The Results and Giveaway – SCOTTEVEST Light Baggage Challenge

Prior to leaving on my week-long trip to New Zealand, I announced my participation in the SCOTTEVEST Light Baggage Challenge. You can read the original piece for yourself, but in brief I’m usually an outrageous over packer and am determined to mend my ways.

The fine folks over at SCOTTEVEST provided me with one of their signature vests, a Fleece 5.0 Jacket. SCOTTEVEST is all about creating travel clothes that are not only comfortable, but which double as and replace traditional carry-on bags.

My goal for the trip was to not just see if I could travel taking only a fraction of my normal gear, but to create habits so that I can travel more efficiently in the future. I think I can comfortably say that I accomplished both.

During my New Zealand trip I kept a diary detailing how I was getting along with the SCOTTEVEST and the light baggage challenge. Overall, it was a very positive experience.

The Pros

Fewer bags means fewer bags – Without a doubt the best perk was not having to check any bags. Because my vest doubled as my carry on, I was able to take my duffel bag onboard as my one allowable bag. While it may not seem like a significant detail, it was freeing not to be “tied down” with a checked bag. Plus, since everyone else on my flights had checked luggage, I was the first through immigration and customs. I’ve never had a more positive experience traveling internationally.

More convenient – Normally when I travel I have a carry-on that not only contains my electronic gear, but all the associated odds and ends one takes on a long flight. Usually though I have a hard time finding items in my bag, the object of my search usually ends up buried on the bottom. With the vest, there was a pocket for everything and I quickly got used to using the vest as storage. Its usefulness extended well past the flight, I used the vest throughout the trip as storage and was really pleased with how well it functioned during normal sightseeing activities.

The Cons

Fewer bags means fewer bags – The one bag I took was small, and I had to pack for a variety of climates and activities. Mentally, it was hard to resist the desire to over pack. I usually worry about unknown situations that may require a variety of clothing options, but on this trip I had to be realistic and pack only for the circumstances I thought would actually happen. That’s fine, but even with the sharply curtailed packing list, the bag was full and heavy. Very heavy actually and since it was a carry-on, it was annoying in airports, especially when I had long layovers. The bruise on my shoulder is slowly going away, but serves as a reminder to find a better solution the next time I travel.

There also wasn’t much room for souvenirs, which ultimately wasn’t a bad thing I suppose. It forced me to think about my purchases and to look for flat-pack, travel friendly items. I also wasn’t able to pack for all contingencies, which meant I was totally unprepared for the ungodly cold weather in Wanaka and Queenstown and had to buy gloves and a hat at a tourist shop.

As far as cons go though, these really aren’t that bad and the convenience of going light far outweighed the negative aspects.

So, will I travel this way from now on? Well, I probably won’t be using a duffel only, but I have definitely learned some lessons. I’ve learned that I don’t need to over pack and that a small, easy to use bag is more than enough for everything I need. I’ve also become a SCOTTEVEST convert. Yes, they gave me the vest for free but that’s it. They left everything else up to me and I warned them that I’d be brutally honest one way or the other. Luckily for them, I loved the vest and intend on buying some more of their products for future trips.

NOW it’s your turn to try the SCOTTEVEST Fleece 5.0 for yourself. SCOTTEVEST has agreed to give one of my readers the same vest I wore throughout my New Zealand adventure. (well not the SAME vest, that’s mine)

Entering is easy, all you have to do is visit the SCOTTEVEST site, take a look at their products and let me know in the comments section which item you’d like to own. The winner will be selected using

Contest begins July 6, 2011 at 11:59PM and ends on July 13 at 11:59PM. Rules subject to change and reserves the right to change or discontinue the contest for any reason at any time.

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By: Matt Long

Matt has a true passion for travel. As someone who has a bad case of the travel bug, Matt travels the world in order to share tips on where to go, what to see and how to experience the best the world has to offer. Also follow Matt on Twitter, Facebook and

97 Responses

  1. david basile

    Essential Travel Jacket for Men

  2. mickeyfan

    The Expedition jacket looks like it has more storage than my bedroom!

