Traveling (not so) Light

Rolling my clothes. Practical outfits that i know i’ll wear! Only 1 pairs of shoes. Bringing less scarves than days you’re going for.
Ok, so I fail miserably at all of these. Especially the scarves part.
Hi, my name is Renee. and I’m a chronic over-packer.

This might be my favorite picture of all time. 
25 euros to pay for a checked bag? Or somehow transform my 16kg to a 10kg bag.
….enter, layeringoneverythingiowned. 
My bag weighed 6kg when we went through security. 25 euros, still in my pocket. Win.

But as a seasoned traveler (and consequently, seasoned over-packer), these are the things i absolutely positively cannot leave for a trip without.

– i comfortable travel clothes. my outfit of choice is usually a dress and tights… so i’m ready to go right away but i’m comfortable the whole flight/drive!

– iPod + cord + headphones(and adapter if necessary!!!). there is nothing worse than a layover filled with silence. and if i’m organized ahead of time, a good playlist ready to go.

– my camera + battery charger. i take back the layover comment – because there is nothing worse than a trip with no PICTURES! (at least for me).

– a pair of jeans/dresses that go from day to night. you never know how long you’ll be out and about… so i usually plan on wearing the same outfit to breakfast that i’ll wear home at 2am.

– a couple of cardigans. usually totally different colors and styles. they are one of the best ways to change up something you wore earlier in the trip or to make a day to night switch with a new addition or subtraction from your outfit.

– shoes i’ll actually walk in. i don’t think i’ve ever brought high heels on a trip unless they were for 1 specific function. a pair of flips, boots, and flats usually do the trick.

– purse essentials: chap stick, gum, body spray, and advil. because dry lips, stale breath, smelling like a train and headaches happen.

– my travel coffee cup. you can get coffee in it, or wash it out to put in water or anything else wherever you are. voila!

– an emergency $20…. because you never know 🙂

– i try my hardest to put a limit to my coats/scarves for a cold weather trip, and a limit to my bathing suits/cover ups on a warm trip. these are areas i almost always significantly overpack on.

– Sudoku, a magazine, a book, my bible, and plain paper or a journal. I understand it’s only a flight, not a 6 month exile, but it’s just how i roll. Even if it’s a short plane ride, i feel prepared knowing i have all these modes of entertainment. But let’s be honest – the person next to me is probably talking my ear off.

– a purse that holds the entire world in it. think Mary Poppins. oh! and must have a zip top that zips TOWARDS the front. nobody is stealing from me that easily!

– my student ID. say whatever you want, but i’m cheap, i still look the same and it doesn’t have a date on it 🙂

– a separate bag for any kind of liquids. it is only a matter of time before your luck runs out and you have a major shampoo exposion, or all your expensive perfume trickles over all of your clothes, leaving an oil residue. just do the right thing, and get a toiletries bag.

I’d love to think that i’m perfectly practical, and strategic, but i’m not. The tips above are essentials. My goal for this trip is to be semi practical, so i can fit as much as i possibly can on my trip back. I’m telling myself that packing light will pay off in 10 days when i’m trying to fit an entire H&M into one suitcase… that’s under 50lbs. I’ve backpacked and winged it and managed to survive….

Wish me luck and practicality on this packing adventure!