Packing for a RTW journey

1 day until departure
Rye, New York

It’s the question I’ve most frequently been asked: when going on a trip around the world, what in the world do you bring? Obviously, while carrying your life on your back, space is at a premium — although this isn’t the only challenge of packing for 80 days away from home. Temperatures throughout my trip will potentially fluctuate 50 degrees from one destination to the next, which means the fleece jacket I’ll need at night in Marrakech probably won’t be much good when the thermometer tops 100 in Luxor. My solution? Take only what is absolutely essential and can’t be purchased abroad and plan on having supplemental items brought and taken home by the family and friends meeting me along the way.

So, what made the list? Here’s the breakdown:

  • Clothing: 5 short-sleeve polos, 7 t’s, 2 long-sleeve t’s, 1 hooded sweatshirt, 2 button-down shirts, 2 pairs of jeans, 2 shorts, 2 khaki pants, 2 athletic shorts, 1 bathing suit, 1 sweat pant, 10 boxers, 10 socks, 1 rain jacket, 1 vest, 1 fleece jacket, 1 pair flip flops, 1 pair walking sneakers, 1 pair dress shoes, 2 baseball caps
  • Gadgets: Nikon D-40x camera, Canon Digital Elph SD-300, 2 gigabyte flash cards, electrical converter, Motorola international cell phone, iPod, earbuds, Powerbook G4, noise canceling headphones
  • Toiletries: Shampoo, tooth brush, tooth paste, deoderant, soap, shaving cream, razor, face wash
  • First-Aid kit: Band-aids, Neosporin, Tums, Immodium, Benadryl, Tylenol Cold, Tylenol Cold Multi-Symptom, Advil, Zyrtec, Scopace, Malarone, Ciprofloxacin
  • Misc.: Watch, journals, pens, guidebooks

Earlier this afternoon, with everything in front of me, I snapped a picture:

It looks like a lot. Thankfully, Eagle Creek makes some fantastic travel gear — and a few of their stuff sacks and compression bags turned all of that into this:

Then, it all got placed in my North Face Backtrack 70 and Timbuk2 messenger bag:

My whole life for the next 2.5 months is in those bags. Crazy, right?

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