Sometimes you don’t need to check a bag. If you’re going on a short trip like a weekend getaway or a business trip, you can travel with a small bag and save on baggage fees. We’ve put together a list of some of our favorite items to pack to help you avoid bringing a checked bag.
There's no need for a bulky checked bag if you've got a roomy but lightweight carry-on that can fit all your stuff. The best carry-on bags have useful features such as space, wheels, and the ability to actual fit in the overhead bin. Our favorite carry-on bags can be found here.
Backpack or Messenger Bag
In addition to a carry-on bag, you can also bring a personal item. Opt for a spacious bag so you can cram more stuff in it and avoid having to check a bag. We really like this backpack from Under Armour. If backpacks make you feel like a kid again, try a tote or messenger bag. Many are just as spacious as a backpack.
If you’re trying to avoid checking a bag, you won’t be able to bring larger versions of your favorite toiletries. Make sure to follow the 3-1-1 rule, three ounces or less in a clear, zip-top plastic bag, with one quart-sized bag per traveler. Instead of buying travel-sized toiletries, try to use refillable bottles. You’ll save money and help the environment.
There's no need to stuff a large suitcase with clothes if you can make a few garments do double duty. For example, wear a polo and shorts for comfort during the day, and then change to chinos at night for a dressier look. Or, try adding a cardigan to a dress or blouse to dress it up for nighttime, avoiding the need to bring a whole separate outfit for going out.