Backpacking Packing List for Packing Light

By: Barbara Freedman-de Vito

Backpacking Checklist for Packing Light

My years of traveling around Europe, primarily by plane, train, bus, subway system and on foot, have taught me several things. The lighter your luggage, the lighter your heart. Traveling light does not mean hoisting traditional suitcases. The suitcases themselves add extra weight, and suitcases are difficult to carry.

Backpacking Packing List for Packing Light

1) The Most Important Element - Your Luggage
If you're a budget traveler you are unlikely to be relying on hotel porters, taxi drivers, or other people paid to drag your luggage around. You're more likely to be dragging it your own luggage through airports, through subway systems, on and off of buses and airport shuttles, and through city streets. It cannot be overstated that carrying too much weight around can be the difference between a fantasic, exhilirating travel experience and an exhausting one that you can't wait to end.

  • If your luggage is heavy, your mind will be more on the thought that you can't bear to drag your luggage down one more street, than it will be on the sights and sounds of that exotic locale.
  • I find that holding a large object by its handle, its weight hanging down off the end of my arm is the fastest route to a shoulder and backache.
  • Why lug a heavy backpack through the wilds of London when there are shops on every corner, where you can forage for everything you need?
  • Furthermore, by carrying just one backpack each, you'll also look less like affluent tourists, and thus you'll be less likely to be targeted by a pickpocket or purse snatcher as you move about city streets and in subway systems.

My advice is that budget travellers or backpackers should carry one small day-pack style backpack. If you think before you pack, and if you make logical decisions as to what you truly can and can't live without, and what you absolutely must transport to your destination versus what you can easily pick up once you arrive, it can be done. below are more more backpacking packing list for Packing Light

Backpacking Packing List for Packing Light

2) Prescription Medication,
Obviously you'll need to carry an adequate supply with you. Carry a spare as well, and keep it on you, so that you needn't panic if your pack gets nabbed by a thief. Be sure to also carry the prescription itself, so that you can prove that you're really transporting a prescription medicine, if you're stopped by customs or security personnel. It's even better if you have a prescription that carries not only the commercial name of the medicine, but also its chemical name, in case you need to show it to a pharmacist, doctor, or customs authority, in a country where your own language isn't spoken.

3) Traveling to a hot, tropical location
Carry a bottle of sunscreen - but buy a bottle that contains the amount you expect to need for the duration of the trip. Don't burden yourself with a jumbo size container, two thirds of which will be still be with you on the return trip.

4) Toiletries
Carry or buy upon arrival, small tubes, bottles and boxes containing just enough for the trip. Don't drag around weight that you'll ultimately drag back home with you, or you'll only end up with a bottle of sunscreen that can boast to its neighbors on the medicine cabinet shelf that it's been to Tahiti.

  • If two people are traveling together, whether they're part of one family or they're friends sharing the adventure of a lifetime, take only one set of toiletries between you.
  • Carry separate toothbrushes, of course, but pack just one of items such as deoderant and soap and then share them. Half of your toiletry weight will have been eliminated simply by not both carrying duplicate types of items and, believe me, objects like these really contribute to the bulk and weight of your luggage.

5) Cosmetics
Ask yourself if you can live without extras such as cosmetics, perfume and jewelry. Their combined mass and weight can quickly add up. Try a more natural look during your trip. It will save you daily time, as well as saving you daily strain on your arm and back muscles. As an added bonus, the less stylish and flashy you look, the less likely you'll be to be the target of a mugger.

6) Electrical Appliances
Forget about electrical appliances and electronic gadgets. You can live without a hairdryer or electric shaver and save not only the weight of these appliances, but also the additional burden of adaptors to suit overseas outlets and electrical currents.

  • Carry, instead, a lightweight compact plastic razor, or just let your beard grow. You may later decide that it suits you and decide to keep it! If you plan to fly, don't bother packing razor blades or manicure scissors. They are not allowed on planes anymore, anyway, so should be bought locally, if needed, and then properly disposed of before you fly home.

7) Sewing Kit
I always find it practical to carry a little sewing kit for emergency repairs, but that doesn't mean an entire kit full of colored spools of thread. It means a single needle plus one little spool of pale thread and one of dark thread together in a little bag.

8) Clothing
Keep clothing to an absolute minimum. Stick to one basic outfit that's comfortable, casual, and not easily wrinkled. Supplement it with a couple of extra lightweight tops and a couple of pairs of socks and underwear that can be repeatedly washed out in hotel rooms. A single sweater or sweatshirt for cool evenings and a thin plastic rain poncho and you should be set.

Finally, by packing light, you travel light.
This means you put less burden on your musclesBusiness Management Articles, leaving you with more energy and a bigger appetite to truly experience the marvelous places that you are visiting. By packing light and you will be definitely travel happier. 

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