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European Travel Skills: Packing

  • Published on Apr 22, 2016
  • In this travel class, Rick Steves offers advice for packing light and fitting everything you'll need for a European trip into one carry-on-the-plane-sized bag - whether you're going for a few days or a few months. Visit for more European travel information.

Comments • 249

  • So woke Not asleep
    So woke Not asleep 2 days ago

    The climate has changed since time began, even when MAN was not in existence.
    It’s called WEATHER.
    You are completely brainwashed about “climate change” - the talking point that the political elite use to justify taxing you lots of money that THEY then line their pockets with.
    Wake up.

  • paulaus
    paulaus 6 days ago

    We got good breakfast tips from the people at a Laundromat in Barcelona.

  • 280zjammer
    280zjammer 8 days ago

    I always leave with a perfectly sized carryon but I always return with a huge rolling bag full of my purchases because Italy sells a lot of stuff that I want. Other countries have a few things too but not as much.
    As for shoes, bring slippers. It’s makes getting through TSA easier and they pack flat. Then, when you get there, look at what the locals are wearing and get yourself a pair of one you like.

  • Eric Leszkowicz
    Eric Leszkowicz 12 days ago +1

    Couldn’t agree more with the packing light but climate change causing flight delays is most unusual statement.

  • vivien khoo
    vivien khoo 14 days ago

    My backpack is usually 3 kg or less regardless if I'm going for 1 day or 1 month, in summer or winter. Clothes wise I need 1 set of pj, 1 set of top and pants, and one extra shirt that I never use, because I just wash my clothes with me when I shower at night and they dry in the morning. I hate the feeling of a heavy backpack or having to pull a suitcase so this is my solution. Works fine, you just need to find clothes that dry fast.

  • nschoess
    nschoess 16 days ago

    Toughest pack job I ever had: 7 weeks through Australia with city, beach, desert, countryside, snow, mountains, hiking, tropics...yikes! Not easy but managed with one rolling bag (22x14x9) and one tote bag.

  • Johnny Martin Johansen

    So, we should both bring a laptop or a tablet, AND guidebooks? Ever heard of google? It's free, not 20 bucks per city or country. Never bought any guidebook, and never ever will.

  • Cynthia Jotim
    Cynthia Jotim Month ago

    Oh Mr Steves I learned that on my first trip to Scotland oh I packed like a mule

  • thermaheal
    thermaheal Month ago +1

    Practical advice starts around 10 min. Rest is chitty chat. Most of it is "philosophical packing"

  • Farishta Farishta
    Farishta Farishta Month ago +5

    I wish I could post a pic, 20 years ago I bought an LL Bean bag that was both a rolling bag AND a backpack. Additionally, it had a day backpack that zipped to the main, soft sided bag.
    I traveled the world with it. No matter where I was, no matter the language if a porter was helping me with the bag they’d all congregate around my bag and I hear “blah blah blah LLBEAN Blah blah blah...” it was the best bag I ever owned and a super conversation piece.

  • chanchaynmeimo
    chanchaynmeimo Month ago

    I agree with light packing especially in Europe. I used to bring almost the whole house when I go travel, but my husband convinced me to do backpacking the first time we went to Europe. We were there 5 weeks, we travelled to 3 countries and changed our locations every 3-4 days or so. It was so much easy using a backpack especially getting in the train . I don't care if I wear the same clothes in some of our pics, I may not post OOTD, but atleast I can post LOTD (location of the day) LOL

  • Saad Kamel
    Saad Kamel Month ago +4

    Nice informative video. For me, whenever I packed light, I wished I'd packed lighter. I think it's a matter of consumerism; the more one consumes in life, the more they need to pack heavy. Thank you Rick.

  • ildix
    ildix 2 months ago +1

    I'm European, a woman and a frequent traveler and I pack lighter than this guy.

  • Ciara Campos
    Ciara Campos 2 months ago +2

    I need options! So much easier being a guy...

  • Humanity Is Lost
    Humanity Is Lost 2 months ago

    there are some international airlines that don't allow a personal item, or 2nd bag.

  • Lynn Ulrich
    Lynn Ulrich 2 months ago +2

    Climate change? BS. How about Climate Engineering!!! You know, the spraying of aluminum, barium and strontium many governments are spraying in our skies DAILY!!

  • Heidi Goatgirl
    Heidi Goatgirl 2 months ago +3

    So strange that Rick speaks of changeable weather as 'climate change' - the politically charged jargon for liberals. Not a good phrase for everyday weather happenings.

  • Karen Tresen
    Karen Tresen 2 months ago +1

    I have packed light for years. However, I tend to pack too light. For instance I thought I could make it for two weeks in Hawaii with one swimsuit, flip flops, a sarong, tinted sunscreen/makeup, tooth brush and nothing more.. I figured I could wear the sarong as a dress or skirt and that's all I needed. After day 4 wearing a swimsuit I had to go out and buy a dress and some underwear. Opps! Now I pack a little more & I ALWAYS travel with powdered silk wash detergent and a backpacking clothes line. I also found that shampoo works as body wash/shampoo/laundry detergent/dish soap!

  • Lee Yi
    Lee Yi 2 months ago +2

    I agree Rick! Packing light will make the trip more fun not a burden.

  • Bobbie Hatton
    Bobbie Hatton 2 months ago

    any ideas about traveling with a cpap?

  • Fat Panda
    Fat Panda 2 months ago

    What 30+ Celsius? Christ that's HOT.

