Clear files are great for holding more than documents, it turns out.

Air travel is stressful for many people, often with the stress starting even before arriving at the airport. Packing can be a confusing and complex process, especially if you’re trying to fit a large amount of stuff into a small carry-on-size suitcase.

So to help, Japan Airlines is sharing some literal pro-tips for packing. On the airline’s recently launched YouTube sub-channel, active JAL flight attendant Ms. Shinkai recently laid out all of the items she takes with her on one-night overseas trips, then showed how she fits all of it into het compact rolling suitcase in less than five minutes.

Shinkai generally takes the same items with her whether she’s travelling for work or leisure, and the things laid out on the table are her actual belongings. For the sake of comparison, the video starts with a member of the video production team trying to fit them all into the suitcase, followed by Shinkai repeating the task much more quickly, needing only three minutes and seven seconds to have everything neatly and securely arranged inside.

▼ The point in the video where Shinkai starts packing

So what are Shinkai’s secrets? First, she starts by putting her largest and heaviest items, such as her shoes, near what will be the bottom of the suitcase when it’s stood up and rolling. Putting heavy things at the top will cause them to tumble down or squash whatever’s beneath them while wheeling the suitcase through the airport.

Shinkai doesn’t really have any individually folded layers of clothing layered loose inside the suitcase. Instead, after folding them she slips multiple items inside a zippered cloth bag, which keeps them from unfolding and also compresses them to help save space.

She also recommends bundling items of clothing around one another, with whatever might wrinkle (or that you don’t mind wrinkling) in the center, and things you want to keep wrinkle-free on the outside. Her most unique wrinkle-fighting trick, though, is to put dress shirts and silk scarves inside “clear files,” the soft plastic document files that Japan loves to use for office organizing.

She’s got another alternate-use strategy for the shoes she’s packing, wrapping them in a shower cap to prevent any dirt from the soles getting onto the other items in her luggage.

Rounding out her tips are some common-sense, but still effective, pointers such as wrapping fragile items inside a jacket or other outerwear (that’s a collapsible hot water kettle that she puts inside her jacket), double-bagging liquids such as skin lotion just in case the containers leak, and saving small, miscellaneous items until the very end of your packing process so you can use them to fill in any gaps left over inside your suitcase.

She makes the whole process look like a snap, so here’s hoping Shinkai will be back soon with packing tips for longer trips too.

Source: YouTube/JAL、サブチャンネルはじめました。 via IT Media
Images: YouTube/JAL、サブチャンネルはじめました。
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