Home » Advice » Advice on Packing » Carry-On Luggage – My journey to en-LIGHT-enment
Carry-On Luggage - My journey to en-LIGHT-enment

Carry-On Luggage – My journey to en-LIGHT-enment

Author Mary Chong
This article may contain affiliate links. This means that clicking on or purchasing products we recommend through a link may earn us a small commission. For more information read our disclaimer page.

Share this article with your friends!

When I use the phrase “carry-on luggage only” with friends and family I normally get a chuckle and a “you’ve got to be kidding me” as a response. But I’m serious about this….really serious.

Outside of the obvious reasons like saving the $20-30 that we now have to pay the airlines for each piece of checked luggage or making a fast getaway once you get off the plane.

My reason is more personal. Here’s why…

A little while ago on a 14 day cruise through the Mediterranean, my husband hurt his back. There I was at the end of the cruise – all 5 feet petite me – with 2 pieces of 28-inch luggage, 2 carry-on luggage PLUS hubby in a wheelchair trying to get around the airport in Barcelona, then connecting at JFK in New York before getting back home to Toronto. Talk about frustration! luggage-carousel

After that trip, we decided to scale down and on our 21-day adventure through Asia, we travelled with 1 piece of 28-inch luggage and 2 carry-on luggage. (Baby Steps!) But in my opinion that was still too much baggage to deal with.

The Calculated Traveller in me feels that in case of emergency, I need to be able to take care of ALL our belongs by myself. Single handed – I am woman hear me ROAR!

Now, I’m ready to take the plunge. Carry-on luggage only…1 bag each = freedom!

This decision comes with challenges…


  • What type of carry-on luggage should I choose?
  • What about weight limitations?
  • What size works for all airlines – domestic AND international?
  • What about the 3-1-1 liquid rule on the plane?
  • What about clothes and laundry?
  • …and what about my shoes????

So follow along on this continuing story of my journey to en-LIGHT-enment:
Part 2: Carry-On Luggage – One Bag to Hold it All
Part 3: One Bag Carry-on Only Challenge – Update

Are you a one bagger? Have you got any tips to share on how you travel with carry-on luggage only? Drop me a comment, I’d love to hear about it!

Share this article with your friends!