Rather than worrying about the important things like where I’m going to live or work when I get to Australia – one of my main concerns has (ashamedly) been focused on what to pack, or more importantly what not to pack for my move. Moving abroad is a once in a lifetime opportunity, but it’s also something that I’m aware not everyone who reads my blog is likely to do. With that being said, what most people will have to face at some point however, is packing for a long trip, moving house or having a wardrobe cull. Over the last few weeks I’ve found myself becoming a bit of an expert in the art of packing, so I thought I’d share the tips I’ve learnt that have helped me reduce my life into one 30kg suitcase.
Although I’m not leaving for two months, packing under pressure is one of the worst experiences and something I wholeheartedly want to avoid. By starting early, you are able to calmly assess how much you have, what you want to take and what really needs to go. If you can avoid it, don’t leave it to the last minute.
When it comes to luggage space, shoes are not your friend. They are heavy, awkwardly shaped and can easily take up a large portion of your suitcase, and weight allowance. As a result, it’s important to be brutal with your collection and take only the essentials – anything you can’t fit, can always be replaced anyway. I’m taking: 2x sandals, 2x trainers, 2x boots 1x heel and this will potentially still need to be cut down – although I do have the benefit of my boyfriend’s relatively empty case to share. Stuff those shoes with jewellery, scarves and any other accessories to save space and help your shoes retain their shape.
Sell Sell Sell
If you haven’t seen me promoting relentlessly on my Twitter already, I have been going big when it comes to selling. In fact, I’m selling so much on my Depop that I’m starting to wonder if I’ll even have anything to put in my suitcase when it comes to packing. Selling is a great way to soften the blow of parting with something you love as it gives you some pocket money in your new country and means it’s going to a welcome new home. For anything I don’t want to sell, I’ve donated to local charity shops.
Weigh Before You Leave
I have a 30kg weight limit on my suitcase, and to purchase any additional weight will cost me a whopping £53 per kg (thanks Emirates), so sticking to the weight limit is non negotiable. To avoid hefty charges at the airport, invest in some luggage scales (or use your own scales at home) and make sure your suitcase is the right weight before you get to the airport. If you’re travelling with someone else, try and split heavier items between suitcases to balance out the weight.
Make Use Of Your Carry On
I have an additional 7kg in carry on weight that I fully intend to use to pack my valuables, in-flight essentials and anything else I can’t fit into my main luggage. Airlines are unlikely to weigh your check in luggage either, so chances are if you go a little over you’re likely to get away with it.
As a beauty blogger, it’s been difficult to say good bye to my beloved makeup collection – but it’s ridiculous how much room makeup and toiletries can take up in a suitcase. 99% of what you own is replaceable, so my policy has been – if I don’t reach for it regularly it has to go. My makeup has now reduced to one small makeup bag and the majority of toiletries I’ll buy when I land in Melbourne.
Use Vacuum-Sealed Bags
Even though I’m moving to Australia, Melbourne doesn’t always have the same favourable climate that the rest of country is known for and there are likely to be days where the weather is as cold and grim as it can be in the UK. As a result, I’ll need a coat or two to keep me warm during the winter. Unfortunately, puffy coats are huge space wasters so my biggest tip is buy vacuum-sealed bags and use these to reduce bulky items by up to 50% and save yourself much more space! It’s also wise to wear your particularly big or heavy items to the airport. You might look ridiculous but it’ll be worth it!