Hello travelers. thank you, thank you very much, thank you. I’m Rick Steves and I’ve spent a
quarter of my–a third of my adult life, four months out of the year, every year
for the last 30 years, living out of a bag this size. This is my home. And I want to
talk about how you pack light today, and just as I was walking over to the
theater here, people were saying, “you know we love your travel, we’re going to go on
all these trips, but there’s no way we’re going to pack in one of those bags.” You’re gonna learn, all right, I mean
you got to understand, there’s two kinds of travelers in Europe. Those who pack
light, and those who wish they pack light. Think about it, you will never meet
anybody who after five trips, brags, “every year I pack heavier.” With
experience, you get serious about packing light. You do not have a mule, if you do you are
abusing your spouse, okay. You need to be mobile. This is so
exciting, you know, and we take 15,000 people on our trips every year,
and this is a very typical gang of people on one of our tours, and one thing
they have in common is nobody is allowed to take any more than a 9 x 22 x 14 inch
carry-on the airplane size bag onto their trip, for the whole trip. Now for a lot of these people that’s a
radical concept, what, “9 x 22 x 14 inches, that was my cosmetics kit.” No, that’s
everything, and with experience you’ll get good at it.
it’s really sort of a freedom. It’s no hardship, it’s not heroic to pack
light, it is enlightened to pack light, it’s a
blessing to pack light. If I had sherpas I would set them free, because I know that the lighter you pack,
the more mobile you are, and the better trip you’re gonna have, okay. So whether you’re
taking a rucksack, or whether you’re doing the rolly bag thing, it doesn’t
matter, two weeks, two months, man, woman, winter, summer, there’s no
excuse, you need to live out of a bag this size.
That’s my self-imposed limit, 9 x 22 x 14 inches. When you travel, you see a lot of
people over there with big bags and lots of extra stuff and you wonder, “what do
they put in there, what? How do you need all that stuff?” Every year, when I pack up
and I go to Europe, for four months out of every year I take to two-month trips
every year, this is the limit one of these bags,
again, 9 x 22 x 14 inches. I look at my Europe Through the Back Door guidebook, I go through the check list, I pick up the bag on the way out
the door, “it seems–this is so light, I must be missing something,” I go back to
the checklist, I’ve got it all there. It’s remarkable how light you can travel
when you really get this figured out, and I just think it’s a beautiful thing. So I want to talk about that for the
next little while, and share with you the nitty-gritty of how you’re going to
manage packing this light. Now if you look at that bag there, this
is a soft-sided bag, and I like a soft-sided bag because you can put it in
the overhead locker, even if–I always go last on the plane. A lot of people nervously go on the
plane first because they’re worried about a place up above. I never check my bags, in the last couple
of weeks there’s been one or two times where I would have been late for
something, but I was at the airport, there was a
delay they said, “do you have your bag with you?” I said yes, “then you can go on
this flight.” You can turn on a dime when you’re
packing light. Yes it’s a drag to carry your stuff with you, but if it’s light
and if you’re mobile it is in your interest. This is very very
important. And when I go on the plane last there’s
always room to squish that, squish that, and put my bag in there. If it was hard
sided that would be tougher and I’d have to gate check it or whatever, but these
days I really like that. These are soft sided suitcases as big as
you can carry on the airplane, with a padded shoulder strap that zips away. It
looks like a soft sided suitcase when you want to be in the suitcase mode, but
when you zip that out then you have this situation here where you’re carrying it
on your back like this. I use this exclusively as a rucksack
hanging on my back. Now the time will come when I’m going to
be rolling my bag through Europe, there’s nothing wrong with that. Most of,
you know, most of my staff is women and I think all the women use the roller
bags instead of this, they’re the same size, it doesn’t matter. But as long as I’m
hardy enough and willing to do the old backpacker way, I really like this. This
is not a scientifically designed bag by any stretch of the imagination. This is a light bag, it’s too small to
have a weight distribution belt, it’s too small to have an interior frame,
I don’t care about that. It’s just hanging my suitcase on my back, okay, because you spend a lot of time
jumping off of trains and running after buses and all this sort of thing. This is a shot that a lot of people
don’t show you when they’re selling tours. These are tourists going to the
bus in the morning. And all over Europe, you’ve got groups every morning having
to pack up and go to the train station, or go to the car park, or go to the bus,
and if you can’t carry your bags, really your trip is in trouble. If you
rely on people who make their living off of helpless tourists that can’t carry
their bags, unless you got a lot of money, you’re in
trouble because they’re going to take advantage of you because you are sort of
helpless. You need to be self-contained, and
self-sufficient, and on your own. So here’s one of our tours. Every year I
take one of our tours, for 25 years I led our tours, for the last 10 years I’ve
just been taking our tours, I find it’s very, I just enjoy it and every–this is
Lisa, she’s our guide, and she’s got her wheelie bag, and her day bag on her front. This man is packing like I do, with his
bag on the back and his day bag. Here’s my son Andy, he doesn’t even bother to zip up
the bag or out the shoulder straps, he’s just carrying it like a suitcase. But the
point is you gotta be mobile and go to the train station. And if your tour is
any good, the bus cannot park right in front of the hotel. You want to have a hotel that’s, you know, in a place where buses cannot get. Now this is, this
is the last day at the airport coming back from a two month trip and this was
sort of my mode when I’m in gear, okay. I’ve got my bag, and I’ve got my day
bag, and this is as big as you can carry onto the airplane and there I am–a
traveler ready to go. So you got your big bag, you got your
little bag. Think about this; however you go, tour, car, trains, cruise, hotels, you got to have your big bag to
leave on the boat, or leave on the bottom of the bus, or leave in the hotel, or lock
up at the train station, and you have your little bag with you for the whole
day. That’s where you got your sweater, your notes, your camera, your picnic, your
water, your whatever-you-want in that. So you got your big bag that you deep
store in your little bag that’s with you. When you step on the train, you need to remember that you’re on your
own to get onto the train, and you find a compartment, and they just–you just heft
your bag up onto the rack above, and that works pretty well. You can–if you’re
worried about theft on trains and stuff like this, I would keep the bag with you.
A lot of trains have a storage locker at the end of the car and some people are
relaxed and just leave it there. I’m just nervous, I want the bag with me
so I can see it. As a matter of fact if I’m a little bit more nervous, I will
clip the arm, or the belt, or the armrests, or the arm straps, the shoulder straps
around something up there so it’s not locked it’s just clipped, it’s just hooked on to it. And then, you
know, I used to say, “there’s a thief on every train in Italy,” union rules, and they’ve
scouted the train out, and it goes into this long dark tunnel, and as soon as it
goes into the tunnel they know what bag they want. They grab it, and if it
doesn’t go, like mine it’s connected, they’re not going to say, “scusi, how
is your bag attached,” right? You have foiled their theft attempt. So I want you to remember this is an
opportunity for you to be not vulnerable. You’re with your bag, you’re connecting
it, you’re able to carry it without looking for a porter, and so on. Now when you are taking the train, or
when you’re taking the airplane, or the bus, you’ve got a lot of time where you’re
sitting and waiting for the trip to go by. In your day bag you’ve got the things
