If you travel regularly, chances are you have heard of LAG's. Even if you travel once a year,
read on , as this affects you too. Who remembers old faithful - our vanity bags ? Back in the day, it was fashionable to have a pretty vanity case, packed with all your toiletries that you took on board your overnight flight. Wow, I think the last time I saw one of those at an airport was when everyone was panicking about Y2K ! ( if you don't know what Y2K is - it's not important to this article) Just google it. If some of you are wondering what a vanity bag is - simply put -
"a pretty toiletry bag on steriods" Now we have to make space in our checked-bags for our LAG's. Okay okay ...... Liquids, Aerosols and Gels ( creams, and pastes too) . There are some exceptions, like baby food. Will talk about travelling with babies and children in a future blog.
The introduction of limiting carry-on toiletries for an overnight flight, became any self-respecting girl's
( or boy's ) worst nightmare. 20 odd years later - we all still have our self-respect but now the nightmare is - trying to get all our chargers, e-readers, Ipads, laptops, earphones and whatever keeps us going, into our carry-on , and searching for flights that allow using wi-fi whilst flying. How things have changed !
LAG's were introduced for our own safety and security - so just do it ! You don't want to be THAT person. No containers over 100ml in your hand luggage, even if they are partially filled. Taking toiletries on-board have to be in 100ml containers . These containers must be packed in a re- sealable, transparent plastic bag.The total capacity of the plastic bag must not exceed one litre. These bags must be removed from your hand luggage and presented to security personnel for inspection. So now that I have this covered , let's get to the rest of my advice on packing the perfect carry-on bag. Remember you have to carry it - and most airlines have a maximum size/weight restriction for carry-on items. So keep it light, and check with your travel agent ( or take hours trying to search for it online if you have booked online) what the restriction is on the airline you will be travelling on. Once you know this, you can plan your carry-on. Make sure all your technology is charged up. Even the items you are not planning to use on-board (some airport security personnel could ask you to start-up your equipment ) You don't want to be delayed just because you cannot get that Notebook started up. Remember your Universal Plug or adaptor. Nothing worse than not having the right connections to re-charge. Check the voltage of the countries that you are travelling to, to make sure your adaptor will work and no use having an adaptor but you forgot the actual chargers. Pack those "noise cancelling" earphones. You can use these to watch the on-board movies, your own downloaded movies and music. I am not sure about those airline's headphones - firstly - eeeewwww and secondly - not the best sound coming out of those things and you can still hear every other noise on the plane no matter how loud you turn-up the volume. Thirdly - very effective if you don't like making conversation with other fellow travellers. So pack your own earphones - you can thank me later.
A pen - It takes no space at all . Some airports have arrival and departure forms that need to be completed. You want to have that pen - believe me.
Socks, jersey and inflateable travel pillow. Those of you travelling in Upper Economy, Business or First class - you can skip this part, you should be getting these on-board. Fresh pair of Socks - Cabin temperature is controlled and I always find I get cold onboard an aircraft. Generally if your feet are warm , you are warm. Also helps to be able to kick-off your shoes and still have your feet covered - for obvious reasons make sure the socks are a fresh pair please. The travel pillow comes in very handy for those long flights. Helps to keep you in check - you don't want to wake up on some stranger's shoulder sitting next to you, especially if you used the earphone "trick" to avoid conversation during the flight. You want to have a fresh change of clothes available, for the time when your bags dont arrive when you do . Yes in today's day and age - this is happening - more now than ever. Here's a little sidebar tip here ....Try to remember that the airline you are travelling on - is probably not the one that lost your bag. Its the contracted company handling the bags at the airports. So please do not be the idiot screaming and shouting at the poor airline staff. Another sidebar tip .....check your baggage tag that the check-in staff have put on your bag at check-in - is it the correct destination and has it in fact been tagged before they put it on the conveyor belt.
Prescription medication must be in your carry-on please. For the same reason above. If your checked-in bag does not arrive when you do, you won't need to panick. Just make sure you carry a valid prescription for the medication with you and a supply only, for the duration of your stay. A docters letter explaining what the medication is for, along with the valid prescription the best way to explain your medication that you take with you. Lip balm and hand cream ( travel size ) It get's dry up there. An eye mask, to block out the light and ear plugs, to block out the noise, are also always part of my carry on items. Hairbrush and travel size deodarent also a must.
Then lastly apart from your passport and electronic ticket, make sure you have the full address of where you are staying, handy, as well as proof of accommodation. Most immigration officials will ask for this upon entry and if not, you will need this to show your taxi or transport company.
I have created a handy carry-on check-list for your to use, for the next time you are travelling on an overnight flight. Click here to download it