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advise please! backpack size for backpacking

Travel Forums Travel Gear advise please! backpack size for backpacking

1. Posted by Nutmeg0613 (Budding Member 24 posts) 4y Star this if you like it!

I'm planning on backpacking in Europe for about 1 month this summer - staying at hostels and visiting all the sights. How large of a backpack should I be looking for? (links to pictures or products would be great and appreciated!)

I am a girl and (unfortunately) I am one of the types that has a hard time packing light. Of course I will be forced to pack minimally for this trip though! I'm just not sure what size backpack i should be looking for...

2. Posted by askgudmundsen (Travel Guru 69 posts) 4y Star this if you like it!

Hey there

You can find a lot of additional advise here

Note that you shouldn't let others pick out or suggest a backpack for you.. You want a backpack fitting you, not somebody else... Also make sure you have the opportunity to fully pack you backpack and try it on before finally deciding!! So buy it somewhere where you know you can easily return it!

Think of your own seize when buying a back pack... You don't wanna haul half your own body weight around... As a rule of thump, NEVER buy anything bigger than a 45 L...!!

Make sure the back you get is advertised as as travel backpack, otherwise it might be for hiking, and you don't want that...
Also make sure you don't get a top loader as you need to get everything out and repack every time you want something from the middle or button of the backpack..
Lastly make sure the backpack have zippers you are able to lock together with a simple padlock...

You might not be able to pack this light, but this can sure be for inspiration.. :)


3. Posted by CheersT (Travel Guru 2574 posts) 4y Star this if you like it!

Travelling light is the only way to go. A quick Google will bring up dozens and dozens of options/opinions for lightweight travel:

I travel indefinitely via hotels/hostels through warmish climates with a 46 litre carry-on size backpack with LOTS of room left over inside - my cinches are all pulled to the maximum tightness.

That's including a set of nice clothes to crash an Embassy party or high-end club, normal day-to-day casual and hiking wear, beach clothes, personal hygiene products and everything else you need to be safe/comfortable plus a laptop, digital still/video package and all the peripherals.

During your travels you'll see lots of experienced backpackers doing the same - and many (especially going to places like SE Asia and/or without the camera/video/laptop stuff) will be quite a bit lighter than me.

I love going light because it allows me to keep my backpack with me all the time - no checking it into the baggage space under the bus where it's out of my sight and out of my control - and it's obviously way easier/faster to navigate a crowded train aisle, stow in a small boat, fit into a tuk-tuk, onto the back of a motorcycle and a million other situations. I'm also a bit of an organizational freak and love jumping on last-minute travel options and hauling a giant backpack would make everything way more complicated and ungainly.

Have fun with your research.


4. Posted by bex76 (Moderator 3859 posts) 4y Star this if you like it!

I took a 55 litre backpack around Australia with me and I struggled with it (I'm only 5ft 1" though) so if I take a backpack now use a 40L one. Admittedly sometimes I struggle to pack that light though, so most of the time I prefer a holdall on wheels because they are easy to get around with and fit more in.

5. Posted by Nutmeg0613 (Budding Member 24 posts) 4y Star this if you like it!

wow thanks everyone for all the tips and info! =)

6. Posted by jeanie99 (Full Member 155 posts) 4y Star this if you like it!

If you really want a backpack the rule is if you can't lift it above your head when fully filled it is too big for you.

I personally wouldn't use the heavy packs, for my 12 month round the world trip I used a 4 wheel suitcase and was very glad I did.

It came in very handy when trying to get off a train in India when people were shoving to get on and I was trying to get off the train.


7. Posted by karmatso (Budding Member 3 posts) 4y Star this if you like it!

Whatever size you eventually decide on, I suggest loading it up with what you plan on carrying, and actually wear it around for a while. Go for a walk with it on, and not just once. This will give it a chance to settle in, and you will know pretty quickly how it is going to work for you. If you have a shop nearby that can help you properly fit a pack to your particular body size, I would ask them for pointers. Since your trip is going to be a short one, smaller is better.

One of the nice things about traveling in Europe, is that you will always be able to find something there if you need to purchase another piece of clothing or some supplies. You can leave the heavy soaps, shampoos, and other items behind, and just pick them up as you go along. Also, make sure the clothing you do take can serve multiple purposes, is easy to layer, and does not need any special washing. Since your trip is relatively short, and you know where and when you will be traveling, you can pack specifically for the types of weather you will encounter, and not have to worry about carrying one of everything "just in case".

Best of luck on your trip.

Post 8 was removed by a moderator