I our worlds of travel, packing light is something that many of us struggle with.
If you are anything like me, in the past I was always dealing with the personal hell of waiting at the dreaded baggage claim.
Everyone anxiously waiting for his/her bags on that noisy conveyor belt, is like a dog starring out a window thinking anyone coming to the house is a family member but is constantly disappointed with each passerby.
Where ever I go, I always try to pack everything into a carry-on, so I can avoid that dreaded bag claim wait and grab an UBER the minute I get off the plane.
The key to packing light for me is to always make sure I have a wardrobe packed that will work on many different occasions.
If you have figured your clothing essentials that can be worn in different combinations throughout your journey, then packing a carry on for your journey is the perfect fit.
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Top Ways On Packing Light For Your Next Trip
Packing Light - Carry On Luggage
Of course, it all starts with a great carry-on bag that will help you get from point A to Point B with ease.
Some travelers prefer a wheeled carry on bag, which is perfect for those who have to make several connections during his/her journey.
While others like the simple approach of an easy duffel bag to carry and has the ability to fit in even the most cramped overhead compartments of your typical airplane.
Below are some suggestions that may help in your decision process of finding the right carry on luggage for you in order of packing light.
NOMATIC Water Resistant 40L Travel Bag
I have been researching several backpacks lately due to the amount of traveling I have been doing over the course of the past year.
With the NOMATIC Water Resistant 40L Travel Bag, I think I have found the perfect fit for me. It’s the best travel backpack for those who wish to pack a carry on for his/her journey because of its comfort and ease of packing light.
The Nomatic Travel Bag is an insanely comfortable bag to carry. Especially when you have been on a 22-hour journey around the world and your back is not ready to handle a large load as soon as you get off the plane.
It doesn’t feel overbearing because of the back support of this bag, and with a sturdy top grip handle, it’s shockingly useful and really sturdy.
The amount of space that the bag can handle is very impressive which helps with packing light. On my most recent 7 day trip to Los Angeles I was able to pack the following with no problems at all:
- 1 pair of shoes
- 1 pair of jeans
- 2 pairs of chinos
- 2 pairs of shorts
- 7 t-shirts
- 2 polo shirts
- 3 long sleeve button down dress shirts
- 8 pairs of socks
- 9 pairs of underwear
- Travel adapter, cell phone accessories, noise cancelling headphones, laptop, kindle, and toiletry bag.
What I like about this bag are the detachable straps that help distribute the weight from your back to your hips, as well as two waterproof pockets to store your valuables for quick and easy access as you travel.
Plus, If you travel with a roller bag, the NOMATIC Travel Bag will be the perfect companion. The bag is designed with a built-in durable sleeve to fit over the handle of your roller bag.
Packable Duffle Bag
Lately, I have started noticing something while trying to sandwich my carryon in an oversold flight around the country, there isn’t much room when you are boarding group 17.
Which is why I have started to use a packable duffel bag for packing light for my journeys under 7 days.
But, the question is how can you fit all of your items into a packable duffle bag and still manage to have the bag maintain its shape regardless if it’s filled to the max or not?
That’s why I tried the Patagonia Black Hole 90L Duffel Bag, and it does the job it needs to do.
The Patagonia Black Hole 90L Duffel Bag isnʼt the smallest duffel bag out there, but it’s still at a manageable size for any travel need. I’ll say this first if you are unfit, buy the bag with wheels.
The Patagonia Black Hole 90L Duffel Bag is made which a very durable with its 900D polyester ripstop that looks great and holds a ton. It also wears easily as a backpack.
The only thing to note is that it literally a black hole, so organization is up to you.
To combat the organized chaos in packing light, I would suggest purchasing some organization/packing cubes for your trips so that you are not constantly rummaging through the whole thing.
Carry-on Bag (Rolling)
If you fly as much as flight crew does, packing light is a priority for them.
If you want a bag that the experts use then I would suggest a carry-on rolling bag like the Travelpro Platinum Elite 21-inch Expandable Spinner.
I have friends in the airline industry that agree this is the bag of choice for his/her daily routines.
The platinum elite 21″expandable carry-on spinner delivers big on form and function with a tip-resistant expansion that offers up to 2″ more packing capacity, deluxe tie-down system, integrated accessory pockets and a removable quart-size wet pocket that is TSA compliant and perfect for toiletries.
Plus, the drop-in, Fold-out suiter is specifically designed to accommodate hanging clothes and prevent wrinkling. A built-in USB port lets you power up on the go, while a dedicated power bank pocket for your back-up battery adheres to faa regulations.
Perfect for short to medium-length trips, this carry-on spinner is crafted in style with premium fabrics, genuine leather, and chrome zippers.
