Travel Junkie: Pack Light
Last week we talked about train riding and how its my favorite way of transportation while in other countries (providing they have this service). This week I would like to talk about something that can make your trip much easier and even though its easy to do, its very difficult to actually do it, and that is Packing. While preparing for a trip we tend to think of all the things we may need in our vacation; we seldom think that most of those things that we are packing won’t be used at all. For starters we don’t need to be bringing our whole medical kit. Other countries have Drug Stores, Doctors, Pharmacies and such, they survive! Don’t worry about those things, if you have a head ache, trust me, you’ll find aspirin. This is just one example of how we usually think when we’re packing.
Think about this: When you are moving from one city to another on a train, the one problem you don’t want to have is having to be carrying a bag that is so heavy that you need a forklift just to get it on the damn train. Second, lets say you arrive to your destination and you are going to be staying just for a couple of days in a Hostel, or maybe a cheap low budget hotel; what you don’t want is having to take out all of those unnecessary things every time around and then lose more time having to pack once again. You want things to be simple and fast. Our most precious thing while traveling this way is time. Moving with light baggage is not only easier, its faster and way more convenient. When you’re in a Train, one thing you don’t want on your mind is thinking about the safety of your stuff. If you’re going to be bringing your best stuff on board, be sure that the loss will be bigger than if you don’t. As a matter of fact, you don’t really need it, you can bring your cheaper things and use them while traveling, even throwing them away when your done with them is valid.
When you have a small bag with you, its easier to keep it near, eliminating unnecessary stress out of your system in a time when you should be relaxing. There are things you want to bring with you because they’re absolutely necessary, but there are others that aren’t that important. Everybody has different priorities so you should put yours on the table and think about what would happen if you didn’t bring any of them with you. Make a list just like I do before you pack. After years of traveling i’ve managed to make my bag lighter with every trip but I haven’t been able to make it the ideal weight just yet. I always put something that I really don’t need inside my bag. I can’t help it! As I told you at the beginning of this article, its harder than you think to pack light. When you do, you’ll appreciate that extra effort of doing things right.
For the regular traveler I would recommend to bring the following to any trip that’s 20 days or less:
- A pair of shoes (good traction)
- 5 pairs of socks
- Underwear for a week
- 1 jeans
- 1 cargo pants
- up to 5 shirts
- Money Belt
- A small bag to carry camera, travel book/ipad/slate, iPod, etc.
- 1 dark sweater (if required)
- 1 light jacket (if required)
- Swimsuit (if required)