Slobodanka Graham


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Happy holidays: how to travel lightly and nimbly

Happy holidays: how to travel lightly and nimbly

For our first trip to New Zealand, Mr PetMan and I decided to hire a mobile home. We wanted to see as much of the country as we could - and we both enjoy road trips.

We flew into Christchurch to collect a Maui, our transport and accommodation for the next 10 days.

Mr PetMan is a meticulous traveller: he’d figured out where to collect the car and where to drop it off; what route we were going to take and what we would see along the way. His plan was to travel clockwise around South Island, staying at key spots of interest all along the way.

While we were in the depot waiting for the Maui, I asked: ‘Why are we going clockwise around the Island? How about we go the other way?’ Mr Petman looked nonplussed.

‘I don’t think we discussed this option . . .’ Mr PetMan is nothing if not fair: ‘Okay . . . How about we toss for it and if you win, you can choose the route.’

He pulled a coin out of his pocket, tossed it - and I won.

I acknowledge Mr PetMan’s generous acceptance of his plan being thrown out of the window: we set off on an entirely different tangent, waking the next morning to a magnificent view of the New Zealand Alps - and no idea where we might go next.

Up until then, I’d been a conservative traveller: I like to know where I’m going, how I’m getting there and where I’ll be staying, but that decision to spontaneously alter our plans was a game changer for me: no longer do I plan everything down to the last degree. But when it comes to packing my hand luggage, like Mr PetMan, I’m meticulous: it’s plan, prepare, countdown and pack. 

Travelling in a mobile home was one of the inspirations for Planepack: how to travel lightly and nimbly. 

My Planepack Top 10 Tips*

My Planepack Top 10 Tips*

My 'killer' necklace - or how to pack like a travel light pro

My 'killer' necklace - or how to pack like a travel light pro