Top-of-the-line mobility features include the precision glide system with eight magnatrac, self-aligning, 360-degree spinner wheels guided by an adjustable PowerScope extension handle with patented Contour grip and rubberized touch points for comfortable, easy maneuvering wherever you go.
If you have never used packing cubes before, then this can be a game changer for you in regards to the way you pack going forward in packing light.
Packing cubes are essentially bags that hold your clothes for a better organization while packing your luggage.
It’s like a dresser drawer in a bag. You can organize your packing cubes as you do at home.
All your underwear and socks in one cube, Shirts in another, and pants in another. The possibilities are endless. They really do make packing for your journey incredibly easy.
Then when you arrive at your destination, you can grab and go without rummaging through your entire luggage to find that one pair of socks amid of all the other clothing options in your bag.
For packing cubes I would suggest either Eagle Creek Pack It Specter Cube Set and AmazonBasics 4-Piece Packing Cube Set as both make great packing cubes that are made to perform with their quality and value (both run around $30.00 per set).
These cubes are available in similar sizes, and are pretty much the same weight, and are backed by lifetime warranties.
Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Cube Set: The water-repellant ripstop nylon bags come in three sizes — one for your jeans, one for tees and another for socks. Each lightweight (2.2-oz total for all three) bag has a top handle making it a breeze to move everything from your suitcase to a drawer.
AmazonBasics 4-Piece Packing Cube Set: While AmazonBasics is an Amazon line of goods sold at low prices from Amazon, and the packing cubes are one of the better products that amazon basics produce.
They can fit all of your clothing items into small, medium, large and slim bags so that if you have to take everything out for a security check, you don’t have to worry about fitting everything back in your suitcase.
The bags are machine washable and help reduce wrinkles so you don’t look like you just stepped off a plane.
Now I know that if you have a carry-on bag, odds are the bag will be with you at all times, but what if you can’t fit your bag in the overhead compartment and have to check it in?
Sometimes packing light has its advantages and disadvantages.
If this situation happens, then you need a good luggage tag that should be durable, simple to use, and discreet.
A luggage tag should allow any traveler to get his/her luggage back quickly and easily, and be able to withstand the wear and tear of being tossed around onto conveyor belts time and again.
That’s why I should suggest the Dynotag Web Enabled Smart Aluminum Convertible Luggage ID Tag. Unlike ordinary luggage tags, the Dynotag Smart Tag offer advanced capabilities to help your property come back home. The smart tag delivers a complete property information management system you can keep secure and update as needed!
You simply create your free dynotag account and click “Activate Tag” in your account – using that tag’s specific “Activation Code”.
Once activated, the tag becomes exclusively yours and cannot be activated by anyone else! Then, only you, the tag owner, can update the tag contents. Others can only view what you choose to share.
For being a bit of a techie, I love that I can track my luggage anywhere around the world in case my bag is shipped off to Mumbai while I travel to Las Vegas.
Packing Light - Clothing
Now that we figured out what is going to hold our items for our next adventures, the next step is what to put inside them.
When it comes to traveling and packing light into a carry-on, the goal is to have clothing that will be able to help reduce space taken up inside your bag.
Clothing can really take up a lot of space if you are uncareful. If you are packing thicker articles of clothing like cotton it can get out of hand quickly.
That’s why I suggest sticking to merino and synthetic fabrics which are lighter and dry faster is the best way of packing light.
Having the ability to have clothing dry faster allows you to do laundry by hand in the sink as needed to reduce the number of clothes you need to carry.
Having great travel underwear keeps you feeling fresh and clean, even when you’re in a destination that is not the greatest in terms of cleanliness.
Travel underwear designed for men and women should be moisture-wicking and breathable, quick-drying, odor-resistant, stretchy, stylish, and cut to fit a variety of body types.
My suggestion for travel underwear for men is the ExOfficio Give-N-Go Boxer Brief.
The reason for this is because this breathable underwear wicks away moisture and the quick-drying fabric means you’re ready to go within hours. Odor-resistant technology keeps you feeling fresher on longer trips.
This breathable underwear wicks away moisture and the quick-drying fabric means you’re ready to go within hours. Odor-resistant technology keeps you feeling fresher on longer trips.
When it comes to underwear, it really breaks down to personal preference, but these suggestions are great for those who are looking for something new for his/her nest traveling adventures.
If you are looking for socks that are durable and light then you really need a great pair of merino wool socks. Merino wool socks are soft and stretchy that have natural sweat-wicking and odor-resisting properties that keep your toes comfortable under all conditions—even when wet.
My suggestion for a great pair of Merino wool socks is PEOPLE SOCKS Men’s Women’s Merino wool quarter socks. I am partial to quarter socks, but PEOPLE SOCKS make crew socks as well.
