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Packing Tips

Don't over pack

Traveling light is an approach to travel that once one experiences the benefits of, adopts the practice like it was second nature. The objective is to resist the temptation to packing non-essentials, bringing only what is truly needed, whether it be for 2 weeks or 2 months. Streamline this in a carry-on size bag and liberate yourself.

Virtues

Drawbacks
You will have to wash some of your wardrobe, but if you hand wash your personals every few nights you’ll stay on top of it AND save time and money.

 

What to bring:

 

Clothing (women)

 

Toiletries

 

Medicine – first aid kit

 

Miscellaneous

 

When choosing a bag, look for the following:

 

Avoid

 

Back packs
Opt for the internal-frame backpacks, which are more streamlined, since the frame is constructed within the bag these are usually fully padded, with very wide waist belts to take most of the weight of the backpack off the shoulder straps, making it more comfortable for long hauls. Unfortunately not all internal-frame pack packs are sizes to fit as a carry-on. Often they are designed with side pockets and padded waist belts that protrude from the body and tend to get in the way or snagged on something.

Avoid the packs with an external frame. These are bulky, awkward and don’t lend themselves well to air travel. They are better suited for major hiking when additional items such as sleeping bags and tents are lashed onto the frame.

 

Book packs

Some of these can be ideal, they are very comfortable to carry, they are affordable and fit nicely under seats on airplanes. Their shoulder straps are normally padded and many models also have padded backs for added comfort. Some even have waist straps, to help distribute the weight.

 

Travel packs (dual purpose)

These are my personal preference, since they are versatile, both for look and function. Usually are soft sided, made of Cordura nylon, like backpacks and book packs. Equipped with shoulder straps and waist belt that tuck away. Shoulder straps clip into D rings when wanting to wear as a backpack and/or over the shoulder bag, or tuck away the straps and waist belt and use as a large briefcase.

Rolling uprights
Beneficial for those with a bad back or who have trouble lifting and caryring heavy items. However, beyond the smooth level corridors and hallways of the airport these forms of luggage become troublesome and problematic. They are difficult to haul up and down flights of stairs (and in Europe you will encounter many).

 

Testimonials

"Thank you for making the trip special and so much fun! Especially loved the markets, Sarlat, Domme, Arles and La Canourgue. We were pleased with the number and quality of the meals and particularly enjoyed the picnic lunches and appreciate Dan's efforts in getting these together. Hope to see you on another trip."

G. Bright, Calgary, Alberta