PICKING what to pack can be one of the most time consuming processes and it can be hard to get it right.
You don't want to get to your destination and find you've left something behind.
Or even worse, be slapped with an excess baggage charge and having to lug around stuff you don't need.
But if there's one group of people who have packing down to a tee, it's pilots and cabin crew.
Emirates crew members – Boeing 777 First Officer Neil Maybury, from Perth, and cabin crew member Cara Eastman, from High Wycombe, WA – shared their tips for packing like a pro with news.com.au.
Read on to find out how they pick what to pack and what they would never fly without…
1. What three things do you always have in your carry-on bag?
Cara: You will never see me in the air without good quality lip balm, an eye mask and some moisturiser to keep my skin hydrated in the pressurised cabin. And Emirates’ signature red lipstick of course.
Neil: I always make sure I have my iPad, some noise-cancelling headphones and something comfortable to change into.
2. What essential items do you pack to get through the flight?
Cara: I always make sure I pack a novel for something to do in my downtime.
A good facial wipe or toner always helps to make me feel refreshed, so that is always in my bag as well.
Plus my water bottle for keeping me hydrated and to help me beat jet lag on landing.
Neil: The most important thing is to be comfortable, so I always make sure that I have clothes to get changed into for my downtime.
Noise-cancelling headphones help make sure I can block out the surrounding noise and get the best quality sleep I can.
A good quality travel adaptor for recharging and powering your electronics.
Staying hydrated is also important when you are flying, so I bring my own water bottle that I can refill on-board. Or I simply ask one of the friendly cabin crew for some.
3. How do you keep your cabin baggage and checked luggage under the weight limit?
Cara: Working as part of Emirates’ cabin crew, I have learnt which items are absolutely essential and have been able to refine my packing to a fine art.
I make sure I’m looking ahead to the weather forecast for my destination so I have something appropriate for when we land.
I also take note of whether I’m going to be landing in the day or at night as well as the kind of temperature I will need to adjust to.
Neil: I am a pretty light traveller so this isn’t ever really an issue.
Pack clothes that have multiple purposes – things that can be dressed up or down or layered for changes in weather.
I always keep in mind too that there are plenty of department stores globally if ever I need to grab anything.
Avoiding lots of bulky electronic equipment is key as well, plus it makes it easier to go through security without having to pull everything out of bags.
4. Is there something people tend to pack unnecessarily?
Cara: Passengers tend to bring their own snacks and food options for the flight without realising that we have some great options on board for them to enjoy.
One of the best things about flying with Emirates is the premium in-flight offering that’s available to passengers across all of our classes.
Flyers sometimes forget that there are products available on-board for their use, such as amenities kits and the in-flight entertainment system.
Neil: Travel publications, and books in general, take up a lot of space in luggage.
Technology means passengers can store digital copies of destination guides and thousands of novels on one device that takes up a fraction of the space of traditional paperbacks.
Additionally, most travellers have a smart device or laptop to research their holiday spots, so it really has become unnecessary to pack books.
5. What other packing mistakes do people make?
Cara: Overpacking for sure.
This comes down to planning and knowing what you are going to need on your flight for carry-on versus your what can be in our checked luggage stored on the aircraft.
On-board you should make sure you have toiletries to help you feel refreshed and comfortable, something to keep you entertained once you’re in the air and items that you will need upon landing.
Neil: Not planning effectively.
Always make sure you are thinking ahead of what you will need on your flight and in the order that you will most likely need it.
No one wants to pull everything out of their bag to get something from the very bottom when they could have easily accessed it through a zip or had it sitting ready on top.
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