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Pack clothes that are lightweight (Rohan has a good range, www.rohan.co.uk), dry quickly and match each other, to maximise your wardrobe options. Ladies, pack a pair of nice earrings, a Travalo (www.travalo.com) 50-squirt perfume atomiser and a light scarf for a quick dash of style (also good for mosque visits or sun-shielding). Men, buy travel shirts that do not crease and smarter-looking travel shoes that work equally well on safari or in good restaurants (try Brasher, www.brasher.co.uk).

The science of packing
Folding items individually into squares is the worst way to pack - it is space inefficient and increases creasing. Instead, roll clothes together. Lay jackets, shirts, trousers and T-shirts on top of each - in that order - alternating the thickest parts of the garment as you layer so you do not get an uneven bulge. Once piled, place a bag of socks or similar in the middle, and wrap each item round this core in turn. The website www.onebag.com has detailed instructions, and loads of helpful packing tips.

Other helpful tips

  • Hand-held luggage scales could save you a fortune in excess charges; try the set from www.globalbagtag.com.
  • Packing cubes and organiser pouches allow you to keep your bag tidy and condense contents. Made of nylon and mesh, they do not add much weight. Check out the ones at www.eaglecreek.com.
  • Invest in a travel towel - these viscose sheets are a fraction of the size of regular towels. Lifeventure's range is antibacterial too (www.lifeventure.co.uk).

CORRECTION: A previous version of this article referred to Ryanair as "the United Kingdom low-cost carrier". Ryanair is an Irish carrier registered in Ireland.

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