  • Maroulio
    Maroulio 2 months ago +3

    We really need this! Going to Greece from Seattle and we are old

  • Agnes Kim
    Agnes Kim 2 months ago +3

    I understand that he does tour groups and consequently, we are probably talking about summer traveling, but as someone who grew up in Europe and moved to the United States, I wonder about his outlook on the climate in Europe. First of all, Europe is not as small as people think and it goes from sea level to 14,000 feet (loosely speaking). So there is not one climate. Second, while the climate did change since when I was a kid (Geneva reaching triple digits for the first time a couple summers ago), it is still milder than it is in most of the US. At least for the northern parts of Europe.
    Since he's showing a map of France during a heat wave, let's take that. 33 degrees Celsius is 91 Farenheit. I've lived in Iowa, central Texas, and central Georgia. In Iowa, 91 is a little warm. In Georgia, it's a nice day for a picnic. In central Texas, it's a nice spring day, perfect for a 3K race. In the northern half of France, it's a heat wave. In the southern half, it's hot. As for violent weather... Tell that to a mid-Westerner (summer or winter alike). The way I would describe the month of May to my mom when I lived in Iowa was "heavenly weather interrupted by apocalyptic episodes". Winters were a fight against the elements that I had never experienced before, not even during snow storms in the Alps.

  • micapetey
    micapetey 2 months ago +4

    I love to travel but I also love to dress up and not look like a tourist when I’m abroad. I also plan on doing some serious shopping when I’m in France and Italy so I need room. Podiatrists will tell you to alternate your shoes every day so at least two pairs of shoes. I pack lots of neutrals and then add scarves and jewelry to mix it up.

  • Maggie'sGrace
    Maggie'sGrace 2 months ago +2

    Climate change? Really? It's called WEATHER. It's always happened.

  • ColoradoRoads
    ColoradoRoads 2 months ago +3

    "with climate change", you should not travel at all, the only person allowed to travel is beloved Al Gore who knows everything about climate changes.

  • edenvalleybakers
    edenvalleybakers 2 months ago +2

    How do you handle the new carryon regulations that limit the total weight allowed? I can pack my suitcase for 10kg, but add electronics and camera, and I'm over the carryon limit.

    • Shelley King
      Shelley King 2 months ago

      10kg? It's 7kg for carry on Air NZ, Qantas, Emirates, Singapore, Thai...Is 10kg American?

  • Vicki Lovegrove
    Vicki Lovegrove 3 months ago +4

    In Australia some airlines have a combined carry-on weight of 7 kg. I have had both backpack and handbag/day pack weighed at the boarding gate and fines are applied immediately. Lots of people get caught out.

  • Kris Dow
    Kris Dow 3 months ago

    Unfortunately a rule about only carry on can be very ableist. My mom can’t be sure she’ll be able to buy everything she needs even in a different area of the US (or rather, finding the right items can be very difficult) so she has to bring stuff with her and it does get bulky. :( I myself have a pillow problem - if I don’t have a good pillow I am crippled by neck and back pain, and I have yet to find an adequate travel pillow although I keep searching. Being disabled really takes a lot of fun out of traveling.

    • Kris Dow
      Kris Dow 2 months ago

      Like I said, so far I haven’t found any that work, including blow up pillows. At home I use a contoured memory foam pillow that I’ve customized the height on by adding additional foam to the bottom, but it’d take up most of a carry on by itself. More recently I’ve started getting awful headaches if I sleep in a bad position, too. So it’s not a minor problem for me. I’m kind of bummed my disability means I couldn’t take a Rick Steves tour.

    • Judy Howell
      Judy Howell 2 months ago

      Kris Dow they have blowup pillows

  • Becky B
    Becky B 3 months ago +1

    I wish he would pack his words as lightly as he keeps insisting we pack. Six minutes into this video and he hasn't said anything new since the first 30 seconds. I don't care if he missed two planes....duh! What has that do with packing. OK still hasn't told me WHAT to pack and I give up. Cannot listen to this boring video anymore at 7:37.

  • M Edwards
    M Edwards 3 months ago +8

    Vacations are not one size fits all. One person's minimalist adventure is another person's death march.

  • yesiownfrodo
    yesiownfrodo 3 months ago +8

    Worst advice ever is to not bring a second pair of shoes!!! OH MY WORD, no. Take 2 pair and a pair of ballet flats. In the middle of the day, change your socks and shoes and it helps so much. Your feet are going to be working a LOT HARDER than they ever work in real life. And you CANNOT get over the counter meds there. Clothes you can buy. But Aleve? NOPE. Looking for nosedrops? Good luck.

    • MC Bruin
      MC Bruin 3 months ago

      yesiownfrodo so you not two pairs off shoes and one pair off flats.
      I use one pair when I travel. That way I only have take one pair with me. I like to take high heels with me for dinner or an evening out.

  • Michael Meyer
    Michael Meyer 3 months ago

    I suggest wearing Dry Fit material such or exercise clothes for easy washing in the hotel room. Golf shirts are frequently Dry Fit material. Hiking pants which can be either pants or shorts by zipper legs on or off. This is important when traveling in a hot climate but need to instantly change your shorts to long pants to enter church, temple, or shrine. I recommend sandals in addition to GoreTex hiking shoes. Sandals can easily compress in your small carryon bag and appropriate when visit swimming pools or Thailand wats. Closed toe sandals if walking around animals.

