Pack like a Pro

With holiday season practically upon us it’s almost time to resurrect your suitcase, ready to be filled with your summer essentials.
With that in mind it’s time to start thinking about the hideous task that is packing. How do you decide what to bring and what to leave behind? And then when you’ve made that decision how on earth do you fit your chosen outfits into just one case?

To help us out British Airways First Officer, Cliodhna Duggan from Dublin has compiled her top travel and packing tips to teach you how you to pack like a pro and arrive in style, ready to enjoy your holiday.

Cliodhna said: “As a First Officer with British Airways, I have been fortunate to fly to some amazing destinations and have picked up a number of travel and packing tips along the way. During the height of the summer travel season, I hope that these useful thoughts will help to make travelling for leisure or business even more enjoyable and hassle free.”

Top tips for packing for a holiday:

• Always roll your clothes, it really helps save space in your bag and prevents clothes creasing.

• Use all available space by stuffing things like shoes with socks or underwear – it will also help maintain their shape.

• Re-use plastic bags by using them to separate different items. Ensure any liquids and dirty items like shoes are wrapped in bags to prevent staining other contents.

• Pop a few sheets of ‘Bounce’ tumble dryer sheets in between your clothes to keep them smelling fresh.

• Don’t wear lots of loose items when traveling, you will be asked to remove belts, jewellery, jackets and shoes through security so to save time, keep these items to a minimum.

• Remember not to carry any sharps in your hand luggage. Lots of people make this mistake with nail scissors and then have them removed.

• Put your money and your address details in a separate compartment or near the top of your bag so that you can reach it easily without unpacking items.

• Have your boarding pass to hand (or know the flight number) if you plan to head to the shops before your flight as you will be asked for it. Having a bag with a zip pocket to store this is useful.

• Decant liquids in to 100ml bottles and seal them in a clear bag to save time at security. It can also be useful to carry a small shoe horn in your hand baggage to enable you to get shoes on and off through security as quickly as possible.

• Ensure you check the hand baggage guidelines for the airline you are traveling with before you depart. Some airlines (like British Airways) have a more generous luggage allowance. Be aware of the charges if you go over the allowance. You can buy cheap hand-held scales to weigh bags which are a good way to check before you leave.

• If you know you might have to pay for excess luggage at the airport, ensure you have cash with you. Some airlines insist you pay additional charges in cash at the airport and if you’re in a rush, this can cause you real problems.

• If you’re packing all your luggage in a carry-on bag, go for something with wheels. You can buy very small bags with wheels now and even with a small amount of luggage you will appreciate having something you can pull if you’ve got a long walk to the gate!

Travelling on board an aircraft can have a very dehydrating effect on your skin, no matter the destination, so packing the right skin care is as equally important as your choice of wardrobe. First Officer Cliodhna advises customers travelling this summer to follow her top beauty tips will leave you feeling fresh upon arrival.

Top beauty advice once onboard the aircraft:

• Keep your make up in place with a good primer, you can sleep soundly in it and it will keep everything where it should be ready for a perfect landing. An eyeshade is also a good idea to stop you rubbing your eye make-up off if you’re nodding off.

• Invest in a good foundation. Bobbi Brown Foundation is a perfect foundation to last for the full flight, which gives you a clear complexion and will boost your confidence without feeling too heavy.
• If you’re planning to go to sleep for a few hours, why not take the opportunity of being sat down to moisturise your feet? Smother your feet in a layer of moisturiser, then put on a pair of old thick socks (or BA ones) and enjoy a mini pedicure inflight.

• Scientists have proved that the atmosphere inside an aircraft is as dry as the Sahara Desert, so lip balm is a must on a longhaul flight. Carmex not only smells fantastic but soothes chapped lips keeping them soft and well hydrated.

• It’s an old favourite, but when you’re travelling don’t forget to drink plenty of water. Alcohol and hot drinks can dehydrate you and will have an effect on your comfort levels and your skin, aim to drink at least two glasses an hour.

• If you suffer from greasy hair, dry shampoo is an absolute saviour. You can buy travel size versions now, which will fit perfectly in your handbag and are easy to use just before landing. Batiste is a favourite of mine.
• If your hands are fresh, you will feel fresh. There are a whole range of great hand sanitisers available, but my all time favourite hand cream is Clarins. It smells fantastic and leaves my hands feeling really soft.
• And if all else fails… make sure to always carry a good lipstick, some sunglasses and a pashmina, which will hide all manner of sins as you make your way through the arrivals hall!