The biggest mistake when traveling is to pack more than what you need. A lot of travelers face this dilemma: they pack more than what they actually need and they end up going home with even more luggage. As they saying goes, it’s always wise to travel light.
Why Travel Light?
Traveling light comes with some advantages:
Security – The lesser number of belongings you take with you, the lesser the risk of losing valuable items. If you only have one carry-on bag when you ride a plane, train, ship or bus, you can see to it that your belongings are taken cared of as they are literally right under your eye. Thus, the lesser risk of getting your things damaged or mishandled and you also lessen the risk of being a victim of theft.
Economy – Traveling light will let you eliminate those extra fees for checked-in baggage. On top of that, you’ll be able to take public transport like a bus or a train.
Flexibility – Less weight means that you’ll have better mobility and more travel options. It will be very easy to switch travel logistics, etc.
Convenience – The biggest advantage of traveling light is convenience. No bulky bags to strain your back, no stress over the security of your belongings and no worries about paying excessive amounts of cash just for your luggage.
The 7 Rules of Traveling Light
Many people say they travel light but they actually don’t. Traveling light can be compared to a strategic process that needs to start from the very beginning of planning.
Rule #1: Plan your activities and figure out what you need for them. Always keep in mind your objective for traveling and only bring what you really need for it.
Rule #2: Prepare what you want to bring on your trip. Carefully arrange them out on your bed and ask yourself: “Do I really need this? Which one is a better option?” As a rule of thumb, always go with the practical alternative. For example, take a neutral pair of shoes with you so you don’t need to bring several pairs to match all of your clothes.
Rule #3: Choose the appropriate bag. You don’t want a bag that’s too small or too big. Having a bag that’s too big will tempt you to pack more than what you actually need. Go with the standard: 22 inches x 14 inches x 9 inches.
Rule #4: Do not put everything in your bag right away. Take time to think it through. Do you really need to bring a hair dryer when you’re going to stay at a hotel that will obviously have one?
Rule #5: Go ahead and prepare what you think you need but only pack half of it.
Rule #6: Never fold your clothes, roll them. Traveling light also means that you know how to pack right and make everything fit. Roll your garments to make sure that every inch of space in your bag is filled.
Rule #7: Don’t over stuff your bag. Take note that you will be on a trip and there is a possibility that you’ll come home with newly bought items.
Traveling light isn’t hard. However, it can be quite a challenge especially if you’re not used to it. The main secret to master the art of traveling light is control. Take control of yourself and just go with the essentials.