Tuesday Tip: Pack like a Minimalist, Feel Free as a Bird When Traveling

Tuesday Tip: Pack like a Minimalist, Feel Free as a Bird When Traveling

By Yehudit Garmaise

 “Bring half as much stuff and twice as much money” is the best packing advice I ever heard, but the words of wisdom are easier said than done.

After taking many trips in which I struggled through airports and streets while lugging many items I saw upon arrival I didn't need, I now try to take only one rolling carry-on bag and a carry-on tote for my wallet, laptop, snacks, and other necessities.

Not only will you enjoy the lighter load of shlepping fewer and smaller bags, but bags that stay with travelers cannot be lost by the airlines.

Additionally, as soon as you land, you can skip waiting around at the baggage carousels and head right outside to ground transportation.

If packing like a minimalist sounds appealing, try some of the following tips:

1. Choose Airbnb, house swaps, or with family or friends instead of hotels, so you have access to a washer and a dryer, and you can wear clothing more than once.

2. As you pack, calculate the bare minimum of every single item you will need each day. Keep it simple.

3. Make a list of everything you need to bring and then check off items as they are packed. Keep this list in your notes app on your phone or in a file on your laptop, so you don’t have to re-write your list every time you pack.

4. Fold and then roll your clothing to make each piece of clothing as small as possible and can neatly align in your suitcase.

5. For books, bring one siddur, one Tehillim, and one book to read for the plane and Shabbos. Books are heavy, and probably you will only have time to read one at best. 

6. Bring the bare minimum of toiletries in 3.4-ounce travel-size containers, the minimum for liquids. Make sure your liquids are completely closed and pack them in a gallon-size Ziplock to prevent leaking. 

7. Bring very small hostess gifts that travel well and can be easily tucked inside a carry-on.

8. Pack one pair of dress shoes in a plastic bag so they don’t bring dirt into your suitcase. Wear the other, more comfortable pair of shoes while traveling. 

9. Bring one empty plastic bag to store dirty clothes in to keep them separate from clean clothing.

10. Use your bathroom scale or a luggage scale to ensure your bag doesn’t weigh more than 50 pounds, as airlines charge up to $200 for overweight bags.

Have fun! What are your best travel tips? Let us know at [email protected]

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