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Has anybody ever cruised on a 7 day with nothing but backpacks?


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Warning majorly TLDR, sorry guys!!:

 

The bag I got was called  "Carry on Backpack, Durable Extra Large 17 Inch Business Computer Backpack, Anti Theft Laptop Backpack with USB Port, Lapsouno Water Resistant College"  on Amazon. It says measurements are ‎16.5 x 11.5 x 5.12 inches so any backpack with those measurements or maybe even a little larger would probably do well.

 

I like that it FULLY zips around, just like a carry-on suitcase. That was a key factor for me. Some that were nicer didn't do that or didn't have the water bottle pockets on BOTH sides. That was my issue with the Amazon Basics one, otherwise I did want that I was thinking quality might be a bit better with the Amazon Basics one.

 

 will say my biggest concern with it is the ZIPPER quality. It appears to be a self-healing zipper (maybe?) but it did seperate once as I was testing it out. My husband thinks the zipper is of good quality so we will see. Otherwise it's a really nice backpack but I'm tacking it on a flight for a weeks land-based vaca in a few weeks. Well, I think I am taking it, all depends d/t the toddler I mentioned above!

 

A packing cube with a bunch of lothing wrolled inside fits, I will look later and see if it was my medium or my large cube I packed in there and time permitting grab the measurements of my cube for you. I have so many different packing cubes, honestly! I have some tan ones, black ones, purple ones, whatever's a good deal at the time. I still want more since there's 4 of us. When I ordered it was $33.55, currently the listing is showing a lightning deal of $31.43 (Wouldn't you know, of course it's cheaper now! lol). I really hope I can mention the bag above, I have no affiliation with it and didn't post a link. Some places are so touchy these days. FB especially and their mods often don't tell you how to correct the post once they take it down. If it's an issue I could screencap it or something I'm just trying to help anyone I can out. There's similar bags out there.

 

 

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On 5/13/2022 at 10:06 AM, cruizergal70 said:

Are you concerned more about the physical backpack or the  amount of clothes? I only travel with a 19" carryon and one small backpack. I only pack clothes for half the days. So, for a 7 day, I would have the clothes I wore onto the ship and then three more days of clothes. Clothes wise, you should be okay with less. Most ships have self serve laundry rooms. A few have ship laundry services.

 

I imagine the biggest concern (I'm not OP) would be the weight on your back depending on what's in there. Clothes can get heavy but that could be remedied maybe with clothes designed for traveling or avoiding denim and heavier fabrics. I love jeans so I have to have at least 2 pair jeans and 2 pr. denim shorts if going somewhere warm. Also how you sleep matters - sleeping in undies would possibly save space (avoiding PJs) or being able to wear your lounge clothes as regular clothes but if your sailing a nice line (ior even otherwise) you might want some more formal stuff. Getting clothing could help (from the ship) so many things to cut down on your clothing weight! Think carefully about how bulky things are you're packing and maybe wear on your bulkiest pieces for embarkation.

 

Laptops/electronics also could be heavy, too!

 

Laundrettes could help if you're willing to wash clothes if they get dirty.

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Definitely doable. We find packing cubes, as a few others have said, really help with packing minimalist. Coloured ones are great - I know to reach for the pink one for underwear, socks etc, and grey for shorts & slacks and the yellow one for charging cords, red one for bathroom items etc. We’ve travelled by bicycles (as well as cruises!) and motorcycle, and they’re helpful in the paniers too.

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There is nice clothing out there that works well for carryon travel and is 'nice' enough to wear on a more upscale cruise line.  As far as jeans - there are jeans out there that aren't the heavy things your grandfather wore 😉  I have some that weigh the same or less than the usual khakis.  AND, they aren't special for traveling - I wear them at home all the time, including at work.  

