A Problem for "Light" Packers

May 11th, 2006, 07:43 PM
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A Problem for "Light" Packers

I have been reading all the threads about packing light. I concede it is possible to do it if you are just going on vacation and to places with more or less the same weather. But what to do if you are trying to combine work with leisure and visit places with very different temperatures?

Here is my problem:
1)this coming September, I will be attending a conference in Cairo, and then on to another conference in Luxor, Egypt. All together, 10 days of very hot weather;

2) From there, I will have to fly to London and from there take the train down to Brighton, UK, for another meeting that will last three days (5days in England);

3) Finally, on September 23, I will take a short vacation. I will fly to ROME, to spend a whole week there - my very first visit to Italy. I imagine it will still be quite warm in Rome.

Now, light packers, what should I take in my 22 roll on suit-case??? Please, help!

Brazilnut is offline  
May 11th, 2006, 07:46 PM
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It would be helpful to know your gender.

Larry J
LarryJ is offline  
May 11th, 2006, 07:56 PM
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First of all it most likely won't be cold in the UK in Sept so you don't have to pack winter wear. Of course it won't be as hot as Egypt (few places are). Don't take any heavy clothes at all. If it gets chilly in the UK - well that is what layers are for. So the same light weight shirts you'll wear in Egypt or Rome are fine for Brighton too - w/ just a cardigan or light jacket if is cool.

Yes - which gender?

But in general I could still do it in a 22 inch bag. One could definitely do it in a 24 incher (though that is too big for carry on - it is still a nice manageable size)

For the business meetings - are you expected to wear formal business attire?
janisj is online now  
May 11th, 2006, 07:59 PM
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I actually think that this is not a problem itinerary for packing. For example, your small items (panties, bras, socks) are all re-usable throughout the trip. So, pack a week of those and no more worries.

Per your outerwear: a jacket will do amazing things for you. I would pack layers (maybe 2 long sleeves, a jacket, a sweater) and just reserve the warmer garments for London. Also, you can buy things in Egypt for cheap and wear them there (lightweight tunics and such), then either jettison them or carry them along with you (they will be light and probably work for Rome as well).

Don't take a lot of extras. For example, unless you are seriously planning on going to the beach, leave the bathing suit at home. Unless you are a hiker, there is no need for heavy boots, etc. Your conference wear will be good wherever you are because you will probably be climatized wherever you are.

Wear stuff over and over, wash when you can and yes, 22 is a good size no matter where you are going.
laclaire is offline  
May 11th, 2006, 08:03 PM
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Ok, but in this case it is not gender, but "sex".

I am a 57 yr-old woman.
Brazilnut is offline  
May 11th, 2006, 08:13 PM
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I forgot to add that the conferences I will be attending are "academic" ones, so I do not have to dress too formally.

I was thinking about taking two-to-three long summer skirts to wear in Egypt and Italy, a pair of dressy black pants, one of black stretch jeans, and a pair of regular jeans (don't travel without them), and then about 6 mix-matching top.

I like the layers suggestions.
Thank your all for the help.

Brazilnut is offline  
May 11th, 2006, 08:59 PM
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I may have been misinformed, but the employee in a Samsonite luggage outlet told me that some international airlines were limiting carry-ons to 20 inches. It might be worth checking the airline regs for the airlines you are using.
socialworker is online now  
May 11th, 2006, 09:48 PM
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My suggestion would be to pack for the hot weather only. The exception would be to take a lightweight windbreaker -- it does get windy at times along the Nile.

First thing to do in England is to go to a Marks and Sparks department store and grab a cheapo, but attractive, sweater or two to layer under the windbreaker for warmth. Throw them away at Heathrow on your way down to Rome.

Have a great trip!

nukesafe is offline  
May 12th, 2006, 12:21 AM
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Suggestion: Mail or ship local wardrobes to each destination.
GSteed is offline  
May 12th, 2006, 01:27 AM
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Suggestion: plan on doing some laundry and wearing fewer items but more often.

It isn't gender, it's "sex"????? What kind of conference is this, anyway?
Intrepid1 is offline  
May 12th, 2006, 01:29 AM
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I often combine work with leisure travel and simply don't bother with the 22" diktat. If there is a way I can fit everything needed for a a winter week working in Vienna (wearing "real" business clothes) with accompanying business social events (some quite formal), a day or two of skiing, a week of sightseeing around Vienna and a few days elsewhere (Krakow or Venice, for example) into a carryon AND still have room for souvenirs, I'd like to hear about it.

Unless you plan to do laundry en-route, wear essentially the same clothes over and over, AND buy nothing that isn't very small and squishable, forget the 22". A 24" suitcase will give you extra room to carry everything you need and you can still take a small carryon for souvenirs and/or valuables.

There's no shame in checking your luggage.
BTilke is offline  
May 12th, 2006, 01:49 AM
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Just check your luggage.
There is absolutely no way that I could pack for an itinerary like that in a carry-on bag. Nor would I want to.
Tulips is offline  
May 12th, 2006, 02:28 AM
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I cannot possibly advise a woman on what to wear or bring on your trip. We have done Cairns and the South Island of New Zealand in June which means snow and tropical weather and still used the same suitcases that we use to travel anywhere. In any case your trip is 22 days and I see no way of doing this trip without doing laundry somewhere along the way. Perhaps more than once. I would use whatever suitcase you have whether it is 22 or 24. Pack the fewest warm weather clothes as I suspect you could have your laundry done for you cheaply in Egypt. September in England or Italy should not be that cold so a light jacket/sweater should suffice. You can always buy something else to wear along the way if need be.
mjs is offline  
May 12th, 2006, 02:47 AM
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On a recent business trip I realised I brought too much but could have done with 1/2 and used the laundry service that a hotel p[rovides and charged to expenses. Also I bought an extra bag thatis soft to use on the trip hoome for any shopping or extra items I brought back.
SiobhanP is offline  
May 12th, 2006, 02:48 AM
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I've managed a 22 day, London-Portugal-India-Thailand-Vancouver, business-pleasure trip in April with carry-on, so Brazilnut, it definitely is possible to for you to manage it on your upcoming trip. In addition to the suggestions already made here, you might consider the following:

1) No one but you cares if you wear the same clothes repeatedly. You can always arrange to have a few items laundered (or wash them yourself).