that can keep you busy. People ask me, “how can I sit confined in
the middle seat on a 15-hour flight from Los Angeles to Tel Aviv?” I got a lot of stuff to keep me busy and
the time goes by. Think carefully about what you can have
with you to be productive for your trip and to help the time go by, and you’ve got that with your day bag,
with you. There’s lots of different kinds of day bags by the way, this is my
favorite one, we call this the Civita Day Bag, I’ve designed this, you see me
with it in all my TV shows. This is actually my briefcase when I go
around the United States just on work. It’s just a very handy
bag. It’s a beautiful material, brilliant design with a little pocket, a big pocket,
side pouches, padded shoulder straps, a wonderful light material that is almost
cuddly–you put a sweater in there and it functions as a pillow. And this is my
very simple bag, it’s 25 bucks or something like that, and this works
really well for me. there are more purse-like attaché bag type sort of bags that you might choose, and you can shop around for those,
but for me I like this minimal sort of design. I want to remind
you, when you’re traveling with kids, forget packing light, all right. I learned
that whatever the mom thinks is worth bringing is worth bringing, just forget
packing light dad, just get a big car and carry the
stuff, okay, you need a big car. And I remember
meeting the family at the airport in Vienna, and I told my family, “pack as
heavy as you want, I’m going to pick you up at the Vienna airport and I’m gonna drop you
at the Zurich airport, we’re gonna have two weeks together going through the
Alps, we’re not going to worry about packing
light.” If you have your own vehicle you can bring extra bags and just park
it in the back of the car and you’re good. It’s when you’re on your own, on the
train, changing locations a lot without your own vehicle, that’s where you don’t want your trip to
be a murderous trek, but you want it to be effortless and that means you gotta
pack light. There’s a lot of good gear when you’re
traveling with kids. There’s a portable crib, there’s wonderful strollers, there’s
backpacks, I never used the baby backpack as long as I was just able to put the
kids on my shoulder, I preferred that, car seats, you got to figure that out, fun stuff for the kids to keep busy. It’s
just, you want to go first class in baby gear if you’re going to be traveling, I
would say, with little tiny kids. A lot of people ask me, you know, “where should we
take our kids if we’re going to Europe and they’re really little?” And when
they’re really little I would really, seriously consider Grandma and Grandpa’s
on the way to the airport, okay. Now, when you are going on a trip and
you want to start light, I mentioned all of our tourists are required to take
that one bag, nobody can check anything on the airplane when they go over. We
don’t care what you go home with, but going over you got to go light. Of course
things gather up after that, and it’s just
important that you have a way to deep store stuff you buy as you go. And I
would highly recommend one of these, we call it a “don’t tell Rick” bag. This is a little bag that, it folds up
into almost nothing, it unfolds and it’s solid enough
where you can actually check it on the airplane going home, but it’s one of
those little tiny bags that balls up into itself. I think this is a luxury because I put
it in the back of the car, or under the bus, and I just put stuff in it that I
won’t need again, so I don’t have to take it into the hotel every night, I deep
store it on the bus. A lot of our people on our tours do that. As you travel, you’re going to have a lot of security,
it’s just a way of life these days. A lot of people just say, “oh the security is so
miserable I don’t even travel anymore.” I just don’t understand that, frankly,
it’s not a big deal, I mean it’s something to be thankful for, you know, it’s just they
got to be more careful than less careful. And sometimes it seems over the top, but
just relax and do what they say. You’re gonna have to go through a lot of
x-ray machines and you should just be prepared for that. When I go through an x-ray machine I
just assume I’m going to put everything in my pocket into this outside pocket. This outside pocket is empty. I stuff on
my little stuff in there, throw it into the x-ray machine, and I’m
good. These days when you get on a train even,
sometimes they will have a security x-ray for you because trains are soft
targets all around Europe, and they want to be careful what’s going onto the
train, what you’ve got. When you’re traveling, a lot of people are very
nervous about locks and, “should I lock my bag?” I have never locked my bag. I don’t–I think if there’s three bags on the floor, one of ’ems got a lock on it, and I’m a thief,
I’m going to take that one. My bag is just sitting there with no
lock. I’ve never been ripped off in 30 years of traveling, and I leave it all
over the place. So I wouldn’t say be sloppy with it, but I don’t, I’m not
paranoid about it, and these have a little, you know, latching zippers that
you can put a lock on, and some people, they’re just lock kind of people, they
want to get locks. And there’s plenty of good locks you can get, little wire pack–pack– combination locks can be very comforting
from a peace of mind point of view. I used to carry one, I don’t anymore. You
can get these TSA locks where they can get in, and then you know they’ve gotten
in, and they can lock it back up and everything. That’s fine, it’s not a big deal, but
personally I think a lock draws attention to your bag. If I’m going to
leave it somewhere where it’s nervous, I take the valuables out of the bag and
put them in my day bag with me, or put them in my money belt, and I wear them.
How you pack is determined by how you’re going to travel. If you’re going on the
Camino de Santiago and you’re going to be walking all the way from Paris to the
northwestern Spain, you’re going to dress like these guys.
That’s a different sort of situation. If you’re going on a cruise ship, you’re going to dress like this, this guy,
alright. So figure out what you–how you need to travel, but I will tell you that
Europe is casual in the summer. You need to look decent but you don’t
need to look formal, okay, a nice pair of jeans, decent looking
shoes, and a sweater over your shirt is dressy enough to go to any restaurant I
would ever recommend. Once in a blue moon you’ll be in a place where you think everyone’s wearing a coat or a tie or a dress, but I wouldn’t pack for that unless you just enjoy
dressing up overseas. It’s a huge difference for people who
bring fancy clothes and they want to travel in Europe. So if you look decent and crisp and you
present yourself thoughtfully, I think that’s good enough. You want to
layer it for warmth. If you’re going on a cruise, I go on a lot
of cruises, we’ve got our new cruise book and we have to– it’s part of my research
responsibilities–and I bring more clothes because I’m going to be wanting
to dress up a little bit on the cruise ship, but it’s certainly not over the top.
And in a case like that, a lot of times I will ship it ahead to a hotel where I’m
going to leave for the cruise for, or I’ll park it somewhere and get it later, but
you want to moderate that. It is annoying when some guy’s running around in shorts
when everybody else is in a tuxedo, okay. So, by the way, if you do go on a
cruise these days, cruise ships are much more casual than they used to be. You
could be dressed just like you are today on a cruise ship and be fine, except for
the two nights during your cruise when it’s the formal night, and they’re
very very careful now to remind people, if you don’t want to go to the formal
dinner you don’t need to, you can just go up to the pool side and have a hot dog
at the at the buffet up there, and and be slumming around the ship like the rest
of these low end travelers, okay. It’s just, you have that option, so don’t
be bullied by this notion that you got to have a nice dress or a tuxedo for the
cruise ship. Europe is getting hot. It is just getting
hot. I don’t know my Celsius very well but
I do know that 82 Fahrenheit is 28 Celsius, right. And for me, that’s all I need to know.
Anything over 28 is over 82, and I’m uncomfortable. Here we have a map of
France, everything’s in the thirties, that’s hot. So be ready for the heat in
the summer, the most grueling thing about European traveler is the heat and the crowds
