Two-Week Trip & No Checked Bags! A How-To
Girls get a bad rap for "not knowing how to pack." More specifically, we over pack. Well recently, when my husband and I went on our honeymoon to Sri Lanka and The Maldives, I decided I would put that myth to bed. Willie knows that I am decent at roughing it (we camp a lot) and I love adventure, but I like to look cute just as much as the next girl. So the question was how to find that balance of practical/cute.
Right before we left, he surprised me with a new little "gadget" - packing cubes! (These are not the exact ones we have, but you can see what I'm talking about here.) Now, babe is a total bag/packing nerd so he was super psyched about this. I was....less than thrilled. I decided to give them a try though (because hey, when he gets excited about something, it makes me smile real big), and I have to say they were pretty amazing! They come in different sizes so you can basically play Tetris with them inside your suitcase, and if you are planning on living out of a carry-on for two weeks, bouncing from place to place, they are super helpful with keeping things organized. Anyways, I thought I would share that little tip along with what I packed for our honeymoon since we both wound up being pretty proud of ourselves for not having to check a bag (except for with Emirates because they decided to be terds and told me I could only bring one carryon even though they let Willie bring two....). We were especially happy about not checking a bag on our way home because we barely made our connecting flight in Istanbul. I'd be willing to bet that if we had checked a bag, it would not have made the connection. Anyways! Below is my packing list for a week of adventure in Sri Lanka and a week of a little more luxury and relaxation in The Maldives and I've included some photos of how I mixed and matched everything. (Note: Despite many years of modeling, I get really weird and uncomfortable in front of cameras when it's not work-related, so I really didn't get many good pictures on the honeymoon. Willie has been super patient with me, and I've been getting better, but definitely a missed opportunity on my part. I'm learning to be more comfortable with myself, though! So, even though I threw a couple in at the bottom of the post, I promise to deliver better photos in the future! In the meantime, I sucked it up and we walked around NYC a bit to take some photos of the clothing I brought on our honeymoon.)
Suitcase side note: My Away suitcase (which is a Minion, actually!) has two compartments - one with a compression thing (still not great with the terminology, sorry) and the other a zipper compartment. I used the zipper compartment for my shoes, goggle mask, and other bulky non-clothing items. I also was sure to leave some space so we could buy a few things to bring back with us! Away also has a place in the suitcase to charge your phone AND a little pouch with a waterproof bag for dirty/wet clothing - super handy!
If this is a challenge you'd like to embrace, check it out and let me know what you think! Any tips you have for packing light? Let me know in the comments!
IN THE NON-ZIPPER SIDE OF MY MINION, I PACKED THE CUBES
6 pairs socks
20 pairs underwear
3 regular bras
5 swimsuits (1 one-piece, one for more active (holds everything in!), a few cute ones)
2 workout shirts (basically tank tops)
3 sports bras (I totally prefer these on travel days)
1 hiking pant
*My REI pants that zip off into shorts were perfect since it was cool in the morning when we left and much warmer up in the sun on the mountain. I was grateful for the "pants" version as well when we were hiking through tall grass to get to a more secluded spot - those plants can really cut up your legs sometimes.
1 workout pants (For hotels that had gyms)
I didn't want to fall off the wagon too hard)
1 sarong (great as a cover up for the beach and in a million other situations)
2 pairs jean shorts (1 white, 1 blue jean)
2 long dresses
*Loose and comfy - nice for a dressy dinner with some jewelry; just as easy for lounging or exploring a city. Good thing to wear if you are going to a temple or somewhere that you need to cover your shoulders - just bring your shawl with!
2 short dresses
*so comfortable and dressy enough to wear to a nice dinner, but casual enough to explore a city it.
*super easy/comfy light weight nightgown from Krochet Kids
1 long sleeve button down
*My Rails button down was the best item that I brought - it was especially helpful when my skin was freaking out about the sun!
1 short sleeve, white button down
*Easy to pair with jean shorts or a skirt for a casual but put-together look.
1 long skirt
1 linen pant (So great for airplane travel)
1 beach pant
*I dont know what else to call these. I love these pants though. They are loose, colorful, fun, and have little pom poms on the bottom! Also great for travel days.
*Great for cool nights, temple visits, and keeping the sun off your shoulders. Check out the company I got mine from - Parekh Bugbee - they are handmade in India and are so stunning!
2 tank tops (one light, one dark)
2 long sleeve tops
*One white top that can be dressy or casual; One very lightweight hoody
IN THE ZIPPER COMPARTMENT
2 pair deux mains sandals (1 bel nanm, 1 minouche)
1 pair Converse (these doubled as hiking and workout shoes...I didn't bring regular sneakers because mine are just too bulky and don't look good with non-workout clothing. I was also usually wearing these whenever we were traveling, so I didn't worry about them stinking up my suitcase hah!)
Goggles with video camera inside
Bag of easy, inexpensive jewelry
*Great to keep the sun off your face! I brought a YAY! ADVENTURE! hat and a "Mrs." hat that was a bridal shower gift. So cute :)