Well, get excited because here it is: Always unpack right away when you return from a trip, no matter how late it is or how tired you are. If you put it off, you end up living out of a suitcase for a week (or more) until you finally get around to unpacking.
This probably sounds familiar. Well, no more! Here are seven tips to create a travel staging area in your home, which help you follow The Golden Rule of Travel.
1. Designate and clear an area in your home that can be used to prepare for trips and on your return. Your travel staging area can be in any area with extra wall space or even tucked away in a closet or cabinet.
2. Use stacked bins, each labeled for a family member and one for general items, for easy access when packing and unpacking. Bins are great if you are limited on space, because they can be stacked vertically.
3. Gather items a few days ahead of your trip and put them in your travel staging area. Packing items well in advance will take the stress out of packing and help you make good choices.
4. Invest in folding luggage racks. This will keep your suitcases open and off the floor. And never put your bag on the bed as you could transfer bed bugs.
5. Keep your trip files in your staging area. Check out my recent blog post about creating an organized trip file.
6. Store any other items you commonly need for travel in this area, including:
- Travel size toiletries
- Toiletry bags
- Travel first-aid kit
- Travel adaptors
- Shoe bags
- Packing cubes
- Jewelry cases
- Laundry bags
- Money belt
- Travel pillow and blanket
- Travel alarm clock
- Ziploc bags
- Luggage tags
- Trip files
- Copies of vital documents
- Packing checklists
Keep in mind that little advance planning can make packing and unpacking for a trip a breeze. Safe travels this summer!