Here's a lovely flattering shot of me packing for my trip. All the important stuff going on here. So what exactly went into my bag?
Let's find out.
Osprey Porter 46L in Salsa Red. Click through the link and you can see it listed on Amazon. I got mine as a Christmas present from my lovely sister Shawn. I ordered it through Moosejaw, an American website. If you click on Moosejaw, it will lead to their website's page for the Porter.
Why did I choose the Porter? Well I wanted a smaller backpack that I could take as a carry on for my trip. I was planning on flying with Ryan Air a few times and didn't want to pay for their hold.
The dimensions of the bag are 22 x 14 x 9" or 55 x 35 x 23 cms which more or less fits in most carryon limits. With my last Ryan Air flight to Milan, I had to check my bag and that was only because they ran out of room in the main part of the aircraft. If they do not have room for your carry on they will not charge to place it in the hold. My bag made it safe and sound. On my flight to Barcelona and home from Madrid, I had no problems carrying it on. I never had to weigh or measure the bag.
The bag has a few buckles and straps which help compress the bags contents to make them a lot smaller. I've also learned a tactic of filling my purse with all my heavier items so that my bag weighs a lot less. It made it through Ryan Air and Iceland Air's weight restrictions. The zipper also has lockable sliders which were quick and easy to make sure my bag was secure.
Inside there is a zippered pocket along one of the walls which was very handy in keeping things secure and separate from the main bag. Another zippered pocket on the top exterior was helpful in holding miscellaneous items like earplugs, flashlight, and dusting powder.
When I went on my Topdeck trip there guidelines for bags were "We recommend soft bags, suitcases or frameless backpacks, plus a small day pack or carry bag. No external framed bags please, as they damage other bags on the coach. Please limit your luggage to a maximum of 20kg. Maximum allowable size for all backpacks must not exceed 70cm x 45cm x 25cm." I learned quickly though that I had the smallest bag on the trip and a lot of people were tugging along large suitcases. I got quite a few amazed comments about the size of my bag which I took with pride as I jealously eyed their packing space in those jumbo jet bags.
I was happy with my tiny bag. It was quick to get on and I could run along after our guide with ease and not have to worry about the pavement or cobblestones.
The next thing in my bags were my Eagle Creek packing cubes. I got four cubes for my trip but only ended up using three of them. The main one was 14.2 x 9.8 x 3.2 inches in black, the half cube at 9.8 x 7.1 x 3.2 inches in black, the tube cube at 10 x 4 x 2 inches in blue. The one I did not end up using was the tube cube. I just didn't need it during this trip. I used the main one for packing my tops and bottoms. The half cube for underwear and socks. The half tube cube was used to hold my chargers, adaptors and other miscellaneous items.
I really liked my Eagle Creek packing cubes. They made my life so easy. I pulled them out and rearranged my bag. Made going through the airports super easy. I didn't have to worry about all my clothes shifting around in my bag when I was wearing it. I would recommend purchasing a set like the one on Amazon. Click through the link, the sets come in blue, black, red and green. Another alternative to the Eagle Creek brand is Ebags which come in sets and have different patterns for a more fun look.
Alright so what was in my cubes. Clothes. Not a lot of them but they did the job.
2 tank tops from Bootlegger, one in white and one in black.
1 green long sleeved sweater from American Eagle.
1 blue dress from Target.
1 black long sleeved light cardigan.
7 pairs of socks (Did not need this many!)
5 pairs of underwear. (Should have brought more!)
1 pajama top
1 pajama bottom
1 North Face rain jacket
1 Harley Davidson hoodie zip up
2 pairs of jeans, one black and one blue
2 pairs of leggings, one black and one grey
1 pair of mittens
1 pink toque
2 shoes, one Toms, one Adidas trainers
1 flip flops
2 pairs of earrings
Small travel perfume
Lush's shampoo bar
travel hand crank flashlight
hearos ear plugs
1 envelope containing important items such as copies of passport, travel plans, etc
1 day pack ( Which was just a Target backpack, the straps started fraying and coming apart on the first day of my Topdeck tour. It soon became a glorified Tapir carrier)
1 pair of blue slippers which came in handy for getting comfy in hostels
1 travel towel
13" Macbook Pro
Changing cables and adaptors for all of it
I'll add more if I think I have forgotten anything.
Please note I purchased some items after I left Canada. One umbrella in Cardiff which was lost and replaced by Umbrella in Manchester. In Liverpool I left one scarf behind purchased a dress, tights and a shaver. In Domodossola I purchased 2 tank tops, nail clippers, 1 zip bag and face moisturizer. In Vienna I purchased new deodorant. In Budapest I purchased new undies. In Amsterdam I purchased 2 shirts and deodorant.
All this was accompanied by multiple postcards, one fan, painting squares, music box, large stuffed Tapir, cheese, mask, and small metal bike. Which were the souvenirs I picked up along the way.
I think I packed the right amount, sure it meant I wore things a few days in a row but I was able to do laundry in Liverpool, Domo and in Prague. I never came into any situation where someone told me I smelled really bad and that they were unfriending me.
I got use out of almost everything in my bag except for my sink plug and washing soap. These will not be coming with me on my trip to Spain. I also won't be bringing with me a few other items like my travel diary and daypack.
I'll possibly do an updated list on what I am going to pack for my two weeks in Spain.
Let me know if you have any questions about anything on my list.