Don't bother with uncomfortable shoes. Now is not the time to break in a new pair or wear your chicest pair. As a traveler, you simply never know when you may need to walk long distances. You may find yourself in Kapadokya, Turkey, kilometers from the nearest paved road, when your driver decides to take off and leave you there. As you walk through grape orchards and walnut groves and into the setting sun, won’t it be nice to be able to focus on the stunning view instead of painful blisters and your poor abused feet? So if you can't walk at least 3 km in your shoes, don't pack them.
You know what? I’m going to take that even further. Don’t bother with any uncomfortable clothing. If you can’t sit in it for twelve hours on a mountainous bus ride, it has no place in your pack.
And while you’re at it, roll your clothing instead of folding. This takes up less space and keeps everything looking neat and smooth, though you probably shouldn’t be packing anything that wrinkles anyways.
I know this advice is boring and prosaic, and it’s so common-sense that you don’t need me to tell it to you. You’ve probably heard it or thought it before and you had the best intentions when packing, really you did, but then that cute new shirt you just bought gave you puppy dog eyes and so you couldn’t leave it at home and you’re planning on hiking so of course you needed to buy new hiking boots for the trip, never mind that they’re not broken in yet. So this tip comes with an extra freebie: take the above advice. No excuses, no exceptions.
Did I say no exceptions?
Fine, an exception: Pack one dress. Lightweight jersey, non-wrinkling. You never know when you’ll end up at swank nightclub in Beirut surrounded by gorgeous Lebanese women who are all doing a remarkable brunette-Barbie impression. (Seriously. Lebanese women are stunning.) On occasions like this you’ll be happy to pull out your (unwrinkled) dress and feel like a lady, instead of feeling like a shlubby traveler.