Our weekend getaways have taken on a new level as we visited our first European city this weekend, Amsterdam.
Why Choose the Backpack Travel Life?
In our numerous short trips, we have tried it all, one big bag, small roller bags, many different small bags, but ultimately investing in one proper backpack has allowed us to travel with much more ease and simplified our trips greatly.
Here are a few more reasons why you should choose the backpack life:
- If you choose the right one (see below what is the right one), it can fit in the airplane cabin hold – This means no baggage check-in and no waiting for your bags after the flight, you are that person just walking off the plane and on to your holiday.
- Easy to jump on and off public transport in any city – No roller bags getting stuck in the gap at the tube and you
- No loud roller bag noises following you down the street, waking up half the
neighbourhood, when you book into your Air BnB late on a Friday night – This also means less unwanted attention that being tourist inevitably attracts and could cause trouble on your trip.
- You will never overpack – Because you literally don’t have
the space(which also means way less washing when you get back home).
- Having to book out of your accommodation by
lunch time, and take your bags with you, is no problem – No needingto find somewhere to store your suitcase, and maybe even pay to do it,because it’s on your back!
How do you Pack your Backpack for a Weekend Away?
Weekends to new cities are not relaxing weekends and means a lot of exploring. We love nothing more than discovering new cities and places, and we hate being held back by our luggage, so we’ve
Here’s some tips on what and how to pack your backpack (yes, this might be the perfect travel checklist):
- Clothes: You really only need maximum the following: 2 pairs of pants (one that you wear
travellingthere on the Friday), 2 shirts (one that you wear travelling thereonthe Friday), a pair of underwear for each day (girls one bra really is enough), 2 pairs of socks, 1 jacket (that you wear when travelling) and one extra jersey (which you can also wear or carry when travelling).
- Shoes: Look at the weather before packing. If it’s going to be cold and rainy, takeleather boots to keep your toes warm and dry. If it’s going to be dry andyou’re going to do lots of walking, take comfy sneakers. If you’re going to a very warm beachy destination, take good quality leather sandals that tie around your whole foot. You really don’t need more than one pair of shoes, no one islooking at your shoes and comfort really is key for exploring.
- Umbrella/SunHat: Once again check the weather before your trip and make sure you haveyour umbrella or sun hat packed depending on your destination. Get a sun hatthat can fold up and doesn’t mind being squashed. Get a proper umbrella with ahook handle. This helps with carrying and if it’s wet to hang somewhere. Alsogetting a proper one saves you money and the first breeze won’t destroy yourumbrella.
- Toiletries: If you’re flying you need to have all your toiletries fit in that
see throughplastic zip bag with only100ml of each item. Best to get in the habit of doingthis for every trip, whether you’re flying or not. See my eco-friendly travel tips post for your toiletry needs.
- Accessories: Let’s face it girls, we want to look good, especially for that perfect Instagram moment, and accessories can make a photo. I like choosing 2 jewelleryitems that are easy to add to a little string bag, won’t bend in your bag, andcan go with any outfit.
- Chargers & Adapters: Chargers are super important, and even more so the correct adapter for the country you are visiting. If you can, get one of those multiplugs where you can plug all your chargers into one socket, you never know how many will be available at your accommodation. We’ve been looking at this one from Amazon.
- Kindle/Kobo vs Print Book: Reading is our go-to way to kill travel time, but I’ll always opt for my eReader over a print book when
travelling. It’s lighter, youcan read in any light (if you can’t sleep on the plane you have your eReaderlight to still read by) and if you finish one book you have another one rightthere with you. Embrace technology.
- Headphones: Another essential for
travelling, especially train journeys and for when you want to catch up on your sleep before or after a trip. Wireless ones that are noisecancelling are a bonus if you have those.
- Powerbank: Probably one of the most important items to pack. Discovering a new city meansusing Google Maps a lot and if you’re roaming or looking for WIFI that willdrain your battery. A good quality
powerbankwith at least 2 charging ports, and maybe even a torch, is a must. Amazon has a wide variety of really nice ones.
- WaterBottle: Your backpack will most likely have a water bottle holder space.
Ifyoudon’t want to contribute to the single useplastic epidemic we are facing, and just want to save some money as well by not buying water, then a waterbottlewill be a great addition to your backpack. Nothing ruins your holidaylike dehydration.
- Reusable Coffee Cup: This is something the
eco warriorin me is very passionate about and just because you’re on holiday doesn’t mean you can forget abouthelpingkeep the planet clean. Also, travel mugs are great for drinking while exploring and you can get a discount on your warm drinks at most coffee shops.
- Reusable Straws: This one really is just because you care about the environment and you want to do the right thing. In the end, 2 metal straws take up so little space in your backpack (you can literally slot it into the pen holders) that it’s a
- Medicine: You’re
travellingto a strange city (maybe where they even speak a language you don’t understand), eating strange food and getting little sleep. It’s very likely that your immune system could take a knock. Pack a small bag with the essentials: Headache tablets, nausea tablets, flu medicine (especially the one you can drink as a hot drink), plasters, multi-purpose ointment for cuts and stings and cotton wool.
- A Smaller Backpack for those Non-Backpack Days: For those days you can leave
you backpackat your accommodation you still need something to put all your daily exploring essentials in. A small leather backpack that can roll up into a ball is a great choice.
What Backpack to Take
Ok so let’s be
It’s worth investing in a good backpack when choosing to travel the backpack way. You want your backpack to last you more than one trip, but you also want it to be comfy and support your back, even after a whole day of walking.
Here are two options to go for:
North Face has a wide range of backpacks to choose from in a wide variety of sizes and even
What’s great about these bags is that it has a number of pockets for all those small things, including easy access to your passport and wallet, and has a
Airplane Cabin Size Certified Backpack
These backpacks are about just as big as a small roller bag and can expand even further. The nice thing about these bags
If you are two people