of summer. If you’re wondering, “can we do this,” go on
shoulder season and bundle up. It’s also important to remember, if you’re going
especially in the north, it rains a lot. If I’m going to Scandinavia, Britain, or
Ireland, I bring rain stuff. If I’m going anywhere else I do not
bring rain gear, if it rains a lot I’ll buy an umbrella there. Remember, don’t pack for the worst
scenario, this is an American problem. Pack for the best scenario, assume
everything is going to go right, don’t bring extra stuff just in case you
need it and if you do need it, go buy it over there, it’s not the end of
the world, it’s a fun excuse to go into a shop. Take just enough toiletries to get you
going, really, just enough toiletries to get
going. Look forward to running out of toothpaste in Bulgaria, really. Now you got a good excuse to go
into a Bulgarian department store, shop around, and pick up something you think
might be toothpaste, okay. So all over, Northern Europe especially, they
say there’s no bad weather just inappropriate clothing, and I find that
so true. When you–if you’re traveling in England,
and you look out the window, and you say, “oh it’s raining we’re not going to do
that,” you’re not going to ever do anything. You just gotta get out there and do it,
because the weather changes five times every day, it really does. You just–we call it “face
the weather,” and you just really need to do that, and that might mean have the
appropriate clothing. When it comes to washing your clothes, you got lots of
options. You can pay the ransom to have the hotel wash it for you, you can go to the laundromat. Laundromats–
a lot of people just enjoy laundromats, it’s relaxing, you get to talk to local
people, you get a fiddle with the machines, you know, you can do that. It’s always–most places you can walk from hotel to a laundromat. If the laundromat has an attendant, for a
little bit extra you can drop it off and pick it up at the end of the day. That
would be very good from a use-of-your- time-smartly point of view. So you have those two options, and then
of course you can wash your clothes in the hotel room. Now what is it really to wash your clothes
in the hotel room? It’s not that big a deal, it’s a 10-minute little chore. Think
of it as exercise. Wring it out in the sink wash it, wash it,
wash it, I don’t use–I don’t bring any laundry detergent, I just used the
shampoo in the in the hotel, and it’s the only time I use the “itsy-bitsies” in the
hotel. I bring my own shampoo and my own soap and I make a habit of not using the
stupid “itsy-bitsies,” except for the shampoo, using that for my laundry detergent. And
then you wring it really tight, and you snap a few times, and you wring it again. You don’t hang it out the window because
they don’t like thinking of themselves as some, you know, Do-It-Yourself laundromat. You keep a
low profile with your clothes, but that’s just part of being on the road. You can wash your clothes in the room
and hang them up, some people like to have one of these laundry chords, and you
can string it across the tub like she’s doing here, otherwise you can just hang it on stuff,
being mindful that they don’t want water dripping on their nice floor, and so on.
So you can have the hotel do it, you can go down to the laundromat, you
can hire the laundromat to do it for you, or you can wash it in the room. And one
thing I’d say is people think, like, after you wear a pair of pants for a couple of
days you gotta wash it. That’s ridiculous, I mean, just between
you and me, I wear these for 30 days before I wash ’em, all right. It’s just–I just lost some points with
some people, okay–you don’t need to wash your clothes as much as Americans
think you need to wash them, okay, people still like you, you don’t have to have a fancy
wardrobe, you don’t have to wash everything all the time, I don’t, you know, things just wash
and wear quite nicely. You can get extra gear, we sell it, but I just keep it very
very simple. These launder cords are very handy for
people who like a laundry cord to hang up their laundry. There is this issue of, “will my clothes
look good when I wash them in the sink?” Try it at home before you go. Wash it in
the sink, literally, hang up the shirt, put the collar together and everything,
try to straighten it out before it dries, and then see what it looks like tomorrow
morning. Some of them look great, others look
worthless, you’d never want to wear it. I–very, very rarely do I ever iron my
clothes in Europe, and people marvel at how on my TV show I look like I’m not that
wrinkled, it’s just, I mean, you choose a decent
fabric, and you wash it that way, and it’s not going to look, like, pressed but it’s
going to look good enough, but you want to try that before you get to Europe,
because sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. And if you are in a jam, every
hotel that I’ve ever stayed in has a iron that you can borrow. If they’re not in the room just ask for
it, and they will get it for you. Now when it comes to packing your clothes, I’ve tried the compression bags, and we
sell them, and some people swear by them, I used to really like the packing boards,
that was a very nice thing, you hold up your pants and shirt, and you got a board, and
you tell Velcro the top on it, and so on. But basically nowadays I just fold my shirts carefully and I put them in the bag. If I could show you in this bag, this bag, I just, it’s my home as I mentioned,
so it’s something–that there is a big long pocket here, and I can put shirts in
here, and if I carefully fold these shirts here, it works well and I pull that out, and
surprisingly, hang it up the night before, it should work. What you want to do,
once again, is have material that washes and wears very well. When it comes to
security, everywhere you go these days, you’ll want to know where you can lock
up your bag. After 9/11 it was tough to find a place to lock your bag,
because people didn’t want bombs in lockers. They’ve mellowed out now, and you can
generally find a place to lock your bag at the train station, you can find a
place to lock your bag at the airport, sometimes you have to ask around,
sometimes you pay a lot of money because they have to have an x-ray machine. If you’re in a jam and there’s no place
to lock your bag, ask at the tourist board if you can leave it there. Also, you can ask at your hotel if you
can leave the bag there and come back later. I find you can leave a bag at a hotel
for many days if you stayed there, and come back and pick it up on your way to
the airport when you’ve done your little excursion. I was just in Israel and I did a week in
Israel, and I was in a hotel in Jerusalem, and then I was gonna have a week in
Palestine, and I didn’t want to take a lot of my stuff from–that I had that I
didn’t need for the next week with me into Palestine, as I wanted to be
particularly mobile. I left a bag at the hotel in Jerusalem
for a week, and I came back a week later, just dropped in, pick up the bag, I was on my way. They’re happy to do that, they didn’t
charge me. Anybody who stays at a hotel, it’s reasonable to ask if you can leave
it in their locker. Okay, I want to talk about the
specifics of your gear. And when it comes to shoes, this is a personal issue. Some people
have to have four pairs of shoes, and I know that I don’t have a lot of
credibility among women–I see people shaking their heads, “no that’s barbaric,”
but I do want to stress that whether you’re a man or a woman, packing light is is realistic. I use one pair of shoes for
most of my trips. I really like this Ecco, the Ecco
walking shoes there on the side. I also bring, when I’m in the mood to
carry a little bit more, I bring a light pair of tennis shoes, but it’s a big part
of your luggage, and if you’re going on a three-week trip and you just have one
pair of shoes, I don’t think that’s barbaric. A lot of
people do, and I hesitate even to tell people I wear the same pair of shoes for
40 days. I take them off at night, they breathe,
you know. A lot of people on this planet wish they had one pair of shoes, but we
Americans need four pairs of shoes to go anywhere, and it’s just, to me it’s kind
of silly, because you got to carry it. Okay, let me go through my gear now. And I
was in, just last summer I was in the Cinque Terre, and I thought, “I’m going to be
teaching this class, I’m going to put everything on the bed,” people ask me,
