I have written about holiday packing on several occasions, mainly regarding the difficulties of confining yourself to your luggage allowance. This can be a major issue if you are travelling with hand luggage only or if you are on a sporting trip which requires equipment. I have often struggled to squeeze all my hiking gear into a small case and skiing is a total nightmare but I have now discovered a bigger one!
Usually my overseas adventures consist of a holidays which require the same clothes and equipment for the duration of the trip. If I am in the mountains I need hiking gear, if I am going to a theme park I just need casual clothes. Next year, however, I am going to Croatia and the holiday will involve a stay in a national park where the hiking gear will be essential. This will be followed by several days on the coast where the clear waters are begging to be explored. I will, therefore, require my snorkel and mask. To make matters worse I will need some smarter clothes for evenings in the swanky coastal towns and then there is the horse riding I would like to do. I keep looking at my bag and the 20kg luggage allowance and I think I am in trouble!
This visit is going to end up like my skiing trip earlier this year. I had so much equipment and such a small allowance that something had to be left behind and it ended up being my clothes! All I had was the outfit I travelled in, a spare t shirt and a pair of leggings. With the aid of a washing machine at the house I had rented I managed to get through the trip without having to visit the local bars in my underwear but it wasn’t ideal.
Next year I fear that my lovely new horse riding gear snapped up in an sale will have to be sacrificed except for the hat. (I am a bit sensitive about safety equipment). I am hoping that I will be able to squeeze in more than one outfit alongside the hiking boots and swimming stuff but I am not budging on the snorkel! It isn’t often that I find myself on the coast of anywhere, let alone the Adriatic, and so the snorkel goes even if it is at the expense of my jeans!
I sometimes wonder why the luggage options with airlines are so limited. I wouldn’t mind paying a bit extra for the privilege of some extra clothes but have you seen the charges? Just taking my skis in an extra bag costs an additional £54 which seems a little excessive to me and that is nothing next to the charges you face if you arrive overweight. Excess baggage charges are ridiculous and I have such a terror of them that I weigh everything before I leave for the airport. Last time I was at Stansted I saw one poor woman being slapped with £80 worth of fees because her bag was overweight and she only had a fairly average looking suitcase. It is a devilish thought but if the airlines are concerned about overloading the plane perhaps they should weigh the passengers instead but I probably shouldn’t go there!
Article by Sally Stacey