These were the stuff that was in my 20L backpack with a pre-trip total weight of 10KG. Some countries were cold, some were warm so I had to pack for both conditions.
For cold weather, I brought 2 sets of inner thermal wear, 2 long sleeves shirts, pashmina, beanie, gloves and synthetic fur lined jacket.
For warm weather, 3 short sleeves shirts, a pair of jeans and a pair of jogger pants.
The rest? Intimates, towel, 1 pair of boots, 1 pair of running shoes and 1 pair of flip flops. I wore a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. So in total I only had 5 shirts and 3 pants for my 3 months trip. How did I manage to survive with so little clothing?
Wear, wash, dry, spare, spare. Wear 1 shirt, wash the other while another one’s drying and keep 2 shirts as spare. For pants, 1 pair is good for a week (depending on wearing conditions). I did my own laundry whenever I could and my shirts were easy to dry overnight in an air conditioned room. Once a week or every two weeks I dropped by the coin laundry for proper washing & drying.
Packing light is crucial when backpacking because carrying the extra weight can really weigh & wear you down. 20 to 30 liter backpack fits just nice in an airplane cabin. Always carry a day pack with your essentials & leave your big backpack at the hotel/luggage storage. I also brought an extra foldable luggage as back-up just in case I went crazy with my shopping (which I did).
I only flew with budget airlines with no cargo perks. Only 10kg of cabin bag allowed.
Except for my flight back to Malaysia. I flew Singapore Airlines, economy class with 30kg baggage allowance. Always fly with regular airline and not low cost airline when returning to your home country because almost always your luggage will either double or triple its weight. And you definitely want to fly full service airline with THAT much luggage. I went with 1 backpack & came back with 2 additional bags. Heh. Don’t we all? 😉