Air Travel Packing Tips

Packing your luggage like a pro is not only about cramming the most amount of items into as small a space as possible … it’s also about knowing what to pack!Use our top air travel packing tips to help you have a fun hassle free holiday.

The Carry-On: What to include for international travel

Use light weight compactible carry-on luggage. Why? Because they can fit into different spaces and will adhere to most airport carry-on size restrictions. Here’s what you will need:

  • Comfortable clothing and socks
  • Slip on shoes
  • Neck support (inflatable pillows work well)
  • Body pillow and soft blanket (usually standard on long flights)
  • Change of clothing (for emergencies: if your flight is delayed or you miss your connection)
  • Ear plugs and comfortable padded sleeping mask (sleeping masks are usually standard on long flights but they’re not the most effective/comfortable)
  • Electronics and valuables (they should not be packed in your travel luggage)
  • Documentation: Passport, Driver’s License, Insurance information, Travelers checks, Credit cards, Airline tickets
  • Prescription Medication
  • Toiletries: Comb, toothbrush and toothpaste, small face cloth

If you’re traveling from, to or through the United States then don’t forget to check the Transport Security Administration (TSA) for what you are and aren’t allowed to pack in your carry-on and check through luggage.

Traveling luggage: More important tips

  • Shop for the items you need several days before your trip to avoid last minute convenience buying.
  • Invest in a customized mini drugstore with various basic items like aspirin, band-aids, antacids, and cold remedies. Hotel convenience stores and local pharmacies are notoriously over-priced.
  • Always have an extra pair of socks, panty hose, and underwear somewhere. Be prepared for anything and everything, including delays. If there are delays on your return trip, for any reason, it is reassuring to know that you will at least have fresh undergarments to wear!
  • Liquid laundry soap can be a good investment for clothing that needs a little spot cleaning or laundering.
  • A toiletry bag stocked with your toiletry and bathroom essentials ready at all times will reduce the likelihood of forgetting something important like your toothbrush…

A typical packing checklist

  • 2 pairs of pants
  • 3-4 shirts
  • Clothes for comfort while traveling.
  • One sport-jacket for men (some restaurants require them)
  • Swimsuit
  • Cover-up for beach or pool
  • Raincoat and galoshes
  • Hat, beret or sun hat
  • 3-5 pairs of underwear
  • 5 pairs of socks – cotton or wool
  • Sleepwear
  • 1 pair of sturdy well-broken in comfortable boots or sandals (I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to have comfortable shoes. If you only take one tip out of all of these, then let it be this one!)
  • For winter include a down jacket, waterproofed boots, gloves, hat and long underwear

Air travel packing tips: other items to consider

  • Camera batteries
  • Zip-lock or plastic bags (seal)
  • Dictionary or phrase book
  • Maps
  • Money belt of pouch
  • Extra glasses, contact lenses and prescriptions
  • Inflatable hangers
  • Combination lock
  • First aid kit – bandages
  • Pocket flashlight
  • Analgesic
  • Antiseptic towelettes
  • Travel alarm clock
  • Insect repellent
  • Nail clipper, tweezers, dental floss
  • Roll of transparent tape
  • Moisturizer
  • Adapter
  • Lip balm
  • Razor blades and shaving cream