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18 Comments

  1. Steph
    April 14, 2021 @ 2:24 am

    There should be more things like books and pillows blankets there is a lot more things

    • Ali Garland
      April 14, 2021 @ 5:58 pm

      Hi Steph! I did mention bringing a Kindle so you can have as many books as you want with you on your trip. I’d never pack physical books because they’re heavy and take up too much space. If you like travel pillows, by all means you should bring one. I can never one that works for me, so I gave up! And a blanket…if you want to travel with a blanket, go for it, but I feel like that takes up too much space for so little use. This packing list is mostly for traveling with only carry on luggage, no checked bags, so I need each item I pack to have lots of use and take up as little space as possible. But it’s not one-size-fits-all, so maybe you have room for a lightweight travel blanket instead of something else on my list that you don’t need. Always adjust for your own travel style!

  2. Sherri
    October 27, 2020 @ 5:58 pm

    So for the first time I will be traveling “carry on” only….your article has been a tremendous help! Thank you!!
    My question is….can you address my “personal” bag that I also can bring on the plane? I’m using my large purse as that item and want to know what I can and can’t put in it? Curious if I can put additional liquids as long as they are small (3.4 ounces) in my purse?

    • Ali Garland
      October 29, 2020 @ 10:46 am

      Hi Sherri! Thank you, I’m so glad the post was helpful to you! First, check the airline you’re flying to make sure you’re allowed to have a personal item. Most airlines do allow it, but there are a few that don’t. I have a helpful chart, I’ll link to it at the end of my reply here. Then, assuming you are allowed to bring a personal item, anything you can pack in your carry on bag can also go in the personal item. You are only allowed one liquids bag per passenger, so that bag can either go in your main bag or your purse. So if you normally keep a small tube of lotion in your purse, that needs to go in your liquids bag. But once you pass through security, you can put it back in your purse if you want. Just remember, if you have a layover where you have to go through security again, make sure all your liquids are back in the liquids bag. I normally pack small, heavier items in my personal item since it is less likely to be weighed by the airline, though certainly some airlines do weigh both items. Some airlines even list a separate weight requirement for your personal item.

      Here’s my chart with 170+ airlines and their carry on luggage size restrictions. Find your airline, click on the name, and you’ll see all the details about what size, weight, and number of items they allow for cabin bags.

      I hope this helps, but let me know if you have any other questions!

  3. Bella
    August 27, 2020 @ 3:29 pm

    Hi, I’m wondering how do I pack my medications I have to take insulin 2 kinds n they need to b cold n also I need to put with an ice pack.. also pain meds n other meds..so can I carry a back pack with that n snacks n my lap top n still have a carry on bag to put up top.. i just need to know if i can carry meds n snack n lapto in a school bag back pack n then my carry on seperate.. please help

    • Ali Garland
      August 27, 2020 @ 4:55 pm

      Hi Bella! You are allowed to travel with insulin and other medications in your carry on. Please always pack them in your carry on bag! TSA has lots of information about traveling with insulin and diabetes supplies, so go to this website and type “insulin” into the search box, and you’ll see several entries. Ice packs are allowed for medical reasons such as yours, so go to this page on TSA’s site, make sure the dropdown menu is on “medications” and read through that. Ice packs are mentioned in the “accessories” section.

      As far as bringing a carry on bag and a backpack, that depends on your airline. Most, but not all, airlines allow you to bring a carry on bag and a personal item, and the personal item must fit underneath the seat in front of you. Each airline has their own restrictions as far as number of items, measurements of the bags, and weight of the bags. So as long as you can fit all your things within the restrictions of your airline, you’ll be fine. A school backpack might work as your personal item depending on how small it is. Here are a few articles on my site that might help you:

      Carry On Luggage Size Chart: 170+ Airlines
      What NOT to Pack in Your Carry-On Bag
      Can you bring food on a plane?

  4. Suzanne Corley
    May 17, 2019 @ 4:07 pm

    Are you limited to one quart size liquid container per person even with checked luggage. Can you have one for carry on and one for checked.

    • Ali Garland
      May 20, 2019 @ 6:58 am

      Hi Suzanne! The limit for liquids in your carry-on bag is 3.4 ounces (100ml) per container, and larger containers are not allowed even if they contain less than 3.4 ounces of liquid. These containers must all fit into a one quart clear zip top bag, and you are only permitted one bag. For your checked luggage, you can have as many containers as you want, and they can be any size. I always suggest packing liquids in checked luggage inside of some other kind of bag in case they break open or leak during transport.

  5. Mari
    December 9, 2018 @ 8:30 am

    Hey banks I’m traveling with my family soon you were really helpful

    • Ali Garland
      December 9, 2018 @ 5:46 pm

      Glad to help!

  6. Matthew Cheyne
    May 22, 2014 @ 2:22 pm

    Thank you for this awesome article, graphic and download Ali. It covers all practical bases and appears that it can be used worldwide as well.

    Kudos and congratulations as always for a job well done.

  7. Maria
    May 16, 2014 @ 10:49 pm

    Kudos Ali – you have it down to a science!
    Here’s a challenge for you…
    pack “light” for a cold weather destination.
    You up for that? 😀

    • Deltasegmentflyer
      May 17, 2014 @ 2:37 am

      One bag packing for the far north can be done! It is a bit tougher but I do layers with fleece lined jeans, wear the layers includeing coat on the plane. For business trips a week or longer I will also rent a house many times (cheaper than a hotel) and have acess to a washing machine.

      I refuse to check a bag!

      • Ali Garland
        May 17, 2014 @ 1:10 pm

        Fleece-lined jeans sound nice! And yes, layers are a great way to go carry-on only in cold destinations.

        • Angel Haili
          November 15, 2018 @ 7:12 am

          Hi can you put a curling iron in your carry on?

          • Ali Garland
            November 20, 2018 @ 5:06 pm

            Hi Angel! If it’s a normal curling iron, yes you can pack it in your carry-on. However, if it’s one of those with a gas cartridge, that has to go in your checked luggage. Either way, I recommend wrapping it in a wash cloth or hand towel in case you have to pack it while it’s still hot, that way it won’t burn your clothes.

          • Ali Garland
            January 25, 2019 @ 6:15 pm

            Angel, not sure if you’re going to see this, but I’ve recently found conflicting info on the TSA website about hair straighteners and curling irons that use a butane gas cartridge, so I emailed them to clarify. Those kind can only be packed in carry on luggage, not checked luggage. I’ve recently written a full post about flying with hair straighteners, curling irons, and hair dryers.

    • Ali Garland
      May 17, 2014 @ 12:04 pm

      Thanks Maria! Yep, I’ve done it! My round the world trip with carry-on only included both warm and cold weather destinations, and I went to South America and Antarctica with carry-on only too. Bring a few heavier shirts and layer up! It meant I was carrying a winter coat to Bora Bora, but oh well.