On our first trip through South America, we left home each one with 27 kilos on our backs from Colombia to Ecuador. We had not even made it to the border, and a shipping package weighing 15 kilos was already going back home.

To pack for a long term travel and carry your “home” on your shoulders require you to clearly understand what is really important to you and what is not. Now, to travel with your home and your office requires even more practicality.  This is the guide you need to learn how to pack like a pro, light, even with the office on the shoulders. You’ll get a FREE CHECK LIST (Check List for Woman or Check List for Men) that you can download. Isn’t it great?

Deciding what to take and what to leave is always quite difficult because we are always tempted to carry a lot of things “just in case”, right? Well, let me tell you we are bloggers, photography lovers, and we also do music, we have our office in the bag on top of the clothing. We invite you to keep reading for you to learn how to do your backpack like a Pro Traveler.

The Challenge: the backpack (for long trips it is always better to pack a backpack rather than a suitcase) should weigh up to 12 kilos and the handbag (only if you have the office onboard) maximum 7.

So, are you ready to pack for a long-term travel?

what to pack for a long term travel- travel light

This post will show you:

-What you should carry in your suitcase for light travel and be ready for any occasion (or almost).
-How to pack in the most effective way (the travel cubes)
-What to include “just in case”
-A FREE and downloadable super checklist (Check List for Men and Check List for Woman) so you do not forget anything important and carry only what you need.

It will be particularly useful for you if:

-You are a free spirit (then you will not be afraid to have little clothes and therefore go light).
-You work online and want to start traveling with your office on your back.
-You play music or enjoy photography in your free time or you have some hobby that means that you add weight to your suitcase.

In addition of being “backpacker” travelers we are also musicians, videographers, photographers, and bloggers, so we travel with instruments and professional material for the image all this means that we carry on a little more than 10 extra kilos between the two!

what to pack for a long term travel

How to pack more effectively? Coiling or spreading?

For us, the solution is called Packing Cubes!
They are made of durable and ultra-light materials and allow you to have “drawers” in the suitcase. In them, we spread and roll everything. In addition, if you have to take something out of the bag, simply take out your travel cubes and easy access to everything immediately and put them back in very fast. Plus, in the hotel, everything is organized even when the outside the bag.

Travel tips to pack for a long-term travel more efficiently

Plan before you pack.

  • What are you going to wear? Pack light and combine clothes with shoes and accessories. The rule is 3 tops for each lower garment (pants, shorts, skirts).
  • Choose shades: to maximize your clothes, it is ideal to choose a shade: gray, brown, dark blue, black and you combine with the other garments. The dark tones disguise the stains very well and are suitable for both day and night.
  • Roll up and spread – large garments are spread at the base of the buckets and t-shirts or tops rolled over or at the corners.
    Share the weight well. The heaviest goes down (shoes, books) or against your back.

Would you like some music on your journey? Here are the Musical instruments (usually tied to our large backpacks or in hand) we carry. The idea is to do what we love: Guitalele, Djembe, harmonica, percussion eggs, wooden kalimba, didgeridoo of PVC, wooden Peruvian quena. (Even if it add some extra weight!;))

musical-instruments to pack for a long term travel

Okay, you have read already all the tips and hacks we use for having our life on the backpack. Here is what we carry on on the handbag and the backpack. Remember to download the free checklist (Check List for Woman or Check List for Men) we have created for you not to forget anything when packing.

LINA’s BACKPACK (DEUTER ACT LITE 45 + 10 SL)

 2 lightweight and dark color shorts.
1 light pant
1 jeans
panties (I take 10 pieces),
bras (4),
socks (5 pairs)
5 shirts of different kinds and colors,
2 t-shirts,
1 long sleeves shirt will protect you from sun and mosquitos (maximum 10 in total)
1 dress comfy and light one
1 dress for any occasion (the “elegant one”)
1 bikini, 1 pareo, 1 pair of sunglasses and 1 hat
1 menstrual cup (This is one of the best things I ‘ve ever bought. I’ve forgotten about tampons, hygienic towels, etc., and it is environmentally sustainable. 

For temperate climate (same always goes with us)

1 scarf,
1 semi-waterproof polyester sweater
1 light raincoat
1 ultralight synthetic down jacket.

SHOES

1 pair of tennis shoes or all-terrain boots. (you choose)
We were a while with the boots, but they are heavy.
The sneakers are more comfortable and light, although they do not repel the water like the off-road boots.
1 pair of flipflops for hygiene and comfort.
1 pair of comfortable sandals (yoga singlet wedge) These are the ones that serve me for all kinds of occasions,
1 pair of wedge crocs sandals, very light and fancy, I feel almost formal with them. and is my female caprice 😉

The “just in case” in Lina’s backpack

1 waterproof for the backpack. (If your luggage gets wet, you get stranded).
Laundry bag (I tell you the washing machine and I love it!)
1 headlight
1 travel repellent sheet bag
1 travel pillow
Manduka Lightweight Yoga Mat (0.5K)
a small thermal blanket that has been sheltered in airports, train stations, buses and in cold places.

All of the above weighs on my back 11.70 kilograms

MAURO’s BACKPACK- DEUTER ACT LITE 60+ 10

1 light fabric trouser and 1 drill shorts.
1 jean and 1 drill pant
10 underpants,
10 pairs of socks
5 shirts and
4 t-shirts
1 long sleeve shirt it will protect you from the sun and mosquitos
(stick to a maximum of 10 top in total)
1 pair of sunglasses,
1 hat
1 ultra absorbent and a small towel.For the temperate climate (always with us)
1 scarf,
1 semi-waterproof polyester sweater and
1 light raincoat for sudden rain.

SHOES

1 pair of off-road or tennis boots. They should be comfortable and light.
1 pair of moccasins (for special occasions)
1 pair of flip-flops for hygiene and comfort.
1 pair of off-road sandals ideal for hot climates.

The “just in case” in Mauro’s backpack

1 waterproof for the backpack. You know … one can get wet, the backpack does not.
1 head lantern
travel repellent sheet bag
1 travel pillow (with its case)
1 ultralight hammock
1 mini survival kit (with penknife, whistle, and matches)
a small thermal blanket that has been sheltered in airports, train stations, buses and in cold places.

First-aid kit

with basic general medicine (1.5 kilos) (with broad-spectrum antibiotics (amoxicillin), band-aid, muscle spasm ointment, activated charcoal, wound and infection creams, sore throat, vitamins, soda bicarbonate (for indigestion), gastritis pastes, allergies, headaches, mosquito natural repellent)

All of the above weighs 12.5 kilograms.

If you simply travel and do not carry with your office on your back, until here you will have all you need and you could even go without any extra backpack, which would be PER-FECT for your comfort and lightness.

Ideally, you have to travel accordingly to the weather, but we travel with this stuffs for temperate climates and it has been great (in Alaska at the beginning of fall was perfect!)

Focus on light materials fits anywhere and heats very well. And for heavy climate, you can always buy good stuff in place and get rid of them when you don’t need them anymore.

And remember this beautiful quote: “you can always go further when you keep it light” Ussain Bolt’s Mother.

Watch our Youtube video and reflection about keeping it light in life:

Okay! This is the list of all the things we carry in our backpacks. When packing, even if it is a short trip, remember to carry the suitcase as empty as possible, so you can fill it with new experiences!
Don’t forget to download your Check List for FREE (Check List for Woman or Check List for Men) so you do not forget anything about your suitcase!

Vamos somewhere!

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