The question of gear and equipment always is a hot topic among travellers and photographers, professional and amateur alike. How light or heavy does the next person pack?! What is their preferred brands?! At Travellers Playground, the thought is that you carry what you pack…NO complaints, regardless of how heavy of a packer you are!
In today’s digital age, I carry with me a a copy of my most personal of documents that I might need access to in the occasion my wallet and/or passport is stolen. Being able to prove identity when items are lost or stolen is very important. These papers include but are not limited too:
- Copy of passport.
- Copy of birth certificate.
- Flight, Hotel & Transportation Details (often needed for landing cards).
- List of emergency contacts at home and abroad.
Everyone has their own thoughts on camera’s, and what type and size camera you travel with, will be specific to you and your personality. I never leave home without my DSLR, but, it doesn’t mean I don’t also shoot with point & shoots as well as with my phone.
What I pack
In general, I don’t like to look ragged, even if often my style is sort of mismatched! I am not that big into graphic t’s and a sweatshirt tied around my waste. I don’t always agree with re-wearing the same shirt 3 days in a row and ‘people won’t care because you’re a traveller’. I find I always feel better, when I look better, it gives a better impression, and since I am surrounded by people I don’t know, I would hate to leave a negative impression… why do I care, well I don’t in the fashion sense, but I would like to take something positive out of my experience with these strangers and in return, leave something positive.
Depending on how long I am travelling for and where I am travelling too will always alter what I bring. I tend to pack 4x what I need when I go away for 2-3 days. When I go away for 2-3 weeks, I tend to pack half as many clothes. Some people get away with 3 pairs of underwear for weeks of travel, personally I prefer about 5-6 pairs, as I don’t prefer to do the washing that often! If you are travelling for more then a few days, find out about laundry options. Detergent can be purchased in single sink load sizes, perfect for a few t-shirts, several pairs or underwear and some sox. All of my underwear are quick-dry. I have learned to love the concept of quick dry clothes. From underwear to sox to my t-shirts and trousers, I highly recommend investing if you plan to pack light and be on the road for an extended period of time!
I feel like most people generally bring less, the more often they travel. To tell someone who is on her first ever big vacation to London, to pack in a carry on size suitcase, when she usually packs her trunk full for a weekend in NYC with the girls… well, your wasting your breath! I have never been the biggest fan of carrying a pack on my back, although I have occasionally but I tend to opt for the roller suitcase, which is why I like my eagle creek, best of both worlds! Just keep in mind, that you need to carry (whatever shape or form that might come in) everything you decide to bring.
This gets a special section. Some people always wear sneakers, some always wear sandals or flip flops, some always wear heels. I have been all of these people at least once in my life. I have marched around Europe & the US in 3″ high heeled, knee high boots. Europeans & American’s wear them everyday, my philosophy, “why shouldn’t I when I am in their cities?” However, I strongly recommend not to wear them unless your feet are accustomed to walking long distances in them on a daily basis. When I wore those heels around London, I was living in London and commuting 3-5 miles on foot a day, so when I jetted off to Italy, Germany and Slovenia… I had not intention of buying different shoes. However when I went to Spain this past fall, all I had been wearing the last few years since I have had a desk job is flip flops, so that’s what I packed! The only time I have ever purchased shoes just for a trip where my timberland boots I purchased for Iceland. Shoes are about comfort. Blisters are not comfort! Also keep in mind shoes will vary depending on the temperature you are travelling too.
Battery operated travel alarm clock or a watch alarm. My alarm clock is about the size of a deck of cards and has 4 preset buttons for different time locations. Sports watches also tend to be great, one’s with alarms. However, since cell phones have become so common place, it has taken over most time related objects, but the clock still tends to travel with me for back up!
First Aid Kit… ALWAYS!
I take a first aid kit with everywhere, I always have one in my car, and have always travelled with one, it really doesn’t take up much space. This is not an exclusive list, its only a few basics…
- Band Aids, variety of sizes I usually use
- Antibacterial cream
- Anti-itch cream
- Duct tape, can be used for so many things, they sell these without the cardboard insides
- Gauze and medical tape
- Mole skin for blisters