  • BazzerObama
    BazzerObama 3 months ago

    I don't pack denim jeans because they A, weigh too much and take up too much room in your luggage and B, take ages to dry if they get wet, who wants to spend the rest of the day in wet trousers after a morning downpour.
    I buy lightweight walking trousers, they dry from wet in twenty minutes and I can fit three pairs in my bag for one pair of jeans. Also you can buy walking trousers that zip off at the knee, so you then have three pairs of shorts too without taking up anymore valuable space

  • Di Shaw
    Di Shaw 3 months ago +6

    Any decent tour takes your bags to the bus for you. We have toured time and again and never had to cart our bags to the bus or into the Hotel.

  • intuitknit
    intuitknit 3 months ago

    Air travel is one of the main causes of climate change

    • Marilynn DeSilva
      Marilynn DeSilva 3 months ago

      @ intuitknit Yeah, those pterodactyls soaring around really stirred things up back in the day.

  • Scott W
    Scott W 3 months ago +2

    Explain how much vacation time (and money) you spend doing laundry. OK, I just lost all respect for him when he justified packing light with climate change. SMH.

  • imbonnie
    imbonnie 3 months ago +2

    Thunderstorm = climate change. Wow, climate change is real!

  • Jade Martin
    Jade Martin 3 months ago

    9 x 22 x 14

  • Sympatico G
    Sympatico G 3 months ago +4

    The picture of that poor mule is so disturbing.

    • honeydooda
      honeydooda 3 months ago +2

      Sympatico G Why? Don’t you know that's what pack mules/donkeys do for a living? They are beasts of burden!

  • Jeni Mah-Clemes
    Jeni Mah-Clemes 3 months ago

    You can keep insulting me instead of using productive words. I will not stoop. For me he singled out women unnecessarily. It was a false statement and making a judgement. If you look around airports, men use rolling luggage just as much. I have been to a lot of airports and countries all around the world traveling for pleasure. It’s a dated norm to make casual sexist comments and we should progress from that. You think he did nothing wrong, ok, but using Trump as an excuse to attack me? Aren’t you being extreme? Am I ruling the country and being a lunatic? Am I affecting negatively a large group of people encouraging hate and violence? You have formidable imagination. It is clear you are determined to take me down for my comment. Go ahead, write more insults in the name of duty. I am done.

    • Sheri
      Sheri 3 months ago +4

      Jeni Mah-Clemes, Let me get this straight. You can judge Rick, but you don't like that he was "making a judgement. Seriously. Do you not see the hypocrisy? And what in the world is sexist about making a benign comment about women liking roller bags? Again, lighten up. I'm not trying to "take you down." I'm just trying to show you that you do the same thing you accuse others of doing: judging.

  • Victoria A Smith
    Victoria A Smith 3 months ago +1

    Thank you RIck, your videos are not only entertaining, but very helpful!!

  • Oki Doki
    Oki Doki 3 months ago

    You Americans belive everything on tv so also on RU-clip haha

  • Martyn Sutton
    Martyn Sutton 3 months ago

    Blah blah blah this like pulling teeth

  • Jeni Mah-Clemes
    Jeni Mah-Clemes 4 months ago

    "Among the women, most women like that roller bag". Uh...Rick, don't sound so degrading or condescending as you say it. A lot of men use it too and they don't get judged.

    • MissDuke2012
      MissDuke2012 3 months ago +3

      Jeni Mah-Clemes Again, get a grip. He shared his observation, i.e. what had formed his opinion on the matter. Opinions can't be false, or true. They are only running conclusions based on one's personal experiences, as they occur. His experience can't be "false," no matter how many logical jumping jacks you do. ✌🏼

    • Sheri
      Sheri 3 months ago +3

      @Jeni Mah-Clemes Good heavens, lighten up. How in the world is he condescending to say that in his experience, women like roller bags? He's just stating his observation. It's not a slam on men.
      I know you are a complete stranger, but since this is a comments section, we have every right to comment on one another's comments. Do you not see the hypocrisy of telling off the person you accuse of telling you off?
      Do you have any opinions of people you don't know? How about Donald Trump? Any opinions on him? I assume he's a stranger to you, so I'm also going to assume you never evaluate anything he says or does.

    • Jeni Mah-Clemes
      Jeni Mah-Clemes 3 months ago

      @MissDuke2012 You think what he says is totally fine - great. Everyone has their own opinion and I don't berate you for it. What he stated was false, most men like rolling luggage too. Wow, to tell a complete stranger you know nothing about to "get a grip". Pat yourself on the back, you told someone off online today!

    • MissDuke2012
      MissDuke2012 3 months ago +2

      He was in no way degrading or condescending. I'm a woman. Get a grip and stop being so sensitive.

  • Kathleen Nelson
    Kathleen Nelson 4 months ago +10

    This is why the European river cruises are so great! Your hotel travels with you!

  • Anne Bialecki
    Anne Bialecki 4 months ago +4

    Washing: Laundromats are a great way to chat with the locals. A long way? Purposeful exercise walking.

  • Anne Bialecki
    Anne Bialecki 4 months ago +3

    Shoes: 2 pairs - runners for comfort and better shoes for evenings out. Wear the larger shoes on the plane. This has worked for my last 6 holidays.

