Ideal for those looking for a footloose and fancy-free jaunt.

After the year we’ve all had, and the extra burden it has left on our collective shoulders, what we’d give for a holiday. A quick jaunt to the continent, free from stress, baggage and fuss, might be just the tonic right about now.

If only it were that easy; restrictions mean holidays require several extra stages of planning to get them off the ground, if they’re to fly at all. That said, if you are intent on getting away for a few days, then travelling light, footloose and fancy-free is surely the way to go. Shedding that baggage, both physically and metaphorically, sounds so liberating after 2020’s relentless march of doom and gloom.

If you’re keen to come along and join us for the ride, then please, pack light. Here are some tips on doing just that; these 6 of the best ways to travel light on your next trip.

PACK INTERCHANGEABLE CLOTHING

Just because you’re trying to travel light shouldn’t mean you have to sacrifice your own personal style in favour of functional items (well not too much, anyway). Rather than packing a new outfit for each day you’re travelling, consider packing interchangeable clothing that you can mix and match throughout your travels. If you’re travelling for a week, you should be able to get away with three days worth of interchangeable outfits, freeing up much more space for all of your other necessities.

Fortunately, there’s always room for accessories. Wrap items such as bangles and necklaces within your clothing to instantly jazz up any outfit for the evening without taking up any extra space in your luggage. 

FIND A SECURE STORAGE SPACE FOR YOUR LUGGAGE

If you’re planning on packing a little more because you’ll be moving from location to location, you may want to consider a different option. Rather than carrying your suitcase with you wherever you go, you could choose a secure storage space for your luggage at each new place, freeing you up to move with abandon throughout your sightseeing tours of individual cities. 

Travelling light in this way needn’t cost you a fortune, with European capital cities in particular often providing solutions for those looking to take a load off for a while, so they can see the city without baggage. If you’re in Rome, for instance, the service Radical Storage allows you to leave unused and unwanted left luggage in Rome for as little as five euros a day! This means you won’t have to compromise as much when choosing what to pack as you won’t be carrying it around with you all day.

UTILISE THE SPACE IN YOUR SUITCASE

Large and bulky items such as shoes can take up a lot of space in your suitcase, leaving you with very little wiggle room for other essential items. While you should always try and compromise when it comes to how many pairs of shoes to pack (some of us simply can’t do without a day and evening pair, at the very least!), you can utilise the space they take up, too.

Use the insides of your shoes to store smaller items like jewellery boxes, underwear, socks, and even chargers for your electrical devices. Not only does it help save on space elsewhere in your suitcase, but it will also help your shoes keep their shape while you’re travelling. 

IDEAL tip: after stuffing your shoes, put them inside a shower cap to prevent them from marking your clothes.

CHOOSE LIGHTER CLOTHING WHEREVER POSSIBLE

If you’re travelling somewhere with a warm climate, packing bikinis, shorts, and tank tops won’t take up much space. However, if you’ll need to pack larger items of clothing, try and opt for lighter materials that can be packed in tighter and won’t weigh the bag down too much.

Should colder climes demand thicker items and more layers, you may want to avoid packing knitted articles of clothing, as these can be very heavy and take up a lot of space. If you need at least one warmer item of clothing such as a coat, consider wearing it on your travels rather than packing it. And remember; thermals are lightweight and insulating!

BRING TRAVEL SIZE ITEMS ONLY

While it might be a bit fiddly, transferring your toiletries to travel-sized bottles can save loads of space in your suitcase. You may also consider downsizing items such as your first aid bag to only the essentials, and you could buy a travel sized hair iron to help save space and reduce the weight of your bag, too.

6 MORE TIPS FOR THE PRICE OF ONE

Other packing light tips:

  • Roll your clothing before packing. This not only stops creases, but will also utilise the space in your suitcase to its full potential, filling nooks, crannies and crevices.
  • Wear your sun hat or beanie rather than packing it. Squeezing it into a suitcase can cause it to lose its shape.
  • Pack one adapter plug and bring cables rather than multiple chargers with large plugs. Simply interchange which device you need to charge.
  • Make your items more compact by packing them into a plastic bag and then removing the air. This will make the size of your luggage much smaller and allow you to pack more.
  • Keep earrings and other delicate jewellery in your purse or wallet. That way you can avoid them falling out of your suitcase or being caught up on clothing.
  • Consider buying some of the things you’ll need when you arrive. Sunscreen, for example, can be purchased upon arrival and used while you’re there. Choose a smaller sized bottle to prevent the chance of waste.

As you can see, there are many ways to pack lighter when travelling. Which is your favourite hack?