Maddie Moore ’22
Picture this: you are a British person about to take the tube to go to a pub (or whatever British people do). However, upon entrance to the station, you notice a girl in a pink leopard print coat sweating buckets as she attempts to lug a 50 pound (or ahem, 22.6 kilogram) bag up the four flights of stairs.
Upon locking eyes with the girl as she pauses to breathe, you note an expression of deep, deep regret written all over her face.
*Record scratch,* *freeze frame,* *stare into the camera.* Yep, that’s me. You’re probably wondering how ended up in that situation.
My name is Maddie Moore, and I am not a savvy traveler.
No matter how far I am traveling, no matter how long the trip, I consistently overpack. From bringing three books in my backpack “just in case” (do not ask me if I have ever finished a book on vacation, let alone opened one), to bringing a large My Melody stuffed animal to Wisconsin “just because” (she wanted to see the snow, okay?), it is a bit of a problem. And unlike fine wine, it seems that with age I have only gotten worse.
This latest trip, though, I finally learned my lesson — it only took 22 years.
For some reason, I thought it would be an excellent idea to take my entire wardrobe with me on a 10 day vacay across the pond. (Okay, okay, I know the reason; I had to have the perfect pink outfits for my pink tour of London!)
My friends protested, my family cried, “but Maddie, why on earth would you take that much stuff,” “but Maddie, if you take 50 pounds of clothes on the way there, won’t your bag be overweight on the way back?!” “but Maddie, you can’t possibly wear 15 skirts in 10 days, it’s mathematically impossible!” But alas, my hubris took no heed to their warnings.
But don’t you worry, dear reader, because you see I got what was coming to me as I hefted my 50 pound suitcase up four flights of stairs. Upon cresting the final step, only to realize there was a 15 minute walk and another elevator-less staircase ahead of me, I vowed that the days of my overpacking were over. I must become a savvy traveler.
So with that, I asked some lovely friends to teach me how:
Sarah Shurtz ’22, Las Vegas, NV
“When packing for trips I make a very detailed list beforehand listing what days I am doing what and the weather each day. For this trip I was going for around 10 days with only enough space for one carry on of clothes so I really had to think through what I needed to bring. I listed out the days I was going and the main activity of each day, then packed accordingly!”
Isha Singh ’23, Chicago, IL & Orlando, FL
“Pack light loose layers that can add on top in case the weather changes, especially for trips like Orlando to Chicago.”
Maddie Moore ’22, London, England
“Please help me! I have an overpacking problem.”
Anneliese Palacio ’23, Miami, FL
“My number one packing tip is to check the weather and to pack outfits based on the weather every day.”
Mia Fenyak ’25, Portland, OR
“My number one packing hack is to leave extra room in your suitcase on the way there so you can enjoy buying gifts for friends and not worry about everything fitting in your bag when you have to pack it all up again! And I wear my biggest jacket on the plane, of course!”
Image Sources, left to right: Sarah Shurtz ’22, Isha Singh ’23, Maddie Moore ’22, Anneliese Palacio ’23, Mia Fenyak ’25