I’m about to go on my first trip out of town in England! I’m headed to London for a three-day weekend! In Canada, I’m used to packing for short trips to Montreal or Toronto. A lot of these trips have been for conventions, so I often have with me a suitcase full of cosplay gear. However, when you eliminate the copious amounts of costume, hair, and makeup products I need for Comiccon, I’ve actually become quite adept at packing everything I need into a single backpack, which is ideal for a weekend trip. These are my tips on what to pack for a short trips!
These are the items that are most important to bring. Pretty much all of them will stay in my purse or day-bag (like my phone!), but they’re definitely things you don’t want to forget.
- Passport – if travelling internationally, it’ll be one of the only valid proofs of ID you can use. Keep it safe!
- Phone and charger – consider bringing a portable charger in addition to a wall plug if you’re planning on being out and using your phone lots during the day
- Camera – as a travel blogger and Instagrammer, I need my camera with me on trips! To be fair, my phone is ancient and its camera is trash, so if you’re comfortable taking all your pictures on a crystal clear Pixel or iPhone, you don’t need a DSLR.
- Camera paraphenalia – DO NOT FORGET A MEMORY CARD IN YOUR CAMERA. Yes, I have done this. I don’t usually bring my camera charger when I pack for short trips, since if I charge mine before hand as my camera’s battery is quite long lasting.
- Travel tickets – if you have a hard copy of your bus/train/plane tickets, make sure you pack them! Keep them somewhere easy to access.
- Bullet Journal – this is a very “me” thing to pack, but I like to have my plans written down!
When I’m travelling for the sake of travel, and know I’m going to play tourist, I like to plan my clothing ahead of time. Consider what your plans are for your trip, and pack accordingly. I try to reuse as many articles of clothing as I can – the ultimate capsule wardrobe – to cut down on space. This list is an example specifically for my trip to London, so don’t take it as gospel of exactly what to pack for yours!
- Jeans (black) – worn on day 1, not packed
- Bodysuit (black) – worn on days 1&2, not packed
- Cardigan (black-ish) – worn day 1, not packed, available as extra layer for days 2&3
- 1pr Tights (black) – worn on days 2&3
- 1 Skirt (black, floral) – Worn on day 2
- 1 Dress (black) – Worn on day 3
And that’s it! That gives me three outfits: Jeans, bodysuit and cardigan for day 1, a bodysuit and skirt for day 2, and a dress for day 3. Pack a few accessories that fit the season to add some colour or detail to your wardrobe. I’m bringing a scarf and a hat, since it’s winter. Don’t forget to pack socks and underwear as needed, as well as a good pair of walking shoes or boots.
It may seem a bit silly or extravagant to pick out all my outfits in advance, but I find it’s so much easier that way. 6 articles of clothing, only 3 of them packed, and I’m dressed for 3 days in outfits that I know I like. Everything I’m bringing is black, so I don’t have to worry about mixing and matching colours. If you like a bit more diversity in your wardrobe, keep contrasting colours in mind when you plan what items you’ll reuse.
While I love makeup, I don’t love travelling with it. I don’t like packing it up, I don’t like thinking about it being damaged, and I don’t like it taking up a lot of space. I honestly don’t think the brands are important, just pack what works best for you. Here’s what I try to limit myself to when I pack for a short trip:
- Foundation & makeup sponge
- Mascara (1, black)
- Liquid lipstick (1 bold, 1 neutral) – I prefer any long-lasting lip colour for travel, since I don’t have to worry about having to reapply throughout the day.
- Liquid eyeliner (1, black)
- Makeup brushes (eyebrow, contour, eye shadow (3))
- My travel Holy Grail palette: The Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Palette
All together, that’s 6 makeup products and 4 applicators. Not bad! Non-makeup cosmetics include:
- Makeup remover wipes – easier to transport and use than a liquid bottle
- Hairbrush and elastics
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
I don’t usually pack hair products or bodywash, since they tend to be supplied by most hotels and AirBnBs. If they aren’t, I’ll pop out to a shop and get a mini-bottle, but I haven’t had to yet.
All packed and ready to go!
Contrary to the stock photo I used at the beginning of this post, I don’t pack my laptop for short travel anymore! I used to pack it when I travelled for conventions and needed to be online for social media management, but when I’m travelling for the sake of it and playing tourist, I find that I’m happier when I don’t have my laptop with me. It’s not taking up space, I’m not worried about it breaking or getting lost or stolen, and I don’t feel the need to work with it being around. I can upload my photos when I get home. You’ll get a London blog post sooner or later, but I’m going to be enjoying the city while I’m there!