planning for packing

rickstevesbagIn addition to looking for a camera that won’t weigh me down on the trip, I’ve been spending a lot of time looking at suitcases. European planes have slightly smaller overhead compartments, and I wanted to have at least one bag that I know will fit overhead on flights there. After reading a number of reviews, I settled on the Rick Steves Rolling Luggage Carryon, which is an ultralight 20″ bag. It’s gotten really good reviews, both on Amazon and on travel sites, and it’s been road tested all over Europe.

My luggage plan for the trip is to bring a backpack (for the two laptops I’m bringing), a carryon, and a large checked bag. Rick Steves may be able to get by in Europe for four months at a time with just a 20lb carryon, but he doesn’t have to teach classes and hold office hours while he’s there. Given that I’ll need warm clothes for March and lighter clothes for April/May, and that I’ll need a range of shoes and boots to go with those, I’m pretty sure I’ll need the checked bag. And since Alex tends to pack light, I’ll be able to steal some space in his checked bag, as well.

After classes are over, we’ll stash our heavier computer gear and our big checked bags somewhere in Dubrovnik, and will head off to Italy with only the smaller bag(s)–just enough clothes and gear for ten days of touring and hiking, and only phones and tablets for computing devices.

What I still need to find out is what things I need to pack that I wouldn’t necessarily expect to need. I’m not sure what’s going to be easy to come by in Dubrovnik, and what I’ll be kicking myself for not bringing along. Next week I need to set up a coffee date with one of my colleagues who just got back from teaching there, to see what his suggestions are in that regard.

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