Over the course of our Selfish travels we’ve had several people ask what we pack for a year abroad. Most people assume we’re hauling backpacks around the world, which would probably have been a good idea, however Mrs. Selfish and I are too old for that type of travel.
Mrs. Selfish and I are in our 30’s. Not really ancient, but my days of sleeping on floors are probably over. I do appreciate the feel of a good mattress, and enjoy staying at fancy hotels, so it’s probably safe to say we fall more in the flashpacker category.
Here’s some of the things we ended up bringing for our year long trek around the globe.
1. A crappy looking backpack to store your valuables.
As per the DOs of traveling, Mrs. Selfish and I rock a 10+ year old, frayed backpack to house most of our important documents and devices. I can’t tell you the number of people I’ve seen on the road keeping time on their rolex watches, bandying about their designer purses, or taking pictures with their iPad 4. They make traveling easier for the rest of us.
2. One or two all in one power converters.
I love the Insten Universal World Wide power converter. So far we’ve used this sucker in every continent but South America. The only downside is that you still risk frying some of your devices in Asia and other parts of the world since they don’t convert electrical output current and voltage.
3. Small laptop.
Useful for staying in touch with the rest of the world. Mrs. Selfish likes to rock the Lenovo X230 which starts at a mighty 2.99 lbs.
4. A compact power strip.
Given that you’ll likely have a few devices with you, I highly recommend a portable power strip like the Outlets to Go power strip. It’s extremely compact and has room for 3 power cords, as well as a USB device. My only gripe would be the bright blue light, that shines like a lighthouse.
5. A collapsible and expandable bag.
Or two! Mrs. Selfish and I ended up bringing 3 Briggs & Riley bags with us to Europe, and 1 Briggs and Riley bag and 1 Samsonite bag to Asia and Australia.
In hindsight, I wish we had brought 2 B&R bags since the Samsonite ended up dying midway through China. I like Briggs & Riley for two reason: 1) They have a lifetime warranty, 2) The zippers never die. You can also buy them for cheap on ebay.