With the increase in the fees for checked baggage, as well as a reduction in the weight of your allowable carry-ons, with exorbitant fees if you go over that weight, it has become more and more important to be able to pack light when you travel. There is a whole new culture out there for one bag travel. Now, this is fine if you think you’re just going to wear a T-shirt and a pair of shorts everywhere, but what if you want to dress up a little bit more than that. Well, with a little bit of planning you can. You can take a luxury weekend away, with only taking one carry-on bag, and still look like a million. Here are some things that will help.

Take Only What you Need.

We have all been guilty of it, the crime of taking everything except the kitchen sink because we “might” need it. How often in the past have you gone traveling and packed clothes that you never even wore on the trip? Just pack what you need. You don’t need to wear a different outfit every night, as long as you’re creative and use layers and accessories. This works for both men and women. Almost everywhere you will travel with these days will have some sort of laundry service if you really need it, so take only what you need.

Keep it Simple

Take a casual outfit with you, as well as an evening outfit. If you’re a woman, that means bring that little black dress and a few accessories. If you’re a man, you already know what your “go to” outfit for going out is, and if you don’t just ask any woman you know what they think looks good on you. 

Be Careful of the Colors 

Keeping it simple means keeping the colors simple as well, make sure everything you have matches the same color scheme and can be worn together. We know that you may love that orange top, as well as those blue slacks, but they sure are not going to go together. So if you want to start packing lighter, make sure everything from your shoes to your head can be worn together.

Where the Heaviest on the Plane

This may seem a bit obvious, but wear everything that you have that’s heavy on the plane. If you’re going to bring a pair of boots with you, wear them on the flight, because if you don’t those boots are going to take up half of your weight allotment of your carry-on. If you’re going to wear blue jeans, wear them on the plane because blue jeans are a heavier material.

Carry on Size and Weight Limits

Make sure you know what the airlines carry-on size and weight limits are. Very often these days weight limits are about 15 pounds for a total between your carry-on and personal items. You can see how that can get filled up awfully quickly. You can use compression cubes make clothes smaller to fit, however this does not help with the weight limit. As a pro tip, you can usually pick up a small handheld luggage scale that you can hang your luggage from at home and see how much it weighs before you get to the airport. There’s nothing worse than getting to the gate and having them weigh your luggage and telling you that you have to pay more or throw something away.

Toiletries and Makeup

Take the minimum you can. Almost anything you need that is heavy, such as shampoo, can usually be had at the location you’re visiting. Most hotels provide these things these days, and if not, there is always a store nearby that can handle most all of your needs. You’re only going away for a weekend, so how much makeup and toiletries do you really need to bring?


Taking a luxury weekend away, wrinkles are probably the biggest enemy that you will have. So it’s a good idea to choose the clothing that wrinkles the least when you pack. You can also learn such packing techniques as rolling your clothes or putting cellophane between different items. You can also bring a small steamer with you, but we never do as we are always trying to keep the weight down. An alternative to that is to turn on the hot water in the shower close the door and hang your clothes in the shower and let the steam fix them. So, even if you love that linen shirt, it’s probably not a good idea to be taking it with you in a carry-on bag.

When you go away for a luxury weekend, you just have to ask yourself, what do you really need. If you’re staying in a luxury hotel, you can buy almost anything you need that you don’t bring. Traveling like a superstar does not mean bringing a dozen suitcases with you, it means not having to struggle with anything. Walking off the plane and not waiting for luggage, stepping into a taxi, and checking in without dragging a case around, is just magic. Once you’ve done it, and experienced how much better it is to travel light, you will never go back.