Frugal Travel Tips For Packing Light

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Airline restrictions are getting tighter and tighter with the amount of checked bags limited and overweight baggage being charged an extra fee. So for the frugal traveler, packing light is packing right. There are some tricks to making the allowance stretch without resorting to buying the pricey new light weight luggage.

A Smaller Suitcase

Huge suitcases when empty can almost push travelers past the allowable limit. Converting to the next size down saves weight that can be used for clothes and souvenirs. Soft sided suitcases are fine for non breakable items (like clothes).

Rolling Clothes

You’ve moved to a smaller suitcase but how to make all your clothes fit? A simple answer is to roll them. Rolling clothes takes up less room than folding them flat. Every section of the suitcase is filled, including air pockets. A bonus is the clothes normally have less wrinkles.

An Extra Duffle Bag

I always pack an emergency soft sided duffel bag just in case I make more purchases than I plan. They also come in handy as a dirty clothes bag, limiting laundry needed.

Black Running Shoes

Shoes are perhaps the heaviest items to pack. That’s why making pairs stretch to numerous occasions make sense. Planning on packing a sporty shoe to reduce pain while touring around cities by foot? Make it a black running shoe. Not only do these shoes fit in better in European countries (where few people wear running shoes for everyday wear) but they can also pass at operas and ballets (where often no running shoes are allowed).

Wash And Wear Flying Clothes

Luggage gets lost or delayed. That is a reality of flying. So unless you wish to spend money on an entire new wardrobe while waiting for your luggage to be found, I suggest wearing clothes, while flying, that can be easily washed and quickly dried.

Not only do I wear a set of easily wash and dried clothes but I carry on an extra set also.

Make Purchases With Luggage Restrictions In Mind

On a first trip to Mexico, I bought a sombrero for my sister. Not only did I have to carry it to every city I went but I had a difficult time bringing it back on a flight.

On the other hand, once I purchased a wall sized painting from Bali. I broke down the frame, rolled the canvas, and wrapped it in plastic similar to a pair of skis. I had zero difficulties bringing it on the plane as the airline was accustomed to shipping skis.

When I make any purchase while on a trip, my first thought is “How am I bringing this back?” If I can’t put it in my luggage or pack it as a separate piece, I consider shipping it directly. If that isn’t financially feasible, I leave it back.

With the tighter and tighter luggage restrictions, it makes sense to reduce the amount of luggage needed as much as possible. Using these tips will save space and hassle.

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