With prices on checked luggage going up, as well as that of excess luggage, it is time to start thinking about traveling light. Hold on we didn't say we were going to fore go style or comfort, so we can all breathe now :-)
At first it seem like mission impossible, but with a little thought into it, it is now second nature. Nothing like being able to get in and out quickly of trips, cars, trains, planes, places to see, you name it!
Key to the lightweight packing is that in the end you should look like you packed all your wardrobe and more than just the essentials in your bags.
To that end, consider theses tips
- fist the actual luggage: find the most lightweight bag out there. 10 pounds or less is the standard in the industry considered as lightweight. Those ultralights out there are 7 pounds or under. Then ponder on the smallest size you are willing to live with. Carry on size is always how we measure our boundaries. Personally we steer away from duffel bags which despite a great weight mark, do not offer any real organization or protection for the contents. not to mention, duffel bags are always on the eye of custom's agents overseas. The lighter your bag, the better. Consider that you are the one who will be handling it all the way since the bag handlers will be busy with those who travel with 3 mega trunks.
- entertainments: while books and other items might be your trusty friends on trips, you might want to opt for electronic gadgets that don't mean sacrificing that great book, it just means taking it with you in a different format. Electronics will also mean many of your necessities will the compactly stored together ready at your fingertips (maps, guides, wifi to keep in touch etc)
- toiletries: if the hotel you are staying at is 3 stars or more, you can be sure shampoo, soap, conditioner and body lotion will be available. That means that there is no need to carry extra weight taking your own, unless you have a specific condition that requires medicated products. Don't forget to consider the weight of your toiletry bag as well.
- clothes and shoes: ehem....yes, shoes can be like the biggest cruise ship that occupies space in your luggage. Now, we do understand the premise of having a pair of shoes for every outfit, but, when traveling light the rule of thumb is to take your lightest pair that will represent comfort and multiple use for your trip. In terms of clothes we recommend choosing a color scheme like say, this trip will be the black trip. Most items will be black, with a few items that will pop and give you your unique style. If of the items you pack you can mix and match, even better. Nothing wrong with re-using a slightly used pair of pants. Actually, true globetrotters use their traveling outfit to get there and to return. We are not there yet, but they are focusing on lightweight travelling. On this last point, you can always pack a small bottle filled with laundry detergent so you can quickly freshen up any garment in the tub or sing of your hotel room. Finally, try picking the lightest of your black jackets, blouses etc to pack in. If you are traveling to cold weather, you can pick effective warmers like wool or microfiber that are lightweight.
Putting this tips into good use, usually leaves us with some leftover room which we don't discard: our purchases and souvenirs will fit there and we will still be practically a hands free traveler!
Safe and Happy Light Travels
Labels: light packing, luggage, packing, Tips, Travel