The Art of Rolling

Fun title, right!

In my traveling 101 blogs, I want to continue sharing how to save money, but looking from a different point of view instead of what to do when visiting a new place. There are ways to "cut corners" when traveling which can come in handy when traveling on a budget!

When traveling via airplane, one thing people dread is paying for baggage because now they worry how much the bag weighs, how many bags, any carry-on bag, and the list goes on and on. I'm getting anxiety just thinking about those expenses that start to add up when traveling. Baggage at the gate can cost anywhere from $18 to over $200. There is no way I am paying $200 for my baggage when my flight cost less than that. C.R.A.Z.Y!!!

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I am here to tell you, that you can fly with only a book bag and have an array of outfits to choose from. Yes, I said it...a book bag. Most airlines consider this to be my personal bag and DO NOT CHARGE for a book bag, so I pay NOTHING for baggage when I travel. If you do need more room, this method can be applied for larger suitcases to fit even more clothes into that luggage!

The Art of Rolling is learning how to "fold" your clothes when needing to travel via plane to eliminate baggage costs. Now, if you are telling yourself you need all 16 outfits for the two nights you are staying somewhere, then you will have to learn to eliminate some outfits or make one pair of jeans match six shirts before grasping this concept. That's six outfits right there!

Now, after you have eliminated some of those outfits you will never wear, let's talk about rolling your clothes...

The art of rolling is not complex to learn but can take some time to master and find your grove. The whole idea of rolling your clothes is to eliminate extra "fluff" in your clothes which can take up extra space. Basically, your clothes should not be able to breathe when in your suitcase.

For me, I start with the thinnest clothing items first because they take less room. I leave my thicker clothing items for last because they take the most room up and if I need to get rid of clothing due to space then these are the first to go. This is my preference and if you rather start with thickest first, go right ahead. Remember, make it work for you.

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To best explain this method, I have written an example piece from one of my previous trips.

When I went to California in October last year, I needed to pack outfits for warm days and chilly nights. So, leggings it was! I pulled all my leggings out that I wanted to pack and laid the pile on top of my bed. I took one pair of leggings and laid them flat on my bed with the waistline facing the top of the bed. (This piece of placement when laying is key when learning to roll your clothes which I will cover in the jeans section.) Take the next pair of leggings and lay them flat on top of the other pair with the waistline facing the bottom of the bed. So, you literally are stacking the leggings on top of each other, but the waistline alternatives side with each pair. Now once you have your leggings (no more than six) laid out, fold them in half so you are only seeing one leg of the leggings. Here comes the fun part...THE ROLLING!

Take one side (doesn't matter) of the leggings and starting to roll them in like folding up a sleeping bag. When you are rolling the leggings, keep it tight because again, you are eliminating any "fluff". Keep rolling until all the leggings (or whatever cloth item you are working on) is done. Now, hold onto the leggings tight, so they don't come undone or space gets between the clothes. Remember, no wiggle room. I know some people use rubber bands to keep the clothes together. Going to have to try this one time!

Next, place these leggings into your suitcase and tuck them into the corner of your suitcase. If you need to use a prop to keep them in place until you have more items rolled, please do so. I cannot tell you how many times I placed my rolled item in the bag and turned away and within seconds, it all came undone. Roll each of your items like this and keep tucking them into your suitcase beside your other rolled items to keep everything neat. When I am done with my thinnest clothing items like dresses and shirts, I move onto my thickest items like jeans.

I have a love-hate relationship when it comes to jeans and traveling. I love jeans because they go with a lot of outfits, so I know I can make the most of them when I travel but hate them because they take up so much room.

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Remember when I said that alternating your clothing items earlier would be key for when rolling jeans, it really does make the difference when wanting to pack jeans. Jeans are thick and the thickest part can be the waistline because there can be buttons or extra material, so when rolling your jeans, you want to evenly balance out the thick parts. This is where alternating the waistline comes in handy to eliminate any extra space that can add up. Doesn't make much sense, let me break it down...

When I traveled to Florida, I wanted to take some jeans, so decided to pack three pairs all while keeping everything in one book bag. I laid the first pair of jeans down on the bed and had the waistline towards the top of the bed. The next pair of jeans were laid on top of those jeans, but with the waistline at the bottom of the bed. Sound familiar? It's the same rolling I did with the leggings. With jeans, I don't want the extra material all laid in the same place because now I have too much clothing material on one end which will create extra space between the clothes. Extra space means I pack less clothing items. No thanks!

After I am done rolling the jeans, I find where the rolled jeans will fit in my puzzle board of a suitcase. Everything should be packed tight to where your clothes are not budging when the bag is thrown onto the overhead bin on the plane. One less stress to worry about!

Think I forgot about items like bras, panties and all those fun things...nope, I save these for very last. I don't roll these items usually because I can find little pockets where they fit throughout my whole suitcase. I may not be in the same area, but they fill any extra space I do have in the suitcase. Now, I do not travel with toiletries because when you land at your destination, hit up the local convenience store for $1.00 shampoos and conditioners. This will save a good portion of the room in your bookbag and a headache at TSA.

Works for heavy items like sweatpants and jeans :)

If you follow the art of rolling when traveling, you can completely cut costs at the airport and use those funds towards another fun activity or simply save it for the next trip. I promise you can pack a whole week of clothes if you follow this method and not pay for any baggage when traveling. WIN WIN!