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  1. #1
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    Travel items for when you aren't travelling

    I'm currently living in Australia and we are pretty limited on travel at the moment. To sooth my craving, I'm intensely researching travel set ups, reading packing lists and making a dream Amazon shopping cart.

    As we can't travel anywhere, it's really made me start to think about travel items vs. everyday items. As much as I enjoy shopping for technical backpacking gizmos, realistically, even in 'normal' times I'd say we are only travelling 10% of the year. The rest of the year, we are living our usual city life. I try to live a minimalist lifestyle as much as I can, while being comfortable and cozy. We are in Australia on a temporary visa and there is every possibility that we will need to pack up and move elsewhere in the next few years.

    All of this has come together in my brain to wonder "how can I optimise my usual everyday lifestyle for travel". What kinds of clothes work well for travel but also work for my business casual office and vintage style preferences? What gadgets work in my EDC but would also totally work for a 6 week one bagging vacation?

    I'd love to hear what items you use and love that have a lot of overlap! Some examples from my list are linen towels, a stuffable backpack, Dr. Bronners for handwashing delicates, snuggly locally made merino cardigans and a black mystery fibre skirt that doesn't crease, and small cotton pouches as 'kits' in my bedside drawer (makeup, nails, jewellery) that could be tossed in a backpack for travelling.

    Share your favs and help me add to that dream shopping cart Wink.
    Last edited by lizalou; 09-16-2020 at 06:43 PM.

  2. #2
    Forum Member sturbridge's Avatar
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    I use Cubelets and Ghost Whales extensively for everyday, as well as for travel. I have various kits put together, that I mix and match depending on what I'll be doing. Almost all of my clothing purchases these days (I'm retired) are clothes that also work well for travel (light weight knits and performance fabrics). Gadgets I pick up these days can be used for a picnic/overnight with family as well as for a real vacation. For the last few years, I've been buying fewer things that are travel only. They just don't get used enough to justify the space, imo.

    So what are my top items? I have cutlery, a bandana and salt and pepper in a small GW. I have a cubelet with masks and gloves. I have another cubelet for what I call my "comfort items", ie things that save the day and keep the mishaps to a minimum: safety pins, super glue, dental floss, small tools, first aid, nail clippers etc. A mini qkit with a battery for my phone. Another mini q kit with supplies to wash my hands. These items come with me most of the time, whether out for just the day, or several days.
    Proud owner of: Pop Tote in cloud, Aeronaut 30 in steel/iberian, Travel Cubelet in Dawn, Travel Cubelet in Nebulous Grey , SE in steel parapack, SSB in black halcyon, Truck in Nebulous Gray, Co-Pilot in Black Halcyon/Iberian,Pickup Truck in Mars Red Small Zipped shop bag in black, Small Zipped shop bag in Dawn numerous pouches, 3D cubes, Q kits and straps, Cubelets and Ghost Whales!

  3. #3
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    +1 on packable backpack. I don't use one every day, but I do use it hiking locally or for day adventures.
    +1 on turkish towel - It's what I use every day and will bring if a trip necessitates it
    +1 travel cubelet (oops, it has a new name, huh?) as my normal purse or travel purse


    Also,

    + PCSB goes with me on most trips and I also use it when I bring my camera with me places locally, a sweater, or similar
    + wool buff - I love that thing - It replaces the warmth of a beanie on cold days locally or traveling. It keeps hair out of my face on windy days. It's what I use as an eye mask while trying to sleep on airplanes. It also just acts as a neck gaiter on cold mornings.
    + a basic zip up fleece goes on every trip but also it used a lot at home
    + long sleeve SPF shirts, athletic tank tops, athletic shorts
    + bikini tops that double as sports bras / are supportive

    Now that I think of it, there isn't anything in my travel clothes kit that I don't wear at home. There really doesn't need to be? None of it works as business casual except dresses, I guess, but I don't get dressed up on most trips. To me, a pretty scarf can dress up black prana "hiking" pants enough to pass. Smilie

  4. #4
    Forum Member haraya's Avatar
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    I am not very good at unpacking promptly, so it doesn't work to use travel gear for everyday use! Embarrassment Big Grin. I tend to have doubles of my essential gear such as meds & toiletries - sometimes triples (road trip, plane trip, home). With that said, my clothing is the same whether for travel or home - I found the qualities that I love for travel (breathability, packability, mix-and-matchiness) work well for everyday wear as well.