  • Wesley Pittman
    Wesley Pittman 4 months ago +15

    It's hilarious reading all these comments from butt hurt people. But what about me????....Miss Fashionista, musician, Mr. Climate Change expert, local yokals, Mr. "No flights ever get cancelled", etc......Get a clue. This is not for you. Weather happens everywhere. Right.....I'm sure Rick knows nothing about travel.......only been watching him in admiration travel for decades now. If you don't like Rick, so be it. But really..we don't need your comments. Here's an idea....just don't watch! ROFL

  • Constance Huntsman
    Constance Huntsman 5 months ago +6

    I like his advice and videos. They are so very helpful. Just a couple of points I have experienced differently from what he said.
    In economy, if you are the last person on the plane they will make you check in your carryon bag that fits into the overhead. Then you have to wait in baggage claim to retrieve you bags and if there’s a problem with the flight, you are stuck as he mentioned. Get on the plane as soon as you can.
    Make sure your electronics convert the voltage. He says it’s not a big deal. However, I once plugged in the wrong voltage and only used an adopter, I blew a fuse in the house, the house went dark, and the owners weren’t too happy. No harm in the end, but better to check before you travel.
    I’m an older woman. I need my toiletries and brands that perhaps you can’t find or you pay so much more in overseas stores. Plus, I would rather be seeing a castle than trying to find something in a store. However, I like his idea of an organized hanging toiletries bag. Many places don’t have counter tops around the wash basin.

    • yesiownfrodo
      yesiownfrodo 3 months ago

      Absolutely agree 100%!!!! I am with you. One of the worst things that happened to me was traveling and following Rick's advice that all the world needs what you need. Uh, no. I was in Belgium and could NOT find feminine protection anywhere. That was a rude awakening. And how embarrassing to try to find the right words to ask for that kind of help. Also, many countries do NOT have deodorant. Not at all. Found the same with sunscreen. That was my first trip in 2000, and I've not made those mistakes again.

  • pumpertube
    pumpertube 5 months ago

    I still fashion travel. I can't travel with 3-4 outfits. Lol

  • Declan O'Neill
    Declan O'Neill 5 months ago +1

    Save yourself the bother of listening to endless repetitions in this lengthy video. The message is ‘pack light’. Gee that’s a revolutionary thought!

  • Jeff Barris
    Jeff Barris 5 months ago

    I've finally circummed to the pack light concept..Its perfect!!!

  • Claptrap Claptrap
    Claptrap Claptrap 5 months ago +1

    I thought I was clever wearing the heaviest and bulkiest clothes on a flight of more than 12 hours to reduce the size and weight of my luggage as advised by travellers in RU-clip. It was hell: motorbike jeans with Kevlar lining are HOT, HOT and SWEATY as, well, hell. So were the motorbike boots, which were also very hard to take off and put on in the tight space between economy seats. ANY shoes apart from flip-flops or sandals require a contortionist act, especially if they have slid around the seat during the flight. At least I could take the coat off in the plane, but as the pockets were also stuffed with things and the suitcase was full, I had to wear the rainproof, non-breathable jacket in a 35 C, humid heat for nearly an hour before I got to my destination. Live and learn the hard way. LOL

    • Kris Dow
      Kris Dow 3 months ago

      I wear my heaviest shoes but I pack a pair of small slippers (like slipper socks) in my day bag and as soon as I am on the plane I put the slippers on for the duration of the flight. That way you can take the shoes off before the plane fills up while you still have a bit of room. Or do it in the airport just before boarding and just go onto the plane in slippers. I try to find the ones that have a thin suede type sole as opposed to the ones that just have non-stick dots.
      Just make sure your shoes don’t smell bad before taking them off. :D

  • Claptrap Claptrap
    Claptrap Claptrap 5 months ago +1

    My friend has has been a tour guide all over the world more than 30 years but he has never learnt to travel light: he always has two large suitcases, a bulging shoulder bag and a document bag for a two-week trip! That's more than I took when I first moved to a different country. Nowadays when I go back, I have all my clothes, toiletries and a laptop in a small flight case and I take a large, empty suitcase for bringing back stuff that I cannot get here, like a couple of pairs of shoes and trousers that actually fit and stuff that is related to my work or hobby.

  • Gabry Wong
    Gabry Wong 6 months ago +2

    My problem is reusing the ssme clothes... especially if u visit a humid country and i dont like wearing back a sweaty clothes that you wore yesterday like yuck! I will loose my mind just thinking about it

      HILDE CAMP Month ago +1

      Wearing fabrics that dry overnight. You can travel with 2 dresses for ever.

  • thomasucc
    thomasucc 6 months ago +11

    When I travel abroad and buy stuff I post it to myself back home. Its cheap

    • Natalie Valles
      Natalie Valles 3 months ago +6

      Yes. Same. I carry a very light and roomy day pack that fits in its own pocket to carry more if I want if it’s not heavy. OtherwIse mail home.
      Also take some older clothes you don’t mind tossing out as you go. Bam! You have room

    • Tony Samaniego
      Tony Samaniego 3 months ago +1


  • Pamela Jane Rogers
    Pamela Jane Rogers 6 months ago +4

    Ladies, Shopvida is a great online resource for lightweight additions to your basic wardrobe!

  • kanehi
    kanehi 6 months ago +5

    I usually wash my clothes after a couple of light use. I do use the shampoo that's provided by the hotel and do hang them dry in the bathroom or in chairs in the room. I also use the blow dryer or iron to dry clothes quicker.

    • rnupnorthbrrr SM
      rnupnorthbrrr SM 3 months ago +3

      Another easy trick to dry clothes faster is to wring it out, snap it or do whatever to get out as much water as possible then lay a bath towel out flat, lay your wet article of clothing on the towel and roll them up together, squeeze it, sit on it or stand on it, unroll and give it a shake and hang up to finish drying. This removes almost all the water, the clothing won't drip and will be dry by the morning. Use two binder clips (that you have used to hold together your travel maps) and a 6ft long piece of paracord for an easy clothes line over the heat/air fan, the clothes don't drip so you can hang them anywhere.

