Best Reasons To Travel Carry-On Only

Reasons to Travel Carry-On Only

The term “baggage” as a metaphor for issues that haunt you - a burdensome weight that you fail to let go of - is a perfect metaphor for a reason. Too much baggage can put a real damper on your vacation. Carry-on only, however, is the perfect solution to all of your airport woes. 

Traveling with checked bags can be cumbersome, prolonging long lines and longer waits. With carry-on only, you get to skip most of these lines and completely avoid the waiting time that comes with them. Packing light is truly the best policy when it comes to luggage. Especially when you are traveling with your whole family. It’s infinitely better to be that lucky family first out of the airport instead of wasting your precious vacation time while waiting for a second, third, and fourth bag to fall from the baggage claim carousel. 


Families shouldn’t be dissuaded from thinking they too can pare down their packing and accomplish carry-on only status. Anyone can manage with just a little bit of careful consideration to the essentials. If you’re struggling with how to limit how much you pack on your travels, keep an eye on our blog for future tips and tricks on how to maximize your packing choices.  

 Source: sugree, via Flickr.


And with delays, such horrible inconveniences can be managed with the minimum amount of stress if you’re free to move about with only your carry-on. You could adapt to the situation and roll with the metaphorical punches at a moment’s notice. But alas, if you’ve checked a bag and you’re forced to switch planes, you’ll have to wait while they move the baggage and you will definitely be late to your destination. With a later arrival and still having to wait for bags to claim, for me personally, this meant I was late to my Hawaiian cruise. Can you imagine missing your cruise ship’s departure? I flat-out ran every chance I could and still almost missed the ship. It was such a close call, I trembled. That’s potentially thousands of dollars lost and thousands incurred with unexpected costs.

 Source: sugree, via Flickr.


If I had been traveling carry-on only at the time, I would have breezed through security much quicker and felt less stress. For example, when traveling in Europe with only carry on, the experience was fantastic; we got through customs so much quicker it felt like strolling off the plane and directly out of the airport. We didn’t have to worry about finding baggage claim in a foreign language or searching out our particular luggage after an exhausting 10 hour flight. It’s a smoother transition through the airport and to your destination.


When switching planes, there is also the increased risk for lost bags. How much stress do tracking tags really reduce? Not enough. You may know your bag is lost and can see that it’s in another country but that doesn’t get your bags back to you any faster. There’s less risk with carry-on only and you can avoid the headache of lost luggage complications altogether.

And on top of all that, when having to deal with baggage claim, there’s always that risk that yours may be the last one down the belt and possibly even covered in gunk. The rotating carousel of bags may also lead to bag mix-ups, with someone mistakenly taking yours or you mistakenly taking someone else’s - either way, a troublesome distraction from your vacation.


Cost, though, is an absolutely crucial reason to shift to carry-on only for the rest of your life. The fees for checked bags are going up and up. Most airlines charge for more than one checked bag per person. Some airlines may even charge for the first checked bag. This can really add up, especially for families with multiple bags being attributed to each person. 


It saves you money by not checking any bags but it also saves you from worrying valuables could be stolen or misplaced from your bags by handlers during out-of-sight security checks or having to deal with the cost to replace expensive items if your bags are lost.

Carry-On Only is plenty of space for even long trips. There are countless ways to pack smartly. You can pack light and not bring more than you absolutely need. Clothing can be rolled to condense its size and/or you can use compression packing cubes. Avoid bringing multiple shoes or opt for something easily packed like foldable flats. Perhaps wear your thicker or puffier items - like jackets - on the plane to reduce taking up space in your carry-on. Also, make sure your return trip is carry-on only too; this means avoid buying bulky souvenirs or consider having your souvenirs shipped home.


So, never travel with a checked bag again and eliminate all that hassle. It’s never worth it. You never end up using every item in your checked bag on the trip, anyway. Leave that stuff at home. In this case, less is most definitely more. Next time you go on a trip, travel carry-on only and enjoy the freedom to breeze through your trip with less stress.

Save yourself time, money, energy, and risk by vowing to only ever travel carry-on only from now on. After all, a life spent basking in the joys of vacationing instead of worrying over baggage is a life well spent. 


Please leave us a comment about your experiences traveling with luggage. Do you have nightmare situations with baggage claim that turned you into a fan of carry-on only? Or do you have tips you’d like to share with us on what travel bag you use?