What is in my backpack and what is not?

When you are going to make a trip, you always prepare yourself somehow. You determine your destination, book your flights or other transport and you might already have a route set out. For me, exactly the same applies, and as you may have noticed, I like planning. I had been preparing a lot for our world trip that we made last winter.

The last part of the preparations, packing our bags!

Do you travel in a suitcase or backpack? I myself have a huge preference for my backpack. Not only convenient because I have my hands free, but also nice because I can take my baggage relatively easily during a hike (although I must honestly say that I have never taken all my luggage with me, but well… it is a possibility! ). In addition, I like the fact that I am forced to pack light with a backpack since it’s full quickly. And finally, a backpack is often easier to store because you can completely dent it and make it flat. That was really an advantage for us when we traveled through New Zealand with our campervans. In our van there was not much spare room, so we could just lay the backpacks, completely flat under the bed. I have a 55-liter backpack (more than enough), which I can increase to 70 liters. This is the Osprey Ariel 55 including rain cover and I had a handy flight back with me (I can highly recommend this one!).

Or rather taking a suitcase on a world trip?

On the other hand, a suitcase is a lot nicer for your back (provided you do not have to carry your suitcase behind you for hours). It is less warm than a heavy backpack on your back. And you can take more stuff with you. When I go to a place where I will not change my location a lot, I usually have a suitcase with me.
And what about a daypack?

Finally, I always carry a small backpack (daypack) as hand luggage. In this, I carry, while traveling, my laptop, headphones, passport and some food. I have this bag, the North Face Router of +/- 35 liters (relatively large). Especially the separate laptop box is very useful to protect my MacBook. When we arrive at the destination, I find it useful to be able to have a backpack when we walk into the city, go to the beach, or go for a day of hiking.

What should not be missing in your backpack?

Super light winter jacket: Even though I did not wear this jacket very much, it was really indispensable! Especially in cold Japan and sometimes in places in New Zealand. It does not occupy much space because you can push all the air out. Certainly, something that I take with me next time (provided we go to places where it can be cold).

Fleece sweater: I wore my red fleece sweater a lot, you can see it in almost every travel picture. But a good sweater to keep you warm during hikes, cold evenings or early mornings is really great.

Two pairs of sunglasses: I did not take one, but two sunglasses with me, and even that wasn’t enough. Ries lost all two sunglasses, so we had to buy new sunglasses along the way.

Toiletry bag: I can highly recommend the toiletry bag we used. It has a hook with which you can hang it in hostels somewhere and then roll it out. We have this toiletry bag from Decathlon (€ 12.99). Oh, and by the way, we used just one toiletry bag, so both mine and Ries’ stuff was in here. So little stuff don’t you think?

Electric toothbrush: It might sound crazy but we took our electric toothbrush. This allowed us (if we had electricity) to brush our teeth very well. I am not a fan of manual toothbrushes.

Hand wash leaves, universal stopper and a clothesline: You don’t always have a washing machine at your disposal when traveling. We have done it many times laundry by hand after which we let it dry in our hostel room. Always went well, except that time in Japan when it was very cold and the laundry didn’t dry …

Extra cellphone: This was so handy! In almost every country we visited, we bought a prepaid SIM card that we put in this extra phone, to be relatively cheap online.

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