|If you knew me well, you will be surprised how I was able to travel for 3 weeks with only a 8kg backpack. This is the evidence :)|
20 April 2014
THE PACKING ODYSSEY
Specially for women, specially for me... this is a tricky and stressing task!!
Perhaps that is why, procrastination is usually the king before starting to pack. I can easily remember myself packing just some hours before leaving to the airport, not only once!.... which is not smart at all because most likely you will end up with no swimming suit in Australia, forgetting your pre scripted medication, no umbrella in the UK or paying expensive over weight fees at the airport.
What I have learned for sure is that packing is a life lesson! As in life, sometimes you have to make wise choices, give up on tempting unnecessary pleasures (such as beauty and hygiene products, hairdryers and perfumes) and focus in the essentials which at the end will make you a better, more resourceful person!
Two factors are important: What to pack and How to do it. My father has been my rescuer most of the time when Im leaving home, he is an absolute master when maximising space is required and his folding methods are just brilliant!. But when coming back I have been forced to face this unpleasant process by myself. I have managed it but don't ask me why!... Last January I had to leave a whole plastic bag full of staff abandoned in an airport in Lisbon, its upsetting!
Since I am not the best person to advise on the matter, I have done some research and here are some tips that I found very useful and will start to take into account for my next trip.
First of all, common sense... Keep all the important items such as camera, wallet, passport and medicines in a separate bag that is always going to be with you, and guard it extremely!
About Clothing...No matter where you are going or the purpose of your trip... For sure you wont need as many clothes as you think you do. Fashionistas can pull it off with minimal clothes and for sure you will end up doing some shopping wherever you go... So you will want to leave room for that as well.
When packing clothes "pack with sacrifice in mind" if you are not 100% sure that you will need it, you probably don't!.
For pants, pack your favourite jeans! The ones that make you feel comfy and that will match with anything. A scarf is always a good companion and more than 3 pair of shoes is greedy.
For bathroom essentials, watch out! Don't overpack... Its the best way to save space and weight. As I said before, this is the hardest for me basically because I can not find the brands I like everywhere but you can get over it and just budget to buy extra shampoos, conditioners, sunscreen and deodorants on the road.
For me, a camera is a MUST for any trip. Even if its your phone, always bring your charger and an extra memory card!.
Ask people!! That is the best way when going to a new place for the first time. Ask someone you know that has already been there. The experience is the most valuable advice... If you don't know anyone. Go online! There is always someone from around the world that is kind enough to help you solve your doubts.
If you will be staying at someone´s house, a host family or you will be having a roommate, I reccommend to always bring a little something from where you are originally; its always a nice way to say thank you, positively positioning your culture and start bounding that relationship.
Last but not least from my personal recommendations; always bring with you a pen and a small notebook, you will need it! Your creativity develops extremely when traveling! so don't waste these brilliant moments! Write your thoughts, your discoveries, letters, your business ideas, something you saw that would like to do further research on, draw, or just to write your number for someone interesting you meet on the train.
As we see, not too hard, not too easy... Just a matter of a little planning as it is for everything when traveling!
For more advices on packing when traveling, I recommend you visit the follow link: http://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/advice/2012/12/12/10-packing-tips-every-traveler-should-know/1764207/