This post is part of the Ask Alex, Travel Question Wednesdays weekly series. To see previous questions click here. To submit your own; tweet it to @AlexBerger, ask it in a comment on this post or send it in by e-mail.
A quick introductory note – When I began authoring VirtualWayfarer in July of 2007 I never expected that I’d still be blogging on travel, adventures, study abroad and everything that goes with it nearly five years later. Over the years I’ve had a lot of questions and luckily my friends, network, and more than a few random strangers have gone well out of their way to answer those questions. While I still find myself asking questions on a regular basis I’ve found that I can also pay it forward as a resource for friends, my readers, and strangers alike. In an effort to share what I’ve learned from my various adventures I’ve launched Travel Question Wednesdays. I’ll be answering one reader-submitted question every week. You are all encouraged to submit, and all past questions will be archved and available as a resource for readers of this blog. I’m going to take a very open approach to the topics I’ll cover, so feel free to ask me just about anything , just keep it somewhat travel related.
This week’s travel question is from Galen E. he asks,
Q. “What is the best bag for a two week trip? Why?”
A. – The easiest and shortest answer to this question is to take a small and medium-sized backpack combo. For a more in-depth break down of different baggage types check out my Lugging Luggage, The Quandary post. Ultimately, the answer depends on what type of trip you have planned and how valuable mobility will be to you. With ever increasingly restrictive luggage policies I prefer to fly with only carry-on luggage, especially for shorter trips in the 1-2 week neighborhood. The added flexibility and convenience of a backpack is hard to beat, and if you’re moving around a fair bit, facing cobblestone streets, or taking public transit between the airport and your hotel/hostel it can be wonderful to have the mobility a backpack offers. On the other hand, if your trip will consist largely of an all inclusive resort, taxi rides to and from the airport and a bucket of beer on the beach, then what luggage you take is largely irrelevant. I’ve assembled a number of user generated and personal packing videos on my Ultimate Packing List site which should give you a better frame of reference for how some of my readers typically pack. View the packing videos here.
At the end of the day keep in mind that most year-long, round the world travelers opt for a mid-to-large sized backpack with a small daypack as their preferred form of luggage. While packing for a two week trip, it’s often easy to pack about the same amount as those traveling for 10-20 times that. Even the most experienced traveler falls victim to this easy overpacking. Consider what you need, what you want, and what you’re comfortable going without and then choose an appropriate bag for your trip.