This article gives more good reasons not to check any bags and calls attention to the problem of different limits and standards for checked baggage across the airline world.
...that is the question: Do you lug your luggage --with your hand, shoulder, or back-- or roll it? The benefits of wheeled luggage are obvious. For those with physical limitations or for those whose travels involve lots of flat, smooth surfaces, wheels are appropriate. The demerits of wheeled luggage are less obvious but are very real. Airplane aisles, stairs, cobblestones, curbs, escalators, and fellow travelers' toes are all unfriendly to wheels. And, there's nothing like losing control of a wheeled case on a ramp. They tend to flop and twist and can wrench a wrist. Wheels are also prone to break or jam; ditto the telescoping handles. And finally, the mechanisms themselves add weight and bulk to carry-on luggage. Weight and bulk are the traveler's enemy. Most wheeled bags are semi-rigid as well. This can present a problem when the overhead compartment or taxi trunk is almost full. Forsaking wheels may be the right move for the onebagger. There is one caveat though: Make sure the shoulder strap or backpack strap system your bag uses is a good one. Otherwise you may rue the decision to travel sans wheels.
The Red Oxx Air Boss is worthy of any light traveler’s consideration. It is close to maximum legal carryon size, yet weighs well under four pounds. It has NO WHEELS - which is a good thing; wheels would double the weight and eat interior capacity. And, it was developed in consultaion with Doug Dyment - the one-bag expert. At $225 this bag costs a lot less than many high-end carryons, and it will probably last several times longer than those $100 bags, which means it may be the best carryon value on the planet. Red Oxx products are made in the USA and carry lifetime warranties.
By the way, the Air Boss has its own packing diagram (also by Dyment) which can applied to most any carryon.
OBOW will be doing a carryon top ten soon - nominate your favorites.
Click on photo for more info >>>
These articles detail the excess luggage fees and limits of the top ten low-cost airlines and the major airlines Convinced light travelers should never be in danger of tipping these fee scales, but you can use this info to nudge your luggage-laden friends, family, and traveling companions toward “lightness”.
Also, many non-US airlines limit carryon luggage to 10 kg/22 pounds. This is important to remember because it’s easly to pack a legal carryon (usually 45” combined dimensions) beyond this weight - especially if your bag has those evil wheels. You really don’t want to carry around anything that weighs over 20 pounts anyway. Don’t rely on the size of the bag to limit your weight. You must pack intentionally if you want to go light.
There are strict new rules about carrying on liquids. This link has all the info. The photo at left is an example of the TSA’s 3-1-1 rule: containers of 3 ounces or less in 1 ziplock-type bag with a 1-quart capacity (one bag per passenger). Download the latest TSA prohibited items brochure here in PDF format.
"Some luggage sold as suitable for airline carry-on exceeds all airline size limits.Know what you can and can't carry on to your flight in advance." - The Travel Insider
What can you carry on the airplane? With most US carriers you are allowed one piece of carry-on luggage plus a "personal item". The most important thing to know about your carry-on luggage is that it should in the neigborhood of 22" x 14" x 9" or smaller. The total dimensions (height+length+width) should equal no more than 45", but the bag must fit in the plane's overhead storage compartment. Odd shapes or overstuffed bags can cause problems. If in doubt, measure your luggage. Don't trust the label in the store - measure it.
The personal item can be a briefcase, camera bag, handbag, purse, small shoulder bag, laptop (in carry bag), other items not exceeding 36" in total dimension, reading matter, small book-bag style backpack, or umbrella. The personal item will need to fit under the seat in front of you on the plane.
Learn more about carry-ons here.
Doing laundry on the road is one of the necessities of light, one-bag travel. You don’t need ten changes of underwear for a ten-day trip; you can get by with three. But, you must use synthetics to successfully wash and dry overnight in the hotel room or hostel. Therein lies the problem: Synthetics get stinky fast. One solution is to pay $18-$35 for high-tech underclothing which has expensive fabric with built-in anti-microbial (and, hence, anti-odor) properties.
I have discovered another, cheaper way: Sink wash your garden-variety synthetic (polyester/nylon) undies using my odor-fighting concoction. Here’s how you do it. Fill the sink about half way with luke warm water. Mix in a couple of glugs of clear Softsoap antibacterial handsoap and a couple of spritzes of Febreze Anti-Microbial. Handwash the undies, then rinse them out quickly - not too aggressively. Apparently enough of the anti-bacterial and anti-microbial stuff stays in the fabric to make it perform like the $25 hi-tech variety. My $10 Champions now finish a sweaty day as sweetly as my more-expensive Terramar briefs (with Visaendurance wonder fabric). The hi-tech fabrics are probably still a little better, and they are definitely still preferable for backpackers who may have nothing more than a creek to wash in or who want to stick with green, biodegradeable detergents. But, for the cost-conscious light traveler my method may be just the ticket. This method works equally well for briefs or undershirts. I’ve used it on my ExOfficio Air Strip shirt, too.
I get this stuff through the carryon screeners by filling two 2-ounce hand sanitizer bottlew with the soap and a 2-ounce spray bottle (half-full) with the Febreze. This is enough for ten days or so. I don’t mix it together until it hits the sink.
I haven’t been using this concoction long. Please let me know how it works for you. Your input may result in an even better Stinkfighter 2.0,
DISCLAIMER: I cannot guarantee that this method will not harm or shorten the working life of some garments, but I have no reason to believe that the method is detrimental to any fabrics or finishes.
Light one-bag travel is NOT for everyone. If you are a big-time business traveler and you need more than one nice suit, lots of printed material and a big laptop, it's not going to work for you. Ditto if photography is the prime purpose of your travel. It's probably not possible to carry on clothing and a complete professional photo outfit. And if you'e just a clotheshorse who requires an extensive wardrobe and you care more about how you look than how easy it is to get there - forget it. But, you can go one-bag and look great in nearly any setting. More on that later!
One Bag, One World (OBOW) is cleared for takeoff. This new site and blog will offer timely light travel tips. Like most one-bag light travelers we were inspired by Doug Dyment of onebag.com fame. Our perspective, and emphasis will be a little different than Doug's, but our traveling hat is always tipped in his direction. Your light travel tips will form the stuff of future page content, so fire away. No one - except maybe Doug - has it all figured out.