Travel light equals more freedom equals more fun. Minimalists and successful digital nomads say the initial hassle of limiting oneself to a carry-on bag is more than repaid during your travels.
„It is of priceless value to just walk out the aiport’s door wihout waiting at the luggage conveyor belt, Conni (planetbackpack.de) describes the feeling of freedom she experiences while travelling only with a carry-on; being able to walk straight out of the airport instead of having to wait in lines for your luggage. This gives you the ultimate feeling of lightness and freedom, which money can’t simply buy.“
Which travel type are you?
During my travels, I met several people travelling in different styles. As an essence, three immediate stereotypes come to mind:
- The Trekker, whose Northface backpacks can be found stuffed with ropes, tents, and trekking boots.
- The Backpacker, who needs to travel to multiple locations rather than travelling from a home-base.
- The Voluntourist, who can travel with more „stuff“ when compared to their backpacker counterparts due to the fact that they have a temporary base.
Before you plan your Packing List light:
While I am not yet ready to travel the world with just a day-bag, I am trying to work my way there. The first thing to realise is that the transition to this type of travel cannot be done in one-step, more-over seems to be a multi-step process (to me). For me it was my fourth time in Indonesia. Each time I’ve travelled here has been for periods of 3-6 months and prior to this trip, I had never considered downsizing my travel gear. I have now come to realise how stressful it is to have to pack up and move everything at the end of a stay somewhere. It’s now time to start my transition to travelling in a light way, so I can avoid the stress related to carrying a heavy load.
Taking stock: Can I get rid of it?
- Literature! I admit, in literature I see the main potential of saving travel weight. Most people carry ebook-readers, but I am a romantic real-book-lover
- A notebook (but your iPhone also haves a digital note-taking app/function)
- An A4-wallet for all printed documents (TAN lists, travel plans, receipts and other for all further important snippets to keep)
- Passport, international diver’s license, immunisation card, diver certification
- TAN device for emergencies, but due to online-banking surely not necessary
I intend to spread my technics, so I like to use a bag for keeping them together, but this ist nothing necessary.
- MacBook Air (11-inch, Mid 2013) and case
- Panasonic Lumix DMC-Lx7 Camera
- SD-Card-Case against the subtropical weather (this one is clunky & heavy, but there are smaller lighter ones!)
- iPod Nano & In-Ear plugs Philips O’Neill, which I love. So much more comfortable than iPhone ones
- External hard drive
- Powerbank – useful in areas tending to have many blackouts
Different than from the picture, I would recommend to bring a universal soap instead of shampoo, shower lotion and related items.
- First-aid kit
Don’t buy into travel accessories, most of them will keep you heavy!
- Travel-Pillow very light and for crucial to me. I consider a good nap as most important energy contributor
- Moskito Net
- Lucie Solar Light
- Inlet for Sleeping bag
- Waterproof case for iPhone5
- A Knife (Leatherman) I would not take with me another time, because its too heavy and I rarely use it
I once published the Ultimate Packing List, that I hereby want to correct.
The new rule:
Only pack for a week!
Usually I travel sub-tropical climates, so one or two long-sleeve shirts and a jeans are enough to carry.
Pro-Tip: If your clothes still don’t fit into your backpack use compression bags as your pack mate, in order to regain some precious space. All items you consider to be helpful just sometimes should be left at home. You will be able of buying them also abroad.
What are your most important travel necessities? Please let me know. Sincerely yours, Anna