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4 hours ago, oyme said:

 

I imagine the biggest concern (I'm not OP) would be the weight on your back depending on what's in there. Clothes can get heavy but that could be remedied maybe with clothes designed for traveling or avoiding denim and heavier fabrics. I love jeans so I have to have at least 2 pair jeans and 2 pr. denim shorts if going somewhere warm. Also how you sleep matters - sleeping in undies would possibly save space (avoiding PJs) or being able to wear your lounge clothes as regular clothes but if your sailing a nice line (ior even otherwise) you might want some more formal stuff. Getting clothing could help (from the ship) so many things to cut down on your clothing weight! Think carefully about how bulky things are you're packing and maybe wear on your bulkiest pieces for embarkation.

 

Laptops/electronics also could be heavy, too!

 

Laundrettes could help if you're willing to wash clothes if they get dirty.

Weight is a big issue for us. Not a problem on most international trans ocean carriers but it is on the regionals that we tend to use extensively in Asia, Europe, and Australia.  Quite often the weight limit is 7 0r 8 Kg. 

 

 We tend to shop for lightweight, easycare fabrics.  IF we are booked on an airline that we know is a stickler (most give 1KG grace) we put a few heavier items in our jacket pockets, including ipad, etc.  We wear our heaviest shoes.  The lightweight shoes go in the bag.

 

It is on those flight that we usually do not want to check because we are off to somewhere else once we have deplaned.

 

The most we ever pack is for six days.  We do layers.  Even when we leave in the winter we are dressed in summer clothing.  Jump into the warm cab to the airport.  No point in dragging heavy winter clothing about for two months.

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On 5/15/2022 at 3:23 PM, slidergirl said:

There is nice clothing out there that works well for carryon travel and is 'nice' enough to wear on a more upscale cruise line.  As far as jeans - there are jeans out there that aren't the heavy things your grandfather wore 😉  I have some that weigh the same or less than the usual khakis.  AND, they aren't special for traveling - I wear them at home all the time, including at work.  

 

What are those -- the light weight jeans?  THX.

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I did a 7-day Alaska cruise on Princess with a carry-on shoulder bag with a similar capacity to a medium-sized backpack. No problem. Formal nights weren't an issue. Princess is not that strict and they had no issues with a collared shirt, cargo pants and hiking boots on fancy pants night.  

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I can't remember the last time I saw a senior with backpack, stuffed to the gills, or even most seniors wanting to wear one at all. So I'm not sure why this discussion went that way.

 

Even as a 36 year-old, healthy, male, there is no part of me that finds comfort in a heavy backpack on my back vs "lugging around" a wheeled luggage (for half of the time that I would have the backpack), that can be as big or as small as I want.

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2 hours ago, Joebucks said:

I can't remember the last time I saw a senior with backpack, stuffed to the gills, or even most seniors wanting to wear one at all. So I'm not sure why this discussion went that way.

 

Even as a 36 year-old, healthy, male, there is no part of me that finds comfort in a heavy backpack on my back vs "lugging around" a wheeled luggage (for half of the time that I would have the backpack), that can be as big or as small as I want.

That is exactly why we went with what the manufacturer referred to as a wheeled international carry on size backpack.  

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13 hours ago, ldubs said:

 

What are those -- the light weight jeans?  THX.

If you are a woman - Athleta, Madewell.  Also, an quick and easy search on the 'net will yield results.  

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3 hours ago, Joebucks said:

I can't remember the last time I saw a senior with backpack, stuffed to the gills, or even most seniors wanting to wear one at all. So I'm not sure why this discussion went that way.

 

Even as a 36 year-old, healthy, male, there is no part of me that finds comfort in a heavy backpack on my back vs "lugging around" a wheeled luggage (for half of the time that I would have the backpack), that can be as big or as small as I want.

Sorry, I don't have a photo of myself...  I'm 68.  As I pack around 35lbs, it's not really heavy.  I carry things heavier than that at work at the condos.  I've "lugged" enough of my guests' wheelies to know they are not user-friendly for me.  Plus, my travels involve more than car-to-ship-to-plane kind of trips, so nimbleness is a necessity.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Joebucks said:

I can't remember the last time I saw a senior with backpack, stuffed to the gills, or even most seniors wanting to wear one at all. So I'm not sure why this discussion went that way.

