big or small backpack?

Travel Forums Round the World Travel big or small backpack?

Last Post This thread is marked as being about Thailand
1. Posted by emily (First Time Poster 1 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Hi there fellow travellers.
I'm setting off on a round the world trip in January, starting off in South East Asia, Malaysia, Oz, NZ and then to South America. I'm hopefully going to go for 12 months if money lasts that long. I spoke to my mate about a backpack today and she reckons she's just taking a weeny one, whereas I had something a bit bigger in mind. Do I need lots of stuff to take or is it better to cope with the bare minimum? We're not taking a tent as we're planning to stay at friends' houses and we've both got back problems anyway. Will a small one be enough and has anyone done this before for such a long trip?

Also, does anyone have any idea how much money I might need to take? I've got 5 grand so far but I know that's not enough, even on budget.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks and I hope you're all having fun wherever you are in the world.

2. Posted by stevieh (Respected Member 615 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Hi Emily,
If you're staying with friends most of the time, 5 grand is a King's ransom! I seem to find 6 grand is a good average for backpackers staying in hostels for up to a year. But, you start by saying "I'm setting off" and then "we're planning to stay..." Does that mean there's 2 of you? In which case it will have to stretch a bit further.

Backpacks. We (2 of us!) each had a proper travel pack with zip off daysack (good for flight hand luggage), but could honestly have done without. They were a bit of overkill really, and there was one item of clothing neither of us wore at all - a longsleeved shirt!
If you think you'll be walking a lot, you'll need a rucksack, but take the smallest you can get away with. Ask around about how to minimise your stuff. Don't forget, you're away for a year, so cannot possibly take everything with you. So take next to nothing. You can always buy extra clothes on the road. They're cheaper than the UK!

If you're not walking much (and we didn't) then a holdall you can carry from terminal-to-taxi, then taxi-to-hotel/hostel/friend's door is all you need.

3. Posted by IMonaghan (Respected Member 431 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!


The longer your trip and the more walking you are planning on doing, the Smaller a pack you want. I don't mean trying to travel for a year with just a pocket book and a fanny pack though

Get a backpack that doesn't look intimidating to you, take it home and cram as much heavy crap into it as you can muster then try it on, if it hurts after a half hour or so then chuck it and get a smaller one.

The first and foremost problem I've seen people have while travelling is having too much stuff with them, you never need as much stuff as you think you do setting out, so be carefull when you pack for the trip... really scrutinize every item you bring with you and if you don't see using it along the way don't bring it.... Also if it is a cheap or heavy item, don't bring it... you can always buy one along the way if it's that improtant to you.