    A couple of items acquired for travel that I am using right now:

    - Cocoon merino/silk travel blanket: I found out about this via Cristina and it is so lightweight yet warm that I have started using it at my desk here at home. (We have an old house and the heating/cooling is very erratic - one room may be freezing while another room roasts.)

    (In general I LOVE super-soft shawls and scarves... I think perhaps they are my grownup versions of security blankets? Smilie So I always have one in my carryon or on my person, almost any time of the year.)

    - Luminary 12: Love this as a sightseeing daypack for travel, but also as a minimalist EDC for running errands in the time of corona.
    Last edited by haraya; 09-17-2020 at 11:54 AM.

  5. #5
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    I got bar shampoo for a trip once, and kept on using it at home. Smilie

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by sturbridge View Post
    Gadgets I pick up these days can be used for a picnic/overnight with family as well as for a real vacation. For the last few years, I've been buying fewer things that are travel only. They just don't get used enough to justify the space, imo.

    So what are my top items? I have cutlery, a bandana and salt and pepper in a small GW. I have a cubelet with masks and gloves. I have another cubelet for what I call my "comfort items", ie things that save the day and keep the mishaps to a minimum: safety pins, super glue, dental floss, small tools, first aid, nail clippers etc. A mini qkit with a battery for my phone. Another mini q kit with supplies to wash my hands. These items come with me most of the time, whether out for just the day, or several days.
    This is exactly my thought process - in order to earn it's place in our home, I want things we own to be able to be used fairly often. I need to make myself a mini 'comfort kit' for my EDC, there are times when you just need a safety pin and nothing else will do!

  7. #7
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    I try to repurpose travel items as much as I can. Small accessories - travel trays, GWOPs, cubelets, 3D organizer cubes - are deployed all over my condo. A packable jacket I wear on all but the coldest days. I use Turkish towels and always take one with me when I fly; they're really versatile.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lami View Post
    Now that I think of it, there isn't anything in my travel clothes kit that I don't wear at home. There really doesn't need to be? None of it works as business casual except dresses, I guess, but I don't get dressed up on most trips. To me, a pretty scarf can dress up black prana "hiking" pants enough to pass. Smilie
    I found myself buying clothes that aren't my usual style for travelling and then I never reach for them at home because they don't feel like 'me'. I do wish there were more options for womens plus size merino blend clothing that wasn't a sporty t-shirt or stretchy leggings but until someone makes them, my usual cotton scoop necks will have to do!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by haraya View Post
    Cocoon merino/silk travel blanket: I found out about this via Cristina and it is so lightweight yet warm that I have started using it at my desk here at home. (We have an old house and the heating/cooling is very erratic - one room may be freezing while another room roasts.)

    - Luminary 12: Love this as a sightseeing daypack for travel, but also as a minimalist EDC for running errands in the time of corona.
    I LOVE the look of that blanket! Is it too big to use as a scarf in winter as well?

    My DLBP is my fav daypack for travel but I'd forgotten about it tucked away in my S25 until a recent local 10k walk - it would have been perfect and I really need to start using it now that it's getting warmer and we can get out more.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celimlodyn View Post
    I got bar shampoo for a trip once, and kept on using it at home. Smilie
    Toiletries are a great category for this! We also use bar shampoo/conditioner/soap and even my normal toiletries are all pretty small and easy to toss into a 3DC for travelling. I aim to only buy cruelty free, natural products and I also love how minimal and clean the small white and amber containers look in my drawer, but that might just be me being weird.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shortie View Post
    I try to repurpose travel items as much as I can. Small accessories - travel trays, GWOPs, cubelets, 3D organizer cubes - are deployed all over my condo. A packable jacket I wear on all but the coldest days. I use Turkish towels and always take one with me when I fly; they're really versatile.
    I haven't found a great turkish towel yet - we had some but I found even after a dozen washes they weren't very absorbative at all and my husband didn't like using them. We are in a one bedroom apartment so I want everything to pull it's weight!