  3. Sylvie W

    The item I really like is the Expedition Jacket. Its a man’s jacket so I’d have to figure out the sizing but I really like the multitude of pockets. Bye bye pocket book because I’d have pockets galore.

  4. Sarina

    The Essential Travel Jacket for women in black. 18 pockets? Incredible.

  5. Jill Myrick

    I like the Go-2 Jacket For Women from SCOTTEVEST.


  6. Jacob LaFountaine

    I wouldn’t mind a pair of the SeV Travel Pants

  7. April Bever

    I like the Woman Vest in Red Rock

  8. Cecilia Andes

    Oh I really love the Expedition Jacket.

  9. Jen Harriman

    The Women’s Q-Zip is really cute! Id like to have that!

  10. Tabz

    I absolutely adore these clothes.. and am bookmarking it for when I take my next big trip.

    I am totally in love with the Women’s Trench. It’s fashionable, stylish and super pragmatic!

  11. Rebecca Peters

    I like the womens q zip

  12. Sue Studenski

    Love the SeV travel pants.

  13. Heather McDonough

    I like the Ultimate Hoodie Microfleece.

  14. Miss Spoken

    Like their Womens Go-2 Jacket

  15. Erin G

    I also like the Women’s Q-Zip

  16. Holly C.

    I really like the women’s Q-zip in Teal

  17. Heather W

    The Go2 jacket for women
    Lovefool827 (at) yahoo (dotcom)

  18. Sarah

    I’d love to own the Go-2 Jacket for Women.

  19. Diane Baum

    I really like is the Expedition Jacket .It looks warm, cozy and ideal for traveling-can’t figure out my size.

  20. Caryn S

    The Go-2 Jacket For Women

  21. tiffany lane

    The expedition jacket is great looking. Great for travel

  22. Derk Thomas

    Sev Sport Coat

  23. David Gossett

    I would love to win the Women’s Trench for my wife! Thank you for the chance!

  24. Steph A

    I’d also like their Bucky Fuzzy Wuzzy pillow or the Go 2 Jacket!

  25. Steph A

    I’d also like the Go 2 Jacket or Bucky Pillow!

  26. Jennifer R

    I like the pink Women’s Q-Zip.

  27. Cristi

    I would also like to have the Women’s Trench

  28. Heather

    I’d love the Women’s lightweight travel vest!

    heatherc191 at gmail dot com

  29. jen gersch

    would love the women’s q zip

  30. Regina M

    Flex cargo pants.

  31. Katharina

    I loooove the cotton hoodie in gray. Both that and the jacket you wore would be perfect for the road trip we have coming up in the fall. 🙂 Katharina

  32. kathy pease

    id like the red rock Essential Travel Jacket for Women


  33. tracey byram

    I like the Men’s Ultimate Hoodie Microfleece.

  34. Scott Dickinson

    The Expedition jacket for men is great – hjelp when I go hiking!

    contestscott33 [at] gmail [dot] com

  35. clynsg

    The Travel Vest for Women.

  36. Ericka

    I like the Cotton Hoodie it looks SO comfy!! Thank you.

  37. Angela

    I also love the XAE – 10th Anniversary Edition Leather Jacket

  38. Happi Shopr

    I like the Women’s Trench

  39. susan smoaks

    i would love to own the expedition jacket!

  40. nicole parsons

    I like the Womens Vests. Would love to win

  41. Theresa H

    love the Women’s Trench…would feel like Inspector Gadget!!

  42. Sand

    I would love to own the Women’s Trench in Red.

  43. meme

    I also like the Ultimate Hoodie Microfleece

  44. Elizabeth Neal

    I love the women’s trench coat.

  45. brian e.

    Thanks for the giveaway…I like the “SeV Travel Shorts” !

    senorpiero [at] yahoo [dot] com

  46. amy deeter

    o-2 Jacket For Women from SCOTTEVEST.

  47. Sarah L

    I like the Expedition Jacket.
    I’ll be wearing my vest on a trip to Chile & Patagonia in 127 days (who’s counting?)
    Thanks for the contest.

Comments are closed.