Drop the baggage!

bye bye baggage! (1)

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This week I saw my colleague walk into the office with a standing fan from her house…

Not a Bluetooth or USB desk fan, I mean the standing old school ones that you find at my gran’s house blowing the life out of those lace off-gold curtains (Yes, off-gold is colour for me).

She stopped-by the office on her way to a 3-day conference in Bela Bela and thought taking a fan along was a good idea – just in case it gets too hot. Now I’m known to over-pack for trips but I can guarantee you that I have never taken along a 1 meter high fan with me just in case! There are just something you learn to take along when you travel solo.

To read more about why I prefer to travel solo click here

I will admit, for a girl with a small car – I carry a large load. (Why does that sound like a pun? No pun intended whatever you’re thinking). I’m not complaining though, in fact most people that travel with me appreciate my packing (after they are done complaining) because mosquitoes? I got something for that. Dehydration? I got litres for that. Snow? I got this. Airplane ears? I’ll be your foam ear plugs hook up. People who pack like me are always prepared for anything.

Here’s the trick:

1. Hand luggage is as important as the suitcase

You would think that going on a trip you should pack for what you will need at your destination but nope. It all starts from the second you leave your house! Everything that you will need on the journey to the destination is put into your hand luggage. Depending on how long your trip is, this might include a toothbrush and other toiletries that you will use the morning before you go and on your stop over. If you are going international, opt for an airline like Qatar Airways because they are known to spoil you with some of these stop-over necessities along the way.

Quick check list for your hand luggage (a.k.a the things you’ll probably forget):

  • Foam ear plugs
  • A magazine / book / some type of mental stimulation
  • A travel pillow
  • Socks and a scarf
  • Camera
  • Medication (Allergy pills, malaria tablets and painkillers etc.)
  • A wallet (with contact details inside)
  • Charger
  • 2 ply toilet paper (hey I’ve seen things okay)
  • Passport / ID / Drivers license
  • Venavine Intensive cream
  • Some kind of storage device
Reading material
Some mental stimulation

2. Venavine is essential

I swear by this stuff especially when I am driving or flying long distance. It is formulated to provide relief for tired, painful and swollen legs. The Venavine Intensive Cream gives your legs a cooling sensation – hence just a few minutes after massaging it on it feels as though you are strolling in the clouds. It can help to keep your legs from swelling or aching when you’re not moving around much for a long time. It helps with blood circulation in your legs too. Our legs would usually get this from walking or running etc. but since you’re movement is limited when you’re still in transit – there is Venavine. I just don’t travel without it.

Venavine Intensive cream and Venavine Intensive capsules

3. Consider a day in your life

When you finally get to sorting out outfits, I have found this works like a charm:

Stand in front of your mirror and say:

This is how you get through a day in the life of me…

Yes its quite dramatic but going on holiday is dramatic so allow me. Then its simple, consider everything that happens in your day and what you would wear to each occassion. That’s what goes into your bag.

Ever heard of a breakfast outfit? Nope? neither have I – I was just asking. Most hotels and restaurants just tell you to dress appropriately for dinner. I.e please don’t arrive in a bikini! So remember to pack in some dinner outfits to avoid being that person. Also make another breakfast outfit for every dinner outfit you pack. You can’t wear the same outfit again else you look like you you skimped on taking a shower! People won’t tell you – they will just think it. Don’t be that person.

Don’t forget your cozzy, make up, heels (in case you hit the town to somewhere fancy) and flats. To my natural sisters: I would usually braid my hair for a holiday but if youre brave enough to take a trip with your natural hair then don’t forget your essential oils, detangler, pre-poo, conditioner and that linen head scarf. Hello holiday… goodbye shrinkage!

*Tip: Check out the Sweet Rush Closet for more tips on looking after your natural hair 

4. Cardigan vs jumper vs hoodie

Welcome to life – rainy days are inevitable. I’ve noticed that my fair skin friends don’t freak out about rain. If anything they just keep going but the rain isn’t a big fan of us sun-kissed folks. We’ve been raised to believe that the rain equals cold! If it is raining – wear a jersey! (yes muumy your words still ring in my ear everytime it starts raining). She was right in some ways I guess, you don’t want to be unprepared for a bit of wet or cold weather. Do your research first before you go – if its Summer at your destination, a cardigan will probably suffice but if you’re off to the likes of Europe where the summer is questionable – just pack a proper jersey and hoodie to be on the safe side.

