Tuesday, May 15, 2018

9 Tips for Traveling Light Without Feeling That You've Left Something At Home

Disclaimer: I received clothing from prAna in exchange for this blog post and my honest opinion. It's easy to be positive about prAna clothing!

I just love summer and what's more fun than a trip out of town? With airlines becoming increasingly restrictive about carry-on luggage, travelers really have to pack light or risk having to check a bag. I recently took an overnight trip to a half marathon in Alabama and booked a "basic economy" flight on United. While the ticket was inexpensive, I was restricted to what was basically a tote bag which had to fit under the seat in front of me. I researched the bag size and found lots of options online if I wanted to purchase one that met the requirements. Fortunately, I had a small duffle bag which fit the size restrictions and carefully selected which items I needed to bring.

I take weekend trips fairly often and have become pretty good at packing. Here are some tips for traveling light without feeling like you've left something at home!


1. Make a list of everything you want to bring on your trip. Lay everything out. Then remove half of what you've laid out. You never need as much as you think!

2. Don't pack to bursting. Save room for things you may purchase on your trip.

3. Stuff small items, such as socks and underwear, into shoes you have packed.

3. Wear your bulkiest pair of shoes on the plane. I always like to go for a run no matter where I am, so I have to pack running gear. My running shoes take up the most room in my bag, so I usually wear them on the plane.

4. Carry a sweater or jacket to wear on the plane. It's normally cold on the plane anyways. Don't pack bulky items that you can wear.

5. Instead of packing books or magazines, download any reading materials to your phone or tablet.

6. Pack items that mix and match. That way you can have a variety of outfits out of just a few pieces. Don't bring anything that can't be worn more than once.

7. Bring clothes that can multi-task. I have running skirts that are so cute, they can pass for a regular skort. I recently received this cute Merrow tankini top from prAna which can do double duty as a cami under a blouse or a sweater. It also works well alone. I paired it with some prAna bottoms that I already owned.


I am in love with this top. It fits well and stays in place, even when I wear it to work out. I can't wait to wear it waterskiing! The cut-out design in the back is really stylish and attractive. Wouldn't it be cute with a skirt?


8. Roll, don't fold your items. This helps prevent wrinkling as well as making it easier to arrange items in your bag.

9. Pack items that don't wrinkle. This Ardor dress from prAna is made from lightweight recycled polyester fabric with moisture wicking technology and unfolds without wrinkles. It can be dressed up or worn for a casual outing. The bright colors can be accessorized with a variety of items like a colored sweater or a jean jacket.


Like the tankini, I love the cut-out design on the back. This dress is so comfortable and I've gotten so many compliments on it. Between work and travel, I'm going to get a lot of wear out of this dress!


Not only is prAna clothing beautiful and practical, you can feel good about wearing their clothing. prAna clothing is made responsibly with sustainable materials. prAna is a member of the Fair Labor Association, making sure that workers making their products are treated fairly. prAna makes clothes that travel well and fit my active lifestyle!

What packing tips do you want to share? Do you have any weekend trips planned for the summer? Any racecations? Do you want to check out prAna's clothing? You can use my code TRTLS18 to save 15%! 

I'm linking up with Marcia, Erika, and Patti for Tuesdays on the Run, Annemarie and Nicole for Wild Workout Wednesday, and Debbie and Lora for Running Coaches' Corner.






80 comments :

  1. I travel to marathons with a friend whose rule is "no checked luggage", which I also think is a good rule. I tend to travel light anyway. Love your tips for packing, and also the Prana dress! Super cute.

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    1. This dress is going to get a lot of wear this summer!

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  2. I am an exert at packing light. Heck I went overseas before with just a carry on. Cute dress!

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  3. Great clothes, very cute and look like they will travel well. When I did my overseas marathon I was so paranoid about losing my stuff, I wore my trainers and packed another pair and two outfits in my carry on and hold luggage!

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    1. I barely ever check bags now. I just pack the essentials.

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  4. Great tips. I find it hard to pack light when the weather is unpredictable, but wearing layers on the plane is a great idea. Love that dress!

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    1. Me too! It comes in different colors, so if you get one, we don't have to be twins!

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  5. Love the back of that top and you know I love my PrAna! I happen to have a weekend trip coming up in a few days. I suppose I should think about packing...

