How to Pack Light for Holiday? | Hand Luggage

How to travel light? Best way to pack and travel light

 I am not going to exaggerate when I say that packing light was not something I would ever consider for my honeymoon. Weekend trips away, yes sure, but a honeymoon? I imagined myself laying down somewhere next to a pool with a colourful drink in my hand. However, after thinking how long can I lay down and not be bored for I decided that my limit is around 4, up to 6, days and that is pushing it. Spontaneously we decided to go for a trip around the south east of Europe. No laying down on the beach for us, traveling from place to place was more of our kind of fun.

How to travel light? Best way to pack and travel light
To reduce costs we used budget airlines, and to reduce stress we would have from travelling with massive check-in luggage we opted for a hand luggage only. All airlines have different baggage size requirements. Almost all of our flights were with Wizzair, which has the strictest rules, so that was the size of a luggage we went for. Especially after being charged £45 in Aberdeen Airport because my backpack was not the perfect shape and not spill out of the metal bag size checker crate. On the other hand, is there actually a backpack that keeps its perfect shape like that of the crate? No, I do not think so either.

How to travel light? Best way to pack and travel light
We ended up buying two small cabin suitcases, which were the perfect size for Wizzair at 42x32x25cm (30 L). We knew that we would be safe with other flight providers too as Wizzair has the smallest allowance. Irritatingly two weeks after we bought the cases Wizzair decided that actually it is time to change their restrictions to 56 x 45 x 25 cm. Oh, the irony. Now I am left with two suitcases that are really of no use to me.

How to travel light? Best way to pack and travel light
Anyways, I took on the challenge and went for my honeymoon with a 42x32x25cm suitcase. Yes, I managed to pack everything you see on the images and more. As a point of reference Ryanair's small luggage size: 55 x 40 x 20 cm; Easy Jet: 56 x 45 x 25 cm. Sizes were correct in August 2017. Also please make sure you know what is the maximum amount of kilograms. 

What and how did I managed to pack everything below into the suitcase?

How to travel light? Best way to pack and travel light

8 Dresses
4 T-Shirts
5 Pairs of shorts
4 Pair of Shoes
1 Long sleeve cardigan
2 Pairs of trousers
2 Beach throws
1 Beach throw to sit at
4 Bikinis I know I have a problem
1 Pair of socks
Plastic Yellow Poncho
How to travel light? Best way to pack and travel light

Body Shop peeling
Body Shop Shine
Antibacterial Tissues
Sun Cream


Laptop - Mac 13 inches
Camera, which I was carrying around with me rather than squeezing it into the suitcase
2 Chargers (iphone, Camera)
3 Various camera lenses, the wide angle one was traveling with me rather than in the suitcase as it is quite bulky

 How did I manage to pack all of it in such a small suitcase?

How to travel light? Best way to pack and travel light
Instead of laying my clothes flat I decided to fold them into a small squares/cubes and create rows with them. I did not try to put all of the things flat to make a direct comparison, so I cannot tell you which method is better. However, personally for longer trips where I jump from city to city I do not like the flat packing method because taking out all of the clothes is not as easy and requires sometimes moving everything out and back into the suitcase. At the beginning I also tried to roll everything up into tubes and line them up in the suitcase, but for the type of clothes it did not compliment the suitcase space.

This folding method allowed me to have an overview of all the clothes in the suitcase and take whatever I wanted without disrupting the order. The only problem with this method is that clothes are more likely, in my opinion, to crease. I do not mind ironing but I picked summer clothes depending from the materials they were made of. Some are less likely to crease than others and I prefer to spend my time exploring rather than ironing, even at expense of my outfit.

What is your favourite way to pack?

Take a look at other post full of Italian vibes:

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  1. Oh my gosh, so impressed! I struggle with 3 days with a carry on, I bow down to your packing skills Iga! That size was so tiny too. I would like to downsize for Florida but who am I kidding I need space for the things I buy there ;-) x

    1. You need your outfits for Florida plus an extra space for all the things you will bring back with you to UK. Love, Iga

  2. Nice tips!




  3. You were charged £45? What the hell! Well that's certainly made me nervous about my holiday next month!

    Rosy | Sparkles of Light Blog
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    1. I know, it was a painful experience. If you are flying with Wizzair be careful. They checked every single bag at least in Aberdeen. Love, Iga

  4. I have had to pack for 3 weeks in hand luggage only and that was a challenge so I am familiar with this. I hate how airline are so difficult when it comes to backpacks etc, sometimes I feel it's just a power trip! How annoying you had to but another 2 suitcase, grrrrr. Also paying £45, what a cheek. I really do think they try rip us off every chance they get!

    1. I see their reasoning (safety, plane balance etc) but it is also a big money making machine, which obviously is never going to be said out loud. One suitcase was mine, another one was my partner's both were bought after the £45 fee - I had a backpack, which due to back support was unsuitable to fit in the tiny cage. x

  5. Wow you did really well! I normally only use hand luggage to so this was really interesting!

    1. Thank you Hayley! I think quite that often hand luggage is all we really need, especially that sometimes cost of an extra luggage exceeds ticket cost.

  6. This is absolutely incredible, I'm amazed with how much you have managed to fit in such a small case!

    1. Hi Evie, thank you! It was a great challenge. I tried to pack a few times before finding the perfect way to fit it all in.


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