How easy is it going on a trip so light, but took me years before I have done it. When I started traveling in 1990, I’m always going on a journey with two suitcases, a large bag, and a carry- on. It is like taking my wardrobe on a trip packing too much stuff, mainly clothing. And at the end of my trip, I return home that half of my clothes haven’t worn.

From large size, I switch to medium size suitcases, and I’m still packing too much which I hate myself for it. But in recent years, I confine myself to travel a piece of carry-on luggage. Because of how bigger my bag how tempted I am to throw everything in it. 

Traveling with hand luggage isn’t easy for me, especially if going on a one-month trip, but I learn to do so. In my opinion, a woman needs more stuff than a man. But eventually, I’m glad I found how to travel light and what to pack.

I never wear a backpack and will never be

I’m small and have a back problem. I envy the women carrying a rucksack while I’m pulling my expandable wheelies. But I’m wearing my daypack to put some stuff and essential documents, as I don’t particularly appreciate wearing a purse. I use an expandable suitcase in case if I’m shopping for souvenirs I have space in my luggage.

Also, I tried to minimize during packing so I can close my luggage neatly without using the suitcase expansion. I have a separate travel outfit, which I only wear on a trip.

These are made from quick-drying fabric, ideally for self-laundry. I do the laundry every two days at the hotel sink. Sometimes I take a washing powder from home, but this is mostly available on the spot of destination.

Save time at the airport and money

These days most airlines charging extra for checked luggage. Have you seen some low fares on the internet? You will notice that check baggage not included if you read the small print or scroll down to an airline webpage. If I’m searching for a ticket, I’ll check the price with luggage included.

Even though not necessarily as I’m traveling with carry-on luggage. But for a specific reason, I’d like to go shopping on the last day of my journey. Also, there’s a weight limitation on carry-on. Most airlines allow you to carry 7 kg onboard. And I mostly exceed on my return trip. On the other hand, one thing I find easy with only have a carry-on, you’re quickly out of the airport.

My list for a one month trip

It is not for the European winter destination. But I guess you figured it out if your destination goes to cold temperature. For Southeast Asia and South America, these were my packing tips.

Tops - I prefer darker colors

  • A trekking jacket – one that you can roll. It is a light garment and usually includes a sack to put the coat when you coil it. It helps you protect from rain and cold. Like when we were in Antigua Guatemala in December, I’m surprised how cold it was and rains a lot. 
  • Five t-shirts and two sleeveless
  • One long sleeve
  • Two dresses    


  • Two dark shorts, one of them for the beach. My favorite beach short is the boardshorts from Ripcurl it dries quickly
  • One dark jeans, but if you’re going to a warm destination it can be so hot, choose a light fabric
  • One black legging, suitable for if you are on a long journey with a bus
  • eventually, a trekking pant if you do some hiking.
  • A hat is the most essential in my luggage I love the horizon breeze brimmer hat from North Face, full brim, and mesh venting.

Great significance in my suitcase

  • Two bras which are one strapless, suitable for a sleeveless
  • Four lingerie, lace fabric underwear is fast to dry. 
  • Two swimsuits and a pareo – the pareo can use multiple ways, either wrapped over the swimsuit or use as a beach towel.
  • Three pairs of socks – I pack thin socks that are comfy to wear under my rubber shoes.

Some essential things that needed

  • Sunglasses – I am always carrying two of them — one multifocal sunglasses for swimming and a regular one to wear with my contact lens.
  • Contact lenses, I pack my daily lenses when traveling — less tendance than monthly lenses. I certainly take enough supplies with me for the duration of the trip. I also take my eyeglasses for a long bus journey and on the plane. 
  • Shoes, I never packed high heels, but I bring one pair of flat sandal for in the evening particularly when going to a restaurant
  • One pair of rubber shoes the one I wore for travel
  • One pair of flip-flops I prefer the Havaianas brand; they have beautiful collections and style. 
  • Torch, I always carry a small one, if traveling to a remote island where limited on electricity, convenient to have a flashlight.
  • Padlock, some hotel safe, especially in Asia, they provide a secure deposit box, but you must have your lock.

Toiletries are easy to find on the spot

I take the smaller size to use for the first day, then look for a shop and buy things that I needed. This kind of personal care is mostly cheaper than at home.

Local medicine works better

Medicine, I usually didn’t take from home except for painkillers. I found out that some of our medication didn’t work in Asia. Such as pills for upset stomach (diarrhea).

My partner got sick while we’re on the island in the Philippines. He took almost the whole dosage of tablets I brought from home, but it didn’t help. The medication I bought in the local pharmacy was more efficient. After taking two capsules, he feels a lot better.

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