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    1. I am loving the tankini top! I was a little reluctant about receiving it, since I'd have to model it. :p

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  6. My favorite tip is buy it when you get there. The first thing I do is find a Target or Walgreen's for things like toothpaste and deodorant.

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    1. Yes! That's a great tip. And a lot of hotels provide toiletries, so that makes it easy too.

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  7. I am such an over packer! I like options :) That dress is super cute and perfect for traveling

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    1. I love to bring my whole closet but I've gotten pretty good at paring down my stuff. A few cute items and I'm good to go!

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  8. I roll my clothes - it's incredible how much more room you get by doing that. I pack light, but when I travel to California, I check a suitcase because of all the shopping I do with my best friend while I'm there, LOL.

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    1. Oh, I get that! When I went to Seattle with my sister, I came home with 2 dungeness crabs!

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  9. Such great ideas, and such cute clothes. I travel fairly often and haven't checked a bag in 20 years. I love materials that stretch and don't wrinkle when packed.

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    1. I try not to buy anything that requires ironing!

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  10. Does the top have a built in bra? If so, how does it feel? It's a cute top but I don't go bra-less myself :)

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    1. The dress has a shelf bra and it's very comfortable. I'm like you, I don't go braless normally but this dress is designed very well for that.

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  11. I love the "wearing the running shoes on the plane" idea but I come from a family that always used to dress up to fly and old habits die hard. It stresses me out to wear athletic attire on a plane! Haha! Lame, right? At least I've move past the heels (seriously, old habits....) and am now comfortable in nice flats. I've even worn Vans before (#progress).

    I really like that dress! Is it lined? (Again, old school). I struggle to find a good slip that goes with a tank dress and I would be mortified to know someone could see through my dress. Remember that old photo shoot of Princess Diana when she was really young? YIKES!

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    1. The dress isn't lined, but the tech material is not see-through. It's the same material as a running top would be.

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  12. Obviously Skirt Sports are a mainstay of my racecations. I do everything in them -- well, everything but swim!

    I always pack my socks in my shoes -- but the thought of underwear in there kind of creeps me out -- and I am no germaphobe.

    I also use packing cubes, which do take up slightly more space but they have a side for dirty clothes & just keep things more organized in general. I just put them in a drawer when I get there, and can easily move it back into my suitcase. And they can double as a race day gear bag, too!

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    1. I've heard about packing cubes, but like you said they take up more space. I like to fit as much as possible in my bag!

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  13. Those Prana clothes are so cute! I definitely try to travel light as much as possible. Wearing the bulky stuff on the plane is definitely one I've taken advantage of before but somehow I've never though to stuff things in my other shoes. I'm going to have to remember that.

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    1. The shoes are empty and just waiting for small items!

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  14. I think I am an expert on this since I travel all the time.

    I do everything you said.

    If I have a race and I fly, I do not check the bag with my running clothes (just in case).

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    1. I never check a bag anymore unless I am forced to at the gate.

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  15. I may need to be your twin...that pattern is super cute! :) I was a great packer until I had kids. Now they want to bring EVERYTHING but the kitchen sink when we go someplace. Two days away and it looks like we'll be gone for two weeks!

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    1. I love this pattern! There's a SUP with this pattern on it. I wonder if prAna would let me try that out?

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  16. I'm a huge believer in mixing and matching, and dressing warm for the plane ride (ie-sweaters or fleece). I'm too paranoid about checking luggage, so I cram as much as I can into my carry-on.

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    1. Packing for a trip using a carry on is challenging!

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  17. Great tips! I always wear my bulkiest outfit and shoes onto the plane with me!

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  18. These are great tips, I am a chronic over packer. I'll have to remember this when I go to Berlin in September!

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    1. Oh for sure! Traveling overseas would make packing a carryon really challenging!

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  19. I travel A LOT (haha) and do all the same things you do ---> especially leaving room for bringing back all my favorite things ;) I roll my clothes when I pack. It seems to give me more room and my clothes don't come out looking nearly as "I've been in a suitcase" looking.

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    1. I bet you have a ton of travel tips! Just saying...

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  20. My running clothes seem to take up half the suitcase, ha! I love Prana- that dress and swimsuit is super cute! I need to update my swimsuit... might have to do some shopping and use that code.

