Packing a Carry-On Bag? – Try These Techniques

One of the thing that has always bugged me about traveling is packing. I always needed to use the largest suitcase just to get (what I thought was) the bare minimum amount of clothes. And when I got to my destination it seemed I still didn’t pack all I needed and what I did have was so wrinkled that it bore no resemblance to what I had originally packed.


And then the airlines got smart and realized that could make more money off of guys like me for charging for that checked bag. One by one they have all adopted this practice with JetBlue finally falling, leaving Southwest as one of the last holdouts.

So now it makes sense whenever possible to pack only a carry-on. Those are generally still free (so far) and you don’t have to worry about things like losing your luggage. But there are problems. Number one is you have to obey the TSA rules, but that is for another time.

Today we will talk about how to pack more creatively. This was a lesson I had to learn (and am still learning) since I never really worried about packing this way. Let me share a couple of hacks which were originally shared by The Frugal Travel Guy that will help you and me consolidate our personal packing into one carry-on.


Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at

Your Daily Pill
Interestingly enough, these hacks com from Pinterest. The first hack comes in the form of how you pack your shirts. According to the illustration, a t-shirt and undergarment can be rolled up together, and packed together in a pair of socks. This gives you one day of underwear, all put together in a space-saving pill! Give it a try on your next flight – you’ll be amazed by how much you can pack in your (still free) carry-on!

It’s How I Roll
Since we are talking about rolling items, here is another tip from Pinterest. It shows how to roll your own items. It’s more than just getting rolled, however, it’s also very important where you put them in your luggage.

This hack, for instance, shows a proper way to pack a carry-on suitcase for your travels. Start by layering rolled items, half-fold pants over the rolled items, pack with another layer and roll on top. If you are taking a longer trip, there’s also many places in your suitcase to roll items everywhere. For instance belts can be rolled up in shirt collars. This will keep collars straight and also save additional space in bags. Seems so simple yet who would have thought?

There are many other packing hacks I am sure. If you know of any others feel free to comment and let me know. I am always on the lookout for better ways to do thing and I am far from a perfect packer (just ask my wife).