Packed Tight for Snowbirding

We’ve been in Florida for a little more than a week so far, and so far so good. This is the 4th year we have had an extended snowbird trip and we are getting good at it.

In particular, the packing went well. It’s amazing that we can live here for 2.5 months on just what you see on the luggage cart in the photo. Our whole life can be packed up pretty tightly …

– TWO SUITCASES – One for each of us with all our clothes, shoes, and jackets for both warm sunny weather and cold, damp weather. January & early February are pretty unpredictable in Florida.

– DUFFEL BAG – This mostly has stuff in it for our dog. He’s fussy about his dog bowl and some other stuff from home. We also tuck our travel cups, plates, and bowls in here. And, our heavy stuff – including a couple Amazon Echo devices and Pickleball rackets.

DOG CARRIER – That’s just for him to sit under the seat on the plane. He did very well.

BACKPACK – My carryon with my iPad and some other “work” stuff. I have two board meetings and a bunch of subcommittee meetings while I’m gone. I even need to fly to Michigan for one of them.

While it went well (so far), I have to say it’s the most difficult packing I’ve done. We flew down, so you have to be choosy what comes with you. If you drive, you can bring a lot more. At the same time, we’re here for 12 weeks, so you want to be comfortable, whatever happens.

How have you best approached packing for a very long trip? Tips?

Image Credit: Pixabay

7 thoughts on “Packed Tight for Snowbirding

  1. My family always tries to exclusively carryon one roll-a-board and a laptop bag each. Especially when traveling a lot places, so our luggage does not get lost. We even pulled this off when traveling a bunch of places in Europe for six weeks once.

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    1. I’ve done 3 weeks in Europe with a roll-aboard suitcase, but now I check luggage. Since the 9/11 changes to luggage tracking, we’ve never lost a bag or had one delayed. Although, I do throw an AirTag in each one in case there’s a problem.

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      1. I cannot say the same. I used to travel around 75,000 miles annually for business including a lot of International travel into Canada, Europe and South America. Quite often I would fly to three countries in a week, so I avoid risk.

        Sometimes when going to tradeshows, I had to check a portable trade show display because it was too large to carry on. Guess what, I ended up at shows with no booth and as a workaround around would post a sign along the lines, “Ask me to tell you about the how awesome our display would have been if the airline hadn’t lost it.”

        I flew primarily a name brand airline and guess what the exotic destination I was flying to when my luggage was last lost? Bet you didn’t guess MSP? Which led me to telling my wife, “The only think that sucks more than not packing everything you want to take along is arriving at the destination and having nothing.”

        How about a little humor. Once when I was flying American Eagle, where I knew I could gate check my portable booth, I sent it through the TSA X-Ray scanner. The booth was packed in a really ominous looking long tube shaped container. The TSA agent asked me, “What have you got in there. A nuclear warhead?” I responded, “You said that. Not me.” We had a good laugh and see sent me along my way to get trapped overnight in Miami.

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  2. We got pretty good at packing light for a month in FL. We’ve been going to the Keys for 8 years now and had gotten it down to just two normal carry on bags. This year will be very different for us. We are going to be RV’ing in the Keys for the first time, starting in late March to April. So we are taking a whole rolling house fully loaded this time!…~12k lbs of stuff!!! Lol!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s the great thing about RVs … you can bring everything with you. That would be great, honestly!

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  3. I echo the RV lifestyle. Nothing quite like it. But, even without an RV, I would drive from MN to Florida for such a long stay. That’s just me. Attached to my own car and always want to take more than can be packed into luggage.

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    1. I might rent an RV for a trip I want to take to Northern Michigan this spring. I’ve never done an RV before, but always thought it looks cool.

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