Travelling Light

by Anna Blanch on June 2, 2012

I have plans to pack and travel as light as possible on the overland to Oz trip. But, this nomadic summer is also an opportunity to travel very light. I left australia with very little luggage. One small cabin bag sized suitcase weighing 12kgs and a laptop bag/large handbag as in the photo above. I’m now packing for the next stage of the journey, from Scotland to the US.

Admittedly, I did have a small bag of workout/leisure clothes that I had left here in the UK that have supplemented what I brought with me from Australia, but none of that will be making the journey to the US with me.

Do you try and travel light? are you a folder? a roller? a bundler?

NPR has this helpful article, How to Pack everything you own if you’d like some tips the bundling technique in  particular (I have to admit that it was new to me.

I wanted to make sure I could pack and travel as light as possible this summer — I changed my paradigm from one of always be prepared, to one of layers and an awareness of the availability of things that I *might* need leaving behind the probable for the essential. I also wanted to make sure that whatever luggage I packed it would be able to fit into the small plane which some of my travels will involve…I didn’t want there to be a struggle getting my bags inside.

Qantas has a cabin baggage policy of one bag + a hand bag. Unfortunately, Virgin Atlantic has the policy of one cabin bag full stop and it needs to fit underneath the seat in front. It’s a pretty strict policy as far as international travel goes. But i like not to fall foul of these things — It causes me more stress than it is worth.

And so, given that the summer in the US will be a little different to my last month — there’ll still be writing, but no conferences or teaching – I decided to leave behind my red laptop/handbag and take the red and black backpack I had left here in the UK along with my small cabin-bag sized suitcase which I will pack well and check in.

One of the ways in which working with effectively the same wardrobe is working out — given that I’ve got limited options for over 4 months — is by incorporating some of the #project333 principles: limiting the number of items in total, making sure that there are multiple ways to wear every piece, loving each of the pieces, and layering.

Amazingly, thought I’ve been in Scotland three weeks and there are still pieces of clothing I haven’t worn while I’ve been here. And I don’t have an excuse relating to the weather – it has been cold and hot and everything in between.

do you strive to pack light? do you have a list or template to share? or any advice for packing light?


Listening. Observing. Participating. Writing. Photographing. Reflecting.

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Traveller. Scholar. Photographer. Writer. Dreamer. Teacher. Anna Blanch is founder of Goannatree, and a PhD candidate in the Institute of Theology, Imagination, and the Arts at St Mary’s College, University of St Andrews, Scotland. Overland to Oz is a crazy adventure marked with photos and word and inspired by the incredible women in Anna’s family, especially her late grandmother, whom she knew as Nan-Nan.

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