Not too long ago, my boyfriend and I travelled to Luxembourg for a quick weekend getaway. I got the odd “what are we doing on this weekend” text and when I got home, I was told we’d be off to a small country called Luxembourg. I didn’t even know where Luxembourg was on the map until I had to Google it.
My boyfriend bought the flights from RyanAir for a whopping £20 for the two of us with return flights included. Since he got the flights so cheap and seeing as we’d only really be there for a couple of days, we thought that it would be pointless to pay for extra luggage, which is where my lovely Fjallraven Kanken backpack comes in.
I always travel with a cabin-sized suitcase, so it was quite a challenge for me to try and fit everything into a tiny backpack. The fact that I’m a serial overpacker and that I needed to really scale down and take only the most essential of essentials was difficult, so I had to have a proper think about the kind of things that I should and shouldn’t be taking.
Passports, a small wallet with my ID, bank cards and money as well as an international plug with my phone’s charging cable (the one pictured above has a USB port so you never have to take the adapter, just the cable) were the obvious ones I couldn’t leave behind so that was the easy part. I took some earphones, my lip balm, a pen and a hairbrush because I could genuinely justify why I needed them.
Next up were toiletries and to be honest, I did struggle a little bit with this one. I follow a three-step skincare technique and because it’s relatively cheaper to get them in bigger bottles, I usually get them in bigger bottles. This was a bit of a problem because that meant I couldn’t take them with me unless I could put them in travel-sized, RyanAir approved containers, which I didn’t have. I didn’t have time to go to Primark to get that travel kit too so I had to do without for the couple of days we were there for. It wasn’t too bad, thinking about it now. It was mildly frustrating though.
In the end, I went with the very basics and decided to buy shampoo and conditioner from a shop when we got there. I’d need more than one 100ml bottle of conditioner for my hair anyway.
And finally, we have clothing. No word of a lie, I spent a couple of days thinking about what to take with me. Having looked at the weather forecast a week before and in the days leading up to our trip, I debated loads of times what I should take. It was going to be cold (it was very cold when we got there), it was going to rain (it rained a majority of the time we were there) and there was a slight chance of snow (it snowed for about an hour the day after we arrived). Not ideal weather conditions are they? Especially when winter clothing has the tendency to be a bit bulky!
In the end, I packed:
- One long-sleeved top
- One t-shirt (don’t ask)
- Two jumpers
- A bobble hat and gloves
- Four pairs of socks
- A skirt and an extra pair of jeans
- Underwear obviously
- Two pairs of tights – one was a 400 denier and the other was extra thick and fleece lined
Considering that we were only there from Saturday night to Monday afternoon, I think I managed to pack more than what I needed really. I guess I had it in my head to pack a skirt just in case we went out out and I fancied dressing up a tiny bit. *We did end up going out but there was no point dressing up as the bars we went to were dead for the most part, but that’s for another post…
Overall though, I was impressed that I managed to fit all that stuff in my backpack. I made sure to pack the toiletries in a clear plastic sleeve and put it in the bag last so it sat above everything else, making it so much easier to get through security. Being the serial overpacker that I am, I was annoyed that I didn’t get to take extras with me, but I’m glad that we managed to save the bit of money we would’ve spent on the bags.
I’ll probably consider taking this bag again in future when we do something similar, but as good as they are, my preference and loyalty still goes to my cabin-sized suitcases. I’ll think about converting to being a backpack traveller at another time.
Do you have any packing tips you can share with me? Let me know in the comments below!