All my stuff …

That is a picture of my stuff from last July, most of the stuff on that picture is still with me.

One of the biggest decisions of being a digital nomad is, what do I really need and what not. Opinions on this question are as different as the lifestyles of a digital nomad can be. I don't want to miss the chance to add my opinion ;)

Being a Digital Nomad always goes more or less along with minimalism. Just because you don't want to haul around big backpacks all the time.

I want to describe here what I figured out is best for me. I spent the last year in Germany, France, Spain, Switzerland, USA, Canada, Israel and Morocco. The temperatures have been quite varied between USA during a very hot summer, the Israeli dessert in November and snow in Germany in December.

I also did change a bit of my equipment during the last year. Especially after finishing my bike tour I got rid of all my bike equipment.

Backpack Dynafit Manaslu 35 liters

I mostly took that backpack, because I already had it. I still like it, because it is very light and has a lot of possibilities to attach things outside on the bag.

I have two additional bags. I use the smaller backpack as day pack or for my stuff to go to co-working spaces or cafes. The orange bag is mostly used for food. I use it to buy groceries to reduce plastic and I also store my food in there to keep it contained.

Water bottle and sleeping bag

For the way I travel, it is useful to have a sleeping bag with me. If I get a new one, which might happen in 2017 because I fixed this one twice already, I would get a smaller one. Temperature is mostly not the problem, it is useful as an extra layer for warmth or cleanliness.

I am very proud of my water bottle. It is a FLSK. I use it almost every day, which is why it looks so beat up. It keeps my tea hot all day and my water cold even when I spent a whole day in the dessert.

My mobile bathroom

I think my bathroom stuff is pretty straightforward. A travel towel, travel toothpaste, shaver. In the wrapped bag are q-tips and the blue thing next to it is a reusable q-tip made from silicon.

Top layers

This is my stuff for the cold days. I have a vest that can be packed very small. Sometimes I use only the vest. I have a scarf that is used for various purposes, protects from sun and cold. My outdoor coat is my every day companion for many years already. Light, waterproof, windproof and even keeps me a little warm. 
Gloves, a hat and a buff.
Piece of paper, pen, hand cream, a reflector in case I walk on a busy street.


I love zip hoodies so I have two of them. The grey one is thin and the coloured one is a bit warmer. The blue long sleeve is a bit more elegant and very thin.


I have four pairs of pants:
One pair of shorts, that can be used for swimming. 
A pair of “working” pants, they are warmer, tearproof and have a lots of pockets. 
A pair of blue jeans.
One pair of thin sleeping pants that I can also use if it is very warm or for sports.


Than of course underwear. Not everything I have is on the picture. I have 6 each and I always try to mix it a bit. I have one sport shirt, some warmer shirts, one more elegant shirt, same with socks 4 are the same plus one thinner pair and one thicker pair.


That might be surprising for some people but I still do attend conferences and meet people so sometimes it is quite useful to be able to dress up a little bit. Also the right shirt is short sleeves so I can easily wear it on hot summer days, too.


I have two pairs of shoes one warm, good to walk or hike in (not quite hiking boots, but close enough). 
 One pair of flipflops, good for around the house or short walks.
And most important, I always have the opportunity to walk barefoot.


Of course I also have some technology stuff with me. Not as much as most people might expect.
Laptop: Lenovo Thinkpad T420. This is way too big and too heavy, I wouldn't recommend this for travelling (+charger)
Smartphone (+charger)
Travel adapter 
(USB Stick - not on the picture)
and a little pouch to store the little electronics.

travel documents

That is my travel documents:
a little notebook
a map from Europe (to hitchhike)
international driver license
some money in USD and EUR (useful in a lot of countries)
passport pictures (never needed theme but I heard it is useful sometimes if you need to get a Visa)
a zip lock bag to keep that important stuff dry


That is the “other” category. It is important to keep that category small, it is most likely to grow with “useful” stuff.

There is a neck pillow I use on planes and sometimes as pillow
lock and the key-chain is a CPR mask
two luggage straps, one is sometimes used as my belt
a head lamp
two pens
a marker
sun glasses
a pocket frisbee
a fork-spoon (spork) 
the red thing that looks like a pen is a multi piece screwdriver. This is more often used than I thought it would be

Things I forgot to put on the photos: 
- I usually have one book with me, that I give away after I finished it
- 32GB USB Stick (still in the pouch)
- Mobile Wifi Router Huawei E5573 (an article about that thing will follow)
- I often have little presents for people I meet, people who invite me, help me, offer me a ride or a place to sleep

All my stuff together is about 12kg, which is most of the times ok for hand luggage. The size of my bag is small enough and I also don't carry large amounts of liquids or anything else that would break carry-on baggage regulation.

I realized, once you travel more than two weeks, you don't need more stuff, no matter how long you travel. You need to find a way to clean your stuff and then you can also pack for just one week and do laundry every week.

That's it. What do you think? Who has less? Who thinks one needs more?

Thank you for the edits to Grace from