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Ask Harry: I’m travelling for business. How do I look great all week?

The secret is simple: careful planning and a little bit of research. Here's a checklist to help things go smoothly.

By: HARRY ROSEN EDITORSDate: 2018-03-28

Hello I’m Alan Whitfield. I’m a buyer with Harry Rosen.

We often get asked about how to pack for a 2 to 3 day business trip. With a little planning you can travel light, especially if you take advantage of your hotel laundry service. Last minute packing generally leads to overpacking and wrinkled clothes. Instead take a moment to study your agenda to determine how many meetings and social occasions you expect to have.

What we have laid out here represents a typical wardrobe for 2 to 3 days, assuming you’re also wearing an outfit on the plane. You’ll notice that all of these items can be coordinated with each other. The jacket and trousers can be dressed up or down. No one wants to check luggage. A good carry on and sturdy garment bag like these will carry everything you need. The hanger on a garment bag can take up to three pairs of trousers if your trip requires a longer stay.

Place your jacket on top, cover it in dry-cleaner’s plastic, and push out any big air bubbles to prevent wrinkles. If a longer stay is requires you can layer on another jacket and more dry cleaner plastic. The first items in your carry on should be your shoes. Pack them heel down evenly across the floor of the bag to provide a good foundation for the rest of your items. Use the belts and socks as shoe trees to support your shoe’s shape. Use your shoes’ duster bags to protect your shoes and keep your other clothes clean.

Now, fill in the gaps with your sunglass case, rolled underwear, t-shirts, and sweatshirt & pants. Try to make the base as flat and even as possible. You can either roll your ties and pack them into the gaps or fold them in four and insert them into the inside pocket of your jacket. Avoid placing them between shoes so that they don’t get pinched and wrinkled along the way.

Overtop place your knits and shirts folded from the launderer. Plan on wearing your overcoat on the plane to avoid unnecessary weight on your dress shirts. One of the key tricks to wrinkle free packing is to make sure you unpack and hang everything the moment you arrive at your hotel. If you’re room’s not ready ask the concierge to hang your garment bag for you.

You’re all ready to go. Thank you and safe travels.

Step 1:

Start by studying your trip agenda – types of meetings, social occasions, time off – and work out what you’ll need.

Step 2:

Choose clothes that all work together so you can mix and match, bringing as little as possible but getting the maximum leverage out of it. Bring your workout clothes and sneakers – getting exercise when you travel is always a positive.

Step 3:

Find out whether your hotel has laundry service. If it does, plan to use it halfway through your week to further lessen the amount of clothes you need.

Step 4:

No one wants to check luggage. Invest in a good carry-on bag and a sturdy garment bag for your tailored clothing. The hanger in the garment bag can take three pairs of trousers and two jackets. Cover the first jacket with dry cleaner’s plastic. Hang the second jacket over it and cover it with plastic too. On the plane, fold the garment bag carefully into the overhead compartment or hang it in the cupboard if you’re flying up front.

Step 5:

Pack like a pro. Shoes go in your carry-on first. Roll your belts and use them as shoe trees. Roll your ties. Even out the bag with socks and underwear. Knits and shirts folded from the launderer’s pack best.

Step 6:

Check the weather forecast for your destination and choose one seasonably appropriate coat, something versatile that works in as many situations as possible. A lightweight three quarter-length coat covers a jacket but can also be worn with a casual outfit.

Step 7:

Unpack as soon as you reach your hotel room and hang up your tailored clothing to let the wrinkles shake out.