“exactly what do you take?” So I spread everything out. There I
was, naked with my camera and inventoring my gear. And we’ve got–in this
trip–and this is everything I had, I got my two pairs of shoes on the right, I got my day bag, I’ve got my
noise-reduction headphones, that’s one major item of extra extra bulk that a
lot of people wouldn’t consider is that important, but this Bose noise-reduction
headphones, for me, I’d rather go economy class on the airplane with this, than
business class without. It is beautiful to have silence, plus it’s great quality
music when you want that. Also, oh, how you pack your your literature is
very important. Be hardcore about going light with that. Different shirts, I would bring three short sleeves, and
three long sleeves, and one t-shirt, it’s up to you, but you gotta carry it,
and you gotta decide how often you want to wash. I just bring two pairs of pants, a pair
of jeans and a pair of very light khaki pants. It’s hot and muggy in the summer, and you
don’t want jeans in the summer, in big cities especially. Men cannot get away
with wearing shorts in a big city, you just look goofy. I’ve had people come
up and pull the hair on my legs when I wear short pants in a big city, they just think it’s comical. Men need to
wear long pants in the big cities if they want to not look goofy, and you want
a breezy, very light pair of pants. I’ve got a light pair of khakis that I just
love, and it’s got, you know, zip pockets, and a lot of extra
pockets, and it’s really, really a great pair for for traveling. So in the summer
you want to find a light pair of pants that way, in the winter I like the jeans. You’ve got your bag for electronic gear,
you’ve got your toiletries, you’ve got your bag for other
miscellaneous stuff. This is a big stuff bag, on the far left, for underwear, and
socks, and t-shirts, and then you got your jacket. So if we look more closely at this,
this is just how it lays, and I would have folded shirts in this pocket
here. A toiletries kit is something very small and very self-contained, you want
it with a hook because there’s a lot of stray hairs on the sink in a cheap
hotel, and you like to have this hanging there so you know, “those are my hairs,” all
right. You’ve got a bag like this, where you put all of your dainties, your
socks, your t-shirts, your underwear. How many socks and underwear you take, as
far as I’m concerned, determines how often you have to wash. You’ve got a light jacket and a light
sweater. You don’t want a heavy jacket unless
you’re going in the winter. You’ve got your light pair of khaki pants, and
you’ve got your heavier jeans. I’ve got a mesh bag like this with all
of my electronics in it and my camera gear. And my toiletries kit is so small
because I’ve got back up stuff in the big Ziploc baggie. That’s my
reinforcements for that, and my medicine and my band aids, and my whatever, I don’t
really have to have in this all the time, so I want to just have that out and deep
store this. And then another bag for your kind of ten essentials that you never
use. I–for me the coldest time of the whole
trip is when I’m on the airplane. I freeze on airplanes, and I’ve been to Europe
for two months, and the only time I ever use my sweater, and my coat, and my scarf
at the same time is on the plane. That merits bringing that stuff. But a scarf
for me is very nice for the flight, and so is the layered sweater and the jacket.
And one thing very nice about this bag, and this is an innovation we’ve got, is
we’ve got kind of a money belt that clips in here. This is a black, clipped, zippered money belt that you can
take out, and you can, then, you can unclip this thing here, and then you can take this and you can, there’s a clip in here, so you can fasten
it into this, if you feel like this is less dangerous than this. Or you can even
clip it under your belt and wear it like a money belt. But for me the cool thing
is, in here I’ve got my essential stuff. If I have to
do something risky with this, and occasionally you do, you can keep this
with you. This is your deep storage security, and I
really find its always clipped, and if it’s always clipped, people are not going
to take your bag as often as they’re just going to rummage through your bag
and look for something that’s expensive, and they won’t know that this is in here.
It’s camouflaged, it melts right in, and I
think it’s a great feature. Okay, electronics. You’ve got your laptop with–these days, when it
comes to electronics, everything I’ve ever had has the conversion with it. 110, 220, I’ve never needed a converter
like in the old days. Your challenge is to hook it onto the
wall, right. You’ve got the built-in converter to go from European voltage to
our voltage, no problem, you just have rectangular plugs and
there’s round plugs in the wall, so you need to have that adapter for that
purpose. My computer, my phone, my ipad, whatever I have, my camera, it all works on European voltage. You’ve
got your laptop, if you’re going to bring a laptop, these days, I bring my laptop because of my work, but if
I was just going on vacation I would bring an iPad. People love their iPads, and a mini ipad
is perfect, a mini iPad just is really brilliant for
traveling in so many ways. You’ve got your phone, you got to
decide, I use a little phone I bought in Italy, I just buy the cheapest little
Nokia I can get over there, or you can use your iphone here, or whatever phone
you use here, if it is unlocked and you can use it in Europe. Talk to your phone people to make sure it works. And I–that
little “Wi-Ho” thing on the top is my mobile hotspot, and I can get online
everywhere with this. This is expensive but because of my work I pay for that, but
one way or another you got to figure out, “how are you going to get online?” You
can do it from the hotels every night, you can mooch free Wi-Fi when you can,
and where you can, you find a lot of students just sitting on the curb
outside of coffee shops in Europe ’cause they know fast food places and coffee
shops have free Wi-Fi, and kids know how to get online and you can too, but I like
not to mess with it and I get my own little mobile hotspot as I travel. I
mentioned the mesh bag for all your electronic gear. I just love to have my laptop on the
road. The toiletries kit, you can see right there, now this is a bigger one, nobody–we stopped selling this little
one because everybody thinks it’s barbaric to just travel with this much
toiletry stuff but, you know, I’m just the start of a public television show and I
don’t need to look very good, right. So you got your bigger toiletries
kit but the point is, it’s a very handy place to keep all your stuff, and it
comes with a hook, and it’s a forget-me-not red, and so on. This is my
little one, and you can kind of decide how much junk you want to take to make
yourself clean and presentable. You don’t need to bring a towel, alright, they’ve got towels everywhere you’re going to be staying at a youth hostel, in which case you’re expected to
provide your own towels. Let’s say you didn’t bring a towel, and
you wish you had a towel, what would you do? You go buy one, it’s fun, everywhere, you just pop into a gro–a
department store. Every time I go in a department store it’s just a fun
experience. With these packing cubes that we have are very popular, and people like
to compartmentalize, I don’t mess with it, but a lot of people just–they use this
basic kind of bag–there’s a lot of bags like this, it’s no secret, 9 x 22 x 14 is as big as you
can get on the airplane, and you got that zone there and you can compartmentalize
it with these packing cubes, and people really like that. The bag comes with a mesh bag like this,
which is also very handy. And you got to decide what kind of travel are you doing.
If you’re going to picnic a lot, you might want to have your own corkscrew. You can’t bring a knife on the airplane
but you can bring plastic stuff. If you do bring a knife, by the way, it’s ok, you just
got to check your bag on the flight. I don’t bring a knife anymore because I
don’t want to check my bag on the flight. By the way, it’s not–you don’t carry on
your bag, like, militantly. If you have to check your bag that’s okay. The one time I would insist on carrying
on my bag is if I have a real tight connection in Europe. If you have a tight connection in Europe you’ll
be thankful, and you really want to make it, that you didn’t check your bag. The literature you take with you is very
