I am almost wrapping up my trip in Paris and it has been so fun! I have yet to travel somewhere in the fall, so it took me a bit to figure out how to pack and what to pack for this trip. We were in Paris for a week the beginning of November. It is a much chillier in Paris this time of year than in Los Angeles, so I had to be strategic in order to not overdo it. Here's how I packed for a fall trip.
The weather was being a bit unpredictable when we were planning, ranging from highs in the low 60s to lows in the mid 40s with the potential for rain, clouds, and sunshine. Ha literally this was making it hard since I am so use to sunny and 75 degrees here in Los Angeles. I chose 3-4 different styled jackets in order to mix & match with any outfit. Long overcoats, cropped oversize canvas jackets, lightweight jackets, etc.. Include a fold-up small rain jacket or poncho to be able to throw on over whatever you are wearing. I also carried an umbrella! Then in order to make sure I was warm enough, I also packed a beanie for my ears, gloves, and 2 scarves. if you insist on packing a hat, wear it on the plane with your heaviest coat to save room while packing.
TOPS & SWEATERS
Since the weather is unpredictable, I needed to basically pack multiple options of my whole closet into a suitcase! The key to this is picking neutral items (see this post for inspiration) that can be paired or layered with EVERYTHING in your suitcase. This is key!! I chose a chunkier sweater, lightweight sweaters, and some thinner layering tops.
My go to bottoms for fall travel is plain ole comfortable jeans! I packed 3 or so pairs, plus an additional color to give an extra pop during the week and switch it up. I also like adding a skirt and dress into the mix for any special outing or fancy dinner that I plan to go to. Make sure all of your bottoms can match every top you pack.
When traveling, shoes can be very important. I tend to pack at least 2 pairs of sneakers because man do I love doing a lot of walking and exploring when in new cities! I then tend to pack one more casual pair of boots and a fancier pair of boots or heels for that fancy night out. Remember to wear your heaviest or largest pair of shoes on the plane in order to maximize the space in your suitcase.
Having easy hair styles that I can do in under 10 minutes is a must! I love to switch it up from straight to curly but sometimes you just need a bit more. I have 5 easy hairstyles all using bobby pins that only take up to 5 minutes. Very simple and easy, I promise!! And they work with both short and long hair.
1. CRISS CROSS
The criss cross is a twist on the classic half back hairstyle. Pull 2-3 inch piece of hair from one side of your part and pull back and pin with a bobby pin to create one of the criss crosses. Then pull another 2-3 inch piece from the other side of your part and pull back similar to the other piece. Secure with another bobby pin causing the bobby pin to cross over your previous one. Secure in place with hairspray.
2. SIDE SWEPT BANGS
I love this look because it is the perfect sweet, feminine hairstyle. It's great for a coffee date or shopping with the girls. If you already part your hair to one side vs in the middle then just pull 2-3 inches of hair from your part and secure with a single bobby pin. If you part your hair naturally in the center like I do, then pick a part 1/2 an inch over to part. Use texture spray and hairspray to let it sit natural. Then secure your hair back.
3. THE CHIC TRIO
This is a sleek and chic pinned back look. Great for an edgy outfit going out or a sophisticated formal affair. I actually wore this to Los Angeles Fashion Week seen here. Pull back 3-4 inches of hair starting from your part and make tight and slick with hair spray. Then once hairspray has been applied, even space out 3 bobby pins starting from your hairline back to right above your ear. Spray a bit more hairspray to fully secure.
4. DOUBLE KNOT TWIST
So this is a crazy cool hairstyle and is more simpler than it looks! Take 2-3 inch pieces from each side of your part and pull backwards to your middle crown. Tie a know with both pieces, yes literally tie a knot. Then, tie again to create a double knot. Once completed, pin one bobby pin horizontal moving towards the right. Then do the same coming from the left. Secure with hair spray.
5. SIDE BRAID
A little side braid is perfect for whatever length your hair is. I was always jealous I could not do a big long side braid when I cut my hair. Now I get a side braid even with short hair! Take one side of your part and begin braiding pulling pieces from your hair line within the braid. Once your braid is behind your ear near the bottom, secure with two bobby pins going in opposite directions. Slighty tug the braid loose and secure with hairspray.
Planning a trip abroad can seem daunting and overwhelming. Over the past few years I have been traveling more and more so my planning skills have been perfected, and I have a stress free way to have an amazing trip. And no, I do not use a travel agent, and you do not have to either! Here is how I plan a trip abroad.
STEP 1: BOOK YOUR FLIGHT
The first thing you need to do when planning a trip is book your flight. Once your flight is booked, you can begin planning the rest.
PICK YOUR LOCATION//
If you know you are wanting to go to say Paris, then research on google the best months to visit your selected location.
