Vacations don’t have to always equal shopping sprees, spending big, and bringing three different outfit changes per day. In fact, research from Griffith University found that many tourists are often happier in smaller, simpler destinations. Not only is there less pressure to look luxurious, this allows you to just enjoy the destination for what it is — and not what you look like in pictures.
To that end, packing smarter can help you make the most out of your trip as it ensures that every piece in your luggage is well-crafted. Minimalist packing can be a challenge, but here are five essentials that you can start with.
Sturdy sneakers
Sneakers are a no-brainer when it comes to travel footwear. You can easily survive on just one pair of sneakers for most trips (excluding ones that involve camping or trekking), and they go with almost any outfit. Ecco’s Soft 7 sneakers are made of durable materials and include a supportive sole, which makes them perfect for strolls around town or rushing through the airport. If you’re not a fan of the worn-out look, opt for sneakers in darker hues like navy or black.
Classic pants
A good pair of pants can easily take you from day to night, and are also great if you’re traveling to more conservative countries. Woman Within’s straight leg pants are basic enough to wear to markets, galleries, airports and beyond, but their neutral hues allow you to dress them up in the event of an impromptu night out. Relying on basics that you can mix and match will save you a lot of time getting ready in the morning, not to mention luggage space too.
Cozy outerwear
Whether you prefer a zippered hoodie or a sweater, it’s always good practice to make sure you have some kind of outerwear with you. Even though the weather forecast predicts sunny weather, you might find yourself in an extremely cold room or train, and the temperatures might dip during the night, too. While you don’t have to necessarily carry your sweater at all times, just knowing that it’s there can give you some peace of mind in case you do end up needing it.
A packable scarf
Scarves can also serve to keep you warm, but their uses go way beyond that. Lots of people accessorize with scarves, and they’re also vital if you end up visiting religious sites during your trip. A light cotton scarf can easily be tucked into a tote or a backpack, which means you should never start exploring without it. Your scarf can also be used as a blanket in a pinch, which is useful during long trips.
Flattering sunglasses
UV rays can penetrate through clouds and bounce off of pavements, meaning you shouldn’t put your guard down even if it’s overcast. That’s why you should always bring a pair of sunglasses with you wherever you go. SunGod’s glasses suit a whole host of face shapes while their polarized lenses block out harmful rays. They’re not too expensive either, so it’s not the end of the world if you lose them.
With so many things to see and do during a vacation, your luggage should be the least of your worries. Save yourself the future hassle and plan ahead with what to pack.

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