Photo by Andi Whiskey on Unsplash

Make your luggage pull double duty

Even when you aren’t backpacking or doing the minimalist thing there’s never enough room in your luggage. It’s always a fight to the death with every item earning its spot. You get to be ruthless in a whole new way.

So anything that makes it through has to really deserve its spot. The holy grail is an item that pulls double duty — or more.

🔊A personal alarm with a pull-string pin design rather than a button is more flexible.

You can keep it in your bag or pocket, somewhere on your person, while you are out and about. Once you are back at your accommodation you can also secure your room.

Use it as a door alarm or window alarm by attaching the keyring or body of the alarm to one side of the door or window frame. Attach the pull string or pin attachment to the other. Then, when the door or window is opened the pin will be pulled and you will be alerted.

Personal alarms are pretty small but they can be used for all-round security. They aren’t just about warding off attackers either. They can summon help if you are lost in the wilderness or injured off the beaten track.

🍴A spork — one of the original multitools.

These little guys take up minimal luggage space anyway and it’s worth keeping one in your daypack. Save the environment by refusing single-use plastic cutlery, and save space.

A spork is technically a spoon and fork combo but many come with a serrated edge on the fork to serve as a knife. You can get the whole set of cutlery at one end or you can have a more full-sized bite with larger sporks that have a spoon at one end and knife-fork at the other.

👕A washing line might not be the most obvious thing to pack. But hear me out.

It definitely works on the multiple-uses front. Not only is being able to dry your washing, or wet things, totally useful without having to drape them all over your hotel room, but you can use it in loads of other ways.

Plus, this version doesn’t even need the attendant pegs — twist your clothes in and it grips them. Smart stuff. It has hooks, suction pads, or you can old-fashioned tie it up. You can use a washing line to fashion a shower or regular curtain, bundle up your clothes to keep them off the floor or make a coat hanger rod. Lash items to your pack and just generally get creative. It takes up virtually no space.

🔆An often overlooked but, imho, essential piece of kit when travelling is a light source.

But before you reach for a torch, consider this: a head lamp. Headlamps free up your hands and that shouldn’t be underestimated. Also, you can hold it and use it like a torch if you want, but you always have the head option.

So demand more from your luggage. Flexible and multifunctional pieces are where it’s at.

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