Pack Like A Cosmopolitan

Most people want to look great on their vacations. I know I did on my trip to New York and Europe last summer. I figured that it was a time to treat myself and to look chic and carefree. Not to mention wanting to look good in the pictures! Dresses, skirts, heels, sandals, sunglasses, and tank tops made up the bulk of my attire. What some people may not realize, myself included, is that they’re setting themselves up for the exact opposite image when they don’t pack sensibly. You want to pack to knock ’em dead, without taking yourself out along the way! Walking miles through crowded streets and braving unexpected rain (or hail) during your sightseeing tours while not being dressed appropriately can leave you looking and feeling less than stellar. A sign of a true jetsetter is being dressed appropriately in whatever location and situation you’re in. That’s why all of the following tips incorporate one central concept: be prepared!

1.) Be prepared for sudden changes in the forecast: This is definitely a case of do what I say not what I do. I did not prepare for changes in weather. I only packed warm weather clothes and new york yankees hoodie , meaning no sneakers, jackets, or more than one pair of pants. What can I say? I knew better, but I’m a skirt and dress girl in the summertime. Flip flops and open-toe heels were the extent of the new york yankees hoodie I brought along with me, and one viking hoodies didn’t help much in London where the temperature was thirty degrees below what it was supposed to be. Trust me, riding on the top of a double-decker bus for two hours in the bitter cold and wind in nothing but flip flops, jeans, and one measly viking shirts is not how a girl should spend her vacation. You want to come home with a summer glow, not frostbite. If that doesn’t get you rummaging through your off season clothes, I have three words for you: Hail, Rome, June. They don’t seem like they go together, do they? I didn’t think so either… until it happened to me. Strange, huh? I still almost don’t believe it.

2.) Be prepared to dress appropriately for the occasion: One of the worst feelings in the world is the one you get when you walk into a room and realize you’re completely underdressed. It’s the same for the opposite, too. Wearing your prom dress to hike through ancient ruins isn’t exactly practical. If you don’t plan on going anywhere fancy on your trip, you don’t have to worry about it as much, but I still suggest bringing at least one formal outfit. Remember, many people in other countries wear incredibly chic clothes just to go out shopping. Also, be prepared to dress conservatively at times. I know that glitter halter top and mini-skirt look great, but some places have a dress code and won’t let you in if you’re not in compliance. At the Vatican, where there is a strict dress code, I noticed a lot of people having to buy plastic clothes from street vendors to put over their own clothes just so they could get inside. And just a side note: looking like a plastic bag is not a good look.

3.) Be prepared to leave room for new clothes you buy along the way: One of the reasons why these tips aren’t as simple as they may seem is because you need to be prepared for all these different scenarios, but you can’t bring your whole wardrobe with you. You don’t want your suitcase to be too heavy because then it’s a pain to drag onto the subway and through the streets. You also don’t want it to go over the airline’s weight requirement or you’ll end up spending extra. It’s important to save room for the inevitable: souvenirs! Some of the things I brought back with me from New York and Europe include a black and white polka dot skirt from Mango in Paris, two hats and a decorative mask from Rome, and a green asian-inspired dress from New York. Of course, you can’t leave out the little things like magnets, mugs, postcards, etc. that you’ll buy for loved ones. All of these things add up and I know my bags were a lot heavier leaving than they were going. Try using the plastic compression bags so you can fit more in your suitcase. Also, just having a daily plan of what you’re going to wear helps a lot when deciding what you need and what you don’t.

write by Ionel Pascan