LOOK FOR YOUR FLIGHT//
So the most important thing I can mention when getting the best deal on a flight is to be flexible on your travel dates. I use the Hopper app to know when the cheapest days to fly are. This is why being flexible is important. If you were thinking that you wanted to leave from a Friday to Wednesday trip, but the Hopper app shows you that Thursday to Tuesday is cheaper, then we typically look for flights on those days. Hopper also gives some dates of when they predict the flights will be cheapest to purchase. You can also set alerts.
BOOK YOUR FLIGHT//
Once you know when you are planning to book your flight based on Hopper, I do a search on Kayak.com and book from there. I love Kayak because it helps me search the top flights and I have trusted their "buy now" feature. I typically try to fly American Airlines or Delta, and occassionally Southwest. I stay clear of Frontier, Spirit, or any airline that offers the "no frills". Make sure before you book to verify that you get a carry on and personal item. And for international flights, make sure that the meal is included as well. You might laugh, but Patrick and I booked an international flight once and the meal was not included. Try flying a 10hr+ flight with no food, water, or drinks without purchasing. Miserable ha! Also, do not forget to enter your frequent flyer rewards accounts once you have booked when looking up your flight on the airline website.
STEP 2: RESEARCHING & PLANNING
SEARCH THE INTERNET//
Once my flight has been booked, I start researching the location for stuff to do, where to eat, and fun places to drink. I start by looking at travel blogs since there are normally more of a personal, like my travel itineraries. I also look at Pinterest and Instagram locations & hashtags to see what people have done. And it doesn't hurt to reach out to friends or family that you know have visited or live there. They will have the true local experience.
CREATE A LIST//
As I am looking things up, I begin making a list of TO DO, TO EAT, and TO DRINK. If anything looks fun and interesting to you, put it on the list with any details you like. If you want my travel guide, scroll down to the end of this post and enter your email so I can send it to you.
CUSTOM MY GOOGLE MAP//
Once you have created a list of all the potential places you want to go, you can create your own custom google map to keep track of all of your spots. This proves to be super helpful and helps plan your itinerary. I tend to group things that are within the same general area to do within one day. No one wants to go back and forth and here and there when exploring a new city. Seeing all of your potential spots on a map together helps you group days together to plan your itinerary. Here is a sample of what my Paris map looked like. You can also add multiple "layers" to group even further like restaurants, museums, bars, etc to help keep everything straight.
CREATE YOUR ITINERARY//
Using the calendar tab on the Travel Guide (sign up at the bottom of the post), begin to plan your trip out. I tend to only plan a few items per day in order to not be so rushed and to a schedule. Cities are the best explored when you are given time to wander and see what is around. I also look up a few restaurants to have on hand in certain areas so that if I am let's say the 1st Arr of Paris and I am hungry for lunch, I have my TO EAT list from my travel guide ready to look at and pick an option.
STEP 3: BOOK IT
So now that you have made a list and rough itinerary, it is time to start booking things. This is when the trip gets real (if it didn't feel like it already ha). Here is how I suggest to book things.
BOOK YOUR PLACE TO STAY//
I normally just use Airbnb because almost everywhere I have been it has come through with great prices and cute places. Click here for $40 travel credit when you sign up with Airbnb.
BOOK ANY TOURS OR ACTIVITIES//
If you come across any tours, activities, or something that needs to be purchased in advanced, go ahead and do so. Make sure to copy and paste your booking receipts and instructions on additional tabs in the travel guide.
STEP 4: BEFORE YOU LEAVE
Before you leave take a picture of any important things and save them in an album on your phone so you can access them quickly if need be. Also share your itinerary with a family member or someone close so that someone has it in case of an emergency.
CHECK BAGGAGE REQUIREMENTS//
Verify the baggage weight limits and the number of bags you have or do not have. If you need to purchase any extras, do so now. Verify the weight limit and dimensions of the baggage as well. International flights will have different requirements than standard domestic.
VERIFY WEATHER & PACK//
Look up the weather and pack accordingly. Pack in light layers with a common color pallet so that you can mix and match any items depending on the weather or event you are doing. I tend to not like pre-planned outfits because they never fully work out the way you hoped. Having easy tops and bottoms that can be worn any way you want is the easiest! I also always pack a fold up bag just in case you need to buy something or what not while on vacation. It becomes very handy for sure!! Here is what I pack in my travel bag as well, see this post.
STEP 5: BE IN THE MOMENT
Remember that this is your time to explore and immerse yourself in a different culture. So relax and be flexible. Allow yourself the opportunity to explore and go into that random cafe you stumbled upon. Because living by a strict itinerary is no fun.
Comment below where you are wanting to travel next! And do not forget to enter your email below to receive my exclusive travel guide planner.
A born and raised Southern girl who's wanting to inspire every women through style and beauty while living in the big city of Los Angeles.