This is especially important on an itinerary where you will be moving and changing locations a good bit – cannot be underestimated. In fact, it can be the difference between an enjoyable vacation and a miserable one! You will never meet anyone who says “I wish I had packed heavier” when they return from a journey. Rick Steves, the Public TV European travel guru, only allows the members of his escorted tours to bring 1 carry-on size piece of luggage per person, even when the tour is 3 weeks long! Can’t be done? Yes it can…and it should! I'm taking the challenge when I go to Thailand. I didn't do so well traveling to Florida.
Admittedly, I may be ready to make a big bonfire and burn the clothing in that carry-on when I return home from my journey, but the advantages, I feel, will outweigh the disadvantages by a huge margin!
3 Reasons to Pack Light
Every morning I will dress quickly in whatever outfit that is clean and appropriate for the day. I will think of my wardrobe as my “travel uniform.” I will be in Thailand to learn and expand my horizons…not worry about what I am going to wear, which is totally out of my comfort zone. Doing a little laundry along the way won’t kill anyone – in fact, it can be a real adventure!
- I will be moving quickly from place to place. Although others will be transporting my luggage, I don't want to worry myself or them with big suitcases and whether it will fit on the train, bus, or taxi. A lot of overseas hotels have no elevator, so lugging heavy bags up and downstairs can be a real bummer.
- Having too much luggage “marks” you as a typical tourist. Con artists figure you’re helpless and you become a serious pickpocket or scam target.
- I'll save enough money in checked luggage fees to treat myself to some special “extras.” I'll also save time by not having to wait around at luggage carousels in strange airports. I'll be off starting my adventure while everyone else is standing around waiting for their bags to arrive.
Here are my suggestions for cutting back on the amount of “stuff” you think you need on your next trip:
Spread out everything you think you might need on the living room floor. Pick up each item one at a time and ask yourself “Will I really use this enough to justify carrying it over the Swiss Alps?” (or wherever you are heading) When in doubt, leave it out!
- Don’t pack for the worst-case scenario…Pack for the best-case and buy yourself out of any jams along the way. Risk shivering for a day rather than taking a heavy jacket. Buy a cheap umbrella from one of the many street vendors who "miraculously" appear when the drops start to fall. If you think it “might come in handy”, it should stay home.
- Pack exactly the same whether you’re traveling for three weeks or three months. Rather than take a whole trip’s supply of toiletries, take enough to get started and replace them along the way. Believe it or not, in other countries they use toothpaste, lotion, hair gel, soap and (sometimes) deodorant! It’s fun to go into a general store and stock up on local brands on the fly!
- Invest in a good quality piece of luggage that fits your needs. Rick Steves offers a few options in his travel store that are reasonably priced and come with or without wheels. If you are healthy enough to carry your bag, do it…suitcases on wheels don’t get along with cobblestone streets very well.
So weed out the unnecessary items, pack your bag and go walk around the block a few times to get a good idea of what you will be dealing with. You will thank me later! Remember, in your travels, you’ll meet two kinds of tourists – those who pack light and those who wish they had!
The Diplomat Beach Resort: A South Florida Icon
Voted one of the top 10 resorts in Florida by Condé Nast Traveler Choice Awards 2018, The Diplomat Beach Resort is ideally situated between Miami and Fort Lauderdale along Hollywood's Gold Coast.
Soak up the breezy South Florida lifestyle at our playground by the sea. Our oceanfront resort features two beachside pools, Kids’ Club, Dip & Slide Waterpark, and a private beach with an array of water sports options such as jet skiing, kayaking, and paddleboarding.
Spa lovers will want to indulge at Diplomat Spa, where rhythms of the ocean inspire soothing treatments and healing therapies. Yoga enthusiasts will enjoy a magical sunrise practice on the sand.
Take your pick from 8 culinary concepts led by celebrity chefs Geoffrey Zakarian and Michael Schulson, including Monkitail, voted #1 Best New Restaurant of 2017 by USA Today's reader's choice, and Four Diamond AAA-rated Diplomat Prime.
Our sun-splashed and spacious rooms and suites feature stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean or Intracoastal Waterway and thoughtful touches like vintage-inspired art, luxurious amenities, and plush bedding.
- Private beach, infinity and lagoon pools, cabanas
- Dip & Slide Waterpark, Kids' Club
- 8 culinary concepts led by celebrity chefs
- Complimentary Diplomat marina dockage to 4 hours, when you dine with us
- Diplomat Spa and fitness center
- 200,000 sq. ft. indoor and outdoor meeting and event space
What To Do Around Here
Find your family-friendly activities at and near our resort. The trolley goes downtown to historic culture and museums, while a water taxi ride will take to Fort Lauderdale attractions. Everglades National Park is only 30 minutes away.
Stroll along the historic Hollywood Boardwalk, or explore Fort Lauderdale's Las Olas Boulevard or Miami's South Beach Art Deco District on Lincoln Road. World-class shopping is available at Aventura Mall and Bal Harbour Shops.