By Caroline Bujold
I’m writing this post from beautiful Gatineau / Ottawa region where I’m on assignment for the month.
As many of you know, I manage an event that is being held here at the end of July. In the final month of preparation, it just makes sense to be on site and work face to face with the local Organizing Committee. This means packing and living from my suitcase for exactly 29 days, in a college dorm room/apartment or, for this time around, in a hotel room.
My setup is pretty good. I have a small fridge, a microwave oven, a coffee maker with coffee provided, cable and free WiFi, as well as a work table, sofa and coffee table. Also, the Games’ Headquarters are only a short 15 minute walk from the hotel and there is a mall with a grocery store between the two. This forces me to walk everyday. During Games’ time, I will have a car and access to the cafeteria, but for now, this is all I need.
So how do you pack for a month?
1 – Pack for 7 to 10 days.
If you don’t know this yet, when you pack to go on a trip that is longer than seven days, you only need to pack about a week’s worth of clothes.
2 – Mix and match your clothes to create multiple outfits.
Choose basic items that don’t wrinkle and add a few pops of colour that go together. This way you can wear your clothes for more than once, without looking like you’re wearing the same thing all the time.
3 – Plan to wash your clothes
If you must, wash your clothes along the way: in your room, in a laundromat or pay for your clothes to get washed. Travel packs of laundry detergent are easy to find at drugstores.
4 – Use plastic zipper bags to protect your clothes from spills
Spillage is a fact of travel. Prevent disasters by holding your products in zipper bags. Products can then spill all they want, but they won’t ruin your clothes.
5 – Use packing containers
THIS is my new favourite travel item! I loved my underwear packing containers so much, I bought some more from Eagle Creek and I was able to divide everything neatly. This made repacking at the last minute super easy. My clothes came out fresh and folded, so I just had to unzip the cubes and transfer to drawers.
What I packed
I’m usually a good light packer, but nothing as extreme as being able to only take a carry-on for a three week trip (yet). Having to work for this long, away from my closet made it somewhat slightly different. I’m pretty sure I have a bit too much, but I wanted to be prepared.
I was also not exactly sure when or if I would have time to go to the laundromat.
I didn’t want to eat take out or from restaurants all this time. So I had a few extras that I normally don’t bring with me.
In my luggage
- 1 sweater (work)
- 1 rain jacket (work)
- 1 Games’ jacket (work)
- 1 vest (work)
- 1 travel size umbrella
- 4 pairs of pants (1 dressy, 1 yoga, 2 jeans)
- 3 pairs of shorts
- 4 skirts: 1 long, 3 short
- 2 dresses
- 6 tank tops: 2 dressy
- 2 blouses
- 5 t-shirts
- 2 sweater/jacket
- 2 scarfs
- 1 bathing suit
- 1 hat
- 3 pyjamas/fitness kit
- As much underwear as I could fit in my bags
- 3 pairs of sandals (including on pair I bought there, because the ones I had were hurting my feet)
- 1 pair of runners
- 1 pair of flats
- 1 pair of flip flops for the hotel room
- 1 Packable tote from Eagle Creek
- 1 laundry bag (you can also use a garbage bag)
- 1 toiletry bag
- 1 makeup pouch
- 1 hair blow dryer (I really don’t like the hotel ones)
- 1 curling iron (I doubt I will use it, but we’ll see)
- A 2 inch binder with work-related documents (fortunately it’s not coming back with me)
- Other paper materials
- Business cards
- 1 set of camping utensils
- 1 camping paring knife
- 1 small plastic cutting board
- Salt and pepper
What do you think? Do I have too much, not enough? Watch for my next update to find out.
p.s. sorry for the darker pictures