How to Pack Like a Savvy World Traveler

Going international? The best way to get to know another culture, cuisine or style is to get on the ground where you can experience it firsthand. The following are some tips for packing traveling backpacks.

What to Pack up Front

This thinner section is made for convenience items. Think sunglasses, for day treks. Although you may wear your sunglasses, or have them ready on your head or shirt collar, it’s handy to keep a case in this part of your tote. This is also a good place to stash a thin rain jacket or windbreaker. Small pockets are great for storing chewing gum, tissues, toilet paper, pens, pencils, lip balm, hand sanitizer, insect repellent, sunblock and earphones. If there’s a hook, you can use it to keep keys close.

Using the Main Compartment Efficiently

If you’re about to get on a plane, train or bus, think ahead about the order at which you plan to use your things, and pack accordingly. For example, if it’s nearing lunch time, and you’re packing a meal to eat while en route, put that inside last, so that it’s the first thing you pull out.

Laptop sleeves are standard in many traveling backpacks. However because of the rigidity of a notebook computer, it goes in easiest if it’s loaded first. Then you can add clothing and other soft items to the large compartment.

Planning for Optimum Comfort and Security

To see as many sights as possible, you’ll likely do a lot of walking. Being in an unfamiliar place makes it necessary to exercise more caution that you are used to at home. Some travelers use padlocks to secure any opening where two zippers meet. It can work very well, as long as you don’t lose the keys.

In some areas, it’s advisable to wear traveling backpacks on the front of your body. On crowded buses with drivers who stop abruptly and accelerate rapidly, it’s a good idea to keep your bag close. On long bus or train rides, never store your belongings in areas that are open to other passengers.

It’s wise not to over pack your day bag. Keep lesser used items in a piece of rolling luggage if possible. If your backpack has a chest strap, be sure to use it. Distributing weight away from shoulders helps to reduce fatigue.

A little planning can go a long way when it comes to knowing how to pack. Lugging items around does not have to be a chore. The better your strategy, the more comfortable, organized and enjoyable your travels will be.

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