Many people have asked me how Lady Tocqueville and I packed for the Trip of a Million lifetimes we are currently on. They are usually quite surprised when we say we are doing all carry-on luggage. We tend to prefer carry-ons anyhow, as you are always in control of your luggage, and don’t have the risk of it not being checked to the correct destination. And while globetrotting, at some points moving from country to country in 24 hours, lost luggage would be brutal. There is also the time factor. If it takes us an extra hour to check a bag, 45 minutes for an earlier check-in, and 15 minutes to wait for the bag to our destination. If we have 20+ flights, that is 20+ hours of our life and our vacation we will not get back and will be spent sitting around at airports. And based on this photo we took at Macchu Picchu yesterday, I would rather be doing stuff like that than sitting in an airport waiting for a bag.
Macchu Picchu on a Sunny Wednesday
So, I took pictures of the packing process on what it took me to get 10 weeks worth of possessions into a carry-on and a personal item. Also, the TSA and other foreign security services limit your liquids, gels, and aerosols that can be carryed-on to 3.4 ounces or less, all fitting in a quart size bag. So that makes it tough!
All the stuff I am going to bring stacked up on the bed
I begin by folding my shirts into Eagle Creek’s Packing System shirt carrying caddy
Shirts and other items folded by category. Underpants in an Eagle Creek packing cube, socks and shoes in an Eagle Creek packing cube.
Shirt carrying caddy and shoes packing cube go in first, then layer in other items
With the suitcase fully packed, all “gear” type stuff goes in the backpack which will be my personal item.
Fully packed and ready for action
All of the Eagle Creek stuff came from REI, as did alot of the gear. I personally prefer Eagle Creek suitcases and their packing caddies and cubes for my packing needs. I use this same suitcase for my weekly travel for work, and so far the gear is holding up well while on the road.
Here is the total inventory of items I brought within the carry-on suitcase, my Eagle Creek Hovercraft 22″, or on my person as I left for the airport:
3x boat shoe socks
3x smartwool socks
2x running socks
8 pairs of underpants
1 bills khakis khaki pants
1 pair of jeans
2 shorts (mountain khaki khaki + bill’s khaki brown)
1 REI trek pants/shorts combo
1 Mountain Khaki durable pants
1 white undershirt
2 j. crew short sleeve shirts
3 j. crew long sleeve shirts
1 ralph lauren polo hoodie
1 north face green polo shirt
1 southern tide black polo shirt
1 grey brooks brothers shirt
1 columbia omnishade long-sleeve shirt
1 j. crew light sweater
1 smartwool base layer
north face class V shorts
1 nike running shirt (gray)
Mamut light fleece windbreaker/shell
1 j. crew flannel shirt
1 blue dress shirt
Here is the miscellaneous gear that I brought in the Berghaus trekking backpack, or in the zippered outer pockets of the Eagle Creek Suitcase:
passport photos for visa or other tourist cards
2 travel power converters
SIG water bottle
bug spray (less than 100ml)
sunglass holders (croakies)
printed copy of passport
Eagle Creek hidden travel money belt
Undisclosed amount of USD in cash
travel face sunscreen
travel detergent strips for sink or washing machine laundry
headlamp plus change batteries
small hand sanitizer
1/8″ speaker cable
Vehicle USB or 110v charging adapter
hdmi cable and mhl to hdmi adapter to play my phone on TVs
Going around the world for 10 weeks in a carry-on is hard enough as it is. Especially for ladies. Luckily Lady Tocqueville is an ardent adventurer who can accomplish this task. She needs clothes that are lightweight, breathable, layer-able, durable, and at least somewhat fashionable.
Luckily – REI came through on this. She was able to get Columbia zip-off pants/shorts, a Columbia Omnishade trekking shirt with sleeves that button up, and a North Face redpoint warm jacket that zips itself into its own zipper for easy storage. These three layers alone will be instrumental in helping us participate in all the fun and exciting upcoming activities. Our local REI was well stocked, and with their generous return policy should there be second thoughts before the trip, we know we can return them with no hesitation.
This post will be part of a future series on what to wear when trekking the world for 10 weeks out of a carry-on suitcase.
Yesterday Lady Tocqueville and I went shopping for some footwear for what to wear on our trip of a million lifetimes. I already have some OBOZ hiking boots I used in Alaska in 2011, that are worn in and comfortable. Lady Tocqueville, on the other hand, was still relying on some old school New Balance sneakers.
REI was our first and last stop. Their sales reps are excellent. Their customer service and return policy (a.k.a. no questions returns) are amazing. The only down side with buying it from the local brick and mortar REI is that we were on the hook for the extortionate 9% sales tax to pay for government buffoonery.
After looking at some hiking boots, Lady Tocqueville settled on some Keen Whisper Sandals.
Keen Whisper Sandals – Straight from REI
These things are awesome! They have the bottom of a light hiking boot. Since we are not carrying packs on our trip, that is all we will need for cushioning. You can wear them with or without socks. They are breathable, and very water resistant and heat insulating. These are a great alternative to the full fledged hiking boot.
Lady Tocqueville will break them in over the next few weeks to make sure there are no hotspots or flare-ups.