With the accessibility to cheap flights seemingly better than ever, the joy of a £20 plane ride to a random city can have the dampeners put on it by the hefty implication of the luggage fee. With more and more budget airlines changing their baggage policies every other day, yes Ryanair, I am looking at you, it can be hard to feel like you have landed yourself a bargain when the cost of checking in your suitcase costs you more than your flight and accommodation combined. So I thought I would share a quick list of what I like to (try and) do when planning a trip with no checked luggage.
Whilst the spontaneity of it all can serve as a large part of the appeal for many of us, it is important that you are realistic about what you intend to do on your trip. Check the weather and dress accordingly – convince yourself you do not need your ball gown or three piece suit and pack multipurpose items that you will be able to re-wear a couple of times. What I wear on an evening one day I try to wear during the day on another. Granted this one can’t really work if you plan on hiking/getting dirty, but for the quick city break it generally works well, and no, you do not need more than two pairs of shoes! (Usually).
Consider Your Luggage
Whether you are a backpack bunny, a wheely case warrior or an over-sized tote-bag-stuffer, think about how much space you will have to play with and how you will be carrying it around. Conventional suitcases can be hardier and easier to store and move around but limiting if you need your hands and can be a nightmare if you have to pull it over cobbles. Backpacks free up your hands but may need to be removed a lot and can cause pain in the shoulders/back. Think of what works best for you for where you are going.
We have all heard that it is better to roll your clothes than laying them flat but personally I hate doing this. I never feel like it saves much space anyway and would much rather try packing the stuff that doesn’t matter too much like underwear, socks and sleep garments into the lining or corners of my bag. I find that this makes the bag hold its shape a lot better too.
Is There A Second Bag?
A lot of the time on a budget flight there will be strict regulations on how many pieces of luggage can be taken into the cabin. If you are travelling with an airline that allows you to take a smaller bag as well as your main cabin bag, utilise this as much as you can. I like to make sure all of the things I need the most are in my second bag like my travel documents, phone and makeup/liquids.
Wear The Biggest Things
I have done this for as long as I can remember – even when I used to go on holiday with my parents, I would always be told to wear my heaviest shoes and my biggest jacket to save on weight and space. This is something I still do today – even if it involves me rocking up at airport security in a floor length fur coat and platform stiletto boots… (?)
Buying travel size toiletries is a super expensive way to go. Instead, invest in some decent (none leaking) travel size bottles that you can fill up yourself with the product that you usually use. I have bottles for shampoo, conditioner, body wash and facial toner and a small screw lid tub for makeup remover and face wash.
Utilise Duty Free
As I can often not fit a bottle of perfume into my luggage because of the liquid limit, I take a scarf with me and spray that in whatever I fancy at the airport – and I mean load it up! That way it lasts for the duration of your trip and a lot longer than spraying directly onto your skin. And no, I am not encouraging Duty Free purchases, just making good use of the facilities.
What tips and tricks do you like to use when travelling? Let me know in the comments below.