How to Never Check a Bag Again

How to Never Check a Bag Again

Tired of painstakingly packing (and way-overpacking) your travel belongings into a suitcase, getting to the airport, and cursing yourself for packing such a stupidly overpacked bag?

Or better yet, packing a carry-on suitcase and being forced to check your bag when it doesn’t fit in the absurdly small box TSA would to believe all carry-on luggage fits into?


Here’s your chance to pack like a pro and leave those less-fortunate arguing with airline battleaxes.

1) Fly with an amorphous shoulder bag.

If it’s got a hard casing and wheels, there is a high likelihood your bag is getting checked no matter what. My advice: get a shoulder bag sans wheels and handle to avoid all of those awkward encounters with airline check-in staff.


2) Pack efficiently.

Bottom line: roll your clothes.Rolling your clothes will save you a substantial amount of space. If you’re afraid of wrinkles, consider a traveler’s iron.


3) Pack lightly.

No, you do not need 4 white t-shirts for a 2 night trip. Once you open the doors of packing hell, you’re bag will go from 20 lbs to 200 lbs in a matter of shirts.

Things to consider: for cold weather, bring items that you can both layer and mix’n'match to avoid looking the same every day. For warm weather, grab those light, comfortable clothes and just enough to get you by.

Worst case, you can always wash your clothes the old school method and let them airdry.


4) Remove Tag. Yes, I said it. (Only recommended if you followed Step 1)

Let’s be honest: there will be times where no matter what, that airline battleaxe has had a bad day and you are their scapegoat – which means, your bag is getting the dreaded tag of doom (IE – the check bag tag).

Instead of throwing a fit and being remembered, give the airline attendent an exaggerated smile, allow them to apply the tag, walk down the terminal towards the plane…and remove it.

I only recommend doing this with a shoulder bag because they are so maleable (my line is always “it’s collapsable, don’t worry!”). If your carrying a well-packed shoulder bag, you’re going to fit in in the overhead.