… feeling a little “stuffed”??

So … I’m going through this right now.

We’re getting ready for a first. A first (what I want to call) combo-cation. We’re heading to San Juan, Puerto Rico for a few days rest and ‘sploring (thats exploring with a little latin slang … remember Ricky Ricardo??) before departing on a 7 night south Caribbean cruise to the islands of St Thomas, St Kitts, Antigua, St Lucia and Barbados.

While some people struggle finding a vacation spot — I find the packing to be even more troublesome. In the end, whether you’re looking at luggage “space” or “weight” …

… something is not going to be packed.

Now I (ok, YOU) have to start prioritizing.

Do I REALLY need so many clothes? DO I bring more shorts v pants? If I’m buying souvenir t-shirts along the way, do I need to bring so many? The queeries go on and on, and they vary from person to person. What I need to bring, Tom (my husband) doesn’t – hence, his & his luggage.

Like I said above, (throw in the airline weight limitation conspiracy) you have to think about how much that bag you’re checking at the airport weighs unless you don’t mind paying a hefty “sur-charge” at check-in. And no matter how much you flirt with that individual, how much you try to detract them with stories, questions about their work day, comments on how busy the airport seems — the scale says what it is, and even an ounce above sound alarms and “HELLO!” that’s an additional $200 on top of the fare you have already paid.

So … for those of you who travel/fly often (and even if you dont), I’ve found this little device that in the end has saved me HUNDREDS (on just one flight alone) in additional charges. The PERSONAL LUGGAGE SCALE. They range anywhere from $12-79 CDN on amazon. Think of it as an investment.

Simply pack your bag as you always do. Close the lid as if you’re ready to run. BUT … before leaving, clip the little band to the handle on your luggage and pull up. This shows you the weight of your bag. Keep in mind, most airlines allow 22.67kg / 50 pounds. Adjust as needed.

Don’t be that person (usually the person in front of … me … delaying … me — yes, it’s all about me, but that’s another blog) at the counter frantically scrambling at the last minute to rearrange their excess checked baggage “allowance” into a carry-on to avoid that $200 surcharge.

Let’s think … What DON’T you need to pack?

TYPICALLY, most locations you are headed to are civilized enough to have stores/markets where you can buy those “extra things” that take up space and you leave at home — deodorants, sun-tan lotion, tooth-paste, etc., etc. Yes — if you already have them, why buy them again when you get there … (where they usually cost twice as much because you’re trapped and they sink their teeth into the tourist)space savings, especially when you’re trying to travel with as little luggage as possible. Keep in mind, luggage and “baggage” can be two different things, but … (again, that’s another blog).

So … what’s the last thing you’re going to pack? Come on, think about it … (scroll up to the last image if need be) — that new little investment-saving personal luggage scale. Why?? Oh gee … lets see, that souvenir coffee cup you got for your co-worker — those adorable little swim-fins you got for the grandchildren — maybe a few t-shirts you bought for yourself … THEY ALL ADD WEIGHT to your post-trip luggage … and what does that mean? You got it .. that $200 surcharge (AGAIN) on your way home. So, again … $12-79 v $400. That’s ALLOT of money you could be using for booze/food on your travels.

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