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30 Days to Packing a Better Bag – Day 30: To the Airport

Welcome to Day 30 of 30 Days to Packing a Better Bag. Our final post!

It goes without saying that you all are packing masters at this point, and we’re proud of the progress (we’re assuming) you’ve all made this month. Go you!

But we still have one task left…

Getting it all to the airport!

We LOVE this part of travel because it is the time when we get to take-off. Don’t let excess baggage fees and security point nightmares ruin the moment. Here are some tips we put together to help with the journey to the airport and beyond:

Be Prepared

Like a Girl Scout. Have your passport and paperwork ready for check-in. Make sure it is all easily accessible in the outer pockets of your bag or handbag (while also not being easy for others to get to, of course!).

Keep your carry-on liquids in a clear plastic bag that can be pulled out of your carry-on luggage without throwing the entire packing system out of whack. That means storing it on top or in an outer pocket if at all possible.

The same goes for your laptop. Have it packed in a way that allows easy removal from your carry-on bag at security. We’ve suggested ideas for this in the packing and protecting electronics section.

Wear Heavier and Bulkier Clothing to the Airport

Yes, this point is controversial because you probably shouldn’t wear your coat if you’re traveling in a tropical destination at the moment. However, those light hiking shoes will be bulky and annoying to pack, as will those jeans. If you can layer up, go for it. You can always shed some layers when you get into your seat. Just be sure to bring a second, more comfortable outfit to change into when on your flight.

This tactic can save you a bit of size and weight from your luggage if you feel that is an issue.

Never Leave Luggage Out of Sight

Never, ever, ever. There are just too many people from too many walks of life congregated at airports. Luckily, since you take fewer belongings with you on your travels now, keeping track of your luggage in the airport will not be an issue. Never again will you have to leave your suitcase outside of a toilet stall because there’s not enough room. We love helping you to travel with less!

Take Action: Get Ready to Travel
Take the final steps needed to get you to the airport and on to your adventures! Happy travels!

Let us know where you’re off to now that you’re all packed up.

Written by Brooke

I run the show at Her Packing List and love packing ultralight. In fact, I once traveled for 3 entire weeks with just the contents of a well-packed 12L handbag. When I'm not obsessing over luggage weight, I'm planning adventures or just snuggling with my pet rabbit, Sherlock Bunz.

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Travel Resources

HPL Learnables

Handbag Packing Masterclass – Learn to pack your lightest bag ever in this revolutionary packing class run by HPL founder, Brooke.

Creative Ways to Minimize Your Toiletry & Beauty Kit – Practical tips alongside DIY recipes designed to help you pack lighter, smaller & with fewer liquids. (Also included as a bonus to Handbag Packing Masterclass.)

Book Your Trip

Viator – Enhance your trip experience by booking from thousands of tours across the globe. – Search for hotels, hostels, and apartments using this one resource. Use it for flights, car rentals, and airport taxis as well.

Trusted Housesitters – Save money on travel accommodation by becoming a housesitter. Housesitters often have extra duties, like caring for pets and gardens.

Reader Interactions


  1. Jessica Crees says

    Thanks for writing these posts. I’ve been following them every day and they’ve been so helpful. I’m going to Africa in just over a week and these posts have been great for helping me pack. Thanks a lot.

  2. Kim says

    I’ve followed along all month. Thank you for the wonderful travel advice. Traveling to Europe in the next few years. Starting my packing list (for my family) very early!

    • Brooke says

      Part of the excitement of travel comes before you actually leave! I love pre-trip gear shopping and packing 🙂 Thanks for following along all month!

  3. Leah says

    I’ve really enjoyed this series. I’m leaving for a month in Thailand tomorrow, so the timing couldn’t have been better. Thanks!

  4. Irina says

    Thank you for the great month of very useful posts!
    I’m not going anywhere right now, but these posts kept me excited as if I am.
    I kind of know about some issues like going to the airport or repacking your bag for early flight, but you put it in such a nice and easy way.

  5. Heather says

    Loved, loved, loved these posts! I head to Myanmar/Burma tomorrow for two weeks. These posts have been so helpful. I have an awesome carry-on and creative packing to finish up tomorrow. Can’t wait to go light! I went to Brazil 5years ago and it wasn’t a light trip. Looking forward to feeling different on this one!

  6. Sabrina says

    Thank you so much – I’m leaving for one year in South-East-Asia, OZ and NZ on the beginning of January 🙂

  7. Missy says

    Thank you for this series! Incredibly helpful in general but specifically I am traveling to Seattle & Las Vegas at the end of the month and I desperately don’t want to overpack – a problem I have.

