Since I started this blog, I’ve had quite a few questions from friends and followers about packing, so I thought I would combine a few rules that I try to live by with my trips. This is 100% my views based on my travel style, but please read on and let me know if you agree or disagree with any of these 😊
1: You don’t need to pack for every weather or occasion imaginable – be reasonable.
Do you remember when you were young and your mum would make you take a jacket with you on boiling hot days? Usually ‘you just never know if you’ll need it!’ was the last sentence in that argument before you’d traipse out the door carrying a hoody on a 40-degree day. Do not apply that way of thinking to your packing. I repeat – DO NOT. Before I go anywhere, I research the area. I find that if I look back at weather patterns for the last 5 years on the place I’m going, its usually pretty spot on. Also, if you know a local – ask them! And if you just can’t bring yourself to only pack for one season, at least be realistic i.e. bring ‘a raincoat’ rather than ‘a raincoat for every outfit’.
This rule is especially important for those (like me) that like to go out and have a drink at night after exploring all day. By the time night roles around, you’re usually too tired or don’t have enough time to change in to one of the 19 little black dresses you probably packed. You will more than likely just wear the jeans you’ve been wearing that day, you will definitely be wearing the same jacket, you might have enough time or energy to swap your top. With that in mind, keep your fancy options to a minimum.
2: Carry-on luggage sucks.
I’m really not a fan of carry-on luggage, and every trip I take just makes me hate it more and more. I just find that I’m already fairly uncomfortable on planes, so the last thing I want to do is have to lug around extra bags, particularly if they’re heavy. And nothing annoys me more than those people who only take carry-on and takeover more than their own share of the overhead compartments. Like cheers dude, thank you for me now having to store my one small bag 10 seats away from myself. And don’t even get me started on the number of times they’ve then dropped their bags on me because they’re too heavy for the person to get them out gracefully.
Over the years, I’ve gone from carrying a giant make-up counter tote bag and a big handbag down to only carrying a small backpack that has comfortable and properly adjusted straps. I’ve definitely found that its made my travelling a little more relaxed. My advice with carry-on is to keep it to a bare minimum.
3. If you don’t regularly wear/use it at home, don’t bring it.
We've all done it – you buy something, usually without trying it on, and you're a bit iffy about it but you have this brain wave that your holiday will be the place you feel good about it and wear it. Guess what? You won't. It will sit in the bottom of your luggage the entire trip, and you'll wish you hadn't brought it with you. Do yourself a favour and leave it at home.
The same sort of idea goes for beauty products. My general rule is not to bring any beauty products that I haven’t used in the last 2 weeks. Let’s be real – if you don’t have the time for some crazy skin care routine when you’re at home, you’re probably not going to find the time to do it when you’re travelling. So, leave it at home and just stick to the basics.
4. Comfort is key.
This one is obviously a little subjective depending on the kind of travelling you do. Myself, I like to do more casual and exploration style trips rather than fancy trips, and I’m not really the girliest of girls. I try to keep my outfits practical and simple and above all else COMFORTABLE. This means thongs (flip flops), denim shorts and baggy singlets/tees for warm weather trips, and jeans, timberlands and comfy jumpers for cold weather. You could almost say I have a travel uniform. My reason behind putting this tip in here is that I have travelled with people in the past who have struggled with daily activities because of the outfit they chose or miss out on seeing attractions because they’re too busy having a whinge about the lack of comfort in their outfit.
5. Wheeled suitcases also suck (they suck less than carry-on luggage though).
I’m not completely anti-suitcase, most of my trips have involved suitcases rather than backpacks, but I’ve slowly been realising that they’re kind of annoying. They can be quite awkward to get around with, and having to wheel them on rainy grounds or even through snow leaves them looking a little worse for wear which is not good for them keeping their quality. Manoeuvring them on trains in any weather can be difficult, too. Plus, if you’re staying somewhere that’s even moderately nice and you then track snow all through the place when you get there with your suitcase – you just feel like a terrible person.
One of my most recent purchases was a North Face Base Camp Duffel in the Large size (95 litres). I love it because it’s a fairly comfortable backpack but it opens up like a suitcase when you’re in your hotel, so you don’t have to dig through everything. I’m so in love with it that I’m going to leave a link here for the exact one I use: https://thenorthface.com.au/product/base-camp-duffel-l#NF00CWW1KZ3 . I will be using this duffel and ONLY this duffel on my Iceland and Peru trips next year, so when that time rolls around expect lots of obnoxious photos from me wearing it …
I’m going to now admit to being guilty of having done ALL of these things, but the beauty about travelling is you get better as you go and you’re always learning about different tips or your own travel style. If anyone has any other useful tips, feel free to leave them below. I’m also weirdly obsessed with watching packing videos on YouTube before I go to sleep, so if you know of any fun or interesting ones – please send me links!!
(Photos courtesy of PixaBay)