When you’re about to travel- especially if your destination is not in your home country- organising everything can be quite stressing.
Documents, clothes, personal goodies, food, travel guides… The list can be infinite and, as sometimes happened to me, it’s pretty easy to forget important things and take with you some other hat were not really that essential.
So for solving this problem, read this list with 11 tips to pack the perfect backpack for a long term trip.
1. The backpack, your absolute must-have:
It is extremely convenient not just for its light weight, but for its adaptability. If you carry few things, it will be thinner and the more stuff you pack, the more its size will grow. Unlike a suitcase, that is always the same size.
2. Always choose the most proper backpack format:
Even if your trip is far, far away, you won’t need the same space for a winter destination that for a summer one. Try to focus first on the sort of destination and then the size, let’s say.
3. Make a (realistic) list:
Don’t do it the day before, try to do it calmly and relaxed. Focus on the things that are 100% irreplaceable, like your phone, laptop, personal documents... Think that in case you leave specific things at home, like clothes or hygiene stuff, you can always head to some local market and buy what you need. A hurrah for supporting local economy!
4. Pack creating a puzzle:
This is primordial for making the most out of the space available. Some handy tricks? Fold your clothes as they were “tubes”, put your shoes in individual bags and keep your heaviest goodies in the centre of your backpack, so the weight is better distributed.
5. Bags for dividing your belongings in categories:
You can make some individual fabric bags for creating compartiments when packing, so when the moment comes, you will find what you need instantly. Put labels on them for easier identification. This is also great for not having a chaotic mess in your backpack during the trip.
6. Clothes always in sets:
Grabbing random pieces of clothes will make it harder for you to match them on the way. That’s why I recommend creating sets beforehand and trying to pack a simple style, so they will match anyway. Take with you clothes for one week, no matter how long you’ll be gone, that will be enough.
7. Protect the most fragile stuff:
Such as souvenirs, laptops, tablets, chargers or any electronic device. The best way to do it is to keep them between several pieces of clothes so, if they hit or crash, they’ll be well covered with soft fabric “walls”. And in case something is especially fragile, take some bubble wrap with you.
8. Pills containers are the absolute best:
The smallest ones to keep your bobby pins or jewelry; and the biggest ones to put in there tampons, pads and plastic bags. Yes, you should bring quite some bags. They always save your day somehow.
9. Place the liquids separately:
Keep them away from clothes and electronics; the further, the better. The best trick is to cover the holes of the bottles with some tape or remove the caps and wrap a piece of plastic paper around the hole. Then, close them again and you will be safe.
10. Take advantage of your shoes & belts:
You’re missing quite a lot of space if you don’t fill the holes of the shoes with the smaller stuff. And when it comes to belts, don’t roll them, place them around the perimetre of your backpack.
11. Get a tiny traveler’s signs book:
I’ve discovered their existence just a while ago, but they come in very handy if you are heading to a country which language is unknown for you. You can look for the sign you need if you don’t know the word and everybody will understand you perfectly.
If you want a very detailed article about packing for different lenghts of trips, go visit "How to pack for a backpacking trip". Jenn gives yous you here the most complete advice on how to prepare your backpack in a strategic and practical way.
It’s true that being able to narrow down what you pack, and doing it in the right way is not always easy. If you’ll be out for a long period of time, this tasks should be done with time and practicality. After that, just enjoy your trip and forget about everything else. That’s the way to go when all you carry on your shoulder is your backpack!
Source main picture: Alice Donovan