Everyone wants adventure in their lives (even Netflix-lovers like me) but very few of us get the chance to take a year to explore the world. For those who get to indulge in their wanderlust tendencies, however, packing for a long trip away can end up putting a damper on your travel countdown. So we have broken down everything you need to pack for a year (yes a year) away from home.
Here’s how to start, what to pack, and what to leave behind…
It all starts with a good bag. You need a few options, but make sure you can carry all of them with you at one time. No one wants to be the person at the airport frantically searching for a trolley or asking random guys to carry things for you. Here are a few options of bags in varying sizes:
The Catalina: for weekend trips has a convenient slot just for your shoes
The O.G: great for short day trips and to hold your laptop/technology safely
DVF suitcases: easy to spot in an airport and have a hard outer case
This three-piece set: covers all your needs with one purchase
Dakine rolling duffle: you get the best of both worlds (Hannah Montana style)
Now you have your vessel, but you need to fill it! With, (what else?) clothes! There is no hard and fast packing list that will get you through a lengthy trip of this nature, no matter how many other people tell you differently. It’s all about your style, clothing preference, and the weather of where you’re headed. However, here are some general tips for making the most of your fashion packing choices.
- Stick to neutral and classic: even if you like bright colors or patterns, try to stick to non-trendy items that can be interchanged with a variety of things to make the most of your outfits
- Stock up on scarves and statement necklaces: another way to give a look a unique spin without taking up almost any room in your bag
- Be selective with shoes: these are the bulkiest, and heaviest items and let’s be honest, you already know your top five favorite pairs anyway
- If you haven’t worn it in six months, it stays: no matter how much you think you love it, if you haven’t worn it at home, you won’t wear it abroad
- Plan for layers: the weather will always be up for grabs, especially when you’re gone for more than a few months so be ready to layer thin items under bulky ones or add a vest under a jacket under a parka to keep warm, dry and ready for anything
Another note to remember is if you have any favorite makeup, face wash, tampon etc brands, they might not be carried in stores where you travel. So if you’re particular, bring extra stores of these picks to have on hand.
In addition to your clothes, you will have to make room for a few must-have items, so leave out that tenth pair of heels and add in these instead:
- A universal travel adapter: This will get you through your home country and any further travel you have planned
- A TSA approved clock
- A money belt/hidden wallet/fanny pack
- Some money in your destination’s currency
- Small locks for hostels
- An international credit card
- Walking shoes: we love all of the colors on these Reebok ones
- A journal: you’re going to want to document this
- A camera: to catch the sites and experiences that are just beyond words
Things you can leave at home or buy when you arrive:
- Socks, flip flops, under shirts or any more basic clothing item
- Bulky winter hats, gloves, scarves: although you should have a coat
- Any books or magazines: there is not better excuse to buy an iPad
- Picture frames: but print your photos before you go
- Bedding: unless you’re particular about sheet thread count
There, you have you plan. You have your shopping list. Now go out there and get adventuring!