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    1. I was a little nervous about posting a picture in a bathing suit but I truly love this top!! Let me know if you try it.

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  21. No matter what I do, I always overpack. I would love to take an overnight trip or two day weekend and just take a backpack.

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    1. Those economy airlines flights force you to pack light or pay $$$ to check a bag! I learned quickly.

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  22. Knowing I tend to overpack, I am always trying to pack less and less and less. Well, with this last trip to Boston/New York/DC, I finally did it--I completely underpacked!! It IS possible!!

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    1. Yes! Did it feel good? Or did you miss anything?

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  23. Super cute stuff! I love that dress. You need to come pack for me. As much as I travel, I'm still an awful packer and notoriously over pack. It's a problem! :-)

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  24. I love that prAna dress and the tankini is beautiful! I am such a terrible packer, mostly because we usually do road trips and you can get away with bringing most of your closet. :-)

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    1. That is a good thing about road trips!

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  25. These are such great tips - I am a terrible packer!!! Saving this post for the next time I need to load up the suitcase. Love the dress, btw. Super cute!

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    1. Thank you! I love this dress so much. I plan on wearing it so much that people will think it's my uniform!

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  26. I tend to travel light and always do a good job of not leaving anything behind. Sometimes I do not pack enough clothing but I just make what I have work - and I dont care if I re-wear an outfit once or twice, LOL! I'd rather have a carry-on then overpack and have to wait for my bag at the baggage claim!

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    1. Exactly! I loathe coming home and unpacking all the stuff I didn't wear, too!

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  27. Im using all of these tips for Blogfest I am such an over packer and get anxiety about not having what I need. Great tips

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    1. I'm jealous that you are going to Blogfest! I can't wait to hear about it!

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  28. I always tend to over pack, so I definitely can benefit from these tips!

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  29. That dress is cute! Ever since I learned about rolling clothes, packing is so much easier!

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    1. It definitely makes it easier to arrange things in the suitcase.

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  30. These are all fantastic tips! I always roll my clothes so I can fit in more than I really need. The hardest part for me is shoes, it all depends on the trip but I have far too many shoes to choose from :)

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  31. So many great tips! I have learned to travel light but still could these extra tips. And I love prAna!

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  32. We have a few trips planned this summer and I'm super excited for them! I love making a list of all the things we need (especially since I'm packing for me and 3 small kids. I roll everything, take mix and match clothes, make sure to pack only what we need and we take one large garbage bag as a dirty clothes bag to keep our clean clothes clean and then I don't have to worry about the mess either.

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    1. Do you pack the garbage bag of dirty clothes in one suitcase?

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  33. Great tips! I always struggle with packing before I go on a trip! I'll have to give this article another read the next time I have a trip planned!

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    1. I still struggle with what to bring--it's so hard to pare down my choices!

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  34. I make lists upon lists before I leave! Not to mention try to cram everything into a carry on ;)

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    1. My mom was always a list maker. For some reason, I haven't followed in her footsteps. I should tho!

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  35. I have standard lists for our long weekends away especially if there are races involved! And definitely packing light is the best way to go - we've also become experts at it!

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    1. I'm sure you are a packing expert! Isn't that what Europeans do?

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  36. I went on a 2 week trip to Antarctica with just a carry on (and not a big roller bag either). Packing light is the way to go. I also love Prana.

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    1. Good job! I can't imagine going somewhere cold with just a carry on. Did you wear all your cold weather gear?

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    2. No I packed it! I just don't need a lot of stuff.

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  37. These clothes are so cute! I love prAna. I still have a dress that I bought 10+ years ago and it still holds up great. Thanks for the tips!

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    1. I love prAna too!!! In fact, I have built up quite a wardrobe of prAna!

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  38. Great tips for traveling light! Thanks for sharing. I always love to learn what works for others and add them to my packing plan. Cute clothes from prAna!!

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  39. I packed for 5 days in an underseat carry-on once - it helped a lot that it was summer, and that I was staying with family so I didn't need much in the way of toiletries. I also finally bought some packing cubes - I've been hearing about them forever and thought they were just an organization thing, but they really make a difference in how much you can fit in the space too.

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    1. I've heard a lot about packing cubes! I need to check them out.

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