Packing Advice for a Weekend Away

Esther Tendai Burt

My name is Esther. I was born and raised in Zimbabwe. I came to the UK, London to be specific in the year 2000. In 2005, I graduated as a psychiatric nurse at South Bank University. I moved down to Southampton in 2006. I did Journalism in 2011 and founded my own publication called DIY Girl magazine. Fast forward, I am now a full-time travel blogger.

Packing Advice for a Weekend Away

(10 points to remember when packing)

I’m going for a weekend away today. I would like to share some advice on how to pack for such a journey. For starters, it’s going to be a bit difficult for me trying to be specific since I don’t know yet where I’m exactly going. My husband organised everything and decided not to tell me until we get there. Therefore, I will give you general but very essential tips you should never take for granted.



Before I even think of packing, the first thing I have to know is the exact type of transport going to be used. This is very, very important, as this will determine the whole packing strategy. In our house, we have different-sizes of travelling bags from backpacks-sizes to very large suitcases.

Knowing the type of transport going to be used is a guide to the number of things to be packed. On this particular journey, I understand we are going to use a car. This is a good start for me as it means I can take with me everything including the kitchen sink. Even if my husband questions the largest suitcase used for just two nights away, my quick answer is always “…we are using the car, at least we don’t have to manually carry everything ourselves…”.

The journey could be hours and hours long, but that would never bother me as long as I know that I have the freedom to pack each and every single thing I need and more. Travelling by plane is very limiting as my luggage is monitored and restricted to stipulated weight requirements. I find it very stressful as I always find myself packing and unpacking several times trying to decide what to take or what to leave aiming to avoid very heavy luggage.



The weather also plays an important role when packing. Since I don’t know yet where I’m going, I decided to pack a bit of everything.

Whenever going somewhere just for two nights, I usually pack three dresses, three pairs of jeans, three under-wears etc. I don’t know where this ‘Rule of Three’ came from but I find it safe. I will never run out of things to wear (not that I have ever do. Everywhere I go I always buy something new for memories’ sake).



Again, because I know we will be using a car, this gives me the freedom to pack a variety.

A pair of Wellingtons is a must. In fact I always keep a pair in the car-boot. They are comfortable and can spend all day in them. A pair of boots is also on the list in case I need to keep warm. I like my platforms. I call them my ‘Just-in-Case’ shoes. Just in case there is an occasion that allows me to wear them, they will be made use of. A pair of heels is always a must, again just in case we go out for dinner or something. I know we will be away but it’s always nice too, going out while away. Last a pair of sandals, they are always handy most of the times.



This also depends on the mode of transport used. If I was flying I was only going to carry one handbag and pack a clutch bag for an evening out. But for this particular journey, three is the perfect number.



You never know, I might end up somewhere in the water so I decided to pack a bikini and two other. I love the water. It has an unbelievable relaxing effect on me. Whether I use them or not but everywhere I go, I always make sure to pack some swimming costumes with me.



I was once a Girl Guide and “Be Prepared” was my motto. I don’t want to sulk over things I can have control on. I might not have the powers to change the weather but I have the power to withstand any weather conditions by dressing appropriately for it. It is that simple but I have heard people cry or curse the weather and I’m thinking to myself, why not just dress accordingly. For this journey, again ‘Rule of Three’ applies.

I’ve packed a very thick coat, a trench in case I need something light, and a small but very warm water-resistant jacket. These three will keep me perfectly sorted for the long Easter weekend.



This really goes without saying but still, I thought to put it down. Some people usually tend to forget their toiletries when going away. I have very sensitive skin. I would not dare use things that I don’t know especially on my face.



My husband is always claiming that I give my laptop too much attention than I give him to an extent he feels I shouldn’t carry it with me when we go away. This is not true of him to say but my defence is that I am a blogger. I think and write about stuff every day. In fact every minute I breathe an idea just crosses my mind. I can’t do without things like a notebook, a pen, camera, etc. These are my very much-valued tools and go with me everywhere.

I also like to take with me a book to read. Reading is very good for the brain. This time I’m reading ‘One-Upmanship’. This is a very good read but will need a good sense of humour to enjoy it. My husband bought it for me but asked me never to use it on him. I told him, “…Good Luck…”. I pack other things like chargers of everything chargeable that I use including a power-bank for backup.



My backup kit consists of things that one would not normally pack for a trip away but I have learnt from previous experiences. I have just shared a few below. The Internet is a very good source of information/knowledge. The problem only starts when people misuse it. I have gone abroad for holiday having booked in a so-called 5 STAR hotel. This was also backed up by very convincing pictures etc, only to find out when you get there that it is not as 5-Star as it was advertised online. Some 5-Star hotels abroad don’t even give you slippers to comfortably walk about in your room. I’ll be left thinking, is this really a 5-Star Hotel…???

As a precaution, I always carry my slippers with me. In fact the ones on this picture, I got them as a Christmas present. I got loads of these Baylis & Harding staff as presents and always keep them for times like this. Even the shower gels, bath foam, body scrubs, no matter how big or small, I always keep them to use when I’m away. I’m not a pass-a-parcel type of person. I treasure each and everything that is given to me. I pack even my shower cap.

My husband likes using the gym and everywhere we go if there is a gym, he uses it. This is why I also end up packing my gym gear even if half the time I don’t use. I am a fit lady but have never had the discipline for the gym. I once paid an annual subscription but I don’t think I even lasted three months in the gym. I find myself better at home doing my squats, sit-ups, stretches e.t.c just to tone up my body and it’s working so far. I love going to Pilates and yoga classes though.



If I must admit to one weakness, it will be the weakness of smiling. I smile almost all the time. I just can’t help it. I sometimes think I will smile all the way to my grave. Anyway, I have still put it down as something never to leave behind when going somewhere. I have been to some crazy places but I turn the experience around and just smile. Smiling has loads of benefits. I won’t start listing them now, as it will need a full post of its own. Above all, smiling keeps young and it’s free. So why not always pack bags of smiles everywhere you go and just enjoy the moment. I do hope my tips above will help you one day when packing to go away on that trip/holiday.

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