Not much is needed for a three day trip to Paris. I travelled by Eurostar so I could take more but I still pack light. All you need is a few clothes and toiletries and some good shoes for walking. Travelling light has many benefits. Though travelling light, I still like to look smart – especially in Paris. Part of the fun of travel is to experience other cultures and a big part of Paris culture is looking chic.
I learned to pack light a long time ago (from Rick Steves) and these days it’s even more important because you so often have to pay extra to check a bag when travelling on cheap airlines. It’s more secure to keep your belongings with you, you don’t have to worry about lost luggage. With fewer items to take care of, packing and unpacking is a breeze. Your luggage is light and easily managed. It’s easier to use public transport.
The key to travelling light and looking smart, is to make sure everything can be worn with everything else, that all colours coordinate and take separates. And be prepared to hand-wash. Here is what I took, including what I wore on the journey.
- gloves (Warmen Touch Screen Nappa Leather Winter Gloves Iphone Ipad Smart Phone (XL, Brown) I donated all the pairs I had some time ago and went for just one pair of quality, warm and stylish gloves in a neutral colour)
- tobacco-coloured skirt
- green jeans
- 2 pairs leggings
- vest (gilet)
- 3/4 sleeved taupe t-shirt
- beige t-shirt
- ruby blouse (special occasion for a party)
- Earrings (one pair only)
- crystal necklace
Buy products in compact sizes where ever possible. You will not need a full sized bottle of shampoo for three days away. In fact, I didn’t even take shampoo because I was staying in a hotel and it was provided. OK, it might not be your preferred special luxury brand, but your hair will not suffer if you use hotel shampoo once or twice.
- Contact lenses and solution
- toothbrush and toothpaste (sample size from dentist)
- Tangle Teezer Compact Styler Professional Detangling Hair Brush – Feline Groovy
- Dove Original Beauty Cream Bar 4 x 100g (for face and body – removes makeup too0
- Crystal Body Travel Deodorant Stick 44 ml
- perfume atomiser (Perfume atomizers of Travalo – Pocket atomizer silver)
- prescription medication
- emery board
- Blistex tinted lip balm
- exfoliating cloth
- hand cream (use for body too)
- eye drops
- makeup (minimal – tinted moisturiser, eyeshadow, eye pencil, mascara, blush, couple brushes)
- iPhone, cable and backup power source
- iPad (with e-books)
- glasses and reading glasses
- foldable, reusable shopping bag
- pen and post-it notes instead of a full notebook
- Ray-Ban 4105 710/51 Tortoise 4105 Folding Wayfarer Wayfarer Sunglasses Lens Cat
Pack Light with Packing Cubes
I have a variety of ultra light Eagle Creek packing cubes and sacks. They are great for organising your bag and because they are so light they are fabulous for really cheap airlines such as Monarch where you might come up against a 5kg weight limit.
Writing the list out above, it looks like a lot of things, but really it wasn’t much at all. In fact, I took a few things that I wouldn’t normally take (extra jewellery and fancy blouse)
The only thing I didn’t take that I should have is a buff. They are so handy to cover ears, keep hair out of your face when doing makeup, keep your neck warm and so on.
The TV charging idea didn’t work, so I bought a European plug with two USB ports straight after checking-in to the hotel. This lasted the entire trip (three days!) and then died when I got back to the UK. You have to pay for quality and I should have gone to the Apple shop for a plug. It usually ends up being cheaper in the long run to buy the more expensive, but better, item.
Do you pack light or pack heavy? Have you bought electronic items in a foreign country, just to have them die as soon as you get home?