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Frequent Fliers: Irish Women Who Travel For Work & Play Reveal Their Best Packing Hacks

One for the over-packers amongst us.

Easily-transportable life lessons.

If you’re anything like us (feet firmly placed in the ‘bring-everything-but-the-kitchen-sink’ category) packing for travel can almost suck the joy out of the trip ahead.

Between unnecessary backup outfits, ‘emergency’ stashes that never see the light of day, and enough toiletries to rival the local pharmacy, it’s been a hot minute since the last time our luggage didn’t have CAUTION: HEAVY blazoned across it in that telltale orange sticker.

Keen to sort out our approach, one carry-on case at a time, we tapped women who fly frequently: for business, pleasure, or both.

Read these pro-packing-hacks, and never be without anything on holds again...

Hannah Saunders 

“Whether I'm packing for a short business trip, a weekend away, wedding, or for a longer holiday, I tend to have the same process when it comes to my packing,” PR guru Hannah Saunders said. “I tend to plan my outfits ages in advance but I only ever pack my bag the day/night before I fly, so I know exactly what the weather will be like, and I can be as planned as possible and avoid having to purchase a coat/jacket on the trip that I don’t actually need.”

London-based Dubliner, Saunders founded her eponymous PR company in 2016 aged 25 and now works with over a dozen fashion, beauty, and celebrity clients, including an array of Irish brands looking to grow in the U.K - so frequent trips between the two cities are de rigueur.

Dealing with such frequent travel has also instilled the importance of good skincare too.

“I have a pretty militant skincare regime and over the years I’ve found if I neglect my skin by using face wipes that I pick up from the airport pharmacy, my skin tends to hate me come Monday,” Saunders said.

“I’ve started to buy travel versions of my go-to products which I keep in a ziplock bag and so I can just grab them before my flight. Most good brands have travel size options and you actually end up saving a fortune in the long run as I find I can easily rack up a 30 quid bill in Boots before I get on the flight! I use a few different brands such as Dr. Lancer, Espa, and Omorovicza they all have great minis,  Fetch Beauty is an amazing site for skincare, it’s also Irish founded and they do great travel kits for a lot of their brands,” she recommended.

Angela Frawley

Saunders' close friend Angela Frawley also travels frequently between her home in New York, her company's London office, and her native Dublin. While racking up all these air miles, Frawley has learned how to cull her case.

"It may seem like a lot before a trip, but I plan and photograph all my outfits before I pack them in large zip-lock bags. This helps me know that I have everything from statement earrings to the right underwear planned spot on."

Despite it sounding like a big undertaking, Frawley, who is Events & Communications Manager for North America, maintains that it saves a lot of time in the long run.

"When I’m on the move with one or two night stays here and there, I don’t always unpack so it means I can scroll through my camera roll and grab and go without rummaging through my case wasting time and space on creating an outfit."

As space is also precious, she recommends maximising the use of the same bags and shoes for multiple outfits to avoid facing additional weight charges from the airline.

"My other travel tip is to pack in colour tones. In spring/summer, I’m all about neutrals, whites, and greys so everything can be combined easily. Come winter, I’m all black everything and will add a pop of colour with my bag or shoes."

Nadia El Ferdaoussi

Frawley's organisational skills are echoed by Nadia El Ferdaoussi, one of Ireland's most well-known travel writers and bloggers.

"My number one packing tip might sound obvious and a bit banal, but when it comes to packing like a pro it helps to make a list of everything I need, breaking it down into days/events."
"For example, the list will look like this: 'Day time - sightseeing - 20c sunny: shorts, t-shirt, sandals, backpack, sunglasses'. Or, 'Evening - dinner - cooler: dress, heels, earrings, jacket'. I then keep each individual outfit in one XL zip-lock bag."
For El Ferdaoussi, who has collaborated with everyone from airlines and tourism boards to lifestyle brands, these lists are a surefire way to spend less time worrying about your look and more time exploring.

Daniella Moyles

As for the ultimate savvy packer - we simply had to suss out how Daniella Moyles managed to travel for an entire 365 days with just one bag. The model and radio presenter recently returned from the formative trip of a lifetime, having even picked up a Yoga teaching qualification along the way.

"To minimise weight and maximize space I target three items: toiletries, makeup and shoes," she said.

"These are far too easy to justify packing and they always end up being bulky and heavy. Be ruthless in your assessment of what’s necessary. Only allow the absolute essentials. If it’s a short trip then only travel-sized bottles are non-negotiable in both my toiletry and makeup bag."

Itchy feet syndrome, anyone? 
Main image: Instagram @daniellamoyles