In recent years, lost luggage has become a reality for my family. It happens with alarming regularity, so much so, that my husband and I have recently decided that it’s a top priority for us to not not check luggage, unless we absolutely must. For my upcoming trip to Spain, Israel, and Belgium I’ve decided to stick to this rule, tiny carry-on and all. It’s even more important when traveling with smaller and cheaper airlines within Europe, since any checked bag costs money and time that I’d rather not spend.
My packing goals were:
1. To choose clothes that can be worn day and night, or transition easily between the two. I love t-shirts that I know I can dress up with a nice structured jacket (I plan on purchasing one), but I also wanted to make sure I could create an evening look with a pair of black pants and a dressier shirt.
2. Pack only items I love. I never wear dresses and rarely wear maxi skirts, so I didn’t pack any. Why take something I may not want to wear?
3. Directly relating to 1, I know what I intend to buy, so I wanted to make sure I didn’t “double up
on some larger items. For example, I’ve been debating packing my yellow platforms for quite sometime, but I’ve decided that I’d prefer to leave some space in my carry-on for new shoes, instead.
So, here’s my packing list:
3 pairs of pants (2 jeans, and one 3/4 pants) + 1 extra comfortable pair of pants for the flight (seriously, this one is like wearing a PJ)
1 long sleeve shirt + a thick 3/4 shirt for flights
3 basic tops to wear under see-through shirts or use as a top
4 nicer looking shirts for outings or looking slightly more put together
1 warm cardigan for the flight
3 casual cardigans
1 PJ set that can also be used for lounging around. Siesta, anyone?
1 pair of pink Tieks
1 pair of Gizeh Birkenstocks (will be wearing these on the plane)
And that is it for clothes and shoes.
As you can see, I am not packing too much or too little. I can actually avoid doing laundry for about 11 days, but I am assuming I will do laundry at least once. I’ve thought about outfits that would transition from day-time to night-time, and I’ve kept my shoe choices really limited.
Funny enough, this packing list feels like an experiment with a capsule wardrobe, something I’ve been considering and adapting lately. Since my clothes are mostly monochrome, I find it easy to mix and match all these pieces together. I’ve always been worried about feeling like I have limited clothing options or getting board with what I have to wear, so this feels like a perfect opportunity to see if that’s the case.
Post Trip Update:
- The Delsey trolly held up beautifully throughout my trip! I traveled to 3 different countries, and took a total of 7 flights using it as a carry on. It fit in the airplane bins, and took some abuse through the pebbled streets of Europe. I never felt like I needed more space with this trolly, too. Overall, I recommend it and has a great time twirling it around.
- My choice of clothes seemed to be mostly spot on! I did do laundry about 3 times, and only purchased one pair of shorts since Spain was just so hot. I also bought a big handmade Merino wool scarf, so I only used my big cardigan during my two initial flights. I will not pack it again, but rather opt for a warmer thin cardigan and a heavy scarf next time.
- The Birkenstocks truly proved themselves as amazing walking shoes. I wore them the whole time, with the exception of one day in which I swore I would never wear my pink Tieks again after walking in them for about 7 hours.
What do you pack for a 3 week vacation?