6 tips for Packing Light; Leah on Global Morning News

A few weeks ago I was featured on Global morning talking about packing light. I didn’t really get to making my points fast enough and ran out of time so I thought I would give it all to you in a blog post! But check out the segment!

There is nothing like walking off the plane and not having to wait around for your luggage to arrive if it arrives at all! I love walking past all the people waiting at the carousel and straight into a car. If I do have to check luggage I always make sure everything I need is in my carry on just in case so the idea of only using a carry on makes sense to me, I just have to decide what I can live without. After all, it isn’t forever!

I have done carry on travel for as long as a month overseas and there are definitely better opportunities than others to try it. Summer or a tropical vacation are both easy because the fabrics are thinner, you need less layers and clothes in general. It’s also best for when you are doing multiple locations so you never end up with lost luggage. If you are planning to do a lot of shopping then bring your must have basics in your carry on and pre-shop online at the stores you want to go to. In other words, plan ahead. You can always bring home a new suitcase for your purchases!

  1. Choices: Make better decisions about what you are going to bring. Be realistic about the itinerary you have and see what little clothing you can get away with especially shoes as they are bulky. I can get sandals, sneakers and dress shoes in the carry on and then wear my boots or heaviest shoes. If you have something thick or heavy you should wear it on the plane if possible. Feel free to change your shoes and coat etc once you check in and have weighed your carry-on, especially if your boots are a pain to get off.

  2. Versatility: You need your pieces to do double and even triple duty and see you through whatever weather you might run into. Simple items in coordinating colours or neutrals with give you a lot of mix-and-match possibilities. I always bring a thin cashmere pashmina that I can use for a blanket on the plane, a scarf when I arrive and a shawl on an evening out. And don’t forget you can shop there too probably!

  3. Layering: Layers are really important especially if you are out and about and don’t want to have to return to the hotel because you are too cold or too warm. Look for lightweight knits that can go over or even under as a warm layer. The thinner your layers, the more you can do to regulate your comfort from day to evening. Consider lightweight and non seasonal fabrics.

  4. Roll it: I like to roll everything and use every square inch available to me. Make sure to fill the channels at the back where your handle retracts into and stuff shoes and boots with your socks and small things. Then use the compression straps over the whole thing and pull it to compress! I don’t recommend vacuum bags unless you are buying a new suitcase for the way home or your hotel/apartment has a vacuum you can use. You can also expand your carry-on bag and then use the zip closure of the expander to compress it even further. You might have to sit on it! Packing cubes are a great way to pack if you are also rolling what’s inside them. If you have multiple stops it can be a great way to keep it organized especially so you don’t have to unpack everything at each location.

  5. Personal bag: Add in a small cross-body, messenger style bag or even a fanny pack to keep your passport, money, phone, jewelry, and personal care items etc with you. Use a tote as your personal bag and you can fit a lot of stuff in it, even if it’s just your duty free. I also keep everything I need for the flight ready in the tote so I don’t have to stand in the aisle finding my computer and my earplugs et al. Some airports weigh your carry-on and personal bag together when you go through security so be aware of the weight restrictions and if you buy a lot of stuff on your trip consider checking the bag for your flight home. You can also use your packable tote bag to carry more stuff on the plane like your food, water and travel pillow plus you can keep it with you when you are shopping during your trip.

  6. The biggest reason people give for not travelling carry-on style is toiletries. Use travel size containers for all of your make-up, lotions and potions. You can even get travel size portions or samples of fragrances etc if you ask your beauty rep or check the travel department at the drugstore. You can also buy items there if it isn’t on a cruise ship or in a remote location. Bring non liquid products whenever possible like a bar of soap instead of a body wash and size down on brushes and tools.

There you have it! Some smart packing tips and things to keep in mind when considering using just a carry on for your next trip! Please fell free to let me know if you’ve tried it and what your tips are!

Leah Van LoonComment