How to Travel Lighter
Travelling by air is tiresome enough, without carrying two or three heavy suitcases with you wherever you go, but most people take way more things with them when they fly than they really need. With a little bit of planning and some common sense, you can easily cut down the weight of your bags, and the number of bags that you have to carry. Could you last a week on what you can carry in one suitcase? Here are some tips that might help make that possible.
1. Take a smaller suitcase
If you take a mega-sized suitcase with you every time you travel, it’s only human nature that you will fill it to the brim. Buy yourself a smaller case and then you will have to cut back on what you pack. It may sound a bit too obvious, but it really will make you think more carefully about what you do need to take with you, and what you don’t.
2. Skip all the toiletries
Don’t pack things like shampoo, sunscreen, and shower gel. You will be able to buy that when you arrive at your destination. Those kinds of things are really quite heavy and take up space. Unless you are travelling to somewhere really remote, there will be shops, and they will most likely be selling the very same brands that you would get at home.
3. Don’t pack for all eventualities
If you are flying to hot country, there really is little point packing warm clothes “just in case” it gets a bit cold in the evenings. The chances are that it won’t get chilly at all and, if it does, you can wear an extra T-shirt under your clothes to keep you warm.
4. Don’t leave the packing to the last-minute
The best way to pack light is to make a list of what you will need and pack your suitcase in advance. If you leave the packing to the last-minute, you are likely to stuff, anything and everything, you can into your bag and take far more than you will ever actually use.
5. Don’t carry what the hotel will provide
If you are staying in a regular hotel, you can be fairly sure that they will be supplying the towels, a hairdryer, and you will be able to borrow an iron if you need to iron a shirt. If in doubt, check before you travel, and then you won’t need to carry anything that the hotel is able to provide.
6. Don’t double up on anything
On a short vacation or business trip, no one is going to notice you wear the same pair of trousers every evening and, if they do, so what? Packing light means packing the bare minimum, so there won’t be room for a complete new outfit every single day.
7. Only pack a maximum of two pairs of shoes
If you are going on holiday, you might need one pair of smart shoes for the evenings and a pair of comfortable shoes or trainers for walking around in during the day, but much more than that is just a waste of space and extra weight. Shoes can be heavy, so wear your comfortable pair for the flight and just pack the smart ones in the suitcase.
8. Don’t pack your home luxuries
You can live without tomato ketchup and your favourite brand of coffee for a week or two, so leave all that kind of stuff at home. Embrace the local culture instead, and eat the local food. It’s all a part of what makes travelling so much fun.
9. Wash clothes while you are away
If you are in a hotel, they will no doubt have a laundry service, so you can get clothes washed that way. Otherwise, you could always wash out a few small items, like socks, in the sink in your hotel room. It’s just another way that you can cut down on what you will have to carry.
10. Don’t roll up clothing when you pack
Rolling items up does mean that you can get more into a suitcase, but it also means you have to unroll them and then roll them back up again when you go home. It’s much easier not to pack too much in the first place and then you won’t have all that weight to carry around.
Travelling light makes a trip much easier and a lot more fun. All you’ve got to do is think a bit more carefully about what you really need to take with you and what you can buy when you arrive at your destination. Long haul flying is stressful enough, so why make it worse by carrying way too much luggage?