 

Even as a 36 year-old, healthy, male, there is no part of me that finds comfort in a heavy backpack on my back vs "lugging around" a wheeled luggage (for half of the time that I would have the backpack), that can be as big or as small as I want.

I hope this doesnt come across as disrespectful, because we do care about you all.

 

That said, we hike 3-4 days a week with 'seniors' carrying heavy packs because they are training for one climb, hike, Camino walk or just another day of fun hiking.  Yesterday we covered 2700 ft of elevation up and down about 4 miles each way to the summit of Mt Diablo. It was a medium difficulty training hike for us.  We are probably the youngest in our hiking group, but ages ranged from 57 to early 80s.   

 

While I feel for those with disabilities, I also encourage healthy people to get out there and change their bodies by walking regularly.  The goal of an exciting trip with a backpack can be an amazing incentive to get more fit.  Some FB former co workers of mine are posting right now from a walking tour of Spain, on the Camino, taking their time, and post about how fast their stamina has improved.  Walk in those great port cities, instead of taking a bus around, if you can.  Packing light can be a part of a lifestyle change and we can cruise healthy!

 

Maybe this is not advice for the OP, as I hope light travel can improve their mobility, but for those who can, is it worth a try for one trip at least or a bit of online research into new tech lightweight tech fabrics, suitcases, etc? Check out REI or a local sporting goods store, as todays packs are nothing like the old canvas heavyweights of the past.

Edited by Pizzasteve
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2 hours ago, Pizzasteve said:

I hope this doesnt come across as disrespectful, because we do care about you all.

 

That said, we hike 3-4 days a week with 'seniors' carrying heavy packs because they are training for one climb, hike, Camino walk or just another day of fun hiking.  Yesterday we covered 2700 ft of elevation up and down about 4 miles each way to the summit of Mt Diablo. It was a medium difficulty training hike for us.  We are probably the youngest in our hiking group, but ages ranged from 57 to early 80s.   

 

While I feel for those with disabilities, I also encourage healthy people to get out there and change their bodies by walking regularly.  The goal of an exciting trip with a backpack can be an amazing incentive to get more fit.  Some FB former co workers of mine are posting right now from a walking tour of Spain, on the Camino, taking their time, and post about how fast their stamina has improved.  Walk in those great port cities, instead of taking a bus around, if you can.  Packing light can be a part of a lifestyle change and we can cruise healthy!

 

Maybe this is not advice for the OP, as I hope light travel can improve their mobility, but for those who can, is it worth a try for one trip at least or a bit of online research into new tech lightweight tech fabrics, suitcases, etc? Check out REI or a local sporting goods store, as todays packs are nothing like the old canvas heavyweights of the past.

 

This is actually very cool that you do this. I highly agree that more people need to do more activities to keep themselves fit. 

 

I know it's impossible to speak for everyone. Over the years, I have traveled with parents, grandparents, family members, friends of these people, many different people over the age of say 50. I can't look at anyone with a straight face and say backpacks are some sort of preferred luggage among the group for its convenience. Especially when you're on a cruise. It is quite clear to long-time cruisers that porters will handle your luggage from the time you enter the port. Your taxi will generally handle it as it is transported to the port or airport.

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10 hours ago, slidergirl said:

If you are a woman - Athleta, Madewell.  Also, an quick and easy search on the 'net will yield results.  

 

Yeah, I'm a guy.  Anyway, when read your comment I realized how heavy a typical pair of Levi's or Lee jeans are.  Maybe I should get the ones with holes in them to save some weight but probably not a good look on a really old guy.  😄

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Posted (edited)
On 5/14/2022 at 8:21 PM, atexsix said:

I did that on a trip to europe once and man did they grill me coming back through U.S. Customs, wanting to know why I traveled with so few belongings...I guess that raised suspicions....my answer though "because your own state department website recommended traveling lightly".

