So you’re thinking about a long, romantic weekend away, or perhaps you’re heading off for your first ever business trip to a telecoms expo. Either way, you’ll need to think about packing your bags.

But stuffing a few sweatshirts into a rucksack isn’t going to cut it anymore. No need to call your parents round for this emergency though, will have you covered for all your ‘short vacation’ crisis matters from now on.

Firstly, you’ll need to consider what you’re going to be using to store your t-shirts and sandals this weekend:


A carryall is great for the occasional getaway; it’s spacious enough to carry a good weekend’s worth of clothing without resorting to lugging around a suitcase. Although great for packing light, you may have a few problems separating your toothpaste from your wingtips, and you’ll start having a tough time if you intend to throw in extras like MP3 players and golfing gloves.

Rolling Bag

Robust like a suitcase, but more compact; think ‘large rucksack on wheels’ and you’re almost there. With plenty of room and lots of compartment nooks, you’ll only run into issues when attempting to check that bad-boy on as hand luggage at the airport.


When the right occasion presents itself, a backpack can be an option. Just avoid anything lacking colour coordination and ensure you’re not using it as an excuse for not buying a grown-up suitcase. If you’re sporting sewn on badges from your favourite rock group, it’s definitely time to part ways.

How to Pack

Now you’ve chosen your bag, you’ll need to consider how to go about packing it. Follow these steps to avoid common issues like crumpled clothes and shampoo soaked bathing shorts…

Put the heaviest items on the bottom
The reason why you’ve got crushed shirts? Because you’ve had shoes stored on top of them for the past forty-eight hours! If you need any protective padding between items, try using your underwear – unless you are planning to wear your boxers for all to see, it doesn’t matter if they’re a little crumpled.

Put socks in shoes
Ball ‘em up and stuff ‘em in. Not only does it save you loads of space in your bag, but also you can safely store other small fabric items. Be careful about putting your neckties in there though, you don’t want your finest silk to smell like old feet!

Shirts on top
Unless you want to give others the impression you’re still wearing the same shirt from last Wednesday, be sure to keep your dress shirts on top of the pile. If you can, try to get them pressed on arrival (or at least hang them up straight away). Consider choosing ‘anti-wrinkle’ fabric if you can – lycra and poly-blends may not scream ‘sexy’, but they’re still better than ‘unkempt hobo’.

Want to avoid the crinkles?
Then pack light – most creases appear because clothing is too tightly packed. Think about ditching the extra suit in favor of a little breathing room; your fabric will thank you for it.

Conditioner on your toothbrush?
That’s why man invented the dopp kit. There are plenty of great looking bags out there. If you don’t fancy investing heavily in a brand new leather kit (though I don’t know why you wouldn’t – it’ll last you for years to come) you can always make do with an old, but well-cleaned shoe bag.

About The Author

Johnathan Bell is the founder, owner and main author of Guy Style Guide, a website dedicated to everyday male fashion, style and grooming. The primary mission? To guide clueless men through the tricky mindfield that is the growing world of male couture. Find him on , Twitter and Tumblr.

One Response

  1. Dan Brown

    Good post on packing – very important to keep light during travel, especially if you will be dragging your backpack/duffle bag around.

    I always find the best place to shop for good packs are outdoor stores, like MEC (here in Canada) or North Face. If they’re good enough for mountain trekking, I’d bet they’re good (and light) enough for day-to-day use in a city.