By Vicky Anscombe on 21 July 2015

We're always in favour of hints and tips, shortcuts, and hacks, whether they're home or travel based.

We've already looked at the essential life hacks for your holidays, and backpacker hacks that you should memorise before you leave the house; but the internet is wide, millions of people come up with genius hints and tips every day, and we couldn't resist sharing them with you.

A quick word; some of these are so simple and straightforward you'll kick yourself when you realise you've been complicating matters all along. We certainly did.

1. Never abandon travel-sized hotel toiletries. Collect them as you go; the cleaners won't judge you (they've seen this all before) and the mini bottles are so, so much lighter than massive economy bottles of shower gel and shampoo. To keep your dirty laundry smelling fresh, throw a hotel bar of soap into your bag so your clothes don't cause offence if you have to unpack them.

2. On the subject of dirty laundry, if you're genuinely worried people will pass out if they smell your mucky clothes, a tumble drier sheet will also work well.


3. Always, always stash your power cables in an old sunglasses case. You're welcome. If you lose the plug for your power cord, you can charge devices through the USB slot on a TV.

4. Girls and boys - when on a long-haul flight, take the time to wash your faces and apply and intensive night-time moisturiser. You won't be fighting flakes and dry patches for days afterwards. And drink water! There are certain superfoods which will keep you healthy; pack your food for the flight before you leave the house.

5. Don't make a hot beverage which cools before you take off; just pop a tea bag or lemon and honey in a thermos and ask the cabin crew to add some hot water once you're in the air. To save even more money, pop some teabags in your pockets. After your fifth mug of home-brewed tea you might look a little cheap, but who cares?

6. You don't need straighteners or a curling wand. Just spritz your hair with sea salt spray when it's wet, scrunch it up and wrap it up with a towel before going to bed. When you wake up, with a bit of luck, you'll have beachy waves. If you must pack your straighteners, make sure that you take a single oven glove to pop them into for when you leave in a hurry and they're still hot. Do not, under any circumstances, wrap your clothes around a still-sizzling hair tool. You'll just singe your clothes. Alternatively, find a heat-resistant carry case.


7. Ladies - leggings are your friend. They'll keep you warm on flights, they're great to work out in if you need a run, and you can sleep in them. Wear them under dresses and skirts for when you're out and about. If you're worried about your baggage allowance, wear your heaviest shoes and coat on the plane.

8. If you have fiddly bits of jewellery, store them in a pill case. Pop your kirby grips in a tic tac container. Stash a cotton cosmetic pad in your blusher and face powder to make sure it doesn't break during transit.

9. When booking flights and hotels online, switch on private browsing. Travel sites often track your visits and will raise the price simply because you've visited before.


10. Don't fold your clothes - roll them. You'll be able to cram so much more in your suitcase. Pack around colour schemes (black, blue and red work well) so that you can mix and match. Avoid being without clean underwear by packing several pairs in your carry-on luggage; if your bag should go missing, you've got pants to hand. To save even more space in your main bag, stuff undies, shorts and tights into your shoes.

Roll clothes

11. Wear a coat with deep pockets on the plane. Who needs an extra bag?

12. If you've got to pack some mucky shoes and don't have time to clean them, pop them in a hotel shower cap.

13. Use Google Maps offline by typing 'OK Maps' and the visible area will save for future access. If you want to access a shop or bar's WiFi but don't have the password, check the comments for that location on FourSquare.

Image credits: Flickr, with thanks to ElyseConnie MaQuinn DombrowskiJEM and Anthony Ryan

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