Last week, I traveled out-of-town for 4 days for a conference and as I looked around the ticket counter and saw people lugging huge suitcases towards check-in. With my one suitcase and work bag, I realized that I had come a long way in my packing techniques over the last few years. Here are essential rules for packing for a four-day business trip!
About two years ago, I was presenting at a conference…only a 3 nights away in the same State. I have always been an overpacker and I really hadn’t figured out the whole concept of not taking multiple outfit choices instead of actually selecting and sticking to my outfits. I way overpacked (thank goodness I was driving not flying!) and ended up having a huge and heavy suitcase with more than half the clothing not even worn. I packed way too many shoes, pants, dresses…even toiletries that was embarrassingly dragged out of the vehicle from the hotel valet with a resounding thud as it hit the curb.
Since then, I have flown to a few conferences and have done a much better job of packing more efficiently thanks to having a list that outlines what I need for professional time and personal time…and sticking to it! I realized now that for the business traveler, four days are pretty simple to fit in a suitcase, but can be a challenge and even overwhelming for any new traveler. Now don’t get me wrong, I have seen and followed other bloggers that talk about traveling 4-5 days with just a backpack…I AM NOT THAT GOOD! But I have come a long way and wanted to share my tips for that inbetweener business traveler….less than a huge suitcase, more than just a carry-on bag!
Want more help? Download the Work It Women Business Travel Packing Checklist!
How to Pack for a Four Day Business Trip
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Here is my generic list of items to pack:
• Two bottoms, one comfortable for travel (i.e. slacks and a skirt and/or jeans)
• Coordinating suit jackets if needed
• Four tops that coordinate with both of your bottoms
• At least one light jacket or sweater (unless you need a heavier jacket)
• No more than three pairs of shoes, including a pair of flip-flops or running shoes (only if you plan on exercising!)
• Enough undergarments, including socks/hose
• PJs or Sleepwear
• Workout clothes (if you workout)
• Toiletries and makeup (just one small bag with make-up essentials and NO FULL Size toiletries!)
• Curling iron (or other styling aids-you don’t need a hairdryer—every hotel has one!)Start with purchasing a decent travel bag…I love this Samsonite hard-shell Case on Amazon with 4 wheels to make for easy manoeuvrability! (https://amzn.to/2RbkXah) It’s fully lined with organizational pockets to separate both sides of the case and under $100
How to efficiently pack your case!
- Start with packing shoes on the bottom I like to put my shoes in plastic bags (germ freak!)
- Next, I like to fold and pack my pants and shirts.
- I put my undergarment and accessories in the inside zippered pocket of my case along with any medications.
- On top, I lay any toiletries, curling irons and fold and lay my suit jackets right on top. I do like to use the internal case straps to hold everything together but finally closing.
- I always pack and keep my jewelry in my purse when I travel…just a habit and safekeeping.
- Finally, I don’t close my case until it’s time to leave my house.
It’s not overpacking, but it certainly is enough items to mix and match and look great during the workday and stylishly transition to nighttime. It has taken me some time to figure all this out! Make sure that you download my free travel checklist for a business trip to keep everything in check and to help you remember all items to bring home! Let me know what you think in the comments!
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