Travel Essentials: Hand Luggage Only

Let’s face it, the weather is pants. I’ve already booked my holiday in the sun for 2018 and if you haven’t I’m sure you’re in the process of finding the perfect destination.

You may argue that you don’t have enough money to go away this year but with airlines like Ryanair offering flights for £20 and websites like luring you in with package holidays for £150pp it’s hard to say no.

I have previously been on a few holidays where I have flown with hand-luggage only and not only does it save you a bit of cash and make the airport process much easier, it forces you to be more selective with what you take with you.

Here is my list of absolute travel essentials when flying light:


Whether it’s the journey to the airport or the flight itself, there will be travelling and waiting around involved, what better way to pass the time than listening to your favourite music. My headphones are the Wireless Sony MDR-ZX220BT, no wires to get tangled up in for this fella.


Book – Batteries run out, screens glare in the sun, books are forever.

Maybe you’re more of the bookworm type, technology while great has it’s disadvantage that batteries do tend to run out and with the sun blaring (should you visit a sunny destination) it can be hard to see the screen whilst sunbathing. Enter, the age old Book. My current reads are 50th Law of Power by Robert Greene and 50 Cent as well as The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle; I am a power hungry gentleman it appears…


All-round sneakers

Especially important if you’re only staying in your destination for a couple of days and have limited space, finding yourself a well-rounded sneaker that can provide comfort and style throughout the days of walking around the city but also double-up as a dressed up sneaker with a pair of dark-wash jeans at night should you be out dining or even partying. My Filling Pieces have been this sneaker for me currently as they are super comfortable yet can be dressed up with a pair of jeans and a shirt.



Whilst hand-luggage limits your ability to bring your 1L bottle of Tresemme with you, you will still be bringing your grooming essentials and these items need a place to stay during your travels. I’d recommend buying a quality wash-bag, I opted for Ted Baker as my go-to bag and it has served me very well on my travels.

Versatile T-shirts

Dependant on the destination you’re heading off to, having a couple of quality t-shirts packed with you is essential when travelling for a couple of days. You have limited space so don’t want to be taking up valuable space with endless combinations of shirts. The right shirt see you through the day as well as allow you to layer them up in the evening. Multitalented clothing is what we are aiming for here.


Luggage bag

Last but not least you actually need a storage unit for all of the items mentioned above. Too many people settle for sub-par luggage, now I’m not saying to go out and buy yourself a Louis Vuitton travel set but invested in a quality, stylish weekend bag will ensure your bag looks great whilst still being practical for travel.

My personal pick is my weekend bag from River Island, it’s monochrome colourway goes well with any of my outfits. For the times that I am travelling to Norway and know there will be some snow my go-to is the Helly Hansen backpack which has survived some of the snowiest winters and still lives to tell the tale.


The bag you decide on will be dependant on where you plan to take it, city breaks will call for stylish weekend bags, more active breaks may require something a little sturdier.

There you have it, my essentials list for packing hand-luggage only, of course you’re going to need to fit in a pair of jeans/shorts depending on the climate as well as your daily supply of underwear – unless you fancy commando… Always wear your heavier/bulkier items whilst travelling as you can always just take them off once on the plane/train/coach.

Have you got any holidays coming up? Let me know below!

– Jack






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