11 Things You Never Need to Pack


(Photo: Craig Holmes/Stocksy)

The key to trip preparation is to pack smarter, not harder. You may feel the urge to plan for the unexpected, but filling your suitcase with a bunch of what-if items can really weigh it down. There’s nothing worse than unpacking after a long trip and realizing that you didn’t use half of the items in your suitcase. To prevent this from happening to you, here are 11 things that you never need to pack.

Excessive hair products


Embrace your beach hair and leave the products at home. (Photo: Fashion Rounds)

We get it, your hair is special. But honestly, packing shampoo, conditioner, a deep conditioner, a detangler, a comb, a brush, a roller brush, pomade, and hairspray is a bit aggressive. If you’re staying at a hotel, it will typically provide a complimentary shampoo and conditioner. And sure, they may not make your hair feel as silky smooth as usual, but they’ll get the job done.

Hair dryer


Just say no to packing a hair dryer. (Photo: Quiet Noise Creative/Digital Vision/Getty Images)

On the topic of hair, if I see one more woman pack her own hair dryer, I am going to scream. Even the compact dryers are clunky and take up a lot of space, and we can’t forget to mention that most hotels have hair dryers for guests to use. If by some odd twist your hotel doesn’t have a dryer, just let your hair air-dry … after all, you’re on vacation.

Related: Two People, One Suitcase? Packing Tips From a Pro

That just-in-case pair of shoes


You’ll never wear all of these shoes! Pack two pairs…max! (Photo: Aleksandar Nakic/E+/Getty Images)

You need two pairs of shoes, max. We’ll let you choose which ones to take, but you can choose only two. They should be versatile, compact, and durable.

Camera equipment


Keep it simple. Leave the accessories at home. (Photo: Tom Karlo/Flickr)

Are you ever going to use that tripod you packed? How about that extra flash? And do you really need three different lenses? Getting an Instagram-worthy photo on vacation is important, but all the bells and whistles are unnecessary, unless you’re Annie Leibovitz.

Workout gear


If you “might workout,” you’re not going to workout. (Photo: Spanic/E+/Getty Images)

OK, so there are a few of you diehards that actually get up and work out on vacation. We applaud you. But the rest of you, and you know who you are, will never bust out those running shoes crammed in your suitcase. The only sweat you’re going to break is the one you get from sitting by the pool all day. Save some room in your bags, and leave the workout clothes and shoes at home.



Towels are way to bulky to pack. (Photo: DEX IMAGE/Getty Images)

If your hotel doesn’t provide towels, you should probably reconsider staying there. Yikes!

Multiple books


One Kindle vs. five books. You decide. (Photo: Purestock/Getty Images)

First, kudos for reading. That’s awesome. But books weight a lot, and packing more than one in your carry-on is pretty much insane. If you’re an avid reader and breeze through books, consider getting a Kindle. It’s lighter than one book and holds thousands!

First, kudos for reading. That’s awesome. But books weight a lot, and packing more than one in your carry-on is pretty much insane. If you’re an avid reader and breeze through books, consider getting a Kindle. It’s lighter than one book and holds thousands!

Clothing options on options on options


Eliminating decisions makes your bag that much lighter. (Photo: moodboard/Cultura/Getty Images)

Let’s say you’re traveling to a wedding in a tropical locale. For the most part, you’ll be in a tank top and shorts, but you know you’ll need a nice outfit for the ceremony. Don’t pack multiple options! If you’re a woman, pack one dress and stick with it. If you’re a man, a nice pair of pants and a button-up will do the trick. The more “options” you pack, the less room you have for the stuff you actually need … like underwear.



You don’t need all three. Pick one! (Photo: Regis Vincent/Photographer’s Choice RF/Getty Images)

Vacation is about unplugging, so why would you want to bring so many things that need to be plugged in? Think twice about packing your laptop, iPad, smartphone, portable DVD player, and Kindle. Take only what you absolutely need. It will make your bag lighter and allow you to actually enjoy your downtime without distractions.

Related: An HGTV Star Tells How to Pack Like an Expert

Too much denim


The beautiful thing about jeans is that you can re-wear them. (Photo: Magdalena MM/Stocksy)

Jeans are beloved because they’re comfy, they’re durable, and they go with everything. With that said, they are also heavy and take up a lot of space in a suitcase. Jeans can last a few days without washing, so just pack one pair and re-wear them.



If you can’t afford to lose it, don’t pack it. (Photo: Tetra Images/Getty Images)

You know that beautiful necklace your grandma gave you for graduation that you couldn’t bear to lose? Yeah, don’t bring that. Sure, it goes great with an outfit you packed, but the risk of it getting lost or stolen is much higher when you’re traveling. Leave that necklace and any other expensive piece of jewelry at home. Bring the cheap stuff.

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