Whenever we travel, I like to travel light. I also like to plan on having some space in my suitcase so that I can pick up a few things to give as gifts and to remember my trip. I almost always pick up flat items, maybe a table cloth, table runner, lace, etc… that does not take up much room. Maybe a hat or two that can be packed easily.
In fact, I like to take a maximum of about a week’s worth of clothes no matter how long the trip. I like to keep my suitcase down to less than 30 pounds; it is a backpack suitcase and I want to be able to hop on or off a train or the metro without an issue.
A pair of pants or shorts don’t take up too much space in my suitcase, but 7 days worth of underwear take up much more space than an extra shirt or an extra pair of pants. I don’t mind wearing the same pair of pants or shorts for a few days, but I don’t like to wear underwear for multiple days.
Generally, if we are staying in hotel rooms, I would bring my light weight, quick drying, underwear and wash them in my room. On our next trip, my wife and I will spend a week in London followed by a 2 week photo safari in Africa. The first week is not really an issue since we have access to a sink every night in our hotel room. On the safari, we are not sure of our accomodations yet, but we could be staying in tents and moving every day or two. It is not like I can leave wet underwear hanging in the tent or even in our room while we are on safari since we will be at a different camp the next day. With fast drying polyester based underwear, they be dry overnight, but not cotton briefs. Yes, TMI, but you have to think about those things when you travel.
The other problem is that we will spend summer days in London and winter days in Africa. Different types of clothes for the very different climates.
I could ship my Africa wardrobe to London and carry the clothes that I want to wear in London in my suitcase. Before we leave, I could ship my London clothes home and carry my Africa wardrobe for the rest of the trip. That is an extra expense but it would be a solution. As noted above, the other option will be doing laundry every night or two. I don’t want to do laundry every couple days for the whole 3 weeks. I have another idea in mind that will give me the space in my suitcase for gifts and cut down on laundry.
I remember that mom always said to wear clean underwear just in case I get into an accident; but I have seen enough of those TV shows where they just cut off your clothes to get to your injuries. So, I figured that I would set aside old and almost worn out underwear throughout the year and take them on my trip. Rather than washing them in the evening, I can just toss them out along the way. So, instead of bringing 7 sets of underwear, I will bring 14 sets of underwear and by the end of the first week, I will have room in my suitcase for gifts.
Starting on week two of the trip, all of the worn out underwear will be in the trash. The 7 sets that I go to Africa with will be the ones that are easy to wash and that are quick trying. I can easily wash them out each night and they should be dry by the morning.
What do you think of this plan?
Turning Dreams into Memories,
One Vacation at a Time.
As you might guess, this document is a compilation of information from our travels as well as from other travelers. I hope it has been of value to you. Check out the important links below.
- Packing Checklist
- Parent Authorization Letter For Unaccompanied Minors
- Medical Treatment Authorization Letter
- Travel With Minors-Permission Letter
Don’t hesitate to email us when you return from your trip with any suggestions that will make this document better for you and your fellow travelers!