Sexy 0 – Prepared 1.

5. Documentation

Now that the outfits are packed and just-in-case weather is accounted for, make sure that you have all your required documentation. These include:

  • Passport (refer back to point 1)
  • Visa
  • Valid driver’s license
  • All tickets and boarding passes
  • Medical aid cards and certificates
  • Proof of payments (accommodation and pre-booked activities especially)
  • Vehicle, trailer and caravan documents (particularly if you are driving cross border)
  • Signed, stamped and valid affidavits for any outstanding documentation

The rules are simple – drop the baggage! That goes for all baggage in life… and well if you still end up overpacking, a dashing smile on foriegn land can assist with that.

There’s some ‘helpful’ folks in Milan

Disclaimer: Dont get jacked on my advice…

Thank me later.


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  1. Coralie - Frenchie Globe Trotter

    Hey hey, I really loved you post and could relate.
    I am well known for the way I pack my bags among my friends too.
    While i was in India with a friend / co-worker, she couldn’t manage to close her suitcase, because hey too much shopping ! Guess what, I repacked for her and everything fitted :p
    I am going to try to find a french alternative for this Venavine cream.
    During my last trip, I experienced a lot of pain in my legs for the first time, and I am afraid it will happen again!

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      Sindi Girl

      Thanks Coralie! We should share some tips. I’m so curious about how you fold for your suitcase, anything for a little more bag room.
      I think the French alternative is AntiStax. These products work like a charm. You should definately give them a try.

  2. Caitlin Stewart

    Your blog is making me laugh. I AM that person with a breakfast outfit. I straight up have a suitcase that I can fit in and I still always overpack!! It’s one of the biggest things I’m working on! But when it comes down to it, I really have no interest in pack packing or anything like that. So I don’t feel that bad about my giant suitcase!!! Except when I buy too many things on a trip. Oh gosh I am a hoarder!

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  3. Bruce Schinkel

    Such a great post. I loved how your integrated your humour into a normally dry subject! I definitely need to check out Venavine for my next long-haul flight (and maybe some not-so-long)

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  4. Lusine

    I’m already used to pack light as I mainly travel with low cost airlines which only allow cabin luggage and a small handbag. In the worst case, even if you forget something, you can always buy a substitute at your destination (if and only you don’t go to some remote village or ghost town, haha).

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      Sindi Girl

      haha! Thanks for sharing Lusine… lol trying to find your favourites in a remote village must be worst!
      You would be surprised how I couldnt find something as simple as sunblock in a boiling hot village in Limpopo South Africa. How ironic.

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  5. John

    Great tips! I’m a chronic underpacker, and end up having to buy more than I would like at our destination 🙂 One day I’ll get it together and start bringing everything I need.

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      Sindi Girl

      Oh John! That’s the worst. Most times convenient stores mark evrything up and you end up paying a fortune for what you left at home. That’s why I always use my checklist when I pack 🙂 Let me know how you do next time…

  6. Milena

    Great tips here. I usually travel with my carry on to avoid allt he hustle and stress. So far, it works pretty well, even though sometimes I need to choose between nice look and comfortable travel 🙂

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      Sindi Girl

      I see many people are opting for travelling with hand luggage only these days. I dont know how you do it- But props to you for doing it! I’m sure it saves you a lot of time and hassles.

  7. Antarik Anwesan

    That’s some cool advice. I have actually heard from a lot of friends how they prefer traveling with just a hand baggage instead of any check-in luggage. Makes it a tad bit faster and convenient. We really don’t need to pack so much when we are off for a casual vacation. I like your dinner advice though- wear something different each time so people don’t think you were lazy 😀

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      Sindi Girl

      Travelling with just hand luggage is not for the faint hearted…especially when you’re female. I wish I could though – it would sure save me a whole lot of time 🙂

  8. Anja / Womanhattan

    Oh, I love you, girl. You pack just like I do. I am always prepared for anything, but then it happened that one guy at the hotel helped me with my luggage and asked if I have a dead body inside 😂😂😂

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      Sindi Girl

      Hahahha Anja! Thank goodness that all we have to do is make sure we get the suitcase to the accomodation…No judgement from there on. From there – trust me they’ll love how handy and efficient we are. Let them try travelling without foam ear plugs or a book (or the other stuff that we are convinced we need but not really…)

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