The Packing Debate: to Fold or Roll. 14


When packing your luggage there is always someone giving you advise which way to pack your clothes.  Many say roll, some (including me) say fold.

Now I can see the benefit of rolling if you are backpacking with a rucksack.  As a backpacker in a previous life (the one before kids), you don’t generally settle into one place for more than a few days and you certainly don’t get cupboards in hostels to unpack you luggage.  So rolling your clothes with each cylinder of clothing facing up makes it easier to access you next item of clothing without pulling everything out your bag.

Roll clothes when packing

The roll method of packing

However I had a backpack that could be unzipped completely and open like a suitcase.  So I found it easier to pack by folding.

I would sit the backpack up like a rucksack and fold each item neatly to fit the size of the pack thereby creating layers of clothes.  When I unzipped the bag I could access the layer of clothing I wanted with ease.

Now these days I travel with my family and we take  a suitcase to a resort.

I start by laying skirts, trousers and dress shirts across the bottom of the case to keep them flat – who wants to iron on holidays?  Then I pack the clothes by folding each type of clothing together eg. T-shirts, shorts, underwear.

This means when we arrive and I unpack our luggage into the cupboards, I can pick up all my T-shirts and put them on a shelf, then all my sons shirts and shorts on to the next shelf, all the underwear onto the next shelf- you get the picture now 🙂

Of  course you pack more than just clothes so toiletry bags, shoes in separate plastic bags, food is all placed into available spaces.  Start with the biggest items first and the small ones will fill in the gaps.

Now many have suggested filling shoes with socks – a great idea.  I also wrap belts round objects such as the formula tin.  In my backpacking days the belt went round a mug with a small tin of coffee sitting inside; there’s nothing worse than getting to a hostel that doesn’t supply breakfast and you can’t get a coffee 😉

Protect fragile items by placing them between groups of clothing.

Place toiletry bag and shoes into your luggage

Next add bulky items to you luggage

Finally use the straps in the bag to keep everything in tight and less likely to move about as the ground staff throw your bag from conveyor belt, to container, and back to conveyor belt.

With a little luck everything should be in it’s place when you arrive at your destination.

So how do YOU pack your bag?

(If you have a post on packing leave a link in the comments and I will add the picture to my Pinterest Board Packing for Trips.


About Sally-Ann Brown

I am Sally-Ann the author of Toddlers on Tour. I am a wife and mother who has always had a passion for travel. I love sharing my experiences and lessons learned to help you have a better family holiday or day trip. Read "All About Me" under the "Home" tab to discover my story and what lead me to here.

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