    • Sharon Dittmar says

      Missy – Just came back from the Seattle/Mt. Rainier area last week. I went to Athleta and bought some great versatile clothing that kept me warm, created layers, and I could mix and match everything so it cut down on my packing. Have fun!!

  8. jen says

    Thanks for all the awesome posts! I have read them all and only wish I would have found this site so much sooner. I went to Costa Rica for 3 months last year and was in complete hell with how much I over packed! I am finally realizing my dream of traveling Europe next year and these posts make me feel like I will be so much more prepared and safer traveling alone. I’ve just received a new backpack for my birthday and I feel that much closer to my trip! Thanks again, this site is truly amazing!

  9. Tiff says

    I’ve loved reading this posts! They’re full of valuable advice. I’m hoping to go to Romania for several weeks next May, and I know I’ll use a ton of the tips you guys have shared:)

  10. Carmen says

    These posts have been so helpful! I am heading to Japan in November and will be there for a whole 4 weeks! I am from Canada and have only ever been to the States and to Mexico, so this is my first big trip. I really need a lot of tips and got pretty much everything I needed to know from these posts. Thank you!!!

  11. Kat says

    I’ve loved following these packing tips and all the articles on Her Packing List. I’m headed to South Asia for 2 years and am thankful I stumbled across this site a few months ago!

  12. Jamie says

    This was amazing, I just read through all of the day packing pages in two days. I’m heading overseas in early Feb for an indetermined amount of time so this has been super helpful. I’ve travelled on one-two month trips before, but this has helped me with the last few ‘how do I make this fit/work/just do what I want you to’ nesses.
    Last time I went I took along a few extra bits of cheaper clothing (singlets, shirts, leggings etc) to plump out my essentials and just shed them along the way as needed. Especially as I was going from freezing to warmer weather.
    Now I just have to replace my ageing backpack with something new and improved, pick up some new bits and pieces of essentials and I’m hopefully good to go with a new pared down view on packing!
    Thank you very, very much!

  13. Paolina says

    This packing series was definitely just what the doctor ordered! I’m headed to England later this week (my first ever trip overseas!) and your tips and tricks are awesome! Wouldn’t have been able to figure it out on my own!

  14. Alexandria says

    This whole series is super helpful for my trip to eastern Europe in a few weeks. I’ll be going through all of it again as the date of my trip comes closer, but this is a very helpful step in thinking ahead and being smart about what to pack. THANK YOU!

  15. Katrina says

    My husband just sprung an incredible surprise trip on me, he’s taking me to New York and Boston for three weeks for my 30th Birthday, and we are leaving in 5 days time! I am SO grateful for this site and particularly this series, I found you thanks to a panicked google search and I think I might actually cope with packing now. I’ve always been a terrible overpacker though with the exception of a weekend in Belgium I’ve never travelled outside of the UK as an adult having to do my own packing. Your advice has been excellent, now to put it into practice!

  16. Desra says

    it’s one good blog Brooke. Very informative for arranging my packing list in my first backpacking trip with the family of four. thanks a lot sweeatie 🙂

  17. Adelie says

    Thank you so much for these amazing posts, I’m glad I found them before my trip to New Zealand. They were very helpful! Now I can’t wait to leave 🙂

  18. allison says

    Thank you for this blog. I have read this all the way through. I am a frequent flyer and always felt I was lacking organisation. This was really helpful.

  19. Dinah says

    I’m going to the Amalfi Coast and Greek Islands for 3.5wks in Aug/Sep with my Caribee Fast Track 45 convertible in tow (plus 2 friends). Have just been reading through this invaluable information. Thank you for lots of tips and ideas to make my traveling easier!

  20. Jess says

    I’m off to India in just over a week and this series has been great. We even bought the Slingsafe bag after reading the review on this website. My last two trips have been to new Zealand and seeing as I live in Australia it’s pretty much like interstate travel for us and we definitely over packed, but seeing as we had a hire car and were driving ourselves around it wasn’t a problem. The tips on this website have given me confidence about my trip, thank you for taking the time to create it! In fact tonight I’m going to the Rocks Markets in Sydney and I’ll be checking out the Aroramas stall!

    • Brooke says

      Aw such kind words! I’m glad you enjoyed the series and please introduce yourself at the markets tonight (I’ll be in the Etsy section). -Brooke

  21. Jeanette says

    I just found your site and currently planning a trip to Italy next year, I have read through the full series and found it very helpful. Thank you.

  22. Sonya says

    Great tips. off to Cambodia and Laos for 4 weeks with my daughter later on this year. Will probably look at updating our backpacks as they are getting worn and the new ones are much lighter. Keep up the good work. Have thoroughly enjoyed reading this site.

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