“Own only what you can carry with you; know the language, know countries, know people.

Let your memory be your travel bag.”

Packing for a vacation, business trip, or mandatory family visit can seem like solving a jigsaw puzzle. Most travelers pack far more items than they need. The extra pair of shoes, the hairdryer, and extra books are all things that bulk up your bag.

Plan by strategically packing these items in your carry-on luggage for happier travels.

Make a list

Lists are the gateway to a stress-free holiday. Separate your essentials from your desirables, and be realistic with your luggage limitations. The goal here is to create a single packing list that will cover you for a standard trip.

Here’s a list of ten things you should always have in your hand luggage.


While sitting at the airport, you spend the entire time on the phone, sending emails, catching up with friends and family before you leave. During your travel, you can’t afford a phone with dead battery. You have to use your maps and internet and get in touch with people.

Always have an external charger and write down important phone numbers and addresses! Take a fast charger as it charges quickly, and it’s small and lightweight.


A comfortable pair of noise canceling ear plugs are fantastic for flying. Block out the sounds of kids screaming, rowdy passengers and the noisy hum of the plane then close your eyes and escape to your little world.

  • iPad, a must to have gadget!

Have all your entertainment in one place. You’ve got your books, magazines, games, videos, movies, TV shows, and music. Then if you decide to do some work you’ve also got all the tools you need for that too. You can even access the internet from your iPad too. To do this, you would just need an iPad SIM card and then you would be able to stay connected, regardless of where you are. This would be ideal for people traveling to different countries.


Keep all your important documents in your carry-on luggage.

  • Boarding pass
  • Passport
  • Copy of complete flight itinerary
  • Copy of any transportation or accommodation plans I have made for arrival
  • The physical address of where you’ll be staying, it may be helpful to share with cab drivers as well so they can easily look up directions.
  • Jewelry
  • Wallet with credit cards and other important cards
  • Money
  • Camera equipment
  • Phone
  • Car keys
  • IPad, Laptop

Pack all valuables in your carry-on bags and keep items closer to you in case you plan to sleep.

  • Pack the carry-on bag with the most necessary pills and medicine you might need.
  • This can be a big trouble for you If you only have a day’s worth of medicine, and your luggage gets lost for three days.
  • Always keep few extra medicines and bandages in your carry-on luggage for emergencies.

Throw some upset stomach, high-climate fever, headache, allergy meds and asthma remedies in your bag.


Keeping a small selection of toiletries will be convenient for you. As you won’t have to search through your suitcase in public.

Make a small kit of:

  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Floss
  • One razor
  • Small bottle of shaving cream.
  • Small bottle of shampoo
  • Bar of soap
  • Sunscreen
  • Lip balm
  • Deodorant
  • Water bottle
  • Digital camera
  • Mini Maglite torch
  • Nail clippers
  • Sunglasses
  • Pen and small notepad – details of flights and other vital information is recorded here
  • Maps and guidebooks to destinations.

What if your luggage arrives late at your destination? What if your luggage gets lost? Be prepared to avoid such situations.

  • It is always better to pack an extra outfit in your hand luggage. At least you’ll have something to change into when you arrive at your destination.
  • Always bring things to make yourself feel comfortable.
  • Wear light, soft and comfortable clothes during travel.
  • Carry a warm scarf or jacket, in case you might feel cold during the journey.
  • Same goes for shoes. You should wear comfortable, fine quality shoes that will keep you going throughout the journey.

It’s always good to be prepared, especially if traveling with children. Packing snacks such as protein bars, dried fruit, a sandwich or salad for your journey will result in a fuller and happier journey!

Snacks can be a cheaper alternative to buying a pre-made sandwich at the airport. Having things like snacks and entertainment in your hand luggage will make your flight experience enjoyable!

So, are you ready to take the one bag challenge for your next trip? Don’t worry if you forget something as most things can be bought at your destination.

As long as you have your passport, wallet and the clothes on your back, everything will be ok.

Pack light for a happier journey!

Author Bio:

Shawn Michaels is a blogger who loves to write about his outdoor experiences. He is also a passionate rock climber and loves traveling. Currently, he is studying and spends his free time reading reviews and gear shopping! He regularly blogs at Thesmartlad.com.