  • Jennifer Perry My Scraproom

    I packed carry on only for a 5 day trip to Australia and even with packing light - dragging that bag from the airport, train and then to the hotel felt like it was 1000 pounds of weight after that long haul flight. I was so happy that "WE" did not bring everything and the kitchen sink.

  • Reva FoSho
    Reva FoSho 7 months ago +1

    3:35 -Great demonstration (lady on left) of how not to wear your hip belts! It’s right under her rib cage going in to her guts...ouch! They work much better if they go right across your hip bones.

  • Offensive Username
    Offensive Username 7 months ago +3

    1:00 How disrespectful to show pictures of other people in a negative way without their permission. Europe has privacy laws and you can get sued for that.

  • cowpoke02
    cowpoke02 7 months ago +1

    buy a electric bike and cart or cargo bike. i will take like ultra light next time .. maybe 10 pounds with a tent and metal cook stove . haha.. buy clothes there at thrift shops .

  • mhs vz
    mhs vz 7 months ago +1

    Climate change, more cancelled flights?

  • Gee Speller
    Gee Speller 7 months ago +6

    Am a minimalist this packing lite works for me perfect 💯✨
    Plus I hate checking my bag takes forever to claim it

  • Renee Barger
    Renee Barger 7 months ago +9

    I invested in the Samantha Brown carry on luggage and we love it! There is a lot more space than you imagine. I have packed enough for both me and my husband for a 2 week trip in the suitcase and tote. But we do not take hair dryers, curling irons, clocks, etc. We use basic toiletries, if it doesn't fit in a quart size zip lock bag, it doesn't go. Color coordinate your clothing to 2 matching colors so that you can mix & match (I make 5 different outfits out of 1 pair of pants, 2 tops & 2 scarves).

  • DD- 563
    DD- 563 7 months ago +11

    I called Air France ....Delta .....United Airlines .....Southwest Airlines .....Swiss Air..... Lufthansa and Brussels Air and NONE of them could confirm that a single flight had EVER been cancelled due to
    " climate change "
    " planetary heating " OR
    " global warming "
    We look to you for FACTS
    Stick with FACTS Steve

  • IgnacioAgramonte
    IgnacioAgramonte 7 months ago

    HE IS A TRAVELER.................

  • msbutterfly714
    msbutterfly714 8 months ago +2

    Family is going for a month to Europe this Dec/Jan and its cold in a lot of places we are visiting so unfortunately warm clothes are bulky so with that said, we are all taking two each rollers with us. Wish us luck haha. (we'll make it, we are strong like Bull)

  • EarlJohn61
    EarlJohn61 8 months ago

    36℃ is moderately warm, where I live!

  • I am Bullyproof
    I am Bullyproof 8 months ago +6

    We travel to Europe quite often. Last trip, I packed a few less outfits. Since we take lots of unique photos (huge part of the fun), packing more lightly left me with too many photos in which I was wearing the same clothing. Lesson learned. I'm going back to packing a "medium" amt. I do believe it depends on what a person values. My hubby is fine with all his photos - year after year - featuring him in white shirts.

    • lavidaconJEM
      lavidaconJEM 3 months ago

      I am Bullyproof did a 7 day cruise with carry on only & pictures every single day. Never ended up in the same outfit once.

  • The Hillhouse
    The Hillhouse 8 months ago

    Also wondering about bringing back gifts... I use a good 20% of my space for that. How do RS travelers bring presents home?

    • Nan Schnabel
      Nan Schnabel Month ago

      @Natalie Valles I mail everything home. I don't worry about carrying things around with me that may break nor do I worry about getting things thru customs. If its larger than something that will fit in the palm of my hand or clothing, it goes in the mail and I've never had a single shop owner refuse to help me. I've sent glass from Malta and a large piece of paper sculpture art work sent from Germany as well as oil paintings from France and all arrived in one piece. Plus I arrived home before they did!!!

    • Natalie Valles
      Natalie Valles 3 months ago +2

      I always take snacks from home with me and as I eat through it leaves space in my bag. I also always travel with at least some clothes I’m willing to leave behind so maybe a couple of older tops.alsoplan to bring less cause you can wash along the way. I carry Small bar of laundry soap to wash when I’m in a hotel for at least two days.

    • Tippytoe
      Tippytoe 6 months ago

      I travel with 1 large check in bag. My clothes will only take up 60% of the bag. The other 40% is for souvenirs. I learn from a pass issue. I went to Hawaii and packed a large luggage for a family of 5. Is was a struggle to fit souvenirs so I stop traveling that light.

    • Console
      Console 7 months ago

      Post it :) generally if I'm struggling for space I leave inexpensive stuff. Undies, socks, toiletries all get thrown out. More than that if I can't check a bag on the return journey for whatever reason or don't want to risk something getting destroyed by baggage handlers I'll use my last full day to go pack things up and post them home.

  • The Hillhouse
    The Hillhouse 8 months ago +5

    I have mixed feelings. Traveling light is fine for some - but what of musicians who must - by rail or air - bring instruments in hard cases, personal articles, and outboard gear too? What of performers or simply fashion lovers who wish to bring several complete 'looks'? We musicians/performers/fashion folks also travel to remote locals, but is dragging a few bags on wheels to the hotel such a hardship?? For day trips we leave with a small day bag and a bottle of water while the gear and big bags remain behind at the hotel. So wherein lies the problem?

    • Natalie Valles
      Natalie Valles 3 months ago

      Ship all that ahead and take their backpack

    • Gee Speller
      Gee Speller 7 months ago +1

      You do a video 🎥 on traveling musicians

  • turkeyphant
    turkeyphant 8 months ago +1

    Utterly hilarious that anyone listens to a word this man says about travel. Yes he's right about packing light but he hasn't got a clue about real & authentic travel anywhere in Europe.

