“The goal is not to have the fewest number of things but to have the optimal number of things.” – Gautam Baid
I’ve backpacked in Chicago, DC, Boston and all over Europe. We don’t need a lot to live, yet we tend to overpack for small situations. You’ll see families packing 12 suitcases onto a plane. That’s just overkill. For me, all I need is money to buy food, a roof over my head, a hot shower, clothes, and a bed or a couch to sleep on. All I bring with me in my backpack are clothes, hygiene stuff, and a book.
How I Pack:
Clothes and hygiene stuff are the essentials. I had swim trunks for the beach in Barcelona, but I also backpacked in the freezing temperatures (I’m a California boy, it sucked) of Copenhagen and Budapest for three weeks by wearing the heavy layers at the airport and keeping the lighter layers in my backpack. I wore thermal underwear and shirts to keep warm and wore a big peacoat during my travels. I was fortunate enough to have washing machines in each of the places I went to so I was able to keep my clothes clean. I essentially had one and a half outfits. My outdoor wear and indoor wear. I love fashion, but traveling isn’t time to look cool because I’m only there for a short amount of time.
I didn’t require much for hygiene too. I had a small baggie of a razor, hair wax, toothbrush, and deodorant. When I was traveling, I chose places where I knew people and used their shampoo, conditioner, and body wash. When I traveled to places where I stayed in hostels and Airbnbs, I was fortunate enough they had offered shampoos and body washes there.
The book is for me to continue growing. I know for a fact I’ll be taking public transportation wherever I’ll be going. Most of the time, I’ll be traveling somewhere on a plane. That’s at least 2 hours. Reading is one of the best investments I can make for myself and I’m making the most of my time. I’m always going to encourage everyone to read more. Even 25 pages a day of a book will change your life drastically.
I don’t need to settle in a fancy hotel to be happy traveling. A roof, bed, and a hot shower are all I need to be content. Whilst traveling, I stay in hostels and Airbnbs to save money. And when asking people if I can stay over at their place while traveling, I’ll settle for a couch even, which is what I did when I stayed in London. Hot showers are also a must for me. I once stayed in a hostel in Bath, England and it did not have hot showers. And life without hot showers SUCKED.
Traveling Light is EASY:
Moving around with two suitcases and a backpack is annoying. Big cities mean big crowds. Getting around the city is easier simply because you are carrying less.
Why You Should Live Minimally:
These tips also apply to your life now. Minimalism makes life easier for you because you only care about the necessities. I live in a house with five other guys and I think I’m living in absolute luxury because I have way more than what I need to be happy in life. We all carry a lot of baggage in life, and by letting go of these baggages, life is just simpler.