A friend of mine leaves all her packing until there's only an hour left before she has to go. The logic being that it can only then waste an hour of her time. I start about 3 days before we leave . Ergo , it takes 3 days. It goes something like this ... wash every item of clothing in the house, end up wearing at least 50% of newly washed items in the 3 days leading up to holiday , re-wash every item with only 1 day to go, end up being up until 1am on the day of departure having to iron knickers dry. Will I ever learn? Why don't I just wash every item the day before we go then we can't wear it and get it all dirty again. There's something very OCD about my packing style too. Toiletries have to be new, washbag has to be scrubbed, no creases, clean shoes, emergency suppliesin duplicate. It's a nightmare going on holiday and even worse coming home again. What's the answer ? A virutal holiday, in a flotation tank, followed by 3 days sleep plus laundry service , online shopping spree with cash saved . Bliss.