Packing tips from the Pros: Mai Flores Campos

Mai Flores-Campos is a travel blogger based in the Philippines. At present, she is currently preparing to live a new life by moving to Dubai. Travelling independently since 2007, Mai tries to pack as light as possible.

While she writes for a living, Mai also manages a 6-year old travel blog. Budget Biyahera is all about finding fun and distinct destinations (local and international), accommodations, and activities that people can enjoy on a “regular” person’s budget and schedule.

What's usually in your carry-on?

I never leave home without my phone and iPad, as I use both gadgets when taking photos and writing notes. Aside from these, I also bring my Bullet Journal, sunglasses, jacket or shawl, earphones, chargers and cords, portable power bank and lippie. Check out "Packing Checklist" for your next trip.

Tell us about the usual type of clothes you bring when traveling?

I prefer comfort over style, so you’ll definitely see me just wearing a basic cotton tee over a pair of jeans (or shorts, depending on the weather). I do, however, plan my wardrobe according to how long I’ll be traveling and where I’ll be heading. With this approach, I’ll know that I won’t run out of clothes to wear.

What's the best packing tip anyone has given you? Who gave it?

My cousin told me that in order to save room in my bag, rolling my clothes one-by-one instead of folding them, does the trick. I’ve since applied this, and it has definitely helped maximize my luggage space.

Photo Credit: @budgetbiyahera

What is the best thing about packing light/heavy?

I’m always on the go, so I enjoy traveling with a light bag because there’s usually less weight on my back. Plus, I have more control of my personal belongings.

How does your packing for a travel routine look like?

I used to be lazy about preparing my stuff, which would then lead to me forgetting certain things (and me spending for things that I should have packed in the first place!). But all of that has changed. Now I pack a few days before my trip (along with a handy list), as this gives me a chance to add or remove stuff from my luggage.

How do you deal with "excess baggage" situations?

Believe it or not, I’ve never experienced it in all of my years of traveling. For me, checking the final weight of my luggage helps a lot. If the baggage limit is only 10 kg, I make sure that I don’t pack all the way down to the bottom.

What's your best-kept packing secret?

Packing cubes are my best friends! Not only are they great for sorting my clothes, they also keep my bag looking clean and organized. At the unlikely event that my bag needs to be checked, I’ll be assured that my stuff won’t be completely exposed to the public.

Photo Credit: @budgetbiyahera

Quick Qs

  • Favourite region? Asia
  • Favourite country? Vietnam
  • Favourite city? Dubai
  • Favourite beach? Mahabang Buhangin, Calaguas, Camarines Norte (Philippines)
  • Favourite food? Pork Sinigang
  • Favourite mode of transpo? Air
  • Favourite book? By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept by Paulo Coelho
  • Window or aisle seat? Aisle seat
  • Carry-on or check-in? Carry-on
  • Hostel or hotel? Hotel
  • What's your favourite design from the CabinZero collection? Definitely, the Urban Camo!
You can follow Mai’s blog and also join her travels on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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