They are the most comfortable Wool Socks ever. Made from the finest quality Australian Merino Wool and knitted in the USA. Each pair is cushioned throughout and reinforced from heel to toe for maximum comfort and durability.
Merino Wool is a natural moisture management fiber that wicks moisture and maintains cushion. Supersoft merino wool provides natural comfort for all seasons.
Flip flops are perfect for everyday travel use. They are great for the beach, walking around town, and for when you are showering in places that you are unsure of what fungus is among you. When it comes to a good pair of travel flip flops, they should be lightweight and flat for easy packing.
A really good pair of travel flip-flops to me is the popular Havaianas as these high-density PVC Brazilian classics are world-renowned for their durability, affordability and reliable traction, even when wet. They pack down to almost nothing, unlike those beefy Crocs.
The unfortunate thing about packing light to get everything in a carry-on is that you may have to do some laundry from time to time. One thing that I carry with me in regards to packing light is a great travel clothesline for washing my underwear and socks, and the occasional dress shirt I always seem to stain on my first day of traveling.
I always pack with me the Nasdom Travel Clothesline which will make your laundry and hanging much more convenient and efficient. Enhance your drying experience, never worry about the problems with your laundry.
It features: 12 clothespins for hanging towels, cloth diapers, underwear, socks, T-shirts, bathing suits and any other lightweight clothes. 13 windproof positioning clips stop the clothespins from sliding.
They also can be moved smoothly by pressing and holding the little button on the top of the clips. 2 adjustable buttons can freely adjust the length of your rope.
Climbing buckle can be fixed at both ends of the rope, you could loop the cord around the rod and hook it on itself.
Decorative buttons can be fixed on the rope at both ends. 1 drawstring bag, tailor-made and can be reused, very useful device that folds up nicely into storage bags, save a lot of space in your traveling bag.
When youʼre washing your clothes in a hotel sink, you want it to be a fast and easy experience.
Keep these mini soak single-use samples in your travel bag for holidays work trips and spontaneous weekend getaways! Just add a pack into water, let your clothes soak, press out the water and hang. It’s just that easy.
The only thing with this product is you can’t find it at the local whole foods or Trader Joes, you can only find it on Amazon.
But, since you can order anything on Amazon with just a click, it’s a no brainer.
Packing Light - Personal Hygiene
We all love our creature comforts at home, but traveling with them can be a pain.
It’s impossible to find your personal preference in a travel size container that you can take anywhere while packing light.
That’s why you have to think about what products you need for your trip and build around them.
You can use the old reliables at the hotel, but sometimes hotels will use brand names that may not work for you. If you want to bring your favorites on the road, I suggest purchasing leak-proof travel bottles that are TSA approved.
I suggest purchasing Oursunshine Travel bottles which is the perfect reusable option for travel, durable, flexible and safety material. Hold your shampoo, conditioner, lotion, body wash, etc. without any leaks and is sealed in.
If you are going to be living out of your bag for an extended period of time a Hanging Toiletry Bag is the best option for most travelers. They are lightweight and spill-proof and flexible with a small hook that can find a place to hang in almost any bathroom.
I suggest the KOMALC Genuine Buffalo Leather Hanging Toiletry Bag Travel Dopp Kit as the go-to kit.
With its Sleek vintage-inspired design, it can be used as a hanging toiletry bag or a flat-lying one. 4 Internal pockets ( 2 zippered and 2 with snaps lined with water resistant material) which can hold a lot of your travel accessories.
While you are on the road, you may not be near your hotel if you decided to hit the beach during the day. What you need is an ultra-light microfiber towel that is super absorbent that you can take anywhere.
I suggest the Rainleaf Microfiber towel as it keeps you fresh and away from mildew & germs and it will remarkable soft suede-like feel on your skin and face. It’s easy to carry and space saving. Plus with a hang snap loop; it’s practical & easy to hang anywhere and dry.
Packing Light - In The Air Or On The Ground
No matter how you travel, you will often time be stuck in an uncomfortable position to take a cat nap or two. But, when it comes to packing a carry-on, you have to think about space saving ways to do this.
There are so many space saving neck pillows out there that can provide support for your neck, but finding the right option for you that doesn’t involve looking like you have whiplash. That’s why I suggest the Trtl Pillow.
The TRTL PILLOW is a scientifically proven travel pillow to keep your head in a better position when sleeping upright by holding your head in an ergonomic position during rest. No more nodding heads!
Super soft fleece combined with a unique hidden internal support, plus some extra cozy cushioning creates a comfortable resting place for your head and neck.
Noise Canceling Headphones
When you are stuck on a plane and a baby flash mob begins and they start screaming at the same time, noise-canceling headphones are the best way to combat this.
I was recently on a plane where the child beside me played the youtube video of baby shark over and over again, and if it wasn’t for my Noise Canceling Headphones, I think I would have started to act like William Shatner on the twilight zone episode below.