    • turkeyphant
      turkeyphant 5 months ago +1

      @Claptrap Claptrap You obviously haven't travelled outside of the global north.

    • Claptrap Claptrap
      Claptrap Claptrap 5 months ago +2

      Actually, as a local who has been asked where to go, I know less than travel guides because I don't see the place with the eyes of a tourist - a traveller is looking for experiences, I'm looking for convenience for everyday living... If riding an elephant is a local thing, it is surely mentioned in every tourist guide already and evaluated online by other travellers - anything authentic you can find, someone else has found already and told about it in their travel blog or social media and all you need to do is google your destination.

    • turkeyphant
      turkeyphant 8 months ago +2

      To b honest, I think it comes with experience and open-mindedness. It comes quicker to some Yanks than others. Living on a variety of continents and slumming it while travelling widely in other cultures helps massively. Def don't get a roller bag like he says, but please don't buy his awful backpack either. And don't dress like any person at all that appears in this video for the love of god! It depends massively what your plan is for Italy too. Cities, beaches, mountains, lakes, countryside, etc. 1 month or 6 months? Good starting rule of thumb: do the opposite of everything in a Frommers, Rick Steves, Time Out guidebook. Lonely Planet a good place to start but you'l need to riff off their ideas to get close to the places locals actually prefer. Rough Guides marginally better but the best way is to actually interact with locals AS A LOCAL not as a tourist on their first trip in southern Europe. Stay in Airbnbs not hotels, hostels and couchsurfing not cruise ships. Watch the people around you. It should be blindingly obvious who lives there every day and who's just got off a tour bus. Most of all: travel more!

    • Richard Ellis
      Richard Ellis 8 months ago +2

      @turkeyphant Can you offer a name or link? Not trying to be difficult. I'm honestly interested in informational sources. I'm planning on taking my daughter on a trip to Italy next summer for her graduation.

    • turkeyphant
      turkeyphant 8 months ago +1

      How about someone actually respected by locals and able to communicate with them? Anyone who has actually lived in Venice/Barcelona/London/Munich/Koeln/Bratislava/Budapest/etc./etc. will be laughing out loud watching these tools follow their tour guides round. And also will be abundantly aware they have no clue of the price of anything so will be easy to rip off.

  • Dances with Stone
    Dances with Stone 8 months ago +3

    Great video, very informative, I've just one question though. . . is it better to pack light or heavy?

    • Tippytoe
      Tippytoe 6 months ago +1

      Dances with Stone Go medium. I check in a large luggage but I only have 60% of clothes in it and I save the other 40% for souvenirs. I’ve been to Italy for 8 days and 4 different countries in Europe for 10 days. My luggage weights 24-30 lbs leaving to Europe and come back at about 40-45 lbs. I carry a $10 luggage weight scale with me so I never go over weight.

  • Dave Armstrong
    Dave Armstrong 8 months ago +3

    Perfect advice! We now spend a month in Italy living out of a backpack.

  • Rene Altena
    Rene Altena 9 months ago +1

    Rick, don't bring 100 EUR paper money (in your video you showed a 100 EUR bill). Nobody accepts it. The highest bill you should carry is 50 EUR.

    • jazura2
      jazura2 4 months ago +1

      100 euro is no problem. 500 euro is problematic

  • LindaLuxable
    LindaLuxable 9 months ago +1

    How do your older travelers do with those backpack?

  • kalulew
    kalulew 9 months ago +1

    Awesome I am glad I'm not the only one who washes clothes in the sinks of hotels. Your feet are the best at getting the grime off in the tub as you shower.

  • kalulew
    kalulew 9 months ago +1

    Just about everything that you said was very common sense but incredibly so people feel like they must travel with a whole bunch of things. I'd say only bring a couple days woth of clothes and if you buy things and collect things-ship it home.

  • Eeenoughalready
    Eeenoughalready 9 months ago

    Are you Mike Wendland's brother? Your voices are interchangeable, with the exception of speed.

  • Asean Nomad
    Asean Nomad 9 months ago +11

    Nice video Rick and I like all of your videos but once you get into photography or film making for RU-clip...tripods...lenses etc it quickly becomes hard to travel light. I basically have one day-pack for tech and one day-pack for personnel stuff...i.e clothes, toiletries etc....

  • Gerry Burks
    Gerry Burks 9 months ago +31

    Next time I'm packing heavier. I took the expert advice and packed one carry-on for 3 months in South America. It was my first international trip. I now know that I NEED CLOTHES. I am a fashion person who enjoys nightlife, dating, adventure, and culture. For me that requires 3 different wardrobes. I will have a checked bag and a carry-on for my upcomming trip. I am a man and I will take 4 pairs of shoes. I salute you light packers...

    • Christopher Bertoli
      Christopher Bertoli 8 months ago +7

      That’s the thing though, you don’t have to look bad in order to pack light. And if you’re picking good clothes then you need to be more extreme before your adventures require specialised clothing.

  • James P
    James P 9 months ago +1

    The only time I pack heavy is when I'm travelling to one place and staying there. For instance, going across country to visit my Dad, I'll check a suitcase and a garment bag and take a carry-on bag on the plane. I'm staying at my Dad's house so I can bring a couple of suits and an overcoat (we go to nice restaurants) plus plenty of clothes (that I can wash there the night before I come home) and a couple pair of dress shoes.
    But for my vacation trips to Europe, it's the 4-wheeled carry on and my camera bag and that's it. The only shoes I take are the ones I'm wearing - extra shoes take up a *lot* of room in a small bag. I wear good walking shoes. Mephisto shoes are my favorite because they look dressy but they are super comfortable.
    And forget the back pack - I'm a roller bag guy. I don't want the extra weight on my back and especially not on my feet.
    And doing laundry in Paris is kind of fun!

