You might be wondering how one packs for a road trip of an indeterminate length. I think most “minimalists” would just pack a small bag and be done with it.
I, on the other hand, will do whatever I can to avoid excess laundry time. Especially while I’m traveling! Because I have one 28-night stay and one 30-night stay in the next 65 days, I have packed accordingly:
1.) Small backpack. I’ve had one of these for several years, having redeemed “Groupon Bucks” for it. This includes my laptop computer and other small electronic gadgets such as my shaver. In addition, I have a snow beanie, snow gloves, five socks and underwear, and a few extra long sleeve lightweight shirts. I expect to be able to “live out of this backpack” for my 1 and 2 night stays to avoid having to lug my larger bags out of my car. (Does that make me smart or lazy?)
2.) Gregory 30L backpack – This was OurNextLife recommended for a trip I never took. In here, I have some lightweight long pants, swim trunks, shorts, extra shirts, sweatshirt, and my remaining socks and underwear. I also tossed in a sun hat, a bag of disposable flossers, and some extra toothbrushes. I’m guessing I have about 2 weeks worth of socks. I run out of socks faster than my underwear….which defeats the purpose of laundry efficiency, but there you go. Maybe I’ll grab some extra socks along the way. Ha.
3.) Big ass suitcase. In here, I have some of my more wintery clothes, a robe, slippers, jeans, and all my of white undershirts. I also tossed in my ear thermometer, the disposable covers for that, my shaver’s cleaning station and refill cartridges. There’s actually room in here for more stuff If it came down to it, I probably could drop the Swiss Army backpack and consolidate into the big ass suitcase + Gregory 30L, but i prefer the current setup for the time being. Plus, the Swiss Army is definitely the preferred way to protect my laptop.
The clothes I left at home were basically just my dress clothes (I guess that shows you my priorities/interests?) and excess outerwear.
I have a sleeping pad, tent, a 55 degree sleeping bag, a 30 degree sleeping bag, and 2 camping pillows. I have no idea when or if I will be using any of this stuff, but if I get stranded, I guess I’m prepared when it comes to shelter. (Sleeping in a Civic would not be comfortable!)
1.) Small toiletry holder – this has travel size stuff that I already owned – tooth brush, travel size roll-on deodorant, toothpaste and sunscreen. I also tossed in some OTC meds that I happened to already have and my nail clippers. I will also use this for the above mentioned short term stays with the small backpack.
2.) Trader Joes Paper Grocery bag which has a full size box of q tips, a full size aerosol deodorant, full size toothpaste, full size mouthwash, full size sunscreen, a box of Glasses Lens Wipes. I also threw in my can of protein powder, cup and scoop.
I also threw in the remainder of my 10 lbs protein powder bag, my hiking poles and hiking shoes. The only items I bought from the store were a 1 gallon Kroger branded Purified Drinking Water, a box of Clif Bars and a box of Granola Bars.
The bottom line is that if this road trip turns into a one way relocation, I’ll have plenty of clothes for variable climates for a good while (Unless I need dress clothes! Ha.), and if for some reason my life leads to me to downsize along the way, I can certainly adapt to that as well. The goal of this whole ‘financial independence pursuit’ has always been to have options in my life. I might not be conservatively financially independent or permanently early retired, but I have given myself some options, so that sounds like a pretty obvious success to me.