I have only had issues twice at Customs traveling so lightly, and that was

1) Entering Scotland in 2019 as a single femme with one bag, they wanted proof I was going to leave (I had tickets to the World Cup opener in Paris three days later plus Eurostar tickets)

 

2) Entering Canada for the second time in a week in 2015. I had gone up for World Cup games, then bounced down to Seattle to see my beloved SF Giants play the Mariners for three days. Then I had to explain to the Border Agent what the World Cup was... when his eyes glazed over I knew I was going to get waved through.

 

Coming through US Customs, no issue ever. I guess I have a face that they intuit will give them the ol' "I am a US citizen and I have a right to return to my residence." answer and nothing else. (I also have a minor in Constitutional Law 😊)

 

Traveling lightly or even ultra-light is something that takes a lot of practice, a lot of effort and pre-planning, and a lot of willingness to splash out cash if you find you left something at home you actually need-- especially when your access may be limited not to the local department stores but what's in a ship's shops. I've been honing my process for over 25 years at this point, and do a lot of business travel along with my personal travel. As an example above, a lot of folks are talking about how heavy jeans are-- yes. Heavy and bulky! My travel wardrobe these days now that I'm dressing femme is completely dresses and leggings. When I did wear masculine clothes in the past, I wore khakis and shorts. You can wash out khakis in a sink, if you don't mind that they likely won't dry out by the next day. Not suggested for humid climates. 

 

Additionally, I am blessed to currently have no mobility issues lifting and carrying for long distances. If there are mobility issues/devices in the mix, I think there are ways you can lighten the packing but unfortunately I have no experience there, and a quick Google trawl shows most of the pack lightly folks tend to be able bodied youngsters, bless their knees. 

Edited by MarySueSays
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Posted (edited)

We find that travelling with carry on helps us when we return home through customs. 

 

 The agent can tell when we left when he scans the passport.  The next question is usually do have have any checked bags.  We say no.  

 

Then he/she asks....are you bringing anything home...anything to declare.   The answer is always no.  When they see our respective carry on rollers they quickly come to the conclusion that we cannot possibly have anything!  

 

This is the way it has been for 12 years of so, at least two or three times a year.  We have only had one issue in the last 12 years.

 

A Vietnamese security person spotted a small metal nail file that had slipped under the lining of our bag.  First time in at least 40 or 50  security screenings (in many countries) that we had been through!  

 

By far the easiest has been entering Australia via Gold Coast.  Went through in five minutes flat.  One question....are you smuggling any maple syrup in that bag"????

Edited by iancal
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On 5/15/2022 at 2:36 PM, iancal said:

Their strong recommendation remained with us...carry on soft side rollers with 2 skate quality wheels, a good zipper, and tough fabric. 

That is what you see flight crews using and they travel for a living. 

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Posted (edited)
50 minutes ago, Ilovesailaway said:

That is what you see flight crews using and they travel for a living. 

Right -  they do not do it with back packs.  They know it is smarter to let the wheels carry the weight most of the time.

Edited by navybankerteacher
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So much depends on your personal lifestyle, time of year, weather. I'm basically a low maintenance kind of person and I don't mind washing lightweight items. There are abundant resources online  for what to pack, how to pack, and how to minimize your packing if you want to do this.

I spent 7 weeks in Europe last fall with a carryon and personal item. And a recent 10 days cruise to Bermuda and Bahamas with an underseat carrier and personal item that included my mask and snorkel. 

So to answer your question: yes its possible if you want to, and if this choice doesn't make you feel like you are depriving yourself of what are essentials to you.

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On 5/15/2022 at 4:31 PM, BruceMuzz said:

I have done several 7-day cruises with a rented canoe, a borrowed tent, and a backpack.

Same thing.

But, did you have to port the canoe???  

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On 5/19/2022 at 5:34 PM, Ilovesailaway said:

That is what you see flight crews using and they travel for a living. 

We have met more than one retired flight crew member during our travels that uses that same carry on bag for their extended retirement trips.

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1 hour ago, Tonopah said:

Our son once did an 11 month cruise with nothing but a single ditty bag…

Three questions come to mind:

 

1) What did he have in the "ditty bag"?

 

2) Do you know what a "ditty bag" is?

 

3) Was he serving time on a prison ship?

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