One Bag Fits All

Peter and Me

Not the most flattering photo of me but my little green friend (Peter) is too cute not to include.

Hello again! After I posted my most recent Mexico travel piece, a reader asked me to share my carry-on packing secrets. This is a post I wrote the first time I packed super lightly and it includes a few handy tips. I hope you can use some of this information to lighten your load – both mentally and physically! Happy traveling!

Freedom From Luggage

For our last trip to Mexico, I packed one small carry-on bag. I felt so light and free. It was fantastic and here’s how I did it just in case, for your next week-long vacation, you want to enjoy that same feeling of freedom from luggage.

Do Your Research

First, I visited informative websites. These sites told me what is allowed in carry-on luggage and what is not, and how much of each allowed item each traveler can bring. I needed to pack my personal items in a one-litre, clear Ziploc bag and to pull that bag out of my luggage, and set it in a tray when going through airport security. This was very useful information because, when I packed my stuff on the afternoon of the flight, I knew to leave my Ziploc bag right on top so I wouldn’t be digging around for it in the line-up at security. I felt so prepared and the security officials didn’t bat an eye at what I’d packed.

Listen to me read this post:

The next thing I did was to purchase tiny bottles created for packing in carry-on luggage. Into these I poured body spray, sunscreen, aloe gel and mouthwash. These are other items I bought in the travel section of the drugstore: a 43-gram hairspray, a 14-gram deodorant, and 2 packages of 7 facial cleansing cloths. Of course, I also tucked in one of those sample tubes of toothpaste the dentist always sends home with me.


Here’s everything I packed for that first carry-on trip.

What did I bring for clothes? Glad you asked! I brought 2 pairs of pants, 2 shirts, one sundress, a swimsuit and a swimsuit cover-up which pulled double duty as a nightgown, a T-shirt, 2 tank tops, a foldable sunhat and a pair of sandals. I also brought a down-filled vest that can be rolled up and stuffed into its own small pouch. This kept me warm back and forth from the Calgary airport and on the flights to and from Mexico. I also found room for my water-resistant camera and my sunglasses.

To save space in my luggage, I wore on the plane about half of the clothes I’d wear in Mexico. For the flight, I had on my light Skecher walking shoes, pants (Airline officials frown upon pants-less passengers.), a tank top, a T-shirt, a white button-up shirt, and my down-filled vest. I was cozy but not uncomfortable.

Everything Fit!

Everything I needed for a week surprisingly and easily fit into one carry-on bag. By the end of the trip, I realized that I could’ve survived without my red T-shirt, too, except that it kept me warmer on the airplane. I didn’t even bring a purse, just my wallet and passport placed into one of the bag’s exterior pockets for easy retrieval.


Iguanas are not allowed in carry-on luggage.

I did have lots of time to plan what to pack for this adventure when at other times, I’ve been pretty rushed. But now that I’ve successfully done this once, I’d definitely just pack one carry-on bag again.

Thanks for being here with me again today. If you like what I write, please share it! And please stay connected. Follow me here on WordPress, write a comment, or just send me a friendly email. I’d love to hear from you! Have a really great day wherever you are.


~ Lori

Ya no puedo mas . . . If you haven’t heard this, click it! It’s too fun.

8 Comments on “One Bag Fits All”

  1. Hi Lori,

    Good to hear your stories again!

    I am floored by the little you pack to go to Mexico!! I’m sure I had that much with me when I went to the ball games at Burma Bridge on Saturday! Ye gads!

    Good planning on your part for sure.

    Take care,


    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Myrna! It’s fun to pack so little but, yes, it requires a bit of planning all right. You know me; I like to organize. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment!


  2. Great post. Everyone of we have our music taste and mine is Cumbia. Cumbia comes originally from Colombia. It is a happy bailable tropical music. Example:

    Example of Cumbia music

    Cumbia is spread on the western coast line of South America; also played in Central America and even in U.S.A. It has little different styles depending where it comes. My favorite Cumbia come from Colombia, Peru and Chile.

    Happy and safe travels!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Lori!

    We have been friends for many years but there is something you may not know about me. My family calls me the Packinator! I have a love of packing for trips! So your post touched me deeply!

    My greatest accomplishment to date…

    Last summer I went to Hawaii for a week. I only took carry on. I brought snorkel mask, breathing tube and flippers! For the extra ‘degree of difficulty’ points, I also packed a large brimmed sun hat ( not collapsible)!

    Aaahhh…sweet memories.

    The trip was good too.


    Liked by 1 person

    • Holy crow! You either wore one outfit the whole time or all your snorkelling gear and sunhat on the plane! I love this story, Wendy, and I appreciate you taking the time to share it.


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