Traveling like a minimalist
If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you probably know by now that I’m on a 6 week long vacation! It kicked off with 3 days in Toronto and since then I’ve been staying in Hawaii, more specifically in Kona on Big Island.
One of my guilty pleasures in life is to lay out all my luggage on the bed and figure out what I’m packing! There’s something so satisfying about filling little bottles of soap, neatly folding my clothes and playing tetris with my belongings until everything fits just right.#joyisinthelittlethings People always look at me mesmerized at how small my carry-on is. Traveling light also means that you won’t need to pay extra to check your luggage and then wait to pick it up at your destination. So just for you, I’ve listed 5 of my favorite tips on how to pack like a minimalist!
1. Consider your destination, the season/weather and trip duration
First things first, let’s be real. You’re going to be packing quite differently if you’re travelling to Iceland than, say, Hawaii! Take some time to research the weather and expected temperatures for the duration of your stay. San Francisco might sound warm and sunny, but I learned pretty quickly (from experience…oops) that layers were key! Don’t make the same mistake I did, do your research! The length of your trip can also drastically affect how you pack. If you’re leaving for a month the odds are you will get access to laundry along the way, so pack accordingly. You don’t need 30 different outfits, you realistically need maybe 5-7 pieces that you can rotate and clean along the way.
2. Choose a color scheme and live for the basics
This is something I preach about even for the day to day life at home. My wardrobe is quite simple, I keep it neutral and make sure that every piece I own brings me joy. Even when I owned a bigger wardrobe, I’d always find myself reaching for the same pieces over and over because I knew they made me look good and I felt comfortable in them. Over the past 4 years, I’ve learned to downsize my wardrobe by over half and I still find that I could cut down even more. Basics have become my best friend, especially while traveling! They are easy to style, match with everything and you can dress them up or down depending on the situation. My rule of thumb is to choose one color scheme and stick to it. I live for neutrals like white, grey, black, linen, denim and to spice it up once in a while I like to add a bit of green in the warmer seasons and burgundy in colder weather. If neutral is not your style, try to keep it down to 3 colors that compliment each other well. The same applies to your footwear and accessories!
3. Stick to what you’ve got and get creative.
I’m not sure if this has ever happened to you, but when I travel I always have this idea that I’ll become a completely different human being while I’m away. I feel like I need new clothes, new styles, new everything if I could really! But the truth is if I’ve lived without it in my day to day life why, would I need it while traveling? I know it’s exciting and you want to treat yourself, so if you do splurge just make sure it’s something you truly need and will find use for after the trip.
With that in mind, try and get creative with what you’ve already got in your wardrobe! Spice up a simple black dress with a cute scarf, your simple lounge pants can definitely double as pj’s and your bikini is basically another bra. This means that you can pack less clothes and still have plenty of different outfits for your trip.
4. Rent it!
This might sound a bit weird at first but hear me out. You might need to get something specific for this one trip, but what will you do with it after? It will likely collect dust and more importantly take out a big chunk of your budget. For my trip to Hawaii I needed a sturdy backpack, something practical for traveling and hikes. Since this type of bag can get quite expensive and isn’t something I find myself needing very often, I thought to myself : ‘‘How amazing would it be to just rent or borrow what I need instead?” Then while organizing my trip I discovered an amazing Montreal based business called Location Backpack. They rent backpacks, GoPro’s and hiking equipment by the week! So much cheaper than buying a new one and it also gives you the chance to try it out before making the big jump into purchasing your own. If you’re looking for something more specific, you could also consider shouting out to your friends on social media and ask if they could lend you some stuff! I’m sure you’ll find a way to repay the favor, sharing is caring.
Make a list and stick to it!
I love making lists, they make me feel organized and it’s so satisfying when I get to cross something off. Making a detailed list will help you visualize what to bring, what to borrow and what to buy, giving you an overview of all the items you need to gather. And because I enjoy them so much, I created a printable packing list just for you to help with your own packing!
Get it in the Freebie’s section right HERE!
Here’s a quick list of what I’m bringing!
4 basic tank tops
1 long sleeve shirt
1 pair of jeans
1 beach dress
1 long skirt
1 lounge pants
Do you have any other tips and tricks you would like to share? Where will you be traveling to in the near future? Let us know in the comments.