In the few years we have been traveling I have really parred down my international travel packing. It has taken a few trips but I have it fine tuned. I now only pack in a carry on for international trips or any trips that we fly. This being said we do laundry in the place we are staying, a laundry mat, drop off service or sink. Admittedly, I am not a light packer for trips around the Southeast. For some reason I always tend to pack more.
This post includes exactly what I packed for our recent international vacation to Greece. But the rough guide is about always the same. Also preference varies. I took a rolling carry on size suitcase around Italy but after dragging my suitcase through the cobblestone streets, uneven side walks etc, I decided to go with a backpack for Greece. I loved it. It was the prefect choice for me.
Let’s talk packing gear first. I used the Tortuga Setout Divide Backpack. It is the smaller size but expandable. To me the more room you have the more you will over fill. I did order the Setout just to compare sizes on my body frame and preferred the smaller Setout Divide. I am 5’9″ so if you are smaller framed you definitely want the smaller size.
I prefer to use a crossbody bag that zips for my personal item, according to airlines, and day bag while sightseeing. Most museums make you check backpacks usually for a fee (and a line). I feel a crossbody bag can pass off as just a purse due to it’s size and if I use the shoulder strap while in the museum most let it pass. I took a diaper bag to Italy but I wish it had a shoulder strap as well as a crossbody strap. To Greece I packed a smaller purse since it had to pass stricter Ryanair rules while traveling within Greece. Check back next week for what I put in my personal item.
Packing cubes. A must!!! I roll my clothes then pack in a packing cube. Any will do. I have the Travelwise set and Amazon Basic set. I prefer to use 2-4 of the small/medium sizes rather than the large sizes.
I pack my toiletries in the Truffle small clarity pouch. I love that it is reusable, TSA approved and this new design holds more than the older one. I place my shampoo and conditioner in the GoToob+. I have different sizes depending on use and length of trip. I obviously use the smallest one possible. These I place in my personal item for easy access during the flight and security.
- 4 Travel Undies: ExOfficio easy wash and dried.
- 2 bras (one to wear, one to wash). I love this convertible sports bra. Great for lots of walking, sight seeing but also transitions under different types of clothing so your straps do not show.
- 4 pairs of socks. I like the toe socks so I don’t get blisters between my toes with all the walking.
- 1-2 maxi dresses. I love maxi dresses for travel. They are comfy, you can dress them up or down, they are long enough for religious sites. I usually wear these while flying or to a nice dinner out. Athleta is one of my favorite places to grab maxi dresses.
- 1 pair of pjs. I grabbed a soft bamboo pair from Amazon. Easily washable.
- 4-5 shirts. All in the same color scheme such as blue, black, grey etc. My favorites are v neck, long, curved hem to cover your assets. Old Navy, Gap , Madewell, and Academy are my usual go tos.
- 4 bottoms. Usually I always go with capri or pant length so that religious sites and standing out wont be a problem. This time I did decide to take one skort and one short since we would be spending a majority of the time on islands.
- 1 Swimsuit. You NEVER know when your hotel will have an indoor pool etc.
- 1 light jacket/rain jacket or heavier jacket depending on weather. I recently bought a Patagonia packable one and really like it.
- 2 pairs of shoes. My go tos. Birkenstocks, I have this extra strappy pair to dress up and I like my shoes feeling secure when doing so much walking. All Birds, Wool Runners. I have tried the Tree Runners but the Wool just fit me better. I do wear a Men’s because #largefeet. Also sometimes I do better without socks when wearing these.
Check back next Tuesday for what I pack in my personal item/daybag.
Don’t forget there are so many advantages to packing light. Easier to maneuver around. Less stress and literally less stuff weighing you down.
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