Hand Luggage Only: Packing Tips

When this post goes live, it’ll be the day before I jet away on holiday for the best part of two weeks and I would have already packed up my suitcase. This year we’ve decided to fly on hand luggage only to save money, so I thought I’d share some tips on how to pack for a two week holiday with hand luggage only.

Hand Luggage Only Packing Tips sweet allure


First things first, the best thing I did a few years back was to buy a suitcase that matched the specification sizes of hand luggage. This just makes things so much easier, you’re not worrying if it’ll fit in the cage thing at the check in desk. I got mine from M&S about 5 years ago and it’s treated me very well over the years and is still in great condition! It’s my top tip for travelling hand luggage only as it just makes it so much easier knowing how much space you have to work with.

Pick compatible outfits
This may seem super simple, but often when we’re packing we get overwhelmed with the choices and end up packing too much stuff. I like to pick out outfits that all work with each other, so you can take less items but get the most out of the outfit options. For example, I’ll take a pair of shorts or linen trousers I know will go with everything and then just change up the top options so I get maximum use out of all the items.

Be Minimalist
I know this is easier said than done for some people, ha! but I’m all about packing light and minimalist. If you’re going on holiday for 7 days, do you really need to take 14 outfits? You could probably get away with 3 or 4 and just mix them up a bit. Even less if you’re lucky enough to have somewhere with a washing machine, then you can take half the clothes and wash them for re-use later on. It’s a holiday, not a fashion show after all!

Buy your liquids abroad
Taking liquids with you when you travel hand luggage only is one of the biggest problems, it’s tricky getting them all in the smallest sizes and being able to fit all your toiletries and make up in. I tend to stick to the absolute essentials, like my make up items, foundation, concealer etc and then leave the rest at home. You can usually pick up a cheap bottle of body wash, shampoo and conditioner locally and leave them behind. This also applies to towels, most hotels usually provide towels so you can leave them at home and free up plenty of space in the suitcase for more important items.

If you do want to take conditioner, shampoo and whatnot with you, some brands likeĀ LUSH do some great solid shampoo and conditioner bars, they even do solid perfumes and deodorants. Then you can pack them in your suitcase worry free and help with the environment by using less packaging.

Wear all your warmer clothes on the plane
Chances are, England will be cold when you’re leaving for your weeks of bliss, so this is perfect to wear the warmer items on the plane so they don’t take up space in your luggage, leaving more room in your case for shorts and kimonos! Another great tip I do is to wear an outfit that I want to use when I arrive in hotter weather but with extras to make you warm enough for the plane. So for example, I normally wear a dress, with tights and a hoodie, but when I arrive at the destination, I can nip to the bathroom, take off my tights and hoodie, put on some flipflops and I’m ready to go. There is nothing worse than arriving in a hot country and not being able to feel comfortable in the heat because you’ve got too hot clothes on!

If you enjoy reading travel posts, check out my Beach body ready? beach please body positivity post or my 5 places I want to visit before I’m 30.

I hope in some way these tips help you and if you have any others to add, let me know! I’d love to hear yours in the comments below.

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