How to Pack to More Easily Be on the Move

Before we even get started, show of hands- who hates packing? It took me a long time before I could happily muster through packing for a trip. Is this how you pack?

Oh hey there clothing mountain
      Oh hey there clothing mountain

Yep, that’s how I used to pack too. I’d pull random clothes out of my closet then dump my basket of clean clothes on top and put the clothes back into the closet that didn’t scream my name. So my luggage would look like some iteration of this disaster. With little rhyme or reason for what I packed, beyond ‘ooh I love that top’ or ‘yay, I’ll bring it just in case’. It took list making, practice, and seeing the huge impact efficient packing had on my stress levels before, during, and after travel to help me change my ways. Now I’ll never travel with a roller suitcase again, LIGHT WEIGHT PACKING FOR LIFE!!

How could you ever travel with just a backpack?

Let me tell you two different stories. Once upon a time my mom and I were traveling for work and had to stay over for a two-night convention in Maryland in early spring. We were driving with two other women in a sedan. And me having been enlightened by light-weight packing, suggested that she and I share a little Jansport backpack for the weekend. She was apprehensive, but I bullied her into it. Hey, I knew it was going to be me stuffed in the backseat with the luggage when we loaded the convention swag into the trunk for the drive back. What I didn’t expect was a massive snow storm. She was not thrilled at the idea of having to stay another night without clean clothes and underwear. This was a business convention, so while I’m all about handwashing and re-wearing, I understood her point. We ended up leaving pre-dawn to beat the storm home, but she’ll still gives me crap for it.

The other story is about my lovely sister: I’ve convinced her! She’s had been the epitome of ‘I’ll pack it just in case’. I wish I had a picture of her luggage for the vacation we took with her best friend. Holy crap what those two packed! Just their toiletries alone **shudder** Anyways, I think I’ve made her a believer. She had to travel a ton this summer and I encouraged her to give it a try. She planned her outfits, took only what she needed, and rolled everything to optimize space. Yay! We just have to get her packing cubes and she’ll lose the luggage for good I think.

So maybe you’ll try light weight packing and like my Mom and say screw that. But maybe you’ll be like my sister and LOVE it (ok I may be putting words into her mouth) TOLERATE it and make traveling with just a backpack your new travel style.

This video shows what I packed for a 6 night, 7 day trip, I didn’t need anything more. Can you believe it!? My personal style goes pretty easily from day to night. I’m huge on only owning pieces that are versatile. So I was able to enjoy and relax during the day in each of those outfits and then dress them up with jewelry and wedges at night. Missing from this picture is the outfit I flew in, making it 7 outfits in total. Eight if you use the swim cover up as a top tucked into the black skirt.

Those little orange bags, those are called packing cubes. They make all the difference. Rather than digging through all of your things to find the one item, you pull out the cube you know it’s in, unzip, remove that item, everything else stays in places, rezip, and put it back into your bag. So easy!

Ok Britt, maybe I could do it for a short trip. But there is no way I could pack like that for a longer trip!

Ok, but I bet you could. This is what I looked like landing in JFK after my two months in Argentina. The only thing different about my packing was an additional medium sized packing cube and that black tote on my arm. 20150331_104210

Aaaand four bottles of wine and artwork from a friend from Buenos Aires. But pretty much the exact same stuff inside that backpack.

 What do you think? Are you a convert too? Team Backpack or Team Luggage? Any super packing tips of your own you’d like to share with us? Leave a comment below!
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