important, and when it comes to literature, I take a lot of stuff because I’m a
guide book junkie. Whether it’s my books or other guidebooks, I just take a lot
of books. That empowers me when I’m traveling, and I am vicious about ripping
up books, and stapling together, and taking the sections. Here we have the
parts of where I’m going to be for a, you know, six-week trip or something like
that, and you can see these are 1,000 page books that I’ve ripped
down to almost nothing. I get a big industrial strength
stapler, I staple the binding, and then I put some clear strapping tape on there,
and it–and I have the cover, and I’ve just made my 1,000 page book a 100 page
book, and it fits in my pocket, and then I’m packing light. It’s easy to
destroy a book, all you gotta do is break the back and
rip out the chapter. And what do I have here, I’ve got Amsterdam. I hate to do this but I’m going to rip up this
this book, okay. So you take your book, and don’t want to carry everything with you, let’s just say you’re
going to be going to Haarlem today, on a side trip, and I got 60 pages of
information on Haarlem, okay. Beautiful book. Break the spine like that, have you ever done this? And then you hold it back, and your trick is, you don’t want to lose any paper, you want to get as much of the gum as you can, right. So I did pretty well just there. Now I’ve still got this and I leave that at the hotel, but I am–well I’m out and about with this little booklet here, aren’t I. And this is in my
pocket, and this is called packing smart. Now if you’re like a book liberal and
you just can’t want to shed all that blood on the–of the book, you
wouldn’t do it, but I see no reason. A book is a tool. You want to use it. It’s a 20 dollar tool for a
3,000 dollar experience. You rip the heck out of that thing, you’ve got it
in your pocket, you take it with you at dinner. Many people don’t take their book with them
to dinner because it’s too heavy. They got 500 pages on Belgium and they’re
going out in Haarlem. You got everything here and when you’re
done with Harlem, you toss it or you leave it at the hotel. So please rip up your guide books and then
buy more. I bring a little notepad. I love these little tiny Moleskines,
we’ve got ’em in our catalog and so on. Mechanical pencils, rubber bands to put
all my literature and maps together, I bring my own little office on the road
with that kind of stuff. But here’s the cruise book, it’s 1,400 pages
big and you don’t want to take 1,400 pages to Barcelona, you rip out the section,
staple them together at home. It’s a beautiful thing, you can do with an
X-ACTO knife or you can just rip it. Because a lot of people want to have it
looking tidy, we have designed this very clever little
folder where you can give yourself a generic cover and back cover, and you
pinch it with that vinyl spine and you can use that over and over again, and
then you don’t feel like you’re walking around with butchered books, because a
lot of people feel bad about that. On the bus you’ll be spending time, you
want your literature with you, want your information, your music. We’ve got an app where we’ve got
hundreds of hours of information that you can just download. We’ve got our Rick Steves Audio
Europe app, by the way it’s free, We’ve deconstructed eight years of
weekly hour-long radio shows into country specific playlists, organizing all
the interviews into country specific playlists. Just–you get that app, it’s
free, Rick Steves Audio Europe, it works on Androids or iPhones, and you pull it
down then you tick which countries you’re going to go to and you get all
that information, and you can listen to it offline. When you’re in a traffic jam,
when your spouse is sleeping and you’re still wired, when you’re on the plane
when you’re coming into a city and you wish you knew who the Etruscans were, you’ve
got all that information right there. So it’s free, and it’s got 40 different
self-guided tours. I’m really excited about the app and I
hope you can use that in your travels. A lot of people, they’re into digital stuff,
all of our books–any guide books these days–are available digitally. I’ve started to autograph Nooks and Kindles
in Europe, it’s an interesting thing. But you do see a lot of people with lots of
books on their iPad or whatever, and for a lot of people that works just
great. Most people who are inclined to do that love the digital access to the
books, I still like print. Either way, you want to have that information. I was just in St. Petersburg enjoying a
great tour with my guide in St. Petersburg, and she whipped out her
little mini iPad and illustrated all sorts of things historically that she
wanted to show us. Great photos, you can get online, you can store your photos, you got your
music, you can Skype your loved ones, there’s so much you can do with your
gear these days. I used to have a big SLR camera because I thought you needed that
for good quality, and I think if you’re a professional photographer you want all
the lenses and the fancy stuff, but I decided, I am also on the road, and I want
to have them with me all the time. I don’t want the little, tiny, pocket
sized 100 dollar Nikon, you know those little coolpix that everybody has, I want to spend more money, you get what
you pay for I think, but I wanted to have a pocket-size. So I go for the most
expensive pocket-sized camera. It’s a 600 dollar Sony rx100 and
I just love that thing. If you look at my facebook page, all
those photographs, all those videos are taken with that, and it’s just tiny, it’s
in my pocket all the time, it’s about twice the size of those little tiny ones that
everybody has. But if you want a real camera, I would
consider–I would encourage you to consider the best quality little one instead of a big SLR when you’re
traveling, and then know how to use it. Know how to use it–that’s–you know, if
somebody knows how to use their iPhone camera they can shoot better pictures
than a lot of us can with a big fancy camera just because they know how to use
the gear, so remember that’s probably the area where you can benefit the most from,
is just knowing how to use it. I spend a lot of time on my laptop,
electronic stuff is no problem anywhere in Europe. I want to remind you there’s two kinds
of adapters. There are the big square rectangular
three-some that’s for the British Isles, and there’s the cute little round ones, the
two little round one sets for anywhere in the continent. Our plugs do not work over
there, you need the little adapter, they
just cost a couple of bucks. I bring the British one, even if I’m not
going to Britain, because I’m usually flying through Heathrow and I’ve got
hours of downtime there, I want to recharge my gear before I have the big
eight-hour flight home, and I just use that time in Heathrow because I thought
ahead and brought the British adapter. There are a couple of cases in Europe where your little two round pronged plugs won’t work, but it’s so obscure I wouldn’t bother
with it. If, by chance, you get to a hotel where
your gear doesn’t plug into the wall, the hotel knows this is a problem,
everybody’s frustrated, they’ve got a whole drawer full of adapters, just ask them if
they can bail you out. I think it’s in Switzerland where they have these odd
little adapters. Remember in Britain a lot of
people are frustrated because they plug everything in correctly they don’t get
any juice, they don’t get any electricity. That’s because
they forgot, in England, you got to turn the switch on at the wall. There’s a
light switch kinda for the electrical plug, and you
just gotta make sure that plug is turned on, otherwise you’re gonna not have any
tea. If there’s two thieves in town, you’re gonna meet ’em. Europe is not a
dangerous place from a violent crime point of view. It’s a dangerous place
from a petty purse snatching and pickpocketing point of view. There’s no
muggings or knifings to speak of, that’s what happens here, over there thieves just target Americans,
not because they’re mean, but because they’re smart, because we have all the
good stuff in our purses and wallets. Solve that by not being vulnerable. You don’t need to be paranoid, you just
don’t need to be vulnerable. Don’t be rip-offable. She sounds and acts like a beggar, she’s
not a beggar, she’s a pickpocket. If you know that, and if you’re wearing a
money belt, it’s no big, scary deal. In fact, when you know the beggars are
