One major travel challenge, especially for women, is cramming everything into a suitcase or backpack. Many of us love to make purchases while traveling, whether it’s clothing, books, kitschy gifts, or art, so it’s hard to find space for these new items when we pack our bags to the brim.
While one solution is to leave home with a bag that isn’t full, most of us are too tempted to fill up all the space we have. How can you make space for your purchases? Leave home with things you can throw away or leave behind at the end of your trip.
Bringing a book with you? If you finish it while on your trip, leave it behind at your accommodations or find a local library where you can donate it. Bring a pair of old shoes or a few old T-shirts you will probably never wear again. Buy sample sizes of all your toiletries at a drugstore and toss them at the end of your trip.
On my recent trip to New York City, I was staying at a vacation rental that required me to bring my own towel. I made sure to bring a ratty old towel with bleach stains. This way, when I was packing to go home, I was able to leave the towel behind without regret and make room for my new clothing purchases.
Some may say this is wasteful. I don’t advocate throwing out valuable items (you probably shouldn’t bring valuable items with you anyway). I just think if you can’t force yourself to leave home with a bag with plenty of extra space, bring items you know you can part with on the back end once you’ve used them for your travels. If you are really concerned about wasting clothes, you can find a local place to donate the clothes or shoes you are getting rid of before you head home.
Have you ever tossed out items while traveling so you can fit more in your bag?