I love to travel but I hate to pack. Packing gives me anxiety; packing is akin to nightmare for me. For international trips there are visas to worry about. I have got them on the last possible day on so many occasions, which meant last minute packing! That is why I so love visa on arrival destinations. But over the years I have develop a method for the madness called packing. But you follow it at your own risk!
For any trip documents are important and this is usually my starting point. For me this phase also means making sure I have enough money and a few cards for the trip. If it is a domestic trip life is a little simpler as it usually means having the travel ticket, money/cards and if I have done it in advance, hotel reservation proof. An Id proof is always to be carried.
If it is an international trip life gets a bit more complicated as that means passport, travel insurance and photographs in case of visa on arrival. I do bother about forex too but more often than not, I end up buying it from the airport. For visa on arrival I do thoroughly check all the documents required and make sure that I have it.
As soon as I have crossed this stage I relax a bit. The next bit is easy but very important to me.
I cannot imagine traveling without my SLR, my cell phone- XperiaZ3 and my laptop. That used to be my complete list of gadgets. But now I have switched to an eBook reader so I need to pack that too. The SLR goes with about 3 additional lenses and a tripod. There was a time when I used to carry a point and shoot camera as well. But now with cell phones like XperiaZ3 having amazing feature rich cameras I do not carry a point and shoot any more.
As important as the gadgets are their chargers! I regularly ensure that I have 4 chargers with me. On the international trip the adapter for different type of plug points is a must. Without the chargers and the adapter, my gadgets soon become dead weight!
By the time I cross stage 3 I am certainly euphoric. I feel my packing is done. And you know who is coming down the slide head first, on my phone screen saver. No points for guessing that it is Chhavi!
Clothes and the Like
I approach packing clothes with mixed emotions. If it is hot weather I will ensure that I have my swim suit. After that I wish they could somehow get packed on their own! A few decent clothes which will cover ‘formal’ occasions and ‘smart casuals’ I manage to get ironed and packed. If it is winter I make sure I have woolens so that I would not freeze to death, I do not take cold well!
Footwear means comfort to me. I have never worm high heels in my life and I don’t have any plans to change. This category also means making sure I have a toothbrush and a comb. And I am all sorted. If I fear dry skin I will pack a Vaseline and moisturizer as well.
In the end, I just tell myself, “you have the documents, you have money, anything else that is really important and you forgot, you can buy.” And then I run out yelling, “yippee I am all done” and go out on that trip!