inquire about their dress codes for different activities.  And note that many countries have dress codes for entering religious attractions.  Avoid heavy handbags or totes, which wreak havoc on your back and shoulders.

Incapsulate!  Lastly, pack clothing and accessories in a “capsule” style. This means you should be able to pack four tops and four bottoms (pants, shorts and skirts) and come out with 16 different outfits.  Staying within a matching color scheme is the key– not that the colors have to be the same, they should simply work well together.  Your jacket or sweater should be nice enough to throw over a dressy outfit if it gets chilly. One set of casual shoes and one set of nice shoes, one shoulder bag and one clutch, again they should be interchangeable.  Ladies can pack some scarfs and jewelry to dress up or vary the looks.  Guys, remember a belt- one casual and one leather if you plan to attend an event or nice dinner.

Don’t have time to pack or want help building capsules?  Contact me to schedule an appointment.  512.217.9869 or

Visit my web site at or






About Thea Wood

I'm a professional image consultant who styles men and women in Austin, Texas. Whether you're climbing the corporate ladder or looking for Miss or Mr. Right, my services will help you create a remarkable first impression that gets results. This blog is a way to provide free tips and fun information about timeless style and things you can do to create your own signature style and increase your confidence. If you'd like to talk in person, please call me at 512.217.9869 to schedule a free consultation.
This entry was posted in Personal Style. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s