Checking in luggage when flying can be inconvenient. Not only does it increase the risk of your suitcase going missing, but it also means you have to lug a heavy bag around. Not fun!
With this in mind, we have some great tips for packing if you’re not planning on checking in a bag:
- Invest In a Good Quality Backpack
A good quality backpack that doesn’t fall apart halfway through your trip is essential. The North Face makes excellent backpacks that have been designed to last for decades, and are well worth a consideration.
These backpacks also have adjustable straps and fit comfortably against your shoulders and back, which can make walking through a city much more comfortable.
Pick a backpack that is large enough to accommodate your clothes and other items, but ergonomic enough to carry around with you comfortably.
A backpack with a hidden compartment is an added bonus as it helps keep your important documents and money safe.
- Roll Your Clothing Tightly
When traveling, space is at a premium. The traditional method of packing clothes is to fold it neatly into your bag but this takes up too much space and makes your clothing prone to wrinkling.
Rolling your clothing up tightly makes it more compact and keeps the wrinkles away. Take advantage of the compartments within your backpack by keeping your essential items neatly separated.
If you’re packing a pair of shoes in your backpack, optimize space by filling the shoes with socks, underwear and other small items.
- Buy Travel-Sized Toiletries
Taking a bag with you on-board means that you can’t pack liquids or gels that are more than 100ml.
Travel-sized toiletries save space and make your travel items compliant with regulations. Unfortunately, most travel-sized toiletries are just as expensive as their full-sized versions.
Thankfully, you can bypass this inconvenience by buying a set of small plastic bottles or containers. When you’re ready to travel, simply decant some of your regular toiletries into the bottles, and you’re good to go!
- Pack Clothing Strategically
If you’re only taking a backpack with you while traveling, you need to pack strategically. Instead of packing items of clothing “just in case”, think carefully about what you actually need, and how many you can pack.
For instance, if you need trousers, opt for a pair of lightweight and quick-drying pants instead of jeans (which are heavier and take ages to dry). This will make carrying your backpack easier, and the pants will also dry faster when you wash it during your travels.
When traveling, you need to be prepared for everything (including rain and cold). Why not invest in a 2-in-1 jacket with a waterproof outer layer and a removable inner section if you get too hot?
Instead of packing an outfit for each day, consider packing only one of two outfits, and then buy a small pack of washing detergent when you arrive.
- Use Multi-Purpose Items
Do you love reading when you’re on a boring flight? Books can be incredibly heavy and take up valuable space in your backpack. However, if you use a multi-purpose item, you can save space and make your backpack lighter.
For instance, you might use a tablet with an app for reading, watching movies, and working, instead of packing a laptop and books.
Another example is using a body wash that doubles as a shampoo, instead of packing soap and shampoo separately.
- Safeguard Yourself Against Theft
Even if you keep your backpack close to you at all times, there is still a chance that it might get stolen or broken into.
You can help prevent this by using a lock on your backpack’s zipper and keeping the key securely on a chain around your neck.
You might also consider using a traveler’s body belt that fits around the waist and keeps money, your passport, and a credit card.
If the worst comes to the worst, and your passport and wallet get stolen, save all your essential information online on a cloud platform, such as Dropbox or Google Drive.
We recommend scanning copies of your passport, credit card, and air tickets and saving them on a cloud-based service. If you need to apply for a new passport, for instance, you would already have a copy of your old one, making the process easier with the embassy.