a Minimalist guide to packing

minimalist packing

This guide has been in the works for the past 2 years. After leaving home 2 years ago to travel, I’ve been on day long and week(s) long trips; all the while being on an extended trip away from Canada as an ESL teacher. I’ll be honest when I first left in October 2015 I had 2 large suitcases, not so minimal. During my the year, I quickly learned how to pack for those weekend hitter trips across Europe. Then I made the move to Taiwan and I only packed my large suitcase, yet even that wasn’t too minimal. As well, I was stuck lugging the big suitcase because I had nothing smaller, again not minimal. I have finally learned how to pack for any adventure be it a day, week(s) or long term, so here’s my guide, to packing like a minimalist.

Minimalist Packing Guide

1. Clothes

If you plan your clothes in outfits then I would plan 7 outfits, for any duration over 3 days including weeks or long term. Try to create 4 everyday outfits, 2 nicer outfits and 1 classy nice outfit. With those outfits, try to make your clothes do double duty and work in multiple outfits. Don’t forget, you can always buy something you need if you don’t it. But it sucks having to get rid of clothes when it comes time to pack and you have too much.

2. Toiletries

Pack the travel size versions of your favourite items, as they give you the free stuff in most hotels and some hostels. As well like you’re clothes, you can always buy soap, lotion, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner or deodorant. Unless you’re using some special medicated version of any aforementioned item, you can find it in the store and maybe even try something new.

3. Souvenirs

If you are trying to live a life where less is more, than don’t succumb to souvenir shopping for yourself or your family/friends. It can be hard, especially in the beginning not to buy some trinket for yourself or others, just a representation that you went where you said you did. But ask yourself, is it useful, would you want it and what would you do with? If you’re making excuses or justifications to answer these question, then you don’t need that item. The only souvenirs purchased, should be meaningful ones, or if someone has asked for something specific from that particular place.

4. Suitcase/luggage

The smaller the better, carryon size would be ideal for any duration; but if you need more than that, go for the mid-size which is around 26 inches (67 cm). This size is ideal, because it means you will not over pack as you can really only fit the necessities. In addition to this suitcase, you would bring a carryon bag of your choice size, that does not exceed the limits of your airline. Don’t ever travel with the big suitcases, unless you’re a family of 4.


minimalist packing guide

This is my minimalist packing guide. It’s very general, allowing you freedom and flexibility. There are no hard and fast rules in this minimalist lifestyle thing, whatever makes you happiest. Just remember, less is more.


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