Holiday Packing Tips!

MSC Holiday Preps give you the best packing hacks for your cruise holiday

Restrictions have been lifted and holidays are on the cards again for travel-starved Brits – but two years of disrupted plans mean our packing skills have plummeted. From the disorganised to the downright daft, MSC Cruises has investigated Britain’s packing nightmares, and we’re here to save the day with a team of packing pros.


35% of Brits find packing stressful, with one in ten  even saying they find it so stressful, they do not want to go on holiday. What’s more, the pandemic has knocked our confidence – nearly a quarter  have forgotten how to pack since pre-pandemic times.


Coming to the rescue, MSC Cruises has assembled a team of super packers. You’ve had holiday reps before, so now it’s time to meet the ‘Holiday Preps’. The team, who are sharing their top tips, comprises of: Emily Norris, the resident family packer; Jeannine Williamson, pro-cruiser and travel writer; Yaya & Lloyd, travel influencers AKA Hand Luggage Only, and Nicola Lewis, the professional organiser. Between them, they are helping hopeless packers prep for their holidays, eliminating the stress so they can get back to focusing on fun. What’s more, guests who book a trip on MSC Virtuosa sailing from Southampton have the chance to book 1-2-1 video consultations with a Holiday Prep for bespoke advice and guidance on what and how to pack for their cruise.


For your chance to book a 1-2-1 packing consultation simply book a cruise onboard MSC Virtuosa sailing from Southampton this summer go to our Facebook page and comment under the post #MSCHolidayPreps.*


Here’s some top packing hacks from our team of Holiday Preps:


Nicola Lewis, the Professional Organiser

- Start off by using a collapsible clothes rail, this will allow you to plan your holiday wardrobe and coordinate what shoes and accessories to pack with your clothes.


-Always use packing cubes. You can organise in category order, save space inside your case and make unpacking so much easier at the other end.


- On the way home, pack your dirty clothes in colour order inside the cubes, this will make the laundry a lot smoother and less stressful upon your return.


Jeannine Williamson, the Pro-Cruiser

-Take a variety of clothes that can be layered such as t-shirts, long-sleeved jumpers, cardigans, a jacket and lightweight raincoat. Temperatures can fluctuate and it gets cooler at night if you want to sit out on deck with a cocktail. Shrugs or shawls are a great idea and take up little room in your suitcase.


- Don’t pack lots of books and magazines – at most, download them to a device. The busy daily programme of activities, shore excursions, entertainment and never-ending food and drink means there is hardly time to read a newspaper, let alone War and Peace!  


-Take a variety of clothes that can be layered over T-shirts and shirts, such as long-sleeved jumpers, cardigans, a jacket and lightweight raincoat. Temperatures can fluctuate and it gets cooler at night if you want to sit out on deck with a cocktail.


Yaya & Lloyd (AKA Hand Luggage Only), The Travel Guys


- Block pack instead of layered packing; don't just pack all of one item (eg t-shirts) all along the base of the suitcase. Fill up your luggage in blocks. This stops you from rummaging through your suitcase when on the road.


- Shoe space; don't pack shoes in cumbersome boxes that fill up your suitcase. Use shower caps (placed on the base of the shoes) to be more efficient with space and keep your packed clothes clean.


- Pick the right luggage for you and your packing style. Some people like to pack everything in one space. Others like to segment and section off things (e.g. toiletries separated from electronic, in case of leakage). It's best to buy a piece of luggage that suits the way you like to pack rather than trying to make the wrong suitcase work for you.


Emily Norris, The Family Packer

-Jewellery can be a tricky thing to pack! A great hack is to store your jewellery in a hard sunglasses case or a pill organiser box to separate them and thread necklaces through straws to keep them from tangling.


- Pack all of your heaviest items at the bottom of your suitcase. This will help to distribute the weight, making it easier to pull and stopping it from falling over!


- Sun hats are so easily squashed inside suitcases! To avoid this, pack the head of your sun hat tightly with clothes so that it keeps its shape.

Terms and Conditions

*Consultations are available for all guests (aged 18 and over) booked onboard MSC Virtuosa sailing from Southampton this summer between 29th April 2022 – 4th November 2022. Winning guests will be drawn at random from those who include #MSCHolidayPreps under the relevant Facebook posts and you will be asked to provide the booking number via private message to confirm your reservation. Consultations will be arranged virtually with a selected expert.