Souvenirs: Now you have to get them home!

So you spent hours looking through shops and trinket stands for the perfect souvenirs. You’ve imagined yourself reliving the sights and scents of the scenes you’ve breathed into your soul each time this precious gem catches your eye when you get back to the realities of everyday life. You tuck them into your luggage and make the long trek home, only to find once you unpack that the items have not arrived in the same condition.

Do not fear! This doesn’t have to happen to you!

  1. Set aside a little space in your luggage from the beginning for fragile items you may pick up on your voyage.
    1. Plan ahead! Leave some space for wearable souvenirs and any small items you pick up. This is where minimalist packing comes in handy! The less you stuff that pack/suitcase with clothes, the more room you have to bring home new stuff!
  2. Protect the fragile items!
    1. Collapsible cardboard gift boxes and folded tissue paper or foam sheets are an easy way to ensure that your mementos arrive safe and soundly. Most craft stores will carry these boxes in varying sizes and if you can get the dividers as well, that will ease in holding things like mini liquor bottles or smaller items. Pack a small roll of packing tape too!

      Websites like Uline carry a vast array of gift boxes and packing boxes in bulk for an affordable price. BRP Box Shop is another great site for boxes and they sell food grade dividers that slide into the box (which are pictured above).

  3. Plan to ship heavy, bulky or multiple souvenirs home!
    1. Post offices will usually carry shipping boxes and tape, but what are you going to wrap the items in? How are you going to locate a store that carries what you need? By planning ahead with the gift boxes and tissue, you can secure the items and place into a shipping box at the post office before shipping them home. (If you want, you can always put a shipping box, flat into you bag and tape too. That way you don’t have to go hunting or deal with the language barrier in looking for a box!)
    2. Keep in mind, alcohol can be tricky to ship. Mini bottles can be carried onto an airplane in your carry-on bag. However, they will need to follow security guidelines. The small gift boxes with dividers come in handy here, so long as you can remove the bottles from the box and place them in a baggie as TSA, to go through security.

 

Halfway through our trip to Ireland and Scotland, we shipped home a box with some extra clothing we didn’t need (over packed!), shoes that weren’t being worn (dead weight) along with some of our souvenirs we had picked up so far. We walked all over Galway trying to find a place that had packing tape and a shipping box, then had to cross our fingers that we had our stuff adequately packed in and that it would arrive in one piece. Thankfully it did, but we learned our lesson! Plan ahead!

 ~ Emylee

 

 

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