My suggestion for a great pair of noise canceling headphones is the Bose QuietComfort 35 II Wireless Bluetooth Headphones. They may be a pricer option, but the quality of sound that Bose is known for is worth every penny.
When you are flying long distances and trying to get yourself ready for your arrival time zone having a sleep mask can make or break your jet lag when you land.
I suggest the Nidra Dreams Eye Mask for finding that perfect deep sleep in the most comfortable way while flying. They are incredibly lightweight weight and contour to your face to get the REM sleep you need.
We have become so accustomed to our devices that we are more worried about leaving them at home that our kids. Which could explain the movie “Home Alone” now.
There are certain devices that you might need to pick up before traveling to make your travel life easier going forward.
I don’t know about you, but being from Canada, the minute I leave the country, my cellphone provider is loving every minute I talk abroad. My most recent cellphone bill on my last trip made me almost want to take out a home equity loan.
That’s why I now carry an unlocked smartphone . An “unlocked” smartphone means you can buy prepaid SIM cards in the country youʼre visiting, to access their local network for less money than the roaming fees charged by your home carrier. With a prepaid SIM, your phone becomes a new phone with a new phone number.
If you are planning a trip outside your own country, having a travel adapter can be a lifesaver, literally.
The reason I say this is because a few years back my wife was using a heating pad via a cheap travel adapter in Manchester, England, that caught on fire and almost burned her.
She made it out okay with no burns, but we knew never to go cheap on a travel adapter again.
It seems like a long title for a small device but it works. This International Universal Travel Adaptor offers superior compatibility with more than 150 countries around the world, Solve your global travel charging problem.
With so many devices that require different cords that a good organizer is a must.
I suggest the BAGSMART Electronic Organizer to store everything you need for your next trip. With its double zipper opening for easy and quick access, you can access the two inner mesh pockets with a zipper that can fit portable hard drive, multiple sizes of USB drives, various cables, and headphones. Plus, 3 SD card slots to prevent SD cards from going missing.
USB battery packs
A power bank can keep your small electronics like phones and cameras to tablets charged while youʼre on the road. Keep in mind that the length of your trip will determine exactly how much extra juice youʼll want to have on hand, but having this backup is a must.
I suggest Anker PowerCore+ as it provides over 6 full charges to iPhone X. You’ll wonder how you ever spent so much time attached to the wall. The Dual 5V/3A USB ports with PowerIQ technology offer faster-charging speeds for phones and tablets.
The USB-C port offers total Power Delivery support, charging compatible devices such as MacBook (C-to-Lightning cable required for iPhone 8).
Gone are the days of the massive Stephen King novel that took up half your luggage only to find out that three chapters were 400 pages. I love my ebook reader as I can fill it up with so many books like songs on my iTunes, and that I never have to worry about leaving a favorite book at home.
Folding water bottle
Traveling with a collapsible water bottle is a great way to reduce your environmental impact, plus save you from having to spend $5 at the airport just to stay hydrated.
Collapsible water bottles are made with lightweight, flexible materials like silicone that allow you to fold, flatten, or twist them down to become compact enough to fit easily into your bag.
I suggest the Nomader Collapsible Water Bottle which maintains its sturdy feel for a comfortable drinking experience, yet it conveniently rolls up or squashes down when space is tight.
Attached multi-function strap secures the flask in its folded position and makes it easy to carry when you’re on-the-go.
When it comes to documenting your journey, nothing beats a great notebook. Sure you can use your smartphone or laptop to document your travels, but to me, there is nothing like a pen and paper to document my adventures.
I use the Field Notes Pitch Black Notebook to capture my memories to paper because the pads are not bulky and easily fit in your back pocket or jacket pocket without becoming annoying.
A must for people teeming with ideas that they would forget later on. Write them down on the spot and never forget anything again!
Peace Of Mind Home Security
I know this has nothing to do with packing light for your travels, but always knowing your home is safe and sound while traveling just makes you put your mind at ease while you are on your journey.
I suggest the YI Smart Dome Camera X which is motion activated and will send alerts and video clips to your smartphone so you can take immediate action.
This camera and others like it also allow you to remotely drop in on your cameras in real time and live stream whatever’s going on at your house. Easy, affordable monitoring
Packing Light - How To Pack Video
Looking for new ways in packing light for your journey? I found this clip on youtube that I use every time I start packing for my trips. Just simple tricks to get everything in your bag that you need for your next trip.
I hope that these tips and tricks on how to pack light will inspire you to try something different for your next trip.
The products I mentioned above I have used and still use with no issues from any of them. They are great products that I will continue to use until I have to replace them with newer models.
Now just get out there and travel!
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Airbnb / Uber / Hotels Tonight Link
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