2) Colour-coordination is important. Don't pack any clothes that can't be worn with at least two other items in your wardrobe, and try to limit yourself to one basic colour combination. I usually travel with a black-blue-pink combination or a brown-tan combination.

3) Shoes are often a female would-be light packer's downfall, because we tend to buy shoes that work with only one or two outfits. If you don't already own a couple of pairs of multi-occasion, comfortable shoes that work with your planned wardrobe, buy them this summer and break them in well before you travel. I generally travel with a super-comfortable pair of Joseph Siebel walking shoes (if it's a pleasure-only trip) or a comfortable pair of black loafers (if I'm travelling for business) and a pair of lightweight black vinyl sandals that actually look quite respectable and that I can wear on the beach or even in the water and not care what happens to them (they only cost $16). I wear the walking shoes to travel, pack the sandals and then pack one other pair of shoes (either a second pair of sandals if I'm mostly travelling in a hot climate or a "fun" pair of shoes that I can still walk in, especially if I might be travelling where there is inclement weather any my first pair of shoes could end up getting wet).

3) A lightweight cashmere-silk pashmina is very useful on the plane (I'd rather have it next to my face than a yucky airplane blanket), as a scarf to warm up a lightweight jacket, to cover my shoulders (or head) if I'm travelling in a conservative country, as a lightweight throw for naps in my hotel room, etc. Tie Rack sells some nice ones.

4) Ruthlessly edit down your cosmetics, so that you take only the absolute essentials, in travel-size containers wherever possible. I rely on hotel shampoo and body lotion, but always pack my own facial moisturizer and toothpaste. But don't forget essential "what-if" products - blister bandaids, Immodium, cold pills in a blister pack, mosquito repellent, hand sanitizer.

5) Instead of taking heavy guidebooks, photocopy the relevant pages and then throw them out when you don't need them anymore.

6) Pack clothes that don't have to look pristine to look decent. I avoid crisp black and navy clothes, as well as most white clothes. I find that heathery, flecked, textured and striped clothes seem to stand up better. (Heathery colours already look like they're covered in lint, striped shirts look less wrinkled, etc.)

7) Try on absolutely everything before you pack it. If you're like me and your weight fluctuates a bit, it can be really frustrating to discover that you packed something that is uncomfortably tight or too loose. Clothes (especially trousers) with a bit of stretch are essential.

8) Use an expandable suitcase. Start off with it unexpanded, so that you can save space for purchases during your trip. You can always check the suitcase on the way home if it doesn't fit in the overhead compartment anymore in its expanded state.

9) Edit your conference papers once the conference is over and/or mail them home to yourself so that you don't have to lug them around with you.

10) As others have noted, the UK won't be that cold in September - probably between 16C and 24C.

11) I love twinsets for travelling. Wear the tank top by itself or under a jacket, wear the two layers together if it gets a bit cool, wear the cardigan over a tshirt or a dress. I usually pack a black twinset and a brightly coloured one that coordinates with a sundress. Land's End has some nice, inexpensive cotton ones.
Kate_W is offline  
May 12th, 2006, 04:59 AM
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"It isn't gender, it's "sex"????? What kind of conference is this, anyway?"

Intrepid1: possibly the kind of conference in which 'gender' refers to grammatical categories of languages, such as 'chateau' being a masculine gender noun in French, or 'table' being a feminine gender noun in the same language. Whereas 'sex' - as a noun, not a verb - refers solely to biological categories of animals, without reference to the behaviour of same.
Sue_xx_yy is offline  
May 12th, 2006, 06:44 AM
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Brazilnut's comment confused me too. In my Webster's unabridged, the 2nd definition of gender is "sex" w/o any qualifications. None of the definitions mention behavior.

Brazilnut: Kate_W's suggestions are among the best you have received. Those that say it can't be done (or they wouldn't do it) are valid -- for them.

But many of us have taken longer trips to more diverse locales in a 19 or 21 inch bag. So it obviously is possible.

One of my trips was 3 weeks including a week in the country w/ hiking, etc. and a week in London with a formal occasion. And I mean FORMAL - long gloves and the whole nine yards (something about being in the presence of Her Majesty the Queen) -- and I still easily managed in a 21 inch bag. And I didn't have to do much laundry except for washing out underwear/socks and a couple of tops. (and actually - I didn't even wear every garment I took)

You don't face those types of special problems so I don't see any reason you couldn't do it if you actually wanted to.
janisj is online now  
May 12th, 2006, 02:32 PM
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IntrepidI, Sue xx yy, janisj,

As a matter of fact, my meeting in Egypt will be precisely about "Gender Studies", my area of concentration in Anthropology. And we do make a difference between "sex" and "gender". To put it simply, we use gender to refer to the "social construction of the sexes". "Gender" explains social inequalities between the sexes. When working with statistics, or referring to actual people, we use "sex" (male/female), not "gender" (masculine/feminine).
Brazilnut is offline  
May 12th, 2006, 02:34 PM
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And Everybody, specially Kate, thank you very much for the suggestions.

I will pack mostly summer clothes and a matching jacket, for cooler weather.
Brazilnut is offline  

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