THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS FROM WHICH WE MIGHT MAKE A COMMISSION.
A backpacker’s backpack can show a lot about them. After all, it is their lifeblood. A backpacker’s backpack contains everything they own, everything they need. How much or how little is in that backpack says a lot about who you are as a traveler. What does yours say about you? What do you want it to say about you? Read on.
What Your Backpack Says About You
If your backpack is over 40 liters you are a classic overpacker. You’re probably new to backpacking and still think you need to bring more than a couple of outfits, full-sized toiletries, and “backpacking essentials” like a sleeping-bag liner, bug spray, and underwear. Your backpack is so big that you topple over trying to walk down the street, need help loading it on buses, and can’t fit it in a locker so you leave it out in the middle of the dorm room so your bunk-mates have to trip over it to get to bed. Your giant backpack makes you look like a backpacking newb.
Example: Osprey Men’s Aether 85 Backpack
Carry-On Only Backpack
If your backpack is under 40 liters and you pride yourself on being “carry-on only” you’re probably one of those know-it-all backpackers who has been there, done that. You take every opportunity to tell people why they are packing too much and how great carry-on only lifestyle is. It’s like the backpacking equivalent of declaring you’re gluten free or that you do crossfit. You don’t have any toiletries over 3 ounces so you’re constantly stopping at 7-11, asking to borrow shampoo, or not showering. But by bypassing baggage claim you’ve saved yourself 2 hours this year.
Example: Osprey Women’s Kyte 36 Backpack
There’s extreme and then there’s extreme. And you’re extreme. You maybe have an extra set of underwear, some condoms, and a passport. And that’s about it. You don’t see the point of lugging around a bunch of extra shit if you can buy, or steal, whatever you need from wherever you are. You realize that travel isn’t about what you carry but what you experience. You leave all the comforts of home behind and are always ready for the next adventure.
Example: Osprey Packs Talon 22 Backpack
You literally don’t give a fuck. And you probably smell.
You’re a tourist. Backpackers wear backpacks. Backpackers do not carry suitcases. If you’re carrying a rolling suitcase you probably should be booked into a hotel, not a hostel and on some group tour that plans all your stops, not trying to go it alone. You’re just not that kind of traveler.
If your backpack is brand new this is obviously your first trip abroad. You have no idea what to expect and have no idea what you’re doing. You’ll say hello and introduce yourself to anyone who walks into the dorm then immediately try to add them on Facebook. You’ll have a million questions, only want to go where Lonely Planet suggests, and complain about the cleanliness of the hostel.
Full of Holes
You’ve clearly traveled a lot and have no desire to lead a materialistic life. You’re a minimalist who doesn’t believe in material possessions. You’ve been traveling for a long time with no plans to stop.
Or you’re just homeless.
Covered in Flag Patches
You’re a show off who wants the world to know you’ve been to more places than them. You want to impress girls and spark conversations, all revolving around you, of course. You probably never left the airport for most of the stops, but at least they sold the patches there.
Has a Canadian Flag on It
You’re an American.
What does YOUR backpack say about YOU?