My dad travels a lot. Like a lot. In fact, he travels every month and lives out of his suitcase than his closet most of the time. Recently, I started my summer vacations (Wohoo!) and when I packed, I was worried I’d be overweight. I was so worried that I was extra careful when I packed. So extra careful, that when I checked in, I found out that my bag weighed 10 kilos! Can you believe it! 10! So now, I decided to share how my suitcase weighed 10 kilos (less than the domestic weight), when I was traveling international.
First, Make a list. Trust me on this guys, making a list really does help. Mainly, because you can check off the items that you’ve packed and make sure you don’t leave anything behind. Making a list also helps you prepare to pack. For example, if you have to pack 4 t-shirts but 2 are in the laundry then, you know that you need to wash them for packing. It allows you track to see where and how much you’ve packed.
Weather. Think about the place your visiting and accordingly you’ll pack those kind of clothes. Is it hot? Take shorts. Rainy? Don’t forget the raincoat or umbrella. My dad always checks the weather forecast and packed. A weekly forecast allows you to prepare for the days in advance and see weather patterns in the place your visiting. Keeping the weather in mind avoids packing unnecessary clothing, reducing weight, clutter and work.
Activities. What kind of trip are planning to take. Business? Work clothes, mainly suits and formal wear. Hiking? Comfortable shoes. Skiing? Don’t leave this mittens and jacket. Think about the activities you’re going to do. If you going to an ancient ruin you may be walking a lot, so need comfortable clothes. Canoeing or other water related activities? Swimsuit, definitely. Try to plan or research about the place and then pack, because you’ll be prepared with what to expect.
Try to recycle outfits. What I mean here is not only washing but reusing the same item with different pieces of clothing. Take jeans as an example. You can definitely wear 3 different t-shirts with one pair of jeans right? There! Thats it! Instead of taking 3 t-shirts and 3 different pants to wear with them, just take one pant that matches with all three! This not only reduces weight, but also gives you options to vary with the weather. Honestly, in my opinion, all every one needs is about 3-4 pants in colors like white, denim, black and khaki. Otherwise, matching colored pants becomes, kind of hard.
Reuse, re-wear. If you care about the environment and hate washing clothes, this options for you! I know many may think its disgusting, but what can we do when we’re on a low budget and can’t waste time in laundry or love those pants so much! Well, by re-wearing your jeans, you can avoid carrying too many clothes! Imagine if you washed everything everyday, what a waste of water, time and energy! you would definitely need clothing for like everyday cause like instead of re-wearing everything would be in the wash and then you’d need more clothes. (Not targeted at anyone. Please don’t take it personally. It’s just a blog.) Re-wearing your pajamas for three days, would mean that you could carry two pairs for 6 days! Thats why it’s so useful!
Use the number of days of travel as a guide to pack. My dad always checks the number of weeks he traveling. Then, accordingly, he’ll decide which outfit to wear on what day and which ones he’ll reuse, re-wear or wash, dependent on the weather and situation. That way, when he arrives he won’t need to worry about what to wear, cause he decided in advance. This organizes your packing and plans ahead of time, so that neither do you have to worry, nor do you pack too much.
If this method doesn’t work, consider halving the days you’re traveling. For example, I’m traveling for 14 days and I just half 14 which gives me 7. The max number of outfits I really need is seven. There! So you have a limit to pack and don’t have to worry about too much luggage or clothes! Limits also increase speed and necessity. With a limit to the number of clothes you take, you’ll mostly choose the most important and your favorite ones first, ensuring that you’ll wear them and travel light.
Comfort. For me, even if it looks nice it must be comfortable to wear, otherwise why would one wear it? (Especially when your on a vacation) Sometimes you can’t decide which clothes to take. Well, when choosing, think about which one you’d rather wear in public. Don’t choose the one that makes you conscious but choose what makes you confident. If you can’t smile (a real smile) when your wearing this article of clothing, it’s not for you. Maybe this applies to shopping too.
Is your luggage still heavy? Try to remove the heaviest items. Can’t decide which one? Think about how many times, how much you’re actually going to use it. What the probabilities are of you needing it. Is it a necessity or a want? Can it be substituted for something lighter. By thinking about these questions, you’ll eventually decide which item to take.
I think that’s enough to reduce your luggage weight. If it’s not, let me know and I’ll try to add some more. Remember light luggage means less work and more fun!
Enjoy your summer!