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How To Pack Clothes For Your Upcoming Eurotrip (For Guys)
Your flights are booked and your Stoke Travel Passport is burning a hole in your pocket. Your trip is a more than a couple of weeks, but less than a couple of months away. It’s probably not time to pack yet, but you’re excitement is getting the better of you; maybe it’s time to plan packing.
Packing clothes for an extended eurotrip is a bit of an art form and one that we’ve perfected over years of trial and mucho error. You too can do the trial and error thing, or you can just follow our simple to use guide:
These are the most important things in your backpack. A good t-shirt can make your day, while not having a good t-shirt will render you a vile, stinky, unfashionable fool. You don’t want to pack too many t-shirts, because lugging dead weight sucks, but having too many is way better than having too few.
- Empty everything from your wardrobe onto your bedroom floor. Absolutely everything. You never know what you’re going to need, right?
- Now work out how often you think you will be doing laundry. A good guide is multiply how often you do it at home by four, i.e. if you do laundry once a week at home, you’ll do it once a month in Europe. When you come to this number call it X.
- Next make an honest appraisal of how dirty/stinky you are. Are you an exceptionally dirty and/or stinky person? How long could you wear a shirt for before it possessed an unacceptable odour? How likely are you to create an unwearable stain on any garment? A good judge is how often you have to change a t-shirt at home. Not want to, but have to. If you’re a real pig it will be every day, if you’re a sweet prince you’ll be forced by grime and grit to change your shirt once a week. Now take that number and divide one by it. That’s Y.
- After that you need to determine how often you’ll be willing or wanting to buy new t-shirts per predicted washing period. Perhaps you’re a shopaholic. Maybe you like buying souvenirs. Perhaps, and most likely, if you’re a once-a-month laundry doer you maintain your slovenly approach to clothes hygiene with a large shirt-shopping program. Anyway, whatever that number is, call it Z.
- Now the tried and proven formula for knowing how many shirts to pack is: XY-Z, where you multiply how often you will do laundry on the road by how often you need to change shirts (as a fraction) minus your predicted shopping habits. Example:
- Jeff washes his clothes at home twice a week, could probably wear a shirt for two days without having to change it and never buys new shirts unless he has to. X = 3.5×4, Y = ½ and Z = 0. Therefore Jeff will have to pack 14 x ½ – 0 t-shirts = seven t-shirts.
- Peter on the other hand washes his clothes once every fortnight, has to change his shirts daily no matter what and buys new gear whenever he needs it, which is about once a week. X = 14×4, Y = 1 and Z = 2. Pete the fucken gross bastard will have to pack 54 t-shirts, which he most certainly will not do, but you can guarantee that he’ll be the stinky kid on your bus to the Running of the Bulls.
- Now go through your floodrobe and find the number of shirts you need. You will want to choose the garments with the highest quality thread, so they can hold up while you’re on the road, and also in a variety of colours. You’re going to want some white shirts, even though they get smashed stain-wise, and you’re going to want some black shirts too. You’re also going to need some colourful shirts. You will want shirts that are as plain and message-free as possible, because a eurotrip is a time for transformation and maybe your Scarface tee with Tony Montana machine gunning everybody you walk past won’t be an accurate representation of you after a couple of weeks on the road. Same goes for any shirts featuring marijuana leaves, as you’d hate for your Up In Smoke tee to be your only clean shirt when you’re visiting the Vatican, for example.
- Roll those tees up, because you read somewhere that rolling clothes takes up less bag space, and jam them into your backpack.
Packing for everything else
Look at how much space you have left, that’s what you have to work with. We’re going to go through this packing list in order of importance, so just go through this until you’ve got no more space left.
- Some thongs/jandals/flip flops or open-toe footwear.
- One pair of black jeans.
- Two pairs of lighter colour shorts that deftly cross the line from dressy to practical.
- All the pairs of underwear you have, if less than eight, or eight pairs of underwear.
- Swim trunks or a speedo, whatever you fancy yourself to be frolicking on a European beach in.
- Four pairs of socks
- A waterproof, light jacket in black if you have it.
- Some Cons or Vans or other shoes in black that look respectable enough but won’t take up too much bag space.
- A long-sleeved collared shirt, in case you meet a French Dutchess and are invited to tea at her mother’s vineyard, or if you’re asked to be an extra on a P-Diddy film clip on a yacht off the coast of Ibiza.
- Four more pairs of socks.
- A little cotton sweater or something to just offer a little extra warmth under your spray jacket (#6).
- Some denim jeans.
- A hat if you regularly wear one, but really just buy a hat on the road if you like them so much.
- Some toiletries, toothbrush, deodorant, sunscreen, moisturiser, night-time anti-ageing face cream, condoms, that sort of thing (this is last because you’ll probably forget it and can get everything on the road).
And that’s it! If you’ve still got space in your bag you’ve either got a massive bag, or you don’t have enough t-shirts. You can always use more t-shirts. Now your bag is packed, you need to chuck on some comfortable clothes to fly in, we recommend soft, stretchy long pants, joggers with thick socks and a pull over. You want to fly in comfort. When you get to Europe you might not have space in your bag for this stuff, in which case give it to a homeless guy.
Look at that, packing is so easy if you just follow an overly convoluted mathematical formula. Now you know you’re going to look good, you just need somewhere to do it. Well, the Stoke Travel Passport will give you at least four trips to do over two summers (if you can’t do four trips in one). And for more practical travellers’ advice head over to our Backpackers’ Guide.