  • waheji k
    waheji k 9 months ago +1

    well not for a lady

  • Pablo Prymtym
    Pablo Prymtym 9 months ago

    you're going to learn now or later... lol lmao lmao

  • Tootsla 125
    Tootsla 125 10 months ago

    Why schlep on and off trains in Europe? Rent a car! I've driven all over France, Switzerland and Italy.

    • Console
      Console 7 months ago +2

      Trains in mainland Europe are actually pretty damn great. You can get a high speed train from Barcelona to Amsterdam if you wanted. Driving that distance would absolutely suck.

      WAYWARD WIND 8 months ago


  • Rafa River
    Rafa River 10 months ago +28

    I packed light for my first trip to europe the only thing I didnt like was that I had the same outfits in 100 pictures and a lot of my friends made that observation.

    • Ribbons4acost Cancer
      Ribbons4acost Cancer 3 months ago

      LOL... FYI... There is a lot of light weight top now that is stylist. I always bring different colors of tank top, layering them in different color, top them with light weight jacket, pair them with jeans or cargo pants. You can throw in light weight scarves to your tank top. I pack light weight now compare to 15 years ago. But telling you, my clothes does not look repeat at all. I refused to look like a tourist wearing clothes as if they are just going for grocery. In my stuff you find emergency kit and sewing kit and extra clothes that friends borrows. Photos you took is nothing when you are looking awful in it and that is the reality. I don't laundry except underwear. Beauty is pain and photo can haunt you,,,,, I bring extra purses and shoes as well. Till to this day, I still carry stuffs and packed the same way but in lighter version. Invest in packing cubes, help fit and organize.

    • Jane Hobson
      Jane Hobson 3 months ago +1

      Change your superficial friends.

    • MissDuke2012
      MissDuke2012 3 months ago +2

      Meh, reconsider who you consider a friend :) I rate experiences over things every time.

    • Lesley Vivien
      Lesley Vivien 3 months ago +2

      Rafa, who really cares?
      If your friends are that bothered, let them come with you to carry your wardrobe trunk.
      Or just get new friends, with better priorities.

    • Vee the Driver
      Vee the Driver 4 months ago +3

      @Marjan393 Clothes are not trash. 😐

  • Jeffrey Tucker
    Jeffrey Tucker 10 months ago +12

    I'd like to see Rick explain how to pack size 13 hiking boots "light." And how to get hiking poles into a carry-on bag without being wrestled to the ground by the TSA guys.

    • Kay Moment
      Kay Moment 10 months ago +5

      Jeffrey Tucker wear the boots onboard and use collapsible poles...or check it they do this for car seats and will even wrap them for you, or some will.

  • Patricia Morton
    Patricia Morton 11 months ago +20

    I've never had a fight cancelled due to climate change, but I've had several due to well-organized union strikes.

  • Jody Johnsen
    Jody Johnsen 11 months ago +1

    I prefer an eye/ear mask with flat speakers with white noise (from my phone.) It’s very small and makes everything better. In the airport I push the eye mask up, in the plane I pull it down.

  • Clara Jordan
    Clara Jordan 11 months ago +20

    Those backpacks do not look comfortable for long hikes or walks; bad for the back

    • Grace Ayscue
      Grace Ayscue 3 months ago +1

      If you think a suitcase backpack is hard to hike with, try hiking with a wheeled suitcase! These are for getting from train/airport/bus station to hotel, not for hiking.

    • lavidaconJEM
      lavidaconJEM 3 months ago +1

      Clara Jordan they aren’t designed for long walks & he says they aren’t designed for hiking. If you’re hiking with that much gear-you carry a framed backpack.

  • Peter Mattei
    Peter Mattei 11 months ago +24

    Awesome video, Rick...I travel with just the clothes I wear and then purchase what I need when in Europe. Upon leaving, I find a local church charity to give my LAUNDERED clothes to. This gives me room to bring my camera gear, recording each trip...I'm passionate about one thing: photography. I am very respectful of cultural traditions - even going to the extremes of purchasing a business suit as well as a sport coat upon arrival so I can blend-in as a local. One can spot a tourist a mile away in Europe

    • Kris Dow
      Kris Dow 3 months ago +1

      What an interesting idea. It wouldn’t work for me for all things but for some items it might.

    • Claptrap Claptrap
      Claptrap Claptrap 3 months ago +2

      Lucky for you to be able to afford that. Most people can't. Another problem I find living in Asia is to find clothes, especially shoes that FIT me and I am not particularly tall: even though my waist size is the same as an average local's my shoulders are wide in comparison: different bone structure. Of course if your hotel has a concierge to locate things for you... again something that an average traveller cannot afford.
      Another thing to consider is climate: I left a tropical country wearing only a vest, thinking I can take out warmer clothes when changing a plane - but when the clerk offered to get the luggage directly to destination I gladly accepted. So when getting out of plane in the arctic, walking to and then travelling in shuttle bus that had no heating, I was thankful the weather was mild - 10 C (average temperature is between -20 to -30 C) and then waiting several hours at airport that was adjusted for people wearing suitable clothes for arctic weather.. I admit that I feel the cold even in England during the spring until I have acclimatised, but the clothes at airport are ridiculously expensive.
      Shops are not always open at the airport: I couldn't find a single place selling snacks or drinks early morning when changing planes in Malaysia: longing for those days when there were no restrictions of liquids in hand luggage...

