Ah, the infamous 2-day trip. It’s a tired working girl’s dream come true.
However, when it comes to packing – it’s a nightmare.
You want to spend your weekend away unburdened by luggage and unnecessary heaps of clothes. On the other hand, you want to spend your weekend away looking and feeling your best, which coincidentally requires heavy luggage and heaps of clothes.
Wearing the same blazer to work five days in a row is somehow completely acceptable, while five changes of clothes per day are the mandatory minimum for a weekend trip.
Why are we like this?
I have no idea.
Is there a solution for all you chronic overpackers out there?
Fortunately, there is, and it comes in the form of our 2-day trip packing list. We’re proud of it, as it took quite a lot of trial and error, almost fifty different outfits tested, and at least half a dozen different bags and suitcases kicked across the room when we couldn’t close them up.
Hey, making a universal packing list is harder than it looks!
Make our troubles worthwhile and keep on reading to find out what the perfect packing recipe for a 2-day trip is.
If you’ve ever seen any of our previous posts, you probably already know how much we insist on always having travel-sized containers on hand.
Well, a spontaneous weekend getaway is one of those occasions where you see just how convenient they can be.
Fill them up with your favorite shampoo, shower gel, and body lotion, and that’s about it when it comes to packing toiletries. If you’ve got a few minutes more to spare, see if you’ve got an extra contact lens case and fill it with your day and night creams.
Let your hair down for the weekend (quite literally), and put only a small foldable detangling brush in your toiletry bag. It will keep even the frizziest hair all nice and smooth, and eliminate the need for any additional hair products. Throw in a couple of hair ties, and you’re ready to go.
- Shower gel
- Body lotion
- Day and night creams
- Hair brush
- Hair ties
Makeup for 2-days trip
Letting your hair down doesn’t mean letting yourself go off the rails. Always bring a few essential products that will keep your face looking fresh and well rested.
If you’re planning on hitting a spa, a waterproof mascara wouldn’t be such a bad idea.
Soaking up the sun in a quaint town on the coast? A BB cream with an SPF will protect your nose and your cheekbones from nasty sunburns and give you a fresh, dewy complexion.
Find an empty small pocket in your makeup or toiletry bag and put a lipstick in there. A classic red lip will dress up even the most casual outfit so you can transition from day to night without a change of clothes.
- BB cream with 15SPF
- Waterproof mascara
- Eye pencil
Here comes the hard part.
Figuring out what to wear is more complicated than packing itself, trust me.
That’s why you should start by making a plan of your weekend activities. Are you planning on going to a fancy dinner? How about a quick Sunday brunch before you leave? Would you be able to resist a quick dip in the hotel pool? Make an outline of what kind of places you’ll be visiting and what is the appropriate dress code there.
The list of clothes we’ve come up with is perfect for a 2-day city break that includes quite a bit of restaurant, gallery, and museum exploring. The clothes we chose are lightweight, versatile, and extremely comfortable, as well as chic and fashionable.
- A flowy blouse or top you’ll travel in
- A casual blazer or leather jacket you’ll travel in
- Dark wash skinny jeans you’ll also travel in
- A white or a blue shirt
- A striped cotton top
- A pair of white pants (skinny or tapered)
You can get three wears from pants and two from tops, so the number of outfits you can get from these pieces should be more than enough for a 2-day stay.
Choose a leather jacket and long sleeved tops if you expect wind gusts and chilly nights, and opt for a blazer and thinner tops if the weather will be on your side.
Travel in the heaviest pieces, in this case, jeans and the jacket, and combine them with different tops and accessories when you get to your destination.
Keeping the color palette neutral will give you more options when it comes to accessorizing. It will also keep you looking smart and well put together, even if you’ve spent exactly seven seconds choosing the outfit.
Keeping your clothes free of prints and vivid colors will make your accessories pop out more. Scarfs and necklaces take up zero space so you can bring a couple of each to get the most out of every outfit.
A silk scarf with a print can dress up a simple striped top and add that je ne sais quoi to a classic shirt and blazer combination.
You should also forget about flabby totes and large, unappealing shoppers. Cross-body bags are the only way to go on such a short trip. A smaller space will stop you from putting all of your earthly possessions in your handbag, and walking and exploring will be that much easier when you’ve got both of your hands free.
- A couple of colorful silk scarfs
- Statement jewelry
- Cross-body bag
Last, but not the least, are shoes.
Two days is too short for two pairs of shoes, but if you pack right, there just might be some extra space left for a pair of dress-up shoes.
Depending on the weather you’ll be having, there’s really only two or three viable options.
If the weather is mild and warm, I suggest you go for a pair of comfortable leather loafers. Put a pair of orthopedic insoles in them, and you’ll feel like you’re walking on clouds. You can also wear a pair of invisible socks if it gets chilly at night. Loafers are great because they’re casual enough for the day, but can dress up a casual outfit if worn at night.
Your second option are boots. And not just any boots – riding boots.
A pair of black leather riding boots is a comfortable and elegant choice for any outfit. Being made from genuine leather means you’ll never be too hot or too cold in them, as natural materials are better at maintaining optimal body temperature.
The shoes you pick are the ones you’ll travel in, so if you’ve got a few additional inches in your bag, you can cram a pair of heels in there too.
If you’ve got a fancy dinner or a night out planned, a pair of heels will make your outfit extra special. Don’t go overboard, though. Choose a pair with a sensible, thick heel, so you don’t twist both of your ankles before you even reach the restaurant.
A pair of flip-flops is mandatory, but I’m sure we didn’t have to repeat that for the hundredth time. Even if you’re not going anywhere near a pool, they come in handy for walking around your room.
- Leather loafers or riding boots
- Block heels (optional)