pickpockets and you’re wearing a money belt, having a Gypsy’s hand slips slowly
in your pocket is just one more interesting cultural experience. I’m in Europe four months out of the
year, and every year, several times, a stranger’s hand slips delicately into my
pocket and I just leave them there. They fish around, they realize there’s not
much to get excited about, and they’re on their way. Just don’t be vulnerable. Why would you
have valuables in your purse? In your purse you’ve got a days spending money, odds and ends, and a funny little note to the thief. Take a wallet, expect
to lose it. In it you’ve got a day’s spending money, odds and ends, and a funny
little note to the thief. If you need the little note we have it in our book, you
just cut it out. It’s in Europe Through the Back Door and I have it in my wallet
right now, and it says, “dear thief [it says this in five languages], sorry this
contained so little money, consider changing your profession.” You
just want to annoy the thieves because they’re out there ripping people off, okay.
Don’t be vulnerable. I’ve never had anything stolen out of my hotel room, not that it doesn’t happen, but I would
think your stuff is much safer in the hotel room, and by the way I’ve never
used a hotel safe, okay. 3,000 days in Europe I’ve
never–I’ve seen safes but I’ve never used them, don’t leave money and cameras laying out,
tuck stuff away, but hotels can get in the habit
of ripping people, off the police are going to see that pattern in a hurry. The most dangerous place by far is when
you’re out and about with valuables in this bag. That’s–they distract you, and somebody’s
off with your bag. So always be aware of your bag. If you–if there’s a commotion, it’s a
fake commotion. If an old lady falls down the
escalator in the subway system, stand back, I bet she’s on a thief team,
okay. If there’s a pushing match on the square, if there’s a shell game going on,
there’s jostling, if somebody crowds behind you on the bus, pushes you, they’re picking pockets,
that’s what they do. They’re out there where the tourists are picking pockets.
Wear a money belt. It’s a nylon pouch you wrap around your
waist and you tuck in like your shirttail, right. You don’t get at this for every
nickel, dime, and quarter, this is your deep storage for select deposits and
withdrawals. I wear this money belt all the time, its
luxurious peace of mind, it’s luxurious peace of mind. Now you’ve
got- -actually, that’s not quite true, I don’t
wear it all the time, I wear it when I feel it’s necessary. These days Europe is so affluent and I
feel it’s much safer, and I wear it when I feel like there’s a risk, and when
there’s not a risk, I’m a big boy, I can re-outfit it myself if I get ripped off. I put it in that backup storage in my
bag and I’ll leave it at the hotel. So you’ve got that money belt, you can
use it when you feel you need to, and you can otherwise rely on your deep storage
or whatever. Different kinds of money belts, you can hang it around your neck,
you can tie it to your belt and flip it in, you can wear it like I like to wear
around your waist in that nylon pouch, a lot of people snap it to their bras,
there’s all sorts of stuff you can do, and it’s just important to have your
valuables securely under your clothing instead of available. What you put in the money belt? Well,
you’ve got your wallet, you’ve got your money belt, and you’ve
got your day bag, and you just got to decide where do you want to put stuff
and how important is it. I bring two credit cards. We have these
old-fashioned magnetic strip cards in the United States, now we’re going to be
moving into the chip cards. Europe is way ahead of us they’ve got
chip cards. Americans–I only have the magnetic strip card, it’s a frustration
but it’s never a trip de-railer. You can’t fill up the tank at midnight
with your old fashioned American credit card, but you can always change–get money
from the ATM, you can pay for your hotel, you can
buy things in the store with your credit card. It’s just the machines that let you
automate things, the automated parking machine, buying a coke from the
machine down the hall in your hotel, those require a card with a chip in it,
we can’t use that until our banks get together and have these chips. It’s on the way, we’re just in an awkward
interim period. I have a printout with my itinerary on it in just this sort of a
chart kind of fashion, and I just have it on my word processor and I just type in
all my little details. I’ve got that on my laptop, I’ve got it in my dropbox account. I just
love to have dropbox when I’m in Europe because I can–if I lose everything that
I’ve been working on it’s already saved up in the cloud, and I can print that out
and I’ve got it in my pocket for this week’s travels. All of my notes to myself
are in this itinerary. I’m getting my ducks in a row for a
two-month trip in a couple of weeks, it’s all laid out right there. So you
want to have your details on your schedule and have several copies of that
to carry with you. You bring a driver’s license just in case you might want
to drive. You bring a driver’s license because a lot of times when you rent
something they want your passport for security, and I don’t want to give them
my passport for security, and what they really want is photo ID, and I get my
driver’s license instead because I’d rather lose my driver’s license then my
passport. One reason to get an international
driver’s license is because it’s a disposable piece of photo ID that costs
you 10 or 15 dollars. You don’t really need it these days, but
it’s something that’s handy to give people for photo ID. You do want to be careful of your
passport, you don’t leave it laying around. On the other hand, a lot of hotels
still have to register with the police every night, and when you check in they’ll
say, “can I have your passport,” and you need to not make a big deal about it.
Americans are the ones that get all nervous and make a stink about leaving their
passport ’cause their mom said, “never let this out of your hand.” Well, you know, nobody’s going to steal
your citizenship with that, and that’s how Americans act sometimes it’s kind of
a joke among Europeans. But you got to give it to them because they have to, at
their convenience, write you down in their ledger so the police have a record
of everybody in the hotel tonight. It’s not reasonable for you, an American
traveler, to say, “you can’t have my passport, do the book right now,” nor is it reasonable for them to say,
“pick it up tomorrow.” I think the reasonable thing is say, “can I come down
in an hour or so and get my passport back?” Ask them to do their work at the
earliest convenience, politely, and then you can come down to get it. Because too
many times I have been in the hotel in the morning and I need my passport, and
I just open up the door thumb through everybody’s passports and
grab mine and I’m on my way. It’s just they’re very casual with your passport
and I’m not comfortable with that, okay. So that’s just good advice with your
passport. So this has been kind of a–just a
blitz through my approach to packing light. I understand I don’t have a lot of
credibility when it comes to packing light among women, but I also want men
and women to know that when you’re traveling in Europe, you will be much better off if you can
just put yourself on vacation. And on vacation means without all of the
material cosmetic baggage that we have to put up with in our lives here. There’s
a lot of people in the United States that can’t even go outside in the
morning until they’ve, you know, figured everything out, and it’s just–you’re on
vacation, you need a break. You should be able, when you’re on
vacation, just to get up and go, and that’s a very, very nice thing. I love it
about Europe because it doesn’t matter that much how you look, you’re moving
around so fast that nobody else notices how limited to your wardrobe is, and
you’re going to go home refreshed, realizing that there’s a lot to be said
about keeping it real simple and being Footloose and fancy-free. Having said that, I’m gonna let our
packing wizard–wizardess Joan Robinson, she’s been giving packing classes at
Europe Through the Back Door for a long time, and she is brilliant about how to be elegant and
classy, as well as mobile, okay. So I’m going to turn it over to John
Robinson right now, and thank you very much, thank you.

