The Holiday Edit: How to pack for hand luggage only!

When it comes to packing for any sort of trip, be it a holiday, a weekend break or just an over-night stay, I am absolutely horrendous! Every single time I feel like I have never been away from home before and somehow end up panicking and packing 30 extra items ‘Just in case’.
I’m not joking when I say if I’m going away for 7 days, I will take 14 pairs of socks – just incase!

However, I recently took a trip to Marbella and the flights included hand luggage only. Something I can usually cope with for a short trip however, it wasn’t the usual Ryan Air ‘as long as you can carry it any weight goes’. No – the limit here was 10 kilograms. And so the onset of panic began…

Mid-panic I obviously had to get a grip of myself, realise the world hadn’t ended and find a way to pack my case like a calm, collected young gal who has her life together.

So here are my top 5 tips, which may help if you ever find yourself in the same predicament.

Check the weather
First and foremost check the weather! Take a note of both daytime and nighttime temperatures so you can get an idea of what sort of outfits you’ll need. This basically just means you don’t end up double packing incase of sunshine or rain and will really help you cut down on weight.

Plan your outfits
Once you have figured out the weather situ, write down roughly your plans for your time away and this will help you plan your outfit choices for each day more closely. Plan for both day and night! Many a time I have thrown in double the amount of clothing because I couldn’t be bothered to properly plan and thought I would decide on the day. Unfortunately, you don’t have this luxury when travelling with hand luggage only – but to be honest it helps so much and takes the stress away from your holiday as you won’t have too much to choose from.
It also makes for pretty little Instagram flatlays if that’s your thing 😉

Travel in your heaviest items
If your trip is a city break and those studded boots and leather jacket are a must, then travel in them as they will most likely be your heaviest item and will leave more room for those 14 pairs of socks you need. If your trip is a beach holiday, travel in that huge floppy sun hat to stop it taking up room in your tiny holdall.

Buy toiletries at the airport
Most UK airports will have a boots store in the terminal so you can buy your toiletries post security however, there’s something even better I’ve only just learnt myself and I don’t know why i’ve never thought of it before – pre-order all your essential toiletries online at and get them delivered straight to the airport! Hassle-free and leaves more time for sipping at the bar rather than trawling the holiday aisle in Boots.

Be ruthless
Above all, you need to be ruthless with your packing. Don’t throw in anything for the sake of it and make sure you have planned every detail so you know exactly what you need.

I hope my top tips for packing hand luggage help and let me know if you do anything different when packing for your own trips!

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