Yesterday night, I returned home from a 16 day trip to Europe with my best friends. All each of us packed for the trip was a stuffed full traveling backpack and a cross-body purse. Since a lot of people have trouble planning what to pack for such a long time in such a small space, I thought sharing what I packed would be beneficial. Below is what I was able to fit into my bag and a breakdown of the clothes I brought.
The backpack I chose was the Osprey Porter 46 which I got on sale at REI Garage and it worked perfectly for the trip. Here it is before it was filled with clothes.
Here is what I was able to fit into the bag.
I was able to fit in a lot more items than I thought I would be able to and I still had a little space leftover. This is what I packed:
- 10 Shirts
- 1 pair of leggings
- 3 shorts (this was during the summer)
- 2 jeans (we spent 5 days in Iceland and I wore one pair on the plane)
- 1 swim suit
- Toiletries and makeup (in the 3 small bags)
- Shampoo, conditioner, body wash, shaving cream, razor and lotion (all mini sizes)
- Tooth brush, tooth paste, mouthwash, floss, Q-tips, makeup remover, contact case and solution, glasses, deodorant, sunscreen (all mini sizes)
- Liquid foundation, powder foundation, blush, mascara and face sunscreen
- Dry shampoo (I brought two, one big and one small, the big one that’s pictured above wasn’t allowed through security at one of the airports)
- 1 light sweater
- 1 pair of Nike tennis shoes (I wore these on the plane)
- 1 pair of Toms for going out
- 1 pair of flip flops
- 1 rain jacket
- 1 beanie and 1 hat
- Dirty clothes bag
In hind sight, I would say that I did a pretty good job packing only the necessary itmes. I only went out to the bars/clubs one night so I could have done without the Toms but they can come in handy if you want an option that’s not flip flops or tennis shoes. I wore a few of my shirts twice and obviously wore jeans/shorts more than once too but if you don’t want to do that, you can always do laundry on your trip. A few of my friends that I went with did laundry and it didn’t take up too much time during the trip. Bringing neutral colors also helps to mix and match outfits. I contemplated bringing a dress but knew that would mean another pair of shoes and I’d probably only wear it once so I opted not to.
I didn’t bring a hair dryer or flat iron since it was during summer and my hair dries pretty fast; however, my friend did bring her flat iron and I used it twice. Usually you can pay for a hair dryer at the hostel or some have them complementary. I also didn’t bring a towel and rented one at the front desk from each hostel once we arrived. They ranged from €2 to €10.
One thing to remember when you pack is to make sure your backpack isn’t TOO full. You’ll want to bring back souvenirs for yourself and friends and need a place to pack them. It also seems like you can never fit everything back in the same way once you’ve removed stuff. I rolled my clothes to make the most of my space in my bag and with all my dirty (non-rolled) clothes that I came back with, it was a lot tricky to get it all in.
I hope this post helps you pack for your trip! Comment below if you have any other tips on light packing. 🙂
Laura – The Waffle Lover