10 Tips for Minimalist Travel

10 Tips for Minimalist Travel

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Traveling can be a fulfilling experience whether it’s a long trip or a short holiday. It might be daunting to consider how to pack light and prepare for your trip, but one thing is for certain, minimalist travel is the key to less stress.

Minimalist travel is the type of travel where you pack only what you need, and nothing more.

Packing with a mantra of minimalism means that your bags will be lighter and you’ll have only the essentials (and maybe some extra space for last-minute shopping). Getting it right can save you a lot of hassle during your journey.

Follow these ten tips to become a minimalist traveler yourself!

1. Roll Up Your Clothes

If you are departing for a few months of travel or on a vacation where you need to take more clothes, then don’t just squash them in and hope for the best.

Rolling clothes up helps to keep them crease-free and in good condition, it can also save a lot of space if done strategically.

If your trip requires you to take clothes for the changing weather, then you can buy compression sacks to compress the clothes you won’t wear yet. 

2. Take Fewer Shoes

Selecting which shoes to take is not as easy as it may sound. You may be tempted to take a few pairs that are stylish and fashionable. Instead, it’s wise to focus on practicality and what you are most likely to wear day-to-day.

Some shoes like lightweight trail running shoes won’t take up much space but boots, on the other hand, will. So carefully consider what is absolutely necessary and comfortable for daily wear. 

3. Take Reusable Bottles

Instead of carrying large bottles of serums and shampoos, it’s much easier to fill up reusable bottles. Hotels usually offer complimentary shower gels with which you can top up your bottles.

If you are traveling with cabin luggage, there will be a liquid allowance, which is also why small reusable bottles are ideal.

4. Carry Soap Solids Instead of Liquids

Nowadays you can buy shampoo in a bar-soap form as well as great skincare soaps. This is environmentally friendly since there are no plastic bottles, plus you can get more use out of each bar while it takes up less space in your luggage. 

5. Pack a Capsule Wardrobe.

Capsule Wardrobe

You might have heard of the term “capsule wardrobe” before. It’s a great method of packing travel clothing for long or short trips. Start with some basics that can be interchanged easily, such as a white t-shirt and a pair of jeans.

Then build on this with other key pieces. The aim is that you should be able to interchange and coordinate each top with any of your bottoms and all your shoes should effortlessly match with each outfit.

  • Jeans and a pair of light, breathable pants are staples.
  • Shirts are vital since they can be worn casually and formally.
  • T-shirts are perfect for layering when it’s cold and for wearing with shorts or pants.
  • Avoid packing multiple jackets that you probably won’t end up wearing. 

6. Don’t Take Too Many Accessories

It might be tempting to take different bags, belts and hats but, do you really need all these accessories? One classic belt, one or two hats and a good bag are what you need, anything else may just take up extra space. 

7. Limit How Many Heavy Items You Pack

Packing heavier prices of clothing such as thick jumpers and jackets will mean that you have less space and weight allowance for other items.

There are lightweight warm jumpers and winter clothing you can find in case you are traveling to a cold destination.

Invest in higher quality materials such as wool and down feather instead of a cheap polyester jumper.

Layering is the key to staying warm without needing to carry too much, especially if you’re trying to figure out what to wear on a hike

8. Don’t Take Too Many Electrical Appliances

Try to limit the number of appliances you pack, consider what their purpose is and how much you need them. Carrying your laptop might be essential but is packing a hairdryer?

Hairstyling appliances can be heavy and end up being useless. Many hotels have a hairdryer and you may find that you don’t have time to style your hair while on vacation or traveling.

9. Invest in a Kindle or a Reading Device

For those that love a good book or to devour magazines, it may be tempting to carry your favourite novel for the journey. Unfortunately, they can be heavy, and they are easily damaged.

Even though reading on a Kindle or on an app is not the same since you can’t flick the pages or smell the paper, it does allow you to download as many books as you want for hours of enjoyment. 

10. Leave Some Space

Instead of packing multiple outfits that won’t be worn try to leave a little extra room for souvenirs or clothing, you might buy. Even if you don’t end up buying anything, it’s much easier to travel with a lighter backpack or suitcase.

Before departing on your big trip consider following these tips to save space and time.

When you’re in the middle of your adventure, hiking up a mountain, you probably won’t miss your hairdryer, but you will be glad that you took your essentials.

That’s why minimalist travel is more convenient and, in my opinion, a lot more enjoyable.

Jeremy Scott Foster
Jeremy Scott Foster
Jeremy Scott Foster is an adventure-junkie, gear expert and travel photographer based in Southern California. Previously nomadic, he’s been to ~50 countries and loves spending time outdoors. You can usually find him on the trail, on the road, jumping from bridges or hustling on his laptop working to produce the best travel and outdoors content today.

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