The rules for packing a carryon when you check luggage are a bit different in my opinion. If you’re going on a trip where you need to check luggage (study abroad, living in a place for months to years), you can put the majority of your items in your checked luggage.
For example, there is no need to put two weeks worth of clothing in your carryon if you have two bags you can check.
If you have checked luggage, your carryon just serves as a bag that has items that allow you to freshen up on the plane, during layovers, or in case of an emergency.
However, there are essential things you still need to put in your carryon.
Don’t forget to bring your
Screenshot of where you are staying (the address should be in the screenshot)
Cash/ Debit or credit cards
Extra underwear –if your bag gets lost.
Socks –Keep a pair handy just in case your feet get cold.
A sweater or sweatshirt– the plane gets cold. It never hurts to have this to keep you warm.
Shoes that are easy to slip on and off the plane (you could just wear this. They do not have to go in your carryon).
A set of emergency clothes and pajamas– in the unfortunate case your checked luggage gets lost, you will have a backup pair of clothes and pajamas. There is nothing worse than having lost luggage and nothing to change into. Save yourself frustration and money by packing this.
Your large-sized toiletries go in your checked luggage (toiletries larger than 3.4 oz). But to get you through the flight (and any layovers), it might be good to have the following:
Pads or tampons
Toothbrush and toothpaste
Makeup essentials if you wear it (mascara, tinted moisturizer, lipstick or gloss, chapstick).
Scarf or Bonnet
Oil or hair product(s) (3.4 oz, TSA approved)
Medicine* (Remember, not all medicines approved in the United States are approved in other countries. Be sure to research beforehand and have a prescription. Be sure to check TSA.gov for official guidelines on how to pack medicine).
I personally keep my electronics in the carry-on.
Mints– for fresh breath
Pen – for the customs and immigration form (if you’re traveling internationally)
Anything valuable – anything you don’t want to lose should go in your carryon.
Hand sanitizer – keep a small bottle of hand sanitizer to use to keep yourself healthy.
Wipes – Planes have a lot of germs. If you’re planning to use the tray table, be sure to wipe it down before you eat or lay your head on it.
A reusable water-bottle – This helps to keep you hydrated. Having your own bottle is good because you won’t have to keep asking the flight attendant to refill your cup. Staying hydrated can help you shake off fatigue and jet lag, and keep you healthy.
In Case You’ve Missed It, Check Out
How To Pack For Long Term Travel (work or study abroad)
How To Talk To Worried Family And Friends About Travel
11 Solo Travel Tips That Could Save Your Life
How I Landed A Job In International Affairs