Norbert Figueroa a RoamRight Blog Author

What Is A Flashpacker And Are You One?

RoamRight shares What Is A Flashpacker And Are You One?

The term flashpacker has been widely used in recent years in the travel industry and among fellow travelers.  But, do you know what it really means?  The truth is that while its use has increased exponentially in the last couple years, there is no exact definition of the word.  But, I will do my best to define what a flashpacker is and we'll see together if you are one.

The word flashpacker is more of a neologism that refers to backpackers who don't necessarily want to travel on a “shoestring” (meaning, with the minimum amount of money possible), but still want to experience all the adventures and explore the world as if they were on a “shoestring”. 

Flashpackers don’t necessarily want to spend more money on luxury accommodation, but they are not afraid to splurge every now and then to get a bit of comfort and rest after a few days or weeks in budget hostels and dorms. They are not afraid to pay a bit more for a flight, if it means they will avoid spending 18 hours on a bus. That is, of course, if they are looking for the comfort and convenience, rather than the adventure and experience.

Flashpackers also travel with a decent amount of electronics, which includes but is not limited to: Laptop, mp3 player, DSLR camera, and other gadgets.  In my opinion, this describes almost all tech-savvy modern day travelers, but it doesn’t just fall into that. The luggage flashpackers carry devotes a fair amount of space to electronics, and if something has to give, a piece of clothing will be left behind before leaving a small gadget.

Flashpacking is sort of a mentality, in which you are readyto get down and dirty if it comes to it, but you won’t necessarily do it if it can be avoided.  A flashpacker is like the “upscale” version of a backpacker with a slightly bigger budget.

Now, do you think you are a flashpacker?  Lets see…

  1. Have you recently traveled with a laptop, e-reader, or tablet?
  2. Have you been on the road and had the option to choose a very cheap hostel but went with a slightly more expensive hostel only for its Wi-Fi or other amenities?
  3. Have you flown from point A to point B knowing that going overland is also an option?
  4. Do you choose where to eat only because they offer free Wi-Fi?
  5. Do you have a backpack for your clothes and a daypack for your electronics, and both are almost equally heavy?
  6. Do you still crave the adventure and the unknown, but (sometimes) after the experience is done you find comfort by getting online and reconnecting with the world or relax by pampering yourself?
  7. When traveling, you don’t feel like you need to pinch every penny?
If you answered yes to most of these, then you probably are a flashpacker!

So, if you are a flashpacker, share with us what othercharacteristics do you think this term embodies?

Note: Available plans and coverages may have changed since this blog was published.


About the Author

Norbert Figueroa

Norbert Figueroa, a RoamRight Blog Author Norbert Figueroa is an architect who hit the pause button on his career in 2011 to do a round the world trip. He's been blogging for over three years at, where he shares his travel experiences, budget travel tips, and a good dose of world architecture. From hiking Mount Kilimanjaro to diving with great white sharks, he is always on the search of adrenaline and adventure. Norbert is originally from Puerto Rico and he is currently based in Milan, Italy... when not roaming around the world, that is. He has traveled to more than 80 countries in 5 continents and his goal is to travel to all 193 U.N. recognized countries. Follow Norbert on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google Plus.

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