Travelling for a week with only a backpack and a carry-on bag

Only carry on for a weeks trip :)I don’t think I ever want to do this, ever again. Particularly in Canada, and particularly in Eastern Canada, where the weather can change within hours, let alone days. So you may ask what is THAT, exactly, Raul? Well, THAT means: travelling for a week with only a backpack and a carry-on laptop knapsack bag. Theoretically, one should be able to do it. My friend Rebecca did it last year.

That’s why I attempted it too.

The last time Rebecca and I went on a media trip together to Quebec, she told me that when she went to Africa she literally packed only one bag and her laptop bag. Thinking that I could do the same this week that I am in Toronto-Kitchener-Waterloo, I packed just one week’s worth of clothes. Actually, scratch that. I packed 4 days. And even then, I wasn’t ready for what happened to me.

On the first day, the temperature was unbearably hot (32 oC feeling like 39 oC). The second, really hot. The third, it was nice. Yesterday was cold and breezy, and today? It’s RAINING. It’s raining in Toronto and in Kitchener-Waterloo. When I am trying REALLY hard to get away from the rainy weather.

Seriously, I think I did something wrong in my previous life, because this can only happen to me. Geez.

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Comments (6)

JenJune 1st, 2012 at 11:49 am

Oh Raul. Your high-maintenance-ness is adorable (and I say that with love!).

If you can’t travel for a week (yes, even with terrible weather!) in two bags, you are, sorry to say, doing it wrong.

After all, we traveled for three weeks in weather that ranged from 14C and raining to 30C in blazing sun. For 2.5 people, with one average-sized suitcase, one duffel bag, one backpack and one diaper bag.

Don’t feel bad, traveling light takes some practice. We should audit what you brought and fix you up for next time!
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KimmJune 1st, 2012 at 1:24 pm

Packing light just takes practice and knowing what you need/want to bring does help as well. I tend to travel for a week with one pack sack.
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Michael KwanJune 1st, 2012 at 2:05 pm

I have a hard time packing uber-light, because I usually have one bag dedicated solely to gear (laptop, camera, cables, chargers, etc.). I have an upcoming 2-day trip and I’m going to try to get away with just a backpack with gear, clothes, and all. We’ll see how that goes, but packing heavy is all kinds of frustrating too.
Michael Kwan recently posted..Movie Reviews: The Girl Who Played With Fire, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest

LoisJune 1st, 2012 at 2:29 pm

I like to have fresh outer clothing, fresh underwear, fresh socks – perhaps more than is strictly necessary, especially if it is hot. I can’t really pack enough for a week unless I am either doing handwashing or laundry along the way.

But I refuse to pay luggage fees, so if that’s an issue, I smash everything in hard, and do laundry if needed.

RebeccaJune 1st, 2012 at 3:58 pm

I ended up with just those two bags by mistake since I had 1 small duffle that was lost by the airline. The only items I missed from there were donations/gifts and liquids (that I couldn’t carry on otherwise).

I did 1 laptop bag + a 21 inch suitcase to Switzerland for a week and that worked out. However both of these destinations had set weather/temperatures.

I think they key is to pack items you can lightly layer + a fold-up rain jacket. My “curse” is I always end up forgetting one key item every time I go somewhere so I don’t think it’s just you that has travel woes now and then. Glad you managed this week though!
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RaulJune 2nd, 2012 at 8:28 pm

@ Jen – an audit sounds a’ok to me! Thanks! :)

@ Rebecca – This trip I also forgot one key item: my razor. I showed up to give 2 talks unshaved. Eeew.

@ Lois – I hate doing laundry while traveling.

@ Michael – the gear also kills me.

@ Kimm – I have no idea how you travel with just one bag. With two bags I had a hard time!

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