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The Question That Can Change Your Packing Style

travel purpose

Why do you travel?

Some people travel for food, some people explore the culture and history, and others, they want a piece of the great outdoors that can only be obtained in other parts of the world.

For me personally, I travel to see life as it is lived on different continents. I travel to see friends and family across the globe. Travel is magical, immersive, and done with wide-eyes.

I travel for many reasons, but you might notice that I didn’t say any of the following:

  • to stand out from the crowd
  • to impress random people
  • to look different in all my travel photos

Why do you travel?

This Helps My Packing

With that in mind, packing for most adventures is a breeze. Why?

Because my clothes- they aren’t the focus of my travels. They aren’t the reason I hop on a plane and fly for 20 hours from point A to B. So, it’s easier for me to pick clothes that serve the function of protecting my body and staying modest, and ultimately, for packing less.

What’s the real focus of your travels?

Once you’re clear with the intention of your travels and what you plan to get out of it all, you might find that it’s easier to pack, and perhaps pack lighter.

Now, I understand that some trips are made for shopping. Some trips might have a focus of seeing the nightlife or fancy events. If that is the case, packing smaller and smarter might come down to following other packing tips that we have listed on the site, as well as the mindset shift that being seen in the same outfit a couple of times is not the end of the world.

It’s a simple tip; it never hurts to be mindful and clear on purpose so you can better focus your time on packing truly what you need.

Written by Brooke

Brooke Schoenman runs the show at Her Packing List. Inspired from years of travel experience, Brooke decided there needed to be a travel gear site focused on the needs of a wandering female.

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Gear We Use


Packing Cubes – Organize your luggage with the lightweight, durable and compressible Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Compression Cubes.

Backpacks + Daypacks

Pacsafe – Since they come with extra theft-resisting features, Pacsafe bags make you a more confident traveler. We especially love this bag.

Sea to Summit – Of all the Sea to Summit products, our most recommended is the fits-in-your-palm, super packable Ultra-Sil Daypack.

Personal Care

Nalgene Toiletry Bottles – These leak-free toiletry bottles and tubs come in all sizes – even super tiny, helping minimalists pack it all without bulk.

Turkish Towels – They’re thinner than most travel towels, and they actually cover your body! We can’t get enough of Turkish towels for travel.


Speakeasy Supply Co. – They make the awesome hidden pocket infinity scarves that are perfect for stashing secret cash, lip balms, and passports.

Anatomie – Anatomie travel pants come with luxury prices, but they offer many benefits for travelers. See our review of the famous Skyler pants.

Travel Resources

Booking Airfare

Dollar Flight Club – Get flight deal alerts for your preferred departure airport. There is both a free and premium version (recommended for more sweet deals). Members save on average $500 USD per flight!

Skyscanner – Skyscanner is our preferred site for searching flights. They offer unbiased search results and are free from hidden fees. You can also book your hotels and rental cars.


Airbnb – Airbnb is the best place to book out apartments around the world. Sign up using this link to get $37 USD off your first stay booking + $14 USD towards an experience booking! – Search for hotels, hostels, and apartments using this one resource. Use it for flights, car rentals, and airport taxis as well.

Hostelworld – For hostels, Hostelworld remains our number one source for booking stays. Choose from straight up hostels, budget hotels and bed and breakfasts.

Trusted Housesitters – Save money on travel accommodation by becoming a housesitter. Housesitters often have extra duties, like caring for pets and gardens.

Reader Interactions


  1. Rena says

    Thank you, Brooke, for addressing this. I think it is the MOST important way to approach trip planning. I always start with the “feeling” of the of the trip, and then pick the shoes. 🙂 And go from there. I’m currently planning on a month long Prague to Dubrovnik in one carry-on size bag, which will have a very different feel than an all Italy trip in one carry-on.

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