Tagged : # # # # # # # # # #

Dennis Veasley

76 thoughts on “Packing Light & Right with Rick Steves”

  1. OK, he was talking about how hot it is in France now, then saying you can wear a pair of pants for 30 days? What gives? I can wear pants MAYBE 3 days in the WINTER in Virginia, IF I am not very active. I can't go more than ONE day without changing underwear and socks, though.

  2. I live in San Francisco, and I always see tourists with these huge suit cases (some can barely move their luggage around lol). On the train and buses, their luggage gets in everyone's way. SF is a small city with lots of stores, if you need something, SF has you covered! I also never travel with large bags. It's so much better for me to not check in any bags; I also don't have to worry if the airlines is going to lose my luggage. 

  3. @Rick Steves Europe  You wear your jeans for 30 days before washing….LOL
    That's funny!! Great information    Thank you

  4. Rick Steves is an American Icon. No kidding either.  My dad was watching Rick Steves when I was 10 and that was 20  years ago I think. 

  5. Rick has great information… his advises are A++++. we were robbed on a Bus in Portugal. Rick stated on his guide to be very careful with pickpockets in Lisbon.. so we did not listen… we were robbed. Rick understands  and gives great tips. Thank you Rick!

  6. Rick, thank you so much for all the helpful tips! I'm going to Brazil for 2 weeks and then 5 days later I'll be heading out on a 2 month trip to Europe/India. Although I have done my fair share of traveling, I have found many of the pointers you mentioned in your video to be spot on. I'm personally against using roller suitcases, I feel that backpacking is the way to go. Thanks again for the tips!!

  7. Steve,

    If you're a serious photographer, one might be able to use a bag this big (9" x 22" x 14") for his or her clothing and toiletry bag. But, one's camera equipment alone might be in a bag this big, especially if you're carrying long lenses and a laptop and extra hard drives.

    When your camera and filming staff travel with you, what do they carry for their clothes and toiletries? And how much "gear" do they carry in what size bag(s)?

    I could easily carry a huge backpack with just 2 cameras and 2 to 4 lenses, a flash, batteries, film, etc.

    P.S. How often do you get to Israel? When will be your next tour? And what video and print information do you have for visiting Israel. As for "Palestine," which I have my own political views on, what do you cover on this so-called geographic area. I prefer to call it the "Palestinian Territories."

  8. Great info! Going on our first extended vacation to the UK, Ireland and Paris in a few months and have been watching travel videos and reading blogs like crazy; your videos and blogs are the most comprehensive. I'm pretty sure I've been watching Rick Steves since I was a preschooler in the 90's.

  9. very helpful, thanks Rick. I have been mocked for wearing shorts as an adult, but that is ok, as I overheat, and get grumpy in the heat. I am ok with looking like a tourist because I am.

  10. That's so funny he's had his hair on his legs pulled. I've had that happen twice wearing shorts, once in Guatemala and once in Lisbon.

  11. Well im just going to be the American that has a problem with leaving my passport with hotel staff. I wont be rude but they don't get to keep my passport any amount of time.

  12. Overall I think it's fine advice and I don't know if he was exaggerating at times so.. Yeah..

    The washing thing obviously depends on the kind of trip (normal tourist museum visits vs. hiking for example) but there's nowhere in Europe where you can't find a place to wash your clothes. Unless you're just lazy there's no reason to wait 30 days. It's not something people do here. We're modern countries. lol We wash our clothes all the time as well even though he's probably right about it not really being needed. We have similar washing machines etc. as you do in the USA.

    The shorts thing in cities though.. What? I live here and I'll wear whatever the hell I want unless I'm going to a formal dinner or something. I can't wait to put on the shorts this year. It's so much more comfortable. Now obviously it may look goofy if you're in full on beach gear while checking out the Mona Lisa or whatever, but if you're walking through Copenhagen or something during the summer, you'll see plenty of shorts. Just do a "Denmark summer" search on Google Images for example and you'll see plenty of bare legs. You'll even find pictures of our royal family in shorts and summer dresses. 😛

  13. 30:30 why weren't we shown the example of the book? why was the camera doing a closeup the entire time on steve?

