It’s tempting and everyone is guilty of packing a few non-essential items when they travel. It can often be hard to leave that extra pair of shoes behind. There are many advantages to traveling light, however. Carting around huge bags is tiring and stressful, especially if you’re always on the move. Packing light gives you more freedom and flexibility. Depending on the destination, you’re likely to find most things you need when you get there, if you happen to forget something from your toiletry bag. Here are five tips for traveling light.
Find the right bag
Choose the right bag for your travel needs and stick to it. If you’re planning a longer trip or multiple destinations, check out these travel backpacks. They are designed to carry the essentials and have different compartments for all your emergency items. Backpacks are also more comfortable than suitcases. They’re better for your back and fit more easily in small spaces, such as overhead bins on planes or buses.
Pack versatile items
One of the benefits of packing light is that you learn you don’t need a separate outfit everyday. Instead, pack versatile items. These are typically your jeans, light tops and sweaters, that you can wear in different combinations. Choose items that don’t need washing after one wear, and don’t forget a comfortable pair of shoes. Pack for the season and always take into consideration the culture of the destination.
Stick to a week’s worth of clothing
You shouldn’t need to pack more than this. Most places will offer a laundry service, so rather than carting around your entire closet, pack a week's worth of clothes in your carry-on. Doing laundry once in a while is less of a hassle than carrying a heavy bag of clothes, and it’s not expensive. Plus it can be a fun way to get to know the locals.
Get a travel towel
Check with your accommodation first, but if they don’t provide towels invest in one of the best travel towels in 2021. These are incredibly lightweight, fold up really small, yet are still perfectly absorbent. They’re also quick-drying and versatile. You can even take them to the beach in a small bag. If towels are offered at your accommodation, you don’t even need to take one. Find out what else is provided so you can lighten the load even more.
Avoid stocking up on toiletries
Most places will have a supermarket or drugstore where you can buy emergency toiletries. Unless you’re going somewhere really remote, take the bare minimum. You don’t need different types of shower products or moisturizers, find one that will do the job. Leaving a couple of these creature comforts at home is worth it to avoid the hassle of carrying them. This will also teach you to travel more economically. You can buy things if you really need them, or run out, but you might just find you’ve got enough in your bag. Traveling light is often quite satisfying, and more convenient.
*Post contributed by Amy Smith, a peer travel writer and adventure lover.*