Pac-Man Lite

Travel is my passion. And packing light is my mission. I only fly with one carry-on. So I guess you could call me, “a man who packs light.”

1. To eliminate the possibility of lost or stolen luggage. I never check-in my bag. I just bring one carry-on. Because my vacations are usually short, losing luggage on Day 1 would pretty much ruin the trip.

2. To be mobile. As soon as I deplane, I’m out the terminal. Because my bag is a backpack, I don’t need to drop it off at a hotel or locker. I can go straight to the museum or café. I also do not use a “rolly” bag, which does not work on stairs or cobblestone.

How does minimalist packing work?

Laundry. I pack five sets of clothes (not including what I wear on the plane.) This means that I would only need to do one load of laundry for a 12-day trip. My t-shirts are polyester, my socks are SmartWool, and my underwear is microfiber. Everything hang dries in a few hours.

The Bag:

I have an Osprey Porter 46 travel backpack. It’s the largest allowable carry-on (22″ x 14″ x 9″) for most airlines. I like that it opens fully, giving you access to all of your contents. Comes with stow away shoulder straps. It’s been one of my best purchases ever.

Packing Cubes:

Packing cubes help keep you organized. They compress your clothes and save a lotta space. I slip a Bounce dryer sheet into each one to keep things “fresh.”

Travel Wardrobe:

I wear my bulky clothes on the plane. I rotate two pairs of dark blue jeans for short trips and three on longer trips. I also wear my baseball cap on the flight.


I only bring one pair. I know that this is the deal breaker for some. I wear black trekker shoes on trips. Great for walking around the city or exploring nature. Super comfortable and waterproof. They’re versatile and can match jeans or shorts.


I wear my jacket on the plane. It’s usually cold. I recommend a black jacket. It’s neutral, and dressy enough to get by.

Toiletry Kit:

I’ve had this toiletry kit forever. I’ve tried to downsize to a smaller model a few times, but this one works so well. It has a great organizer and enough room to keep medicine and vitamins all in one place. This kit has a hook for hanging. Sometimes there’s no counter space. (Sometimes there’s no counter.)


I pack a light, collapsible daysack inside of my backpack. I always have an umbrella with me. I hate rain. I also carry toilet paper, just in case…


My iPhone is the only device that I travel with. I’ll also bring AC adapters and a portable charger.

The 3-1-1 Liquids Rule:

For carry-on luggage, you can only bring one quart size bag with travel-size containers up to 3.4 oz or 100 ml. Anything larger will need to be checked-in or confiscated.

Tips & Hacks:
• I print a copy of my passport for my bag, and I also email a copy to myself.
• I have the AT&T International Day Pass for my iPhone. It costs $10 per day.
• I bring an ample supply of Airborne vitamins to stay healthy.
• I pack spare disposable masks in my backpack and daysack in case the one I’m wearing breaks.
• ChapStick & sunscreen are must-haves. Don’t forget the imodium!
• No need to carry a water bottle or heavy flask. Bottled water is available everywhere.
• Notify your bank that you’ll be using your ATM & charge cards abroad.
• TSA pre√ is well worth the money. Take the express line and never take shoes off again.

Part of what makes you a minimalist is “doing without.” I do sacrifice a few things that a lot of people wouldn’t. I don’t bring slippers, shorts, or an iPad on my travels anymore. I also don’t buy stuff on my trips. I’m too poor. All of my spending money is for food.

I’m so looking forward to traveling again! (熊本!)This kind of packing is not for everyone, but it works. It’s so “freeing.” You should try it. Pack light…