I always start making a list of what I need on vacation at least 10 days before (I'm a compulsive list maker) and start the actual packing maybe 3 or 4 days before. Though it depends on the kind of vacation, but this one is just my husband and I going home for Christmas. What do you do?
Most Helpful Guy
Usually, I pack my backpack/suitcase on the evening before I depart. I love travelling, so I have kind of developed a feeling for what I need and what I don't. I'm a pretty light packer. Enough clothes (I don't own too many clothes anyway), a swim suit (no matter where I go on vacation, I always carry one with me), some electronic devices, stuff like toothbrush and toothpaste, my medicine for my eyes... sometimes a travel guide... that's pretty much it. I like to do simple style, kinda adventurous backpack travelling and when you do that, you realize that travelling is a bit like flying to Mars. Any excess weight that is not absolutely necessary should stay home. Good example: many people take about 6 books on vacation. I think this doesn't make sense. I try to be honest to myself and ask myself "am I really gonna read 6 books in two weeks of travelling?" If the answer is no (which it always is for me), the books should definitely stay home.
However, I have also lived abroad twice for a whole year at a time each and in these cases, I did start to pack my things a little earlier, maybe 3-4 days previous to my departure. When you go away to live in another country, there are more things you have to think about. For example there might be things that you don't miss on vacation but you miss them if you go away from home for a very long time. For me, one of these things is my guitar. I can easily live without my guitar for a month or two but if it becomes longer than that, I like to have it by my side. It gives me a lot of comfort in difficult and sad moments. This is why I took my guitar with me both times I went to live abroad despite the transport being very tricky (it's an acoustic guitar, so getting on a plane with it can be very difficult because it doesn't fit in the overhead bin and you can't check it in along with your suitcase because the icy temperatures and the lack of pressure in the belly of the plane would break and crack the wood of the guitar).0
Most Helpful Girl
Probably a week or so before I need to leave. That way, I can pack a little here and there and not feel rushed. I can double check ahead of time as well.1