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Organizing for Travel (2023): The Best Tips and Tricks

Posted by Dianne Chen on
Organized suitcase for travel

Organizing for travel seems like a complex task. But honestly being organized can make a huge difference! You can focus more on your trip, avoid any travel blunders and best of all, prevent stress and mess.

Not sure where to start? We got you! Keep reading for the best travel organization tips and tricks! 

How to Stay Organized While Traveling

Woman packing for a trip

Getting organized may be the last thing on your mind, especially when you're too busy pinning awesome places to your Pinterest travel inspo board. #samehere

But, trust us, any traveler can benefit from a little organization. The tips below would guide you on how to be an organized traveler.

1) Start with a packing list

Travel packing list

Want to know a secret? Every epic travel story begins with an awesome packing list. It just makes packing more efficient and prevents you from leaving anything important behind. No need to make a checklist from scratch. Choose from our large selection of packing lists below and you're golden. The best part, it's free!

2) Secure the paperwork

You know the drill... Get your passport ready, apply for the necessary visa, finalize your itinerary, etc. Once you're done, it's a must to use a system to keep track of all your travel documents. Always keep printed copies of your most important documents like your passport, flight confirmation and hotel reservation. Place these documents in one, easy to access pouch or envelope. For everything else, keep digital copies that you can easily access even without WiFi (like a screenshot on your phone). 

3) Pack as lightly as possible

Resist the urge to cram everything in your suitcase. Remember that packing checklist? Stick to it and only take the essentials, those that you really can't survive without. A few outfits (not the entire closet), basic toiletries, shoes (2 pairs max) and miscellaneous items should be enough. If you can travel with a carry on only, it will certainly help lighten your load and save you a lot of time in the airport. 

4) Plan your outfits in advance

Keep in mind the local weather and activities when you're planning your outfits. It also helps to bring clothes in the same color family so that it's easier to mix and match. You don't need to bring an outfit for each day of your trip but rather select pieces that are versatile and can be worn interchangeably. This reduces the possibility of packing so much yet not having enough to wear on your vacation. #girlproblems

5) Step it up with packing cubes

How to stay organized for travel with packing cubes

**Thanks to Jenna for this awesome organized suitcase photo!

If you still haven't joined the packing cube game, you're missing out on all the organizing fun! These packing cubes will keep you organized before your travel, while you travel, and after returning home. It's the best tool for keeping your travel suitcase neat and tidy. Also works great for organizing a weekender duffel bag, backpack and more! 

How to organize with EzPacking cubes?

✅ Complete Bundle - This packing cube set includes 2 each of our 4 packing cube sizes. Plus, 1 laundry bag, 2 shoe bags and 1 folding board set. Perfect for packing a checked luggage! You can also choose the 2-color option to make color coding 1 suitcase for 2 persons super easy.

Complete Bundle

Starter Set - This is our beginner's set which includes 1 each of our 4 packing cube sizes. If you're new to the packing cube world and you don't want to feel overwhelmed, this one's for you! Also fits perfectly in a carry on luggage.

Starter Set

Individual Cubes - You can also build your own packing cube stash as you need 'em! Check out our different size cubes here (also available in different fun colors!).

Individual Cubes

6) Take advantage of travel apps

Every day is a new, crazy, to-do list filled day. You may think you’ll remember everything, but let’s be real. We’re human and we forget things.

This is where travel apps come in. Download these apps and make your travel life a bit easier:

TripIt - Makes it easier to manage all your bookings / reservations in just one app. You can forward the travel information straight from your email and the app organizes it for you.

Google Maps - Download the maps you need before you go so you can access them offline.

Google Maps

✅ Booking / Airline Apps - Don't forget to download your specific airline's app and also your favorite booking apps (like Kayak and Skyscanner). These are super helpful and use less data compared to the regular booking sites.

Trailwallet - Great app to track your spending and stay within your travel budget!

✅ Uber / Lyft - Or any other local ride-sharing app you might need.

Google Translate - Download the local language before your trip so you can use the app offline. 

7) Keep your electronics safe and sound

Cords organized in packing cubes

**Thanks to Wendi for this cool photo!

These items cannot withstand rough handling! Use a velcro wrap or washi tape to avoid cords from getting tangled. Laptops, cameras and iPads need to be packed in padded sleeves. Don't forget to place all gadgets in your carry on preferably in their own pouch. 

8) Use a TSA Approved Toiletry Bag

TSA Compliant Airport Liquids Bag

If there's one place where it truly pays to be organized, it's the airport. This cutie patootie TSA Quart Size Bag will help you strut through airport screening like a queen. Fill it with your travel size toiletries, meds and other knick knacks. It just makes the whole screening experience less stressful, faster and easier. 

9) Keep your travel wallet light

Take a few minutes to downsize your wallet before your trip. Get rid of old receipts and rewards cards that are taking up extra space in your wallet. Some local cash, ID, credit card and debit card will suffice. You can also invest in an RFID wallet to keep the important stuff safe and protected.

10) Don't let the clean stuff get mixed with the dirty

Travel laundry and shoe bags

**Thanks to Samantha for this photo!

Have a plan for your dirty items! First up, shoes... Those dirty soles can do a lot of damage to your clean items. Make sure to place them inside Travel Shoe Bags. Likewise, dirty clothes need to have their own little place too like this Travel Laundry Bag.   

Going on a beach vacay? Pack a Wet Bag to contain your wet swimsuits, undies, etc. and avoid these items from leaking into your suitcase.

11) Stash some duplicates

If you travel a few times a year, keep a stock of your most important travel items. Whether it's your favorite moisturizer, sunscreen, foundation, medications, etc. preferably those items that you can't get overseas. Keep all these extras in one place so you can easily access them when needed.

Pro Tip: After each trip, reassess your toiletry / makeup / First Aid Kit bags and discard items that are expired or empty. Then replace these items from your duplicates stash so you're good to go for the next trip!

12) Go digital

Kindle for organized trip

Lessen the weight and bulk you're carrying by going digital! Leave the printed guidebook behind and download the ebook version instead. Backup your photos in the cloud instead of bringing a bulky hard drive. Carry limited cash and pay your tickets online using a credit card or digital payment options. 

13) Don't forget the little things

So you've packed your cute outfits, shoes and other essentials but don't forget to organize the tiny stuff! These things can easily get lost at the bottom of your suitcase. Keep your jewelry items like necklaces, bracelets and rings organized in a Travel Jewelry Roll. Place your cosmetics in a cute Half Moon Bag and things like earphones, coins, keys, etc. in a Circle Pouch.   

14) Color code the kid's essentials

Assign each kid their favorite color Medium Cube and pack their outfits inside. This is a great way to keep the kid's essentials organized and not all mixed up and jumbled. Also makes getting ready in the mornings super easy! Just give your kid their own cube and no more whining about which items belong to whom.

Color coded packing cubes

**Thanks to Megan for this awesome photo!

15) Leave some space for the souvenirs

Planning to do a lot of shopping? Don't pack your suitcase full so you have some space for the extras. You can bring a foldable bag or just use your empty packing cubes to keep your souvenirs organized.

Despite all the “travel organization systems” available online nowadays, always input your own personality into the system you choose, and follow the one that works best for you.

Becoming organized doesn’t happen overnight; it takes time and effort. With a little commitment, these tips and tricks will keep you organized and hopefully, make for the best trip every time.

We challenge you to follow the tips mentioned above, and start taking action.

Which one's your favorite? Share it in the comments section!

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