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How to avoid HAND LUGGAGE HELL!

Updated: Dec 10, 2019

Bargain flight bagged, hold baggage added? erm...no. In your eagerness for that bargain break you quickly slipped passed the adding of that extra baggage, and who could blame you...With some airlines charging as much as the flight for that extra storage it's easy to see why so many skip it altogether!

So in order that you don't end up paying a fortune on check in we are going to tell you how to travel savvy and avoid 'HAND LUGGAGE HELL'.


First of all let's cover what you should definitely avoid carrying in your hand luggage:

  • Any liquids over 100ml - these needs to be packed in a clear bag for a separate inspection at security - surprisingly this includes Marmite...jam and baby milk or food if you don't have a baby with you!

  • Marmite lovers do not despair! you can now buy a travel sized option if you cant go without

  • Anything sharp or anything that could be potentially used as a weapon - that figures...except knitting needles. This varies from airline to airline and rules vary depending on the Country you are visiting so if you really must knit, check before you go. Disposable razors with a handle are fine but no straight razors or spare blades for these.

  • For further advice IATA has a great guide on everything baggage

  • Not many people know you can now pre-order your lotions and travel goodies at Boots Click and Collect airport locations - check the site for ordering in enough time!

Now let's cover packing!

Let's face it, a rushed pack is a disorganised pack. Before you go think about where you are going and where you are staying, if your accommodation is rural you are unlikely to need three pairs of heels! plan different outfits from some key pieces. Thread.com offers some good advice on how to plan a capsule wardrobe and for girls check out House of Fraser's Capsule Wardrobe Guide

A-TEAM your carry on

When it come to packing the Army and Military are the masters! Here are some of the methods they use to get all that kit into one bag:

  • Pack in reverse - this means pack as you need things - if you have a late flight, your pyjamas will need to be on top...

  • Extra underwear? - it goes in the bottom

  • Sort by size and shape - fold smaller items uniformly so they can be stacked together and for larger items try rolling these, could you secure them with a hair band?

  • Build a wall in your bag - take the smaller uniform pieces as the bricks and fill the gaps with 'concrete' - not real concrete - your socks and smalls! this is great for bumpy landings - your kit won't budge!

  • Digitise your media - your Kindle will hold many more books than you can

  • Finally - use compression sacks to compress your items

Get the best BAG for your BUCK:

Remember not all airlines are the same so do check your bag is within guidelines or you could end up with an expensive bill to check it into the hold.

The internet gives us endless resources to shop around, do your research and find a bag you like then shop around for the best price. Expertreviews.co.uk offers a great guide on the top cabin bags for 2019.


I hope these tips will help you have a hassle free journey wherever you go.


Caroline Preston writes for The Jarvis Jotter her copywriting, blogging and travel writing business near Newcastle upon Tyne. View my other blog articles here

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