How to travel the world with carry-on only
A friend of mine was recently very annoyed saying it was not possible for me to travel to Chile and Brazil with a carry-on only for two weeks. But after several trips to Europe and South America with carry-on only, I can assure it is indeed possible and very convenient and liberating. If I can do it, you can as well! However, take into consideration that I flew from Puerto Vallarta via Mexico City. Available carriers play a role here.
- Not having to pay for a checked bag
- It makes it easier to get around without carrying a ton of luggage
- Not worrying about lost luggage
- Not losing precious time waiting at baggage carousels
- Having one bag makes it easier to keep an eye on it, at the airport or when you are walking
Top tips to fly with carry-on only
1.- Make a list of basic needs according to activities and weather
- Write a clothing itinerary
- Pack items of clothing you can wear several times and for different purposes. For example, a silk scarf is also useful as a sarong for the beach.
2.- Read the airline’s carry-on policy
Most airlines allow a small suitcase or backpack that goes in the overhead compartment, plus a “personal item” (a purse, briefcase, diaper bag) that must fit under the seat in front of you. Sometimes it is also allowed to bring an additional item such a jacket, an umbrella, a book. Some low cost airlines only allow one carry-on item.
3.- Choose the perfect suitcase
I find it useful to have lots of separate compartments. Use the pocket in the carry-on to fill it with things that you might need easily accessible.
4.- Wear the heavier and bulkier items on the plane
The bulkier stuff such as boots, jacket and jeans, you can wear them on the plane, so they don´t take space in your carry-on.
5.- Make the most of every inch of space in your suitcase
Roll your clothes and stuff socks or underwear inside shoes.