    • Carrie R
      Carrie R 3 months ago +4

      love your idea of buying in the country you are visiting and then donating them before you leave.

    • Grace Ayscue
      Grace Ayscue 3 months ago +3

      I like your attitude!

  • Joe Soap
    Joe Soap 11 months ago

    Airlines are now putting weight limits on carryon bags so even though you may meet size limits if its more than 8 kg (+/- 18 lbs) you have to pay check bag fees - €25 paid in advance or €40 at the airport

  • Ken Dash
    Ken Dash 11 months ago +8

    I am sorry, lost you at “climate change”

    • Elke Summer
      Elke Summer 5 months ago +1

      Perhaps Macron and his globalists are sponsoring Rick

  • mR h4lfscopy
    mR h4lfscopy 11 months ago +1

    Thanks Rick, going to Venice alone next month & your tips are really making a difference for a first timer ready to explore.

  • Yasunari Ishii
    Yasunari Ishii 11 months ago +3

    25 years ago, we traveled in England for two weeks, relying on Rick Steves guidebook and had a wonderful time. I had a suitcase-style convertible backpack that I had bought in Japan, and been using for a while, never checked luggage, did laundry as we went. I didn't know much about Rick Steves then, just that it was a guidebook recommended to us in just finding places to visit. As I rediscovered and look at these videos today, I naturally agree with his style of traveling wholeheartedly. I'm still traveling with a carry-on size backpack on planes, trains, subways, city buses, etc., Mobility is definately the most important to me in packing.

  • Therese Ember
    Therese Ember 11 months ago +33

    When I went to Switzerland, I packed extra warm clothes which was a LIFE-SAVER for my 2 friends when we went up at the Jungfrauyoch. They were absolutely FREEZING and what I brought saved that trip! They made fun of me at the beginning of the trip for overpacking until they were crying and begging me to borrow what I had brought. It’s wise to plan for even those around you because if they suffer, you will too. Pack throat lozenges, Vaseline; hand cream; Tissues; Vick’s Vapo Rub; Mosquito cream; Magnesium 200-250 mg; Aspercreme, Tylenol Extra-Strength; Benedryl; Gas-X, Flaxseed Oil Capsules; Witch hazel; hand sanitizer; ear plugs, eye drops, Anbesol, earache drops, Dramamine; moleskin + remedies because people can get colds or can feel a bit unwell sometimes on trips. Have it with you and bring a lantern flashlight or headlamp
    flashlight (carry-free). Pack fleece (lightweight). Bring 2-3 money belts (1 to wash/dry and 1 to wear). Put a spec cord on your glasses and sunglasses. Bring a tiny needle/thread kit, safety pins; a few clasps. A small magnifier sheet. Your meds w/ prescription labeled bottles. Wear a Sky ID holder. Pack TSA lock keys in your money belt. Make a hard cc of all important documents & keep in money belt. Bring a cable + lock to lock luggage on trains, etc. Attach tiny extra thin flashlights to your purse, luggage. Wear a Pac-safe satchel for smaller amounts of cash & wear it under a Gortex hooded rain jacket. Purchase a purse and/or luggage that has TWO zippers for each compartment so that you can lock it. Use a roller backpack because you get tired carrying a backpack. NEVER overpack your luggage so that the zipper doesn’t break. Only buy luggage w/ a strong zipper & strong handles. Buy 4-wheels that work independently + can stand on its own without falling over. Buy 2 packets of “No-Jet-Lag” pills (made in New Zealand)-1 packet for the flight there & 1 for the flight back. Make sure you don’t pack carry-on items that TSA prohibits or else they’ll throw it in the trash! So if you DO need certain items, then DO send them in checked luggage. Schedule a Swedish massage before your flight and shortly after arrival. For really long flights, spend 1-2 days in a hotel overnight halfway to break up the fatigue. Remember, you don’t have to torture yourself on your vacation. Cheers! Bring ankle-high, cushioned shoes. Wear TED hose. Wear socks on the plane & a warm coat (it gets cold); Cabeau travel neck pillow; eye pads for flight, etc.

    • patti jesinoski
      patti jesinoski Month ago

      You forgot the most important, an extra 100,000 iu of vit d3, should you start to feel ill. Nip it in the bud.

    • Mary Johnston
      Mary Johnston 2 months ago +1

      @Jade Martin hashana, good one!

    • Jade Martin
      Jade Martin 2 months ago

      When traveling to the land of Ricola, need to pack throat lozenges?!!!!

    • barbara cronin
      barbara cronin 2 months ago

      The shops with the good sized lit crosses outside? Think Walgreens/CVS, etc

    • Amanda Rausch
      Amanda Rausch 3 months ago

      This is me 🤣 And I never learn.

  • Alicia Valadez
    Alicia Valadez 11 months ago

    No body talks about laundry? Where can I buy those bags? Oh great you talk about laundry!

    • DD- 563
      DD- 563 9 months ago +1

      Alicia Valadez
      I travel all the time all over the world and I really don't see a problem with laundry I take an old Tums container full of Tide laundry soap and it lasts for a month I just washed out one or two items every night in the sink and I never have to worry about laundry and I never really have to plan anything having to do with laundry just bring a small container of your powdered laundry detergent from home and it's really not that big of a deal

  • Gideon John
    Gideon John Year ago

    Hey, great channel!