If you are new to the concept of traveling light, here’s the most important part of it: traveling light does not mean you don’t carry important, or enough, things. It means you rethink what and how much is important. Traveling light is great if you don’t want to lug around heavy bags and pay extra to get them on a flight. It also allows you to stress a little less because you will, potentially, be carrying fewer bags in general. Not just that, traveling light forces you to travel sustainably, too. So, how does one ‘travel light’? Here are a few steps you can follow in order to effectively reduce all sorts of loads when traveling!
Before you start packing, make a detailed itinerary of all the places you want to visit. This will give you a clear idea of all the clothes, accessories, and footwear you’ll need to carry. Not just that, you’ll also be able to decide what kind of luggage you want to carry - trekking backpacks, trolleys, or duffel bags. Gauge your need and pick one. Since we are traveling light, pick JUST one.
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The point of making a list of all your essentials is to have a list, obviously, and also to see what parts of these essentials are replaceable, or not required on a trip at all. So, once you do make this list, strike off all the multiples, all the extras, and all the ‘just in case’ items. Whatever you are left with, is your list of essentials that you actually need to carry.
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Here is where we actually start packing. Once you’ve figured out what you want to carry, the next step is to figure out what are you going to carry it in. Traveling light, inherently, requires you to carry fewer things. One of the best ways to do that is to restrict the amount of space you have. Of course, don’t go for the smallest bag available, though. Choose a bag that is one size smaller than what you would choose regularly. Two sizes, if you’re feeling adventurous.
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This is only applicable to your clothes. You should keep this in mind especially when you’re traveling for longer durations. Almost all the places you visit will have some sort of laundry service. If not, all places will definitely have cloth detergent bars. Choose one day to do all your laundry and you’ll be sorted for another week. For long-lasting results, repeat this process once, every week!
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By ‘bulk’, we mean bulky pieces of clothing. This will mostly be a problem if you’re traveling to colder places. When we think of colder places, we think of preparing ourselves for the cold. We tend to pack the fluffiest, coziest jacket that we own and pack another one, just in case. Avoid this at all costs. Carry just one bulky piece of clothing. For the rest of the heat, pack layers. That will help you save on a lot of space since one folded quilt jacket can take up space that would easily fit three shirts.
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This is the golden rule of traveling light. When you’re packing your clothes, avoid keeping individual outfits for individual locations. Instead, keep a bunch of items of clothing that you can pair with the rest of your travel wardrobe. This way, you can carry almost half the amount of clothes you would carry otherwise, while also having enough outfits to last a lifetime!
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Since you’re carrying fewer clothes, it is going to be a challenge to have a fresh look every day. Keeping accessories will be like a real-life cheat code for this. This does not mean you load up on every piece of accessory you own, though. After you’re done picking your clothes, pick and choose accessories that are statement pieces. That way, you get the opportunity to add one more aspect of modernity to the outfits you’ve already mixed and matched!
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By carrying electronics, we mean carrying only the necessary electronics. Instead of a laptop, a GPS device, and a reader, carry a tablet or an iPad. Both these devices will weigh approximately as much as a book would, and give you access to maps, apps, websites, cameras, and any e-books or audiobooks you might want to carry. When it comes to carrying chargers, carry just one brick and the minimum amount of cords you’d need to connect your devices to that brick. This way, you won’t just save up on space and weight, but also won’t have to worry about forgetting, losing, or breaking one of your chargers.
One trick is to carry the charging brick with the most electrical capacity. For example, if you are using Apple products, carry only the brick for the iPad. It will work with all your devices, and the higher amperage will allow you to charge smaller devices faster. Other than that, do not carry your steam dryer or hair curler. Things like these are available at almost all hotels. Just use them!
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This hack is more for convenience and speed than for anything else. Carrying a bag that only opens a specific way or has a very narrow opening, means you cannot access every bit of space in it. It also means you have to maneuver your things in order to make use of the limited space that is available.
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After everything is said and done, traveling light is just one way for you to make the most out of your travels. It is not a set of rules that you need to follow and definitely nothing that will take away from your experience if you do not follow. So, make sure you don’t carry unnecessary weight, but don’t sacrifice your comfort to an extent where you would be struggling with yourself every morning. Most importantly, big bags, small bags, or no bags, make sure you have fun and stay safe. Happy travels!
What Does Travel Light Mean?
Traveling light essentially means carrying the least amount of weight for any trip. Ideally, when traveling light, your luggage should not go beyond one luggage bag and one carry-on.
Why Should You Travel Light?
Traveling light allows you to travel without the stress and the actual burden of a lot of luggage. This, in turn, allows you to explore more places, much more vividly than you would be able to otherwise.
What Should I Not Forget To Pack?
That is a long list. However, to bring it down to the very core essentials, there are three things that you should not forget in any case – first aid kit, paperwork, and your glasses!
What Do You Need For Traveling?
The essentials that we all need to carry while traveling are documents, foreign currency, a first aid kit, clothes, toiletries, etc.
What Is Allowed In A Carry-on Bag?
Liquids like creams, spray cans, and paste are allowed in a carry-on bag.
How Do You Not Overpack?
When traveling for weeks or a month the best way to avoid over-packing is by packing stuff smartly. Like packing Anti-Stink Clothes, Packing lightweight and multipurpose Shoes, packing items that go together, coordinating items with your travel companion, etc.
Is It Better To Roll Clothes Or Fold?
Not all clothes can be rolled and even if they are it is going to spoil your clothes, casual clothes that are soft and breezy can be rolled up, avoid rolling dresses, these cloth items can be folded instead of rolling.
Do Packing Cubes Actually Help?
Packing cubes are small cloth-like containers where you can store your clothes and other travel items, these cubes help your clothes and other stuff from getting wrinkled.