For packing, first take out everything you think you want to take on this trip with you. Stack it on the bed or on the couch so you can see everything. Then, take out all the dress up stuff, formal wear and high heels, unless, of course, you are going for something like a wedding.
Keep it simple, mix and match. Wear the same skirt or pants with different tops. Pack more lightly than you think you should, it will turn out that you don’t need so much stuff. Take along some Woolite so that you can do some laundry along the way or wash out in your hotel room in the evening when you come in.
Roll instead of fold unless you fold with tissue paper or dry cleaner plastic bags, it will reduce the amount of wrinkling. Use all of the pockets and nooks and crannies in your suitcase; put your socks in your shoes to save space. Don’t take your expensive stuff with you, wear whatever jewelry you want and take your camera in your carry on bag. Never pack cash or credit cards in your suitcase.
One bag to check and one bag to carry on is enough, taxi drivers internationally charge per bag. Also, make sure your bags are on wheels, it will be so much easier.
Mark your bags so that you recognize them from others. Use whatever method you choose; just remember what you did to make your bag stand out from the others.
In the bag you carry on with you, it is a good idea to have everything you need if your other bag is lost or misplaced. A change of clothing, underwear, any medicine you need to take on a regular basis, contact case with contact solution or glasses and your toothbrush and toothpaste.
If you are travelling with a companion, pack together in your carry on bags, half of your stuff goes in theirs and vice versa. This way, if your bag was delayed or lost, you would have a change of clothes and other things you need.
If you aren’t staying a prolonged time, sample sizes work great for shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, etc. and take up much less room.
Pack an empty bag for shopping, this way you don’t have to try to fit the stuff you bought in your suitcase, it will have its own bag.
Don’t forget the staples like a first aid kit, t paper, personal care items, dental floss, etc.
Make sure your prescription medications are in their original containers just for safety’s sake. You never know, where you are going, your meds might be sold over the counter.
You will need a universal adapter for things like curling irons, blow dryers, electric shavers and the like.
You might want to make copies of things like your passport, driver’s license, hotel reservation confirmations, airline tickets and so forth. It’s a good idea to have a copy with you, one in you luggage and one with a family member or close friend at home.
I am sure you will get better as you travel more, after all, they do say that practice makes perfect. Have a great trip!