How We Pack Our Travel Clothing

When we first travelled, I didn’t read up on tips for travelling and just try to fold everything as much as possible without creases and lay them on top of each other.

I started reading up more on packing when we had to quickly travel through a few counties in Taiwan with one-night stop in one location. Due to this, we had to pack lighter luggage and only two luggage so we could each carry one through the public transport. Yet, we need to pack more clothing as the trip was eight days long.

Eventually, I learnt how to pack clothes in a ‘roll-up’ way. Once I found this tip, it was like an ‘ah-hah!’ moment. It’s extremely useful and really saved us a lot of luggage space. The clothes would not get tangled in each other and it was easy to find them. (We do not have small clothing organising bags in the luggage).

We ended up packing clothing & stuff for eight days, for all three of us, into a big yellow luggage (28″) and a small red one (20″). The majority of the adults clothes are in the big yellow luggage with a few of Dar’s clothing. The small luggage contains majority of Dar’s clothing with a few of our clothing. This is as a precaution because if they lose one of the two, we still have clothing to wear while waiting for retrieval. We also hand-carried only one other bag for our overcoats and blankets during flights. As each of us carried only one luggage each with Dar in a stroller, we managed to go through the Taiwan Railway station and buses quite easily.

All we packed for our eight-days Taiwan Trip in Nov 2012
All we packed for two adults and one child for our eight-days Taiwan Trip in Nov 2012

With this efficient method, we were still able to wear at least three different pants and at least seven different tops for the eight days, with new looks everyday. With each trip, I’m getting more conscious of styles in our clothing so we could look nicer in the photographs taken so I tend to pack more clothes.

Here’s How I Roll Up ALL our clothes, tops, pants and inner wear.

1. As usual, vertically halve it first.


2. Specially For Europe Trip 2013 where I need larger quantity of clothes for seven weeks stay, I do a vertical half-fold on the pants again so the width is even thinner. It will crease badly but we could borrow an iron at the hotel. (which I did when we arrived).

Skip this step and start rolling in Step 3 if you have lesser clothing to prevent creases and need to iron.


3. Then, I start rolling slowly (tucking in extra) from top to bottom. Think ‘sushi roll’. I also rolled some clothing from bottom to top if the top is more prone to crease. Lesser creases will appear if they are not folded in eventually but just placed ‘under’ the rolls in the luggage.


4. Notice those lined up on the side in rolls? See how compact they are! Dar’s clothing is already small but now they are even smaller! I could place them on top of each other in the luggage and side by side in neat rows.


When they are taken out of the luggage after we reached our destination, there were less creases too as compared to previously when I just folded them into horizontal halves.

5. For Long Sleeve Tops, I fold in the sleeves into the ‘body’ first before folding it in vertical half, then do the rolling.

Additional Tip: Place Clothes that are heavier such as pants near the bottom of the luggage. When we pack, we tend to forget that luggage places UPRIGHT. When you pack horizontally and you start closing it to put it upright, what happens? Those lighter flimsy tops got squashed by the heavier pants as they were placed at the wrong end. They might end up all wrinkled when we reached our destination.

For this new trip, to organise even more efficiently, I intend to get this: Travel Pack Cubes

Clothing is packed into a bag and zipped up. There are different sizes. You can organise clothing into different cubes

  • by day by day
  • by just two packs for first leg of the travel or last leg of travel.

After that, just take one ‘pack cube’ out when you need your clothes for that particular day.

If you have not planned what to wear on which day, simply use the pack cubes as separators for different kind of clothing. One for tops, one for bottoms, one for inner wear or one for swimwear.

I’m intending to look for these to buy for our upcoming travel. I think they are really useful to have so as to prevent even more mess when the luggage is thrown here and there.

Read the Usage of Travel Pack Cubes: How We Pack Our Bags Part 2


  1. Linda May 17, 2013 at 1:17 am

    I’ve never heard of the packing cubes before. I need these for future trips since I always had to dig my luggage to take things at the bottom and created big mess.

    1. Cat May 17, 2013 at 8:46 am

      I also didn’t hear of it until I read up on packing tips. Then I realized I may have come across it while shopping for traveling things in the past…just didn’t know what it was used for. 🙂

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