Travelling Light With Hand Luggage

I don’t think i’ve really mentioned much about my upcoming travels, but I am going to Rome for four days in just under a weeks time and I am beyond excited! What I have not been excited for is the packing, because I’m travelling with just hand luggage which i’ve never done before but i’ve spent the weekend just gone organising my suitcase with all the bits and bobs I need whilst sticking to all the weight and liquid limits. With all of this in mind, I thought it would make for a fab blog post as more and more people are opting for the just hand luggage option when travelling.

hand luggage, beauty

Here are some tips on how to travel light with just hand luggage!

When it comes to travelling for me I’ve definitely got better over the years with not overpacking too much and planning my outfits more prior to travelling, but at the same time I’ve always travelled with cabin checked baggage and I’ve always had a couple of spare kilograms to play with so it’s never usually a worry for me. Having said that I am actually quite proud of myself for managing to be as organised as I have been with packing and I thought this post would help anyone else who like me is fairly new to travelling with hand luggage.

The Suitcase

For many people the starting point is picking the right suitcase because airlines are becoming more and more strict on the size and weight of your hand luggage (yes i’m looking at you Ryanair). Luckily my Mum has travelled with hand luggage many a time with Ryanair and plenty other airlines, so she has kindly lent me her suitcase as mine bit the dust last year. Annoyingly she’s had this suitcase for years so I can’t link it, but so many retailers have plenty of suitcases of all different sizes on offer. I’ve seen some absolutely fab ones in Dunelm for very budget friendly prices, because lets be honest they are only going to get battered so why fork out hundreds for something that’s just going to get battered?!

One thing I would recommend is double check the allowed baggage dimensions of the airline you are travelling with and also what weight limit you have. Most airlines allow 10kg but some are beginning to become cheeky by lowering this to 7kg. So just make sure you’re suitcase doesn’t weigh a lot when empty, but also make sure it doesn’t exceed the allowed dimensions. What i’d also advise is getting yourself a mini luggage weigher which you can actually travel with, which are fab for double checking the weight of your suitcase prior to travelling. You can pick these up from many retailers, but i’ve found also this one for just £1.99.


This for me was probably the hardest part because although I don’t overpack all that much, knowing I’m so limited on space being more streamlined came as a bit of a shock and caused a little bit of stress. For me what I found best to do is to start off checking what the weather is likely to be doing so I know exactly what clothes i’m going to need to pack. Luckily for me the weather in Rome is looking to be beautiful so I don’t have to be packing any wooly knits that are likely to take up a lot of room.

I started off by picking out items i’d specifically bought for Rome and then looked at how I could outfit those specific pieces. For example I am packing one denim skirt, but I have at least 3 tops that I can wear with that one skirt for multiple different occasions. I’ve also made the call to not pack anything that only has one wearing occasion because what if I don’t end up wearing it? So my advice is to just pre plan your outfits and be savvy but realistic about whether you’ll actually wear things.

When it comes to items that are likely to take up more room, I would personally advice to travel in them. For example i’m taking one pair of jeans and one pair of trainers so I will travel in these as we all know jeans and bulkier footwear will take up more room than a light floaty dress and a pair of sandals.


Firstly just to mention I have a separate post for the exact liquids/makeup that I will be taking with me, so look out for that but as mentioned previously when travelling with hand luggage you are limited in terms of liquids you can and can’t take. For anyone who has flown before then you’ll know that you can’t pack any liquids in your hand luggage over 100ml and to make matters even more annoying all of your liquids must fit in a fairly small clear plastic bag that is usually provided prior to going through security so you have to be really strict with yourself when it comes to packing.

Luckily a lot of brands offer mini travel sizes of your favourite products of which you can purchase from most Boots, Superdrug and supermarkets such as Tesco. Also another thing to consider is buying the necessities like shower gel, shampoo, sun lotion etc when you’ve arrived at your destination. I’d be shocked if you couldn’t access a shop that didn’t sell these necessities, unless you know you’re travelling somewhere remote.


Another to consider when travelling with hand luggage is what electrical you can and can’t travel with. This is another thing i’d advice to check with the airline you are travelling with, but personally i’ve never had any issues with travelling with the basics such as chargers, hair straighteners or hair dryers. Also don’t forget that other countries have different plug sockets to us brits, so make sure to get yourself a couple of travel adapters so that you can still use your electrical products.

So those are just a few tips/suggestions to consider when travelling with just hand luggage. If you have any other recommendations then please do leave them in the comments below!

Are you travelling anywhere soon?