Business Trip Packing

Packing combines some of my favorite things: Lists, travel, and planning. This week, I took a quick trip up to the DC area for work. I pack light for these trips, since I don’t want to check a bag and it makes moving through the airport faster.

I take 2 bags–one is my “mobile office,” otherwise known as a backpack. The other is a small rolling bag for my clothes–and I adore this bag. My mom got it for me for Christmas a few years ago and it is perfect for short business trips. 

It fits easily into an overhead bin so I don’t have to check my larger rolling bag plane side. Also, it fits in the seats on the metro, so I can sit where ever on the train. It has a ton of pockets inside, and even comes with an extra bag if you have more to take home (though I usually leave that at home on this type of trip to save space).

Here is what I take along for a 3-day business trip in the winter.


  1. Work laptop
  2. Charger and Mouse (I have extras that I always keep in this bag)
  3. Planner and work notebook
  4. Tissues (always in this bag)
  5. Small bag with chap stick, extra hair ties, gum, etc. (always in this bag)
  6. Small bag with chargers
    1. iPad/iPhone charger
    2. Fitbit charger
    3. external charger/cable
    4. Headphones
  7. Water bottle
  8. Pens (always in this bag)
  9. Wallet

Rolling bag:

  1. 3 Work outfits, shoes and accessories (I bundle these together as an outfit)
  2. 1 comfy pajama and socks
  3. Toiletry bag/make up bag
  4. Jacket and scarf
  5. iPad and kindle (there is a perfect pocket for these up front)
  6. iPhone (side pocket for easy access)

While not nearly as efficient as my sister packing for her 3 month south america trip, it is easy to maneuver and I can access everything quickly.

I also prepare the boys days in advance, telling them where mommy is going, why and how long. I check to make sure there is enough food in the house (for people and kitty) and go over meals with Clay. I also talk with the nanny and make sure she knows whats going on with my travel since her hours are usually longer when I am gone.

How do you pack for short trips on your own?




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