Pack smarter – A guide to hand luggage travelling

I reckon every European knows the drill with Ryanair flights, they offer super cheap flights when you chose to only fly with a carry on and a small bag. (This is also changing come November 1st, when you need to book priority boarding to take advantage of this perk) A lot of other airlines only offer one cabin bag with their most affordable fares. As someone who likes to take multiple trips a year and wants to spend only a small amount of money to splurge on all the foods, I only travel with carry on luggage to most of my destinations. And I am not talking backpack the size of a human cabin luggage but my trusted Titan trolley. There are some things to take into consideration when travelling like this, below are my tips to make it through a week or two travelling with only essentials.

Planning, Planning, Planning

And I am not talking itineraries but clothes. Sounds like only a girl could write it? Wrong! Especially when taking a trip with only limited luggage capacity this is one of the vital points. So how do you know which pieces are the right ones? Versatility is the key point here. I used to be the one to go to Paris for a week with the biggest suitcase you could imagine, filled to the brim. Why? Simply because I packed items that could only be worn in one specific combination and also only if I felt like it. I changed that radically. Now I pack mainly staples and items that can be mixed and matched in numerous ways, to not to get bored of them in a week. This does not mean they are not stylish if that is your concern. Also make sure you make up your mind on what to pack well in advance, I usually start thinking about what to pack, obvs in accordance with the weather, about a week before my flight. You do not need to throw it in your suitcase already but having a clear idea of what to take with you, makes for quick packing in the end.

Here are some exemplary outfits that only require a few pieces and won’t look repetitive: Mix and Match Baby!

Size matters

When it comes to packing the smaller the better is the motto. There will always be certain necessities that you will pack/need to pack when travelling, especially when staying at hostels. The item that used to take most of the space in my little Titan companion were towels. Classic bathroom ones won’t make the cut if you want to travel light. During my many travels I realized that most people that stay in hostels actually have microfiber towels, that a lot of my friends go to the gym with. So I went on Amazon, ordered a small and a big one, you can find similar ones here. Let me tell you that I do not regret the purchase at all, I’ve immediately fallen in love with them, to the extent that I use them as my every day towels as well.  Talking all things bathroom, you are probably wondering how to fit all of my skincare routine into one small plastic zip bag. Guys will be like: ‘I have like two things that go in there, I am fine’. Well as a girl with not the easiest going skin I can tell you it is a challenge, BUT it is easily doable. First of all if you happen to use a lot of products from an apothecary, for me that is Avène, you will either be lucky that the products are purchasable in travel size or (my fave) pharmacists will have sample sizes. Just ask them politely and they will surely give you one or two of the products you want/need. If you do not want the hassle you can also simply buy a pack of empty containers like these and fill it with all your necessities. I use those for my hair care namely Ouai and Redken styling products, otherwise my hair is a frizzy Hagrid-esque mess.

Limit your Loafers

I am talking shoes, one could think they are part of the planning, yes they are but there are much more than that. For trips of most kinds, apart from a week full of spa sessions and no outdoor action, you will need comfortable shoes that you can spend hours exploring the cities and sights. As we all know you should not wear the same shoes every day but you also do not need 7 pairs for one week. I tend to pack 3 pairs, one of them I am already wearing to the airport. As I practically live in sneakers I either pack a pair of Adidas’ Stan Smith, Gazelles or ZX Flux, be it summer or winter. Then seasonality takes its pick. In summer I mostly go for my beloved Birks or some simple sandals. In winter the choice is made for me by the weather forecast, so it is either another pair of the above mentioned sneakers or some boots, either black Chelsea’s or brown Timberlands. The third pair are some chanclas, more commonly known as flip flops, to shower in the hostels and just lounge around in my home for the period of the trip.


Leave Space for Souvenirs

For some it might sound crazy that there will be space left to splurge on some holiday memories. For me this is usually something to eat or nothing at all. I am, however, aware that the majority of people like to bring so little bits and bops for the loved ones, so they can have a piece of the lovely time and memories that have been made during the vacation. So try to always leave a small spot for those things when starting your journey so you do not have to try and squeeze your possessions into your suitcase once you’re packing for home.


I hope this guide will help some of you to be able to travel with handluggage more often and safe the precious money on the amazing food and maybe splurge on a beautiful Piece that you’ll be able to fit into you suitcase, thanks to those groundbreaking tips!

If you don’t mind I’ll go and pack my suitcase for my next adventure to London-Town to show my sister and some friends the city that has taken my heart by storm!



One Comment Add yours

  1. ronjalustig says:

    Thanks – some great advice there. Totally agree on the “mix & match” technique 😀

    Liked by 1 person

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