Winter travel packing tips: how to pack light for cold weather

Packing light for a cold weather trip

We’re off somewhere cold for New Year. That’s all I have been told so I have an idea of what to pack!  So, packing for somewhere cold and packing light as we are saving cash and taking hand luggage only – no challenge there! But how can you pack light for cold weather travel when you need to keep warm and toasty?

So whether you are going to Siberia (I don’t think I was that bad over the year!) or New York, here are some tips on how to pack light but keep warm.


You don’t need to take that huge big fluffy jacket to keep you warm, although that would help!  It will just make you hot and bothered when temperatures rise.  The key to packing light for cold weather is to pack layers.  Put them on when cold, and peel them off again when things get warmer.  If you take that one big heavy jacket or coat, you’ll not only end up sweaty but be carrying extra weight around.  Unless you are going to Antarctica – or somewhere you know it will be minus gazillion, leave that big heavy coat at home.

Think of the different ways you can mix and match your layers.  Multiple outfits from a few pieces which will handle different temperatures.  Keep warm and keep your cool when temperatures get higher.  On your legs, think about tights and leggings.  They will both add another layer of warmth underneath trousers (even jeans).  Leggings can also be used as pyjamas.

Base Layer

I like tank tops and camisoles.  They can be worn as a vest layer or as a pyjama top and even as a going-out top.  Start with this light layer and keep the core of your body warm.  After this, you can move onto thinking about…

john lewis winter packing list camisole

Outfit layer

Outfit layer is the layer that everyone will see when you are inside.  These can be anything from shirts, sweaterscardigans or tunics.  They are another layer on top of your tank top or camisole, holding a layer of air to keep you warm and cosy.   Next up your…

winter packing shirt

Jacket layer

A fleece or hoodie is an ideal piece to wear here.  Put on or pull off depending on the temperature.  Finally…

fleece winter packing tips

Outer layer

A waterproof jacket or a coat which will be windproof and/or waterproof.  Wear it to save space in your carry on luggage.

winter packing list coat


Boots are always good when wet, but they take up a lot of space in your luggage.  So wear bulky boots onto the plane and keep smaller walking shoes packed.  Remember to bring lots of socks in case you get soaked or have a very cold room.

winter packing list coat


To save weight and luggage space, wear as much of the bulkier items you can on the plane!  Boots, jackets and jeans all take up a lot of luggage space, so save space and wear them on board.

Do you have any packing light for cold weather tips?

Mr Foodie

Mr Foodie

Likes to travel, eat weird things and read three books at the same time.

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