  14. 29:02 you ALWAYS need to bring a towel, and have it on your person pretty much constantly. I swear, it's like some people never read the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy…
    Seriously though, a small towel is super useful in a lot of situations and doesn't take up much space. I rarely leave the house without one.

  15. Washing your socks underwear works great in the bathroom sink even when using shampoo . Important as I tend to sweat up a lot!!!!

  16. I've read everything, but you've got to speak for women traveling. WAY so way different. I don't need to know who the Etruscans are…but need to know about 'women's gear' and women's health in Europe. Call me if you need help with expressing that..

  17. I've never heard anything most stupid than saying that people don't wear shorts in Europe. Of course we do! All the time! Nobody's going to look at you if you're wearing shorts, let along pull your legs' hair. Has Steves really been in Europe at all?

  18. One tip about lockers, if your key does not have your locker number or if it is a combination lock then you need to take a picture of the locker so you will be able to find it again.  I ran into this in Eastern Europe.  I guess you could write it down also but I have a bad habit of not being able to find that little scrape of paper when needed.

  19. Rick iv'e been reading and watching your videos since 93 Your advice is great. I travel for 3 months in asia with two small packs a book bag sized bag and a shoulder mans purse. You can always do laundry.

  20. Does anyone know the bag at https://youtu.be/kn65riaKccA?t=531?
    It looks like a shoulderbag which can be modified into a backpack (which i always wanted).

  21. Get at least two pair of shoes, one with thick rubber and one for back up.

    The shoe advice is bad imho. I pack two pairs for a 5 day trip let alone a 22 day trip.

  22. I definitely over-packed on my last trip. My big mistake: bringing sweaters. It was winter and I could have worn them, but I just kept wearing the same zipper cardigan over the few t-shirts I brought. It was nice material and it looked great the whole trip.

    Synthetic fabrics or blends aren't always the best in the summer, but they work great in the winter. You can wear them repeatedly without the garment losing its shape. I also find hanging up your clothes can make a big difference.

  23. Wash underwear in the shower lol also your socks. Anything else in the laundromat. Ironing fold pants and stack it between the mattress.

  24. Tell them brother. I can travel anywhere with my 32 liter bag (smaller than his), including winter travel. 2 pair of everything, 3 of socks, and that's it.

  25. Pretty funny, he's right about the weight, but I pack in bags half this size. Having a list is essential, as is buying local when you are there.

  26. I was enjoying every single word of this video until …. YOU RIPPED UP YOUR BOOK!!!! (GASP!!!) I have a whole shelf of your travel guide books and would never think twice of ripping up a book, but … now I do see your point and I guess I'll be that one person that rips up one copy and buys another exact copy for my shelf!! 😉 I'm reading up on Ireland right now getting prepared for our trip to London (5 days) then on a British Isles Cruise. I looked for a British Isles Cruise guide book, but didn't see one?! Not sure if that is available or not??

  27. I spent four weeks in England and Germany doing office work and carried one small piece of luggage. I dressed well enough to be able to work everyday in one office in each country and I am a woman. It made my life much easier and the local people I worked with more comfortable. Rick is so right. Pack light and don't spend all your time taking care of your stuff.

  28. I watching this , thinking I am going to Europe lol I am going to Waikiki ! But, I bringing my back pack !


  29. Then there is the old time tested race car system. Take the part. Throw it in the air. If it comes down again it is too heavy.

  30. This is interesting. Now, in the era of travel bloggers, we can't just pack for ourselves, we have to pack all the camera gear too. It's possible, but you have to pack even lighter on the personal side so you can fit more camera gear as well.

  31. You are the only person I have found who rips up guide books besides me! My family hates my torn up travel books, but I travel light. Thanks. Another reason for loving Rick Steve’s travel info and videos!

  32. Free tip don't take expensive cloth they are not shy to rip out your cloth and putt into there plastic bags esply if they notice you in brand cloths. Freinds whent out hiking with branded out door clothing to return and there bags emptyd

  33. The only place you need to bring young children is to grandma and grandpas on the way to the airport ….

  34. Canada has had chip cards for quite a while its not only Europe that's way ahead of the USA lol

  35. Because he doesn't care what he looks like. Many of us rent a car and care what we look like. You can travel through Tuscany looking like Rick Steve's or Pierce brosnan… It's up to you … But you don't dress nicely by taking just one backpack

  36. I am so thankful of watching this video before my trip to Europe. It ready did help me. Thank you for the great tips!

  37. I haven't "checked" a bag in years. (with one exception to trek Mt Kilimanjaro) I've been to England in the winter for 9 days and used 1 carry-on. Once I went to Santa Fe, NM for a week, then stopped off for an upscale holiday in Las Vegas and used 1 carry-on. Rome for 7 days? 1 carry-on! Rick's video's for packing light are the best. Now I'm using packing cubes. miracle

  38. Now Italian railway stations are really full of thieves. I read in the newspaper that some thieves dressed elegantly, stepped into a train and went to the 1. class. Many travellers slept, confident that all would be fine there. In Italy we grow up knowing that it is safe to always have your bag near you. Women also carry their handbag on the side of the walls when they walk in the streets. It is just a good habit. Another problem with tourists is that they go to some discos and drink too much (even girls). That makes them to very easy targets. 🙁 As for clothing, Italians pay a lot of attention to the way someone is dressed. In Germany or Austria they take it easier.

  39. Regular clothes washing prevents bug infestations. Bed bugs are once again active after the DDT knocked them out for decades.

  40. We were on a train in Italy March 2018 and opposite us 4 young American girls got on the train, threw their handbags on the rack above and then after lots of laughing and being young girls they all put earphones in and closed their eyes. We could see two young guys walking through the carriages looking at bags on the racks. We warned the girls and they grabbed their bags. Next stop the guys grabbed a bag each from further down the carriage and jumped off the train and ran. They had their passports, money and all ID in their handbags so they were very lucky.

  41. He stresses, "You're on vacation, leave all the nice clothes, shoes, and makeup behind." Well yes, I get that. But if I'm in the big European cities like Rome and Paris, I want to look nice (especially in the evenings) and I can't pull that off with a pair of rumpled khakis and one pair of all-purpose walking shoes. Part of the experience, for me, is getting a little dressed up in these fashionable cosmopolitan cities, not looking like I'm living out of a rucksack for two months.

  42. Not everyone goes to a hotel. I always rent an apartment, and have to take everything. But I can still go for a couple of months in a single carry on. This time im taking my dog and still manage with one carry on and the dogs kennel. I just eliminate the unnecessary. It can be done.

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