Hand-luggage Tips and Packing Light

You’re going on a long weekend, flying with a budget airline or you want to take as little as possible. Taking hand-luggage only is the best option for you. You get the opportunity to carry all your belongings on the flight where it’s safely stowed above your head. You can then leave the airport afterwards with ease instead of doing the Carousel waiting game. Bliss! Take note of these (handy) hand-luggage tips for your next trip abroad!

packing light hand-luggage tips for travel by plane

The Best Hand-Luggage Tips For Your Next Adventure

Don’t panic: I know it’s easier to say than do. At times it can stressful to pack everything into a small bag. But take a moment to think about what you REALLY need. You’ll be surprised just how small the essentials list is.
If you struggle and stand at your wardrobe in utter confusion…

Make your checklist your best friend: Lists are self explanatory and so helpful as I am quite forgetful. Use the list to knuckle down on outfit ideas and everything from underwear to sunscreen. The most important things- money, boarding passes and your passport, don’t forget them!

Understand your luggage allowance: Remember restrictions differ over Airlines. You’ll want to research the one/s you’re travelling with to know what size and max weight the bag can be.

Plan your outfits: I’m sure we’ve all over-packed before. Have you ever returned from a holiday and found unworn clothes scrunched at the bottom of your bag? I most certainly have.
If you’re visiting a place you’ve not been before, do a little weather research for the time of year. If you’re visiting a warmer climate you’ll likely have less clothes/lighter clothes thus, more space to add more.
I like to mix and match two tops to every pair of jeans/leggings/skirt, savvy space saving. Try to cut down your jewellery and bags as it’ll save space too. I bring just one all purpose day bag, big enough to carry a bottle of water and my camera.

So what about shoes?…

The less shoes, the better: Surely I’m not alone in thinking spare shoes are the most annoying things to pack?! They take up quite a bit of space, especially trainers and boots. I’ve discovered one pair of trainers for daytime and one pair of pumps for evenings is perfect. If I was going on a beach holiday I’d probably bring flip-flops too, they take up minimal space anyway.

Roll your clothes: Once you’ve planned the outfits you’ll want to pack them neatly, reducing the risk of creasing. Rolling your clothes is the best way to go about this. You’ll save much needed space when rolling your clothes!

Minimize packaging & share liquids: The biggest struggle for me when taking hand luggage abroad is attempting to fit it all in just ONE 20x20cm clear bag. Sharing products such as toothpaste and facewash can be a great idea instead of two of every product. Small containers are perfect for stowing away just the right amount of product, like foundation and moisturiser! Not forgetting travel sized hair and body products, they’re more than enough for a long weekend to a week!

Leave space for souvenirs: Or any other items you may purchase on your adventures! Buying a load of local nic-nacs then not having enough space ends in disaster.

Phew, that was a long post! Did you find these hand-luggage tips helpful? What are your top travel and hand-luggage tips you’d like to share? Let me know in the comments below.

  • I have only travelled hand-luggage only once and I could never do it again, I simply like to take all my crap away with me! Definitely agree with the less is more philosophy though, I have certainly cut back over the years!

    Emma | Harmony Blaze.co.uk

  • Two Nerds Travel

    Rolling your clothes and minimizing how many pairs of shoes you bring are great tips! We don’t usually roll our clothes (never thought of that), so we’ll have to do that next trip! As for shoes, it’s hard to choose only one pair. I’m always worried I’ll run into a situation where I need a different pair of shoes (nice night out, etc). I limit myself to two, but even that’s hard, and I’m not usually a shoe girl. 🙂

    Thanks for the awesome packing tips!

  • great advice and I have always paid extra for checked in luggage, just in case i need more room, but perhaps one day i might be brave and try just hand luggage only 🙂

  • agoldafternoon

    Wish I had read this two weeks ago before I flew with only hand luggage! I usually have a checked case but with only a short haul 4 day trip I opted to save money and take only hand luggage. I ended up not really buying anything when I was away because I didn’t have room in my bag so I’ll definitely keep this post in mind for future trips!


  • Amazing tips! I will use these for my trip to Amsterdam this weekend. 3 days with only hand luggage 🙂

    http://psychologyfoodandfitness.blogspot.co.uk <3