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Packing for a work trip can be a tricky business. Whether it’s a last-minute overnighter to charm an important client or a multi-day conference, ensuring the perfect wardrobe for the unique combination of business and socializing that work travel involves is very different from packing for a week on a beach or the best luxury cruise. For starters, your carry-on will probably be full of laptops, tablets, work electronics, and documents, meaning that you need to learn to pack extremely lightly when it comes to clothes. Secondly, you need to curate a wardrobe that lets you be totally professional during the day, but able to look your best for client dinners and networking drinks at night. So if you want to wow your colleagues and look the part on your next business trip, read on! Here are five tips for packing with style when traveling for work.

Plan ahead 

This is the golden rule for packing well, in any situation. Before you begin to put your bag together, have a good, long think about your itinerary, what you will be doing, and what events you will be attending. Think about anything that might have a specific dress code, and plan your outfits accordingly. If you are packing to a plan, rather than just what feels right, you’ll be able to avoid overpacking and ensure that you have the right clothes for every occasion.

- Mr Start
- Mr Start

Choose versatility 

In a work situation, you might often be required to slip seamlessly from boardroom to bar, as your pitch turns into a client dinner or networking drinks. Focusing on pieces that can be mixed and matched to create different outfits is a great way to give you freedom and flexibility, while also helping you pack lightly and efficiently. A blazer is a great way to add formality to any outfit, while a button-up shirt lets you dress up or down depending on the occasion. 

Pack smart 

Selecting an appropriate suitcase is a key step to ensure a smooth travel experience. It should be lightweight, user-friendly, spacious, and sturdy enough to withstand airport handling. You can meet most airline cabin requirements with a 55x40x20cm size carry on suitcase measurements, offering a compact size while still providing enough room for your essentials. Alternatively, you can opt for a slightly larger 56x45x25cm carry-on suitcase, which still adheres to airline cabin requirements while offering a bit more room for packing your travel essentials. These dimensions make it easy to stow your suitcase in overhead bins, simplifying your journey. Once you have the right suitcase, you can focus on efficient and effective packing. Use packing cubes and compression bags to pack smart and maximize space in your suitcase. Rolling your clothes up instead of folding them will give you extra space, and will also reduce wrinkles, letting you look that little bit smarter as soon as you arrive. 


Packing well for work travel is made complicated by the multi-faceted nature of a professional trip. This is why being able to elevate an outfit quickly and easily is one of the most important aspects of dressing for a work trip. Accessories make a huge difference in changing the vibe of your look, with statement jewelry, watches, ties, or scarves transforming a basic, workaday outfit into something chic and stylish. This lets you move from occasion to occasion without constantly having to head back to the hotel to change.

- Globe-Trotter
- Globe-Trotter

Invest in quality luggage 

A good quality suitcase is always a good investment and can make all the difference when it comes to a smooth, stylish business trip. The ideal work travel suitcase is lightweight, durable, and spacious, with compartments that can keep your work items (laptops, files, etc) separate from your clothing. A carry-on with a detachable laptop sleeve is also a great idea, giving you extra flexibility during the day, and making airport security checks smoother and simpler. 

Packing for a work trip shares plenty of the challenges and factors that come into play when packing for any vacation, but there are a few specific issues that need to be considered. By following the tips above, you’ll find it easy to pack efficiently and still look professional and stylish at all times, making your business trip completely stress-free.

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