LIGHTEN THE LOAD FOR MORE PLEASURE
Luggage can weigh a traveler, so here are some techniques on how to travel intelligently, efficiently and lightly. When he was a young and inexperienced traveler, he was a habitual excessive packer. I would bring things like extra outfits, extra shoes, travel trinkets and knickknacks that I never wear from L.L Bean, and things to entertain me if I get bored on my travels.
If you are a chronic excessive packer and have no idea how to differentiate between what is needed on a trip and what is not, then here are some things that I have learned after many excursions.
1.) Think about the things you packed on your last trip. Now think about the things you didn’t use. Once you discover this, remember not to pack it again! If you did not use it on your last trip, you will most likely not use it on your next trip. Leave it at home. It will probably be there when you return.
2.) Don’t be afraid to wear your clothes more than once (not including underwear!). I used to be a victim of packing too many additional outfits because I thought it would be nice to have “one option”. I suggest packing only some garments that are easily interchangeable. I discovered that a pair of jeans is good for about two or three days of travel and the shirts can be worn both as daywear and pajamas. Also, place your clothes in layers. It is a fashion statement and helps you adapt to the changing weather; loose layers when it’s hot, and add layers when it’s cold.
3.) When determining what type of outfits to wear, be sure to check the weather before venturing into the world. It will help you decide what kind of clothes you need to pack. Even if the weather forecast is for warm weather, I still like to wear a sweater no matter what, because the nights can be cool or I just want to curl up. However, a good sweater helps you be prepared. And speaking of prepared, a rain poncho does not take up too much space in your backpack.
4.) The double backpacker method. One bag is your travel bag, and the other is your day bag. It is ideal for walking from the train to your hostel. Once you arrive at your temporary residence, leave the travel bag and use only the day bag. I like to put things like my wallet, my camera, a sweater, maps, a small first aid kit and a bottle of water in my backpack. Those are basically all the essential elements for day trips and venturing into new cities.
5.) Shoes; It is a popular topic among the female population. If you know something elegant is going to fall, pack a pair of classy floors. They are comfortable, easy to walk, light and practically do not take up space in the backpack. Also consider the shoes you wear. Be sure to wear comfortable walking shoes for all the places you will see.
If you know that you will go to a hostel where there is a high possibility of sharing a shower, I suggest you wear flip flops in the showers. Your feet will thank you.
6.) Many people like to buy travel toiletries for when they travel. Yes, the size is practical, but the price can hit your wallet in the chest and cause a cash hemorrhage. Although that beautiful little bottle of Garnier Fructi’s excites you with your next adventures, it is not profitable. You can get two or possibly three uses (if you put water in the bottle and shake it before lathering it) from a travel-sized bottle. Sure, it can be only 50 cents, but if you think of a normal-sized bottle, priced around $ 3.50, it’s not worth it! I think the only thing worth buying on a travel size is toothpaste, because it is very useful, and many things can go wrong when you pack a full tube.
In the same travel size section of the store there should be an area where there are empty travel size bottles. Just grab them and use the essential elements of the shower you have at home to fill them. These are extremely practical because you can use what you already have and the bottles can be used for many trips to come.
7.) Do not pack knickknacks that you do not use daily. That self-inflating multi-sport seat Pathfinder by L.L. Bean is witty, but think about the space he will occupy! In addition, it is not something you use daily, therefore, you can live without it. Be a true pioneer and use the things around you to make accommodation for you. The banks, the fountains, the bases of the statues, the steps of the monuments and, in past cases for me, the Roman ruins, are excellent places to rest, reflect and then talk about when you share your trips with others.
8.) As for knickknacks, don’t pack things that you think will be “entertainment.” If you need entertainment on your vacation, it’s not a good vacation! Look around! There should be tons of things to occupy your mind when you’re in a new place. Do not waste space bringing tons of magazines, books, games, etc. It does not mean that you cannot bring these things. Try to limit it to a single piece of reading material for downtime, time spent on the train, or the time you use to fly. Believe me, you will not finish reading the five classics you packed.
9.) To sum it up; Travel alone with the essentials. Be a survivor and live on the things you can carry with relative ease. You will be surprised how creative you become when you are left alone with the needs. Become the MacGyver of traveling! Your trip should focus on enjoying the views, not fighting to take things you didn’t want to leave at home.