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Are you guilty of over-packing?

Guilty of overpacking

I’ve lost count of the number of times that I have come home from a holiday and not had to wash over half my clothes as I haven’t even worn them!

I did the same thing recently. I had a wonderful family holiday in Florida with my two nieces, dad, stepmother, brother and his fiancé and completely got my packing wrong.  And I don’t know how I did it.  I realised I wouldn’t be going out partying every night (like my normal holidays) but I still hadn’t packed enough casual day clothes and enough comfortable clothes for trekking around the theme parks.  Thank goodness we were in a nice villa with modern domestic appliances!

Thankfully, this makes me not so different from the average woman who over-packs her holiday suitcase with 26 items which never see the light of day! A detailed study recently found that typically a woman needs 34 separate items for a week-long break – but packs 60 “just in case”. I don’t think that I am that bad but I do believe that we ladies like to prepare for every eventuality – which means packing for all weathers, the possibility of day trips, evenings out, sports and activities – you name it, we pack for it.

 

The research showed that the average female will pack 19 tops for her holiday – including t-shirts, cardigans, blouses and evening tops – but will only wear 10. She will also cram the case with 16 ‘bottoms’ – such as trousers, shorts and leggings – but will come home with eight unworn. A further five accessories such as hats, sarongs, pashminas and sunglasses will return home unused, after women pack a total of nine. Female holidaymakers will also return home with one pair of shoes which never made it out of the suitcase, a spare bikini and a couple of pieces of underwear.

Now I know where I do actually win is when I’m packing toiletries.  I have this down to a fine art and make the most of sample bottles and travel miniatures whenever I can.  But then I’m lucky, I don’t have any real skin sensitivities, like to go fairly ‘naked’ on the make up front and know when my periods will descend so I don’t get any surprises.  Other women I know are not so lucky and so toiletry packing is much more important to them.

I will however admit to packing electronics and books etc. that I don’t use.  For the same Florida holiday, I’d packed my IPod, three books, my Nintendo DS, a hairdryer, a camera and a pair of straighteners!  What a joke – the straighteners didn’t get out of the suitcase.  I don’t know what I was thinking, Florida is humid and I have naturally frizzy hair!  There was no way I was going to win that battle.  My IPod got used once on the plane, I read someone else’s book as it was far more interesting that the ones that I had brought with me and the Nintendo DS and my camera are still gathering dust in the bag!

What are the classic over packing mistakes you’ve made over the years and what can you not live without whilst on holiday?

Naidre

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