Welcome to Backpacker’s Boutique. Every Sunday, this spot will feature a new travel blogger. Some weeks it will be a really fun interview about packing, fashion, and fitness so you can snoop inside their bags & lives a little bit and other weeks it’ll be a detailed luxury guide to a city the featured blogger/expat knows very well. E-mail me if you’d like to be featured.
An interview with packing tips from Globetrotter Girls
Tell us a little about about who you are, what your blog is called, and where you’re traveling now.
Hi, I am Dani, and I run Globetrottergirls.com. I am 33 years old, originally from Germany, but lived in the UK since 2006 until I became a digital nomad four years later.
I have been traveling and blogging since April 2010, when my former partner and I decided to leave London, where we were living at the time, for what we thought would be a one-year round-the-world trip. We quickly realized that we wanted to continue this trip beyond the 12-month mark and worked on turning our blog into a money-making business. Even though I hadn’t worked in a travel writing related profession before, I had always enjoyed writing and photography. Sadly, our relationship didn’t last but I decided to keep the blog going and am still traveling, nearly five years after I set off on this journey.
Do you use a backpack or rolley suitcase for long-term travel?
I bought a Karrimor 65 liter backpack in London before leaving the UK in 2010 and I am happy that the backpack is still holding up even though I’ve been using it constantly since then. I love the backpack because it opens all the way, similar to a suitcase, and not like a top loader backpack which I loathe. The brand is only available in the UK as far as I know, but I highly recommend it.
That said, I just did a travel experiment for a three-week trip to New York in which I tried if I could get away with a wheeling carry-on suitcase for a trip that short (outcome: I prefer overpacking and happily wait at the baggage claim for my oversized backpack!).
I prefer traveling with a backpack because it’s just so much easier to walk around a place carrying my stuff on my back instead of pulling it. I appreciate my backpack especially whenever I walk up and down subway stairs and see people struggling with their suitcases, when I am in a hilly place or somewhere with cobblestone streets.
Dani in New York
What shoes are your every day walking around, sightseeing shoes? And how many pairs of shoes do you pack for a long-term backpacking trip?
I try to follow the sun, and usually travel to places where I can walk around in flip-flops all the time. For colder days / hikes, I have a pair of red Gola sneakers that I love and I also carry a pair of Asics running shoes. I also have a pair of cheap ballerinas for fancier events. (Can you see why I can’t get away with carry-on only?)
For my current trip, however, I only brought a pair of boots which go with all my outfits, my running shoes.
When you’re pigging out trying new foods, other than typical walking & sightseeing in towns- what do you do to keep away the love-handles?
Oh boy, great question- I am definitely one to put on weight quickly. Here in New York for example I have to go running every day to compensate all the bagels, pizza slices, Mexican food and donuts I indulge in. I try to go running everywhere I visit, and hate when I can’t fit a run into my daily routine for whatever reason (usually when I move around a lot).
When you’re traveling, do you pick up beauty & shower products while you go or are there products you can’t live without- what are they?
I love Bath & Body Works products from the US, especially their body lotions and shower gels, but when I run out, I pick up whatever brands are available in the place I’m in.
If someone said to you “I could never live out of a backpack for 3 months” what would be the first advice you would give them?
I would tell them that I used to fill up a 20 kilo backpack for every 2-week vacation I used to go on, and now everything I own fits in a backpack! So if I can do it, anyone can! I am still surprised how few things I actually need.
What type of outfit do you take in case of a night out clubbing or going to a fancy bar/hotel?
I have one fancier pair of pants that I usually wear with a button down, and that’s as fancy as I get!
What is the one material thing you miss most from home while you’re roughin’ it abroad?
I have to say that I don’t really miss anything materialistic but I miss having a kitchen sometimes- I love to cook and to bake, so I try to stay in an apartment as often as possible, mostly doing housesits to save money and to have some furry company at the same time.
When you’ve been sleeping on trains and buses for days, what products do you use to freshen up or do you just wait until you find a hotel?
I carry a few face masks with me that I use when I get to a hotel after long bus rides and flights. My skin is super sensitive if I don’t clean it right and it shows immediately. On such rides, I only use baby wipes.
trusty beach dress
The Werkenntwen has to ask, would you ever pack heels on a backpacking trip?
Nope! I’ve met people who do but I am not that much of a heel person anyway.
Airport style: love looking LA paparazzi ready or could care less? Do you pack “plane” or “relaxing” clothes for a long-term backpacking trip or would it take up too much space?
I don’t carry any plane clothes with me – I’d feel too much like a bum, I think, lol. I see girls in sweat pants sometimes at airports in the US and I am usually horrified. In my book, that look is for your couch only – I think that’s a European thing though that we dress properly every time we leave the house, even if it’s to just go to the bakery or pick up milk.
Do you have a special skin care routine on the road to prevent breakouts from the stress, sweat, and humidity?
I wish I did but I am so lazy with that kind of stuff. I clean it with water and soap only. That said though: I started long-term traveling in my late 20s and am now in my early 30s and feel like I have to take care of my skin better than I’m doing right now.
What does your most worn, daily outfit look like while you’re traveling?
Baggy Capri pants and a black T-shirt. Boring but comfy :)
Tell us the ONE thing you pack for a long backpacking trip & would never leave behind.
My black fleece jacket. To be honest, it is still the one I bought before I left London, which means it’s almost five years old and very washed out, but I can’t get rid of it until I find one exactly like it. I wear it almost every day. The other thing I could never leave behind are my jeans. Even though I try to only to travel to places that are too hot to wear jeans, sometimes I just have to – like currently here in New York.
What are your absolute favorite make up products you take with you on a trip?
I don’t have a favorite brand but I never travel without mascara, eyeliner, eye shadow and cover-up make-up.
You can only pick one: iPod or Kindle?
iPod, no question. I have both, but I use my iPod every day, while I barely find time to read on my kindle these days. When I don’t have time to read a book, I still like to read news and travel articles which I save onto the pocket app on my iPod, I use it to listen to music and podcasts, to take photos, to look up stuff online, feed my Instagram addiction or to check my emails. Definitely iPod!
Thank you for interviewing on Werkenntwen, before you go can you tell readers that may be on the fence about taking a trip why YOU think they should go for it!
You can only regret what you don’t do. Go out and see the world. Nobody ever said ‘I wish I WOULDNT have gone travel the world.’
Dani Heinrich is the vagabonding writer and photographer behind GlobetrotterGirls.com. Dani, originally from Germany, left her home country in 2006 and has been nomadic since April 2010. She originally started Globetrottergirls.com with her partner, and when they separated in early 2014, she decided to keep traveling solo and continuing to sharing her travel stories and tips on Globetrottergirls. With the motto ‘One Globe. No Regrets’, Dani has traveled through over 50 countries on four continents and has no plans to stop any time soon.
On Globetrottergirls.com, she shares the good, a little bad and sprinklings of the ugly of travel with the readers. If people can plan a better trip or be inspired to visit someplace new by reading Globetrottergirls.com, she feels she has done her job. You can also follow her adventures on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
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