I try to whittle my luggage down to two matching, checkable (that’s the size larger than carry-on), ballistic, rolling cases with telescopic handles and a soft matching vanity case. Don’t scrimp on luggage: it takes a beating out there, and up there. That said, I’ve found Lands’ End to have the best bargains, followed by L.L. Bean. I attach sturdy nametags to all my luggage, even my purse, and tie colorful Western-square-scarves on the handle of each piece so I can recognize my own bags on the conveyor belts. Whatever you can do in this respect will help keep strangers from walking off with your identical-to-theirs bags by mistake. I nearly got out of the Athens airport with someone else’s green, monogrammed Lands’ End bag several years ago. I had neglected to tie on my usual “flag” and was stopped just in time when I noticed the initials on the bag weren’t mine.

When packing, consider the stairs