What to take in your hand luggage

What to take in your hand luggage


I used to over prepare myself when it came to packing my hand luggage.  I always have the thought in the back of my mind about what if my luggage doesn’t turn up and I’m stuck for a few days with nothing but the things on my back.  I have now found the perfect balance of minimalism and having a tonne of stuff.


I prefer to have a hand luggage bag that I don’t have to hold with my hands or one shoulder, I find it way too uncomfortable otherwise.  I found my backpack in a second hand shop for $5 and thought it was perfect. It has a tie up body which also clicks with a buckle, and it has a handy front pocket with a zip as well.  Get a bag which doesn’t have 1000 pockets otherwise it will just get too confusing.  Obviously the weight is important, which is another reason I picked this bag because it is like holding a feather.  I carry my laptop and my Nikon D50 with me (an older heavy SLR camera) so keeping this bag packed with only essentials is important so I can keep to the weight limit.

As mentioned above, I carry my Toshiba laptop and my Nikon D50 in my biggest compartment. They both have bags that they go in so they don’t get scratched.  I carry my laptop charger but not my camera charger because my battery lasts for days and sometimes weeks! I always carry about 3 SD cards on me and a few more in my big luggage bag. Because I am a blogger I always carry a notebook with me so I can jot down ideas or if I feel like doing a bit of planning or writing I can do so.  Having a travel diary is an awesome thing to have with you so you can start writing how your feeling while travelling to your destination.  You could also write a bucket list of things you want to do when you get there and do some planning!


My Essential items include:

  • Passport – Sorry love, you not getting nowhere without one!
  • Phone 5 and charger, because the battery life sucks arse!
  • Battery block for my phone – just in case there is nowhere to charge it
  • Headphones
  • My other travel documents which I keep in my travel wallet.
  • Mini travel first aid kit!

Other items:

  • Neck pillow
  • Spare trousers, underwear and socks
  • Raincoat. This is just a pull over raincoat and wind protector which folds up super small
  • Chewing gum
  • In my beauty/toiletries bag:
  • Wipes that are suitable for your face as well.
  • Vaseline for my lips
  • Mascara
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste

I try and not wear makeup during the flight (only mascara) so I don’t see much point in having it with me.  I usually wear a long t-shirt dress because it is super comfy and I also pair it with my converse or other sneakers, that way I have comfortable shoes on me.  I also wear tights underneath to keep me warm because usually I get cold on the plane.

Tip: I tie my sweatshirt around my waist so it doesn’t add to the weight of my bag.

All up my bag weighs around 5Kg.  If you try and go over the 7kgs it just gets uncomfortable and you end up filling it with so much unnecessary crap!

If you liked this post then leave a comment!  I would love to hear what you take in your hand luggage.  I highly recommend travel insurance when you’re travelling.  Go with World Nomads, they are a reliable company with competitive prices.  Check out Agoda and Hostelworld for all of your accommodation!

What to take in your hand luggage

Pin it for later!




  1. Michelle
    July 26, 2015 / 7:23 pm

    Great list! Although I always take a good face and body moisturiser – I find the air on the planes can be so drying 🙂

  2. September 16, 2016 / 2:54 pm

    Very good list, I have a similar small backpack and most of the items you mentioned go there, except I don’t have a raincoat, now thinking about one 🙂 . I dont put any makeup in this bag except a small pouch that holds my lip balm and eye liner. I also have a cute small hand sanitizer in the pack

Say something...