Work and Wellbeing · 6 January 2020

Lightweight essentials for the business traveller in 2020

I have always loved to travel and I am very fortunate that it’s one of the things that I have to do a lot of when running my sneaker business. Whether it’s visiting one of our manufacturing partners in Portugal or the Far East or attending shoe exhibitions and shows in Europe and even photoshoots, wherever I am going, travelling lighter is essential.

Of course, lighter travel is great for convenience, speed and ease.  But for me the idea goes further than that; travelling lighter is also about my impact when I travel and when I buy travel-related products.

Here are my top recommendations for lighter travel:

1. Leave the big stuff behind

We make the most of our kit by losing the big DSLR cameras and shooting with the Moment App and Lens.

This photo app gives you more control of your phone’s camera, especially the depth of field, meaning you can knock out those backgrounds without an upgrade.

And the lenses take mobile cameras to the next level. Big pictures in a tiny space. Another great idea that began life on Kickstarter!

2. Flexible videoing

When we need to keep our pack light and want to shoot stable video, we use the GorillaPod system; it can be used to mount an iPhone or a full-size DSLR and with its grippy legs, it can be attached to practically anything, anywhere. Packing perfection starts with the case.

I always take an AWAY Carry On. When Jennifer Rubio’s case fell to pieces on a trip, she decided to design her own replacement. We love the minimal style, organisation cubes – a revelation in packing – and the on-board power bank.

Nice kit, living up to the hype and no more paranoid searching for the one plug socket in T5!

3. Clothes for seamless transitions

I need to be able to go seamlessly from a formal meeting with a factory owner to a photoshoot to the mad dash for the plane, and all in style and comfort.

So, choosing a few signature pieces in materials that never need ironing.

I love sustainable staples from The Cotton Story and as someone who only ever wears a white tee – one less thing to think about every day – theirs are perfect.

I only take one pair of shoes in order to move seamlessly around a city whether I’m having meetings, taking pictures or going to coffee shops. And I want to do this in one pair of shoes that I can fly in, walk miles in and depend on.

My new favourites are Flite from SEVEN FEET APART. They are super-lightweight and come in a multi-use packing cube which is used to deliver the shoe, pack the shoe in your case, and store the shoe – so no more single-use shoeboxes taking up space.

The design is versatile; from business to casual wear – so no need to pack lots of shoes.

Plus, they are 100% vegan, made from recycled plastic fibres with a unique sugarcane sole.

4. Reduce waste

There are some big steps we all have to consider related to sustainability and travel; for example, is every trip essential?

Could some of them be avoided?

However, the tiny steps add up too, which is why I pack a Keep Cup Brew everywhere I go.

It’s easy to carry, attractive and brilliant to use, keeping my coffee warm and reducing the number of disposable cups going to landfill – the foundations of a great everyday carry item.

I encourage you to check out these great travel items to help you pack and travel lightly, knowing you have everything you need without lugging a giant case around. Happy travels!

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ABOUT THE EXPERT

Matthew Bagwell is a seasoned traveller and co-founder of SEVEN FEET APART, a UK footwear brand. Founded in 2017, it’s purpose is to make every everyday journey better by creating brilliant shoes for the modern traveller. The shoes, known as Sevens, are crafted and engineered to deliver understated style, premium quality and outstanding comfort. SFA’s lastest range of shoes – known as Flite - is entirely vegan and features the innovative Sugarcane Sole, a substantial environmental improvement over conventional EVA materials. SEVEN FEET APART is committed to being sustainable, kind and better; the sale every pair of Sevens affords the preservation of 100ft2 of biodiverse, endangered land, in partnership with the World Land Trust.

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