  12. #12
    Forum Member melminimalist's Avatar
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    I use my packing cubes to sort and store my stuff in everyday life. My small A30 aether packing cube holds my underthings, my pcsb stores swim gear, my medium padded pouch store my ipad mini, my small pouch houses my passport and extra bank cards, a large pouch holds all my important documents and banking/tax forms. The only item that is used solely for travel and has not found an everyday use for is my one-bag travel bag, a cotopaxi nazca. I am a weirdo exception to the rule though, as a minimalist (bordering on extreme minimalist) I only own so much to begin with. During one of three evacuation pack-ups Iíve had to do this summer (busy hurricane season) the question finally dawned on me, if it isnít important enough to travel with, what true and real purpose is it serving in my life? In other words, if I donít travel with it, why keep it? It prompted yet another clean-out for me. And just in case anyone was curious, the only items I kept that I wouldnít travel with was work clothes, and camping gear, everything else was donated or sold.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    "Not all who wander are lost"
    "Love people, use things, because the opposite never works" - The Minimalists
    Synapse 25 in Olive, Aubergine Side Effect, UV A30 PCBP, Sitka PCSB

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by lizalou View Post
    I haven't found a great turkish towel yet - we had some but I found even after a dozen washes they weren't very absorbative at all and my husband didn't like using them. We are in a one bedroom apartment so I want everything to pull it's weight!
    I bought mine from Costco. They are great to wrap wet, long hair. Lightweight on my neck and they absorb so much more water than a normal towel. I've washed A LOT over the last year, and their absorbancy hasn't changed. My husband doesn't like them either, though. Too much change for him... maybe.

    https://www.costco.com/turkish-towel...100035511.html

  14. #14
    Forum Member TheLibrarian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lizalou View Post
    This is exactly my thought process - in order to earn it's place in our home, I want things we own to be able to be used fairly often. I need to make myself a mini 'comfort kit' for my EDC, there are times when you just need a safety pin and nothing else will do!
    I purchased a convertible bag (backpack/handbag/crossbody/shoulder bag) on indiegogo (vegan, cork instead of leather) that I thought would be THE answer to my EDC woes...and I'm.... not happy (others have posted about quality problems, some of which I've experienced myself). It's half perfect, half great idea-missed-the-mark.... And for $200+... it's disappointing..... (it was supposed to be the LAST PLO I ever bought...but I bought another purse 2 weeks later).

    Some times, your best intentions just don't work Scrunch Face
    Synapse 25, Aeronaut 30, Monster Truck, Travel Tray

    ď...a book is a fragile creature, it suffers the wear of time, it fears rodents, the elements, clumsy hands. If for a hundred and a hundred years everyone had been able freely to handle our codices, the majority of them would no longer exist. So the librarian protects them not only against mankind but also against nature, and devotes his life to this war with the forces of oblivion, the enemy of truth.Ē
    ― Umberto Eco

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLibrarian View Post
    I purchased a convertible bag (backpack/handbag/crossbody/shoulder bag) on indiegogo (vegan, cork instead of leather) that I thought would be THE answer to my EDC woes...and I'm.... not happy (others have posted about quality problems, some of which I've experienced myself). It's half perfect, half great idea-missed-the-mark.... And for $200+... it's disappointing..... (it was supposed to be the LAST PLO I ever bought...but I bought another purse 2 weeks later).

    Some times, your best intentions just don't work Scrunch Face
    Ugh, that's so disappointing when that happens! I've not had any success with convertible bags - a tote that can be a backpack is my dream but they are all either super heavy or ugly. I tried the Fjallraven totepack but the straps weren't right for me.

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