Minimalism and travel, what could go better together? Besides cookies and milk. Or a single malt scotch and … well, anything. OK, so it’s not unique, but it’s still a great combination!
Let’s chat about five things you can do to keep your travel bags a little lighter and make your wandering ways a tad easier. All have been tested and found true through years of self-abuse and mistakes.
SCENE ZERO (DESK)
(hop up into chair, lean in personal, comic teasing style)
So, you’re frugal. And minimal. And you want to travel without bringing your entire closet with you on wheels.
(lean back and smile victoriously)
Well, guess what? It’s not only possible, it’s actually kinda easy. Wanna know how?
(comfortable, friendly, playing around with words)
Hi, I’m Rick Higgins and today we’re talking frugalism. Or minimalism. Some ism like that. Isms that help travelers like us travel better.
Here are five, count em, five! great ideas to lighten your suitcase and speed you along in your journeys.
SCENE ONE (CAM-ONE)
(each section needs a transition, a video clip with title and music underneath)
(have pants and shorts stacked on a table in front of me. Use them as props. Need b-roll of me modeling them)
(additional b-roll: hand washing and drying clothes, packing suitcases, laundromat)
Tip number one? I’m wearing them. My pants. And no, I’m not going to take them off to show you.
The idea behind this tip is two-fold. Lighter and quicker.
Lighter as in lightweight. Take my pants, for instance. They’re from Colombia and are sold for hikers. You can’t rip or harm these things. They come in lots of colors, they look great as casual clothing, and the black ones even … almost … look like dress slacks.
Now I’m a big guy … 6’2” and 200 plus … a lot of pounds. My clothes are big. And in the space of one pair of jeans, I can roll up three of these. And they de-wrinkle incredibly fast.
📍 Which brings me to point number two … quick dry. If you want to travel light, you need to figure out how to live in only 2-3 outfits. Which means that you need to be able to hand wash things and have them dried the next day.
These pants … and the matching shorts! … do exactly that. Combined with wicking and quick dry underthings, socks, and shirts … and your suitcase will be a third of the load it might otherwise require.
📍 And you won’t be hanging out in coin laundries when you can be elsewhere exploring.
SCENE TWO (Cam-2)
“US Phone Numbers”
(Use phone as prop, casual conversation, they are right in front of you as you explain)
(b-roll of mobile phones and poor connections, Google Voice ads, two-factor authentication, text messaging)
📍 Tip number two is communication. When you’re abroad you need to be able to communicate both where you are, and back home. And you have several options, all of which I’ve tried … and only one of which succeeded.
Now you could simply swap sim cards in your phone, but that’s a pain and both numbers won’t be in service at the same time. You could keep your US phone, but is your US sim card going to work everywhere you go? You could even carry two phones … which is the opposite of minimalism, right?
And yes, I’ve done the two phone thing, it’s not an option. Trust me.
Here’s how you solve it. Get Google Voice. You could use Skype, but Voice is better.
📍 Because you’re going to use the app for SMS/text messages as well. And most places like banks, etc don’t see Skype as a valid mobile number, so you can’t get texts. Say, to access your account. (Don’t ask how we know) I have yet to find a company that doesn’t see my Google Voice number as a valid mobile number.
By using Voice, you always have your US number with you, and available, no matter where you are. Your foreign sim card provides the data and the local number.
Oh, and quick tip … every place you go in-country that has free wifi? Log in and keep it in your access list. Not only to save money on data minutes, but if you ever run out of minutes or have sim issues, you can easily and quickly connect to the internet through your remembered connections. Again, personal experiences talking here.
SCENE THREE (CAM-ONE)
(need the belt as a prop, obviously, plus wallet phone keys)
Tip number three is kinda a two parter. We spend a lot of time in Barcelona. They have a pickpocket problem. Lots of other cities do as well, like Paris. I use this thin waist pack.
You can get the multi compartment and zippered version, but I like the single pocket variety. Why? Because I don’t want to carry a lot. And if I don’t have the room, then I’m not tempted. In this thing … and it’s moisture wicking by the way … I carry my phone, wallet (minimalist, of course), and house key. Fits perfectly and tucks under my shirt. Foils the pickpockets and keeps me free to focus on life, and not things.
(lean in, make it personal and quick)
** Quick story on how pickpockets work, zippered pockets won’t save you ***
SCENE FOUR (Cam-2)
“Snap A Pic”
(phone as prop, look guilty and embarrassed)
Tip number four is only loosely minimalism-related. But it’s saved me many a time.
When you park your car at the airport, or your rental anywhere. When you walk up to your hotel room. Take a picture of the parking slot, address, room number, everything. It’s new, and your memory isn’t enough.
I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve wandered around wondering (a) where did I park the car, and (b) what car am I driving this time? Now your could carry with you all of the paperwork, but that’s hardly an option, now is it? But your phone is always going to be with you, right?
Oh, and that paperwork? Take a picture of it as well.
SCENE FIVE (DESK)
(Back to where it started)
And tip number five? It’s a life saver. If things go really pear shaped for you abroad, who are you going to call? 911? Nope, that’s not a universal number for help. Before you hit a new place … in addition to learning a few words of the language to be respectful … learn what emergency numbers and procedures they have in place.
Put them in your phone as well.
** Quick story about London 999 vs 111 ***
With that, be happy, healthy, well traveled, and we’ll see you soon.
I envision this as a completely discoverable video. It’s not for subscribers as much as new folks who don’t know me. So yea, I need to mention my own name, I suppose.
Five sections and an intro, no real cohesive story other than to help folks do a thing. However, each section needs a story of how it works. And it also needs b-roll which shows the story. And then a super-fast wrap-up and poof, gone.
Quick Dry, Wicking Everything
Google Voice / Skype
Waist Pack For Security and to limit your stuff
Snap a Pic of your room number and address … and where you left the car parked (you always have your phone, never the paper)
Pre-know Emergency Numbers … it’s not 911
It’s a DISCOVERY VIDEO, so story is important, just not focal.