Packing Tips for Long Trips

By now, you’re probably wondering how to pack your entire wardrobe for this long trip of yours. If you read my article on Packing for Short Trips, this might not seem so far-fetched. However, today I’m going to teach you packing tips for LONG trips.

A long trip, in terms of how to pack, is 5 days or more. Regardless of whether your trip is 2 months or 5 days we are going to pack the same for both trips.

Heres What I mean:

If you’re a backpacker or budget traveler chances are you’re going to take everything you need in a backpack or roller bag (not judging.) Backpackers usually take everything they need in one bag for the entirety of their trip, regardless of how long the trip is… But how do we get all of our things into this bag?

Lets start with basics. We need socks and underwear. We will pack enough for five days worth. That’s 5 pairs of socks and 5 pairs of underwear. Next we want trousers. Depending on your destination, you will either pack shorts of pants. Either way, lets take 3 pairs of trousers. Now for tops. If you know where you’re headed to, a fancy dinner, a festive party, then pack accordingly. However, if you’re like me and take “to the wind” and go with the flow, then you might just want to pack general t-shirts. Lets pack three shirts. If you feel like this is not enough you can add an extra shirt. But NO MORE THAN 4 SHIRTS! Otherwise, it’s too much clothes. Seriously though. You will not wear it all. But don’t listen to me, prove me wrong.

Trust me that’s all you need.

What about the next four weeks of my backpacking trip?

This is where most travelers start to worry. Remember you’re not moving to a desolate planet without resources.

On my first backpacking trip across Europe I was gone for 2 months but I made sure I always had enough clothes to wear. However, I did not pack 2 months worth of clothes. Packing is something you learn through experience. I packed about 2 weeks worth of clothes. It was too much.

Here’s a tip:

Make sure you wash your socks and underwear by hand everyday in the shower. This will give you a fresh pair to wear.

Another tip:

Take pants and shirts that match. This means you can mix and match to make other outfits.

Remember, nobody knows you in this country and they certainly are not going to notice if you’re wearing the same t-shirt more than once a week. If you do, it’s no big deal. You don’t need to wash your pants and shirts every time you wear them. If they look and smell clean, it is clean.

When washing pants and shirts in the shower only get the main areas like the armpits and collar of the shirt. Regarding pants, make sure to wash out the crotch and butt part… the rest is clean. Unless you’re a clumsy eater and constantly spill food on your pants and shirts you should be good.

This is the most economical way to continue recycling your clothes while you travel week upon week.

At one point, if you come across a laundry facility, or your hostel has one, feel free to use it. Laundry facilities inside hostels are usually cheap. I would stay away from Hotel laundry. Every hotel will wash your clothes for you, but they charge a lot. Expect to pay around $50 or more per load of laundry.

More Packing Tips for Long Trips:

Now that we know what we’re taking on our long getaway make sure you have the proper luggage.


Always use a bag small enough to carry-on the plane with you. Checking your bag can be stressful.

Airlines constantly lose checked bags. If you’re connecting in certain countries you may need to leave security, grab your bag, re-check it and go back through security. If you’re pressed for time, you might miss your flight. Lets not do that.

Your bag is important. Its going to be with you your entire trip. Make sure its sturdy and conventional and carry-on size. The maximum dimensions for a carry-on bag are 9 inches x 14 inches x 22 inches (22 cm x 35 cm x 56 cm), including handles and wheels. Your backpack or luggage should be around this big.

Here’s a tip:

If your bag is little bigger than this most airlines wont measure, so its okay. Anyway, if it’s slightly bigger its more room for other travel necessities.

Check out these bags bellow, they’re travel packs from Amazon. I’m not saying these are the perfect bags for you but its a start. They’re affiliate links. This means if you click on the image and decide to buy it from Amazon, I’ll get a commission and you’ll be supporting my website. =)

Packing lightly will also make sure that you have enough space for other travel necessities like electronics, shower sandals, a quick dry towel, toiletries, a book etc.

Let me break it down for you:

If your trip is 5 days and longer this is how you should pack.

  1. Lets pack 5 pairs of socks and underwear
  2. 3 pairs of trousers
  3. 3 or 4 pairs of shirts
  4. Make sure you wash your underwear and socks by hand daily as you shower.
  5. For t-shirts wash arm pits and collar about once a week in the shower with you…
  6. Trousers, wash the crotch and stinky butt area as well (about once a week)

It’s okay if you wear pants and shirts more than once, no one is going to notice.

Hope this helps. Have any suggestions? leave me a comment.

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