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Pack Light While In-Flight

what to pack

Tracking PixelLet’s snoop inside my travel carry-on bag courtesy of our friends at Gold Toe.
I long for a clutter free life. Whether it be my house, my car, my files, my cabinets or my handbag, I need organization. When I travel my in-flight carry-on bag is no different. I like things nice, neat and orderly. Now that Tot is a tween it is only on the rarest occasions that you will find wrappers or toys in my purse. I make a point to overpack my carry-on bag I like things to be breezy and not overflowing. Face it, the last thing that is easy-breezy is lugging a huge, heavy bag thru LAX, or off of a plane. 

Packing your carry-on bag

First you need a great carry-on bag. I’ve had this great soft leather tote I’ve had for years. It fits EVERYTHING and is versatile. And when I say everything, I mean from clothes to a laptop to a small Volkswagen, but then it is small and stylish enough to transition into an everyday handbag once you arrive at your destination. I love the length and how sturdy the handles are.

But it’s what’s inside the tote that really matters most especially on long hauls.

Where to start?

What to Pack in Your Carry-On Bag

What to Pack?

The very thought of TSA lines make me break out in hives, so I like to make sure I arrive at the airport ready to go. I don’t want to be “that person” who holds up the lines either. So I as long as I can neatly lie everything down in one of the airport x-ray scanner tubs, I’m a happy traveler. Remember friends: Less is more. So what do I pack and why? Let’s take a look:

Sunglasses :: I actually think I might be part vampire and these help me battle the morning sun after long red-eye flights. I can take on the world with my sunnies! 

Pashmina :: The person who came up with the pashmina deserves to be canonized saint. A trendy scarf that doubles as a blanket, wrap or even pillow? Yes, please.

The Tech Stuff :: I really don’t think I need to explain this in much detail, but I don’t leave home without my phone which doubles as my camera, my tablet to stream movies and read books/magazine and a great pair of noise canceling earbuds. I also take my laptop everywhere. I tend to get a ton of work done at a cruising altitude of 35,000 feet. 

Travel Wallet :: Inside I stash my credit cards, a little cash for tipping and local markets, my passport, boarding pass, copy of my itinerary an a few JetSet Family business cards. 

Catch-all :: I keep a few essentials in a mini catch-all to save space like: mints, dental floss, wipes, water drops, ibuprofen, hair bands and lip gloss. 

Old school :: I never leave home without my trusty notepad, pen and my favorite magazine. Tablets are great, but just in case I forget to charge the battery – I want back up! And I never know when a great idea is going to come to me, or if I’m inspired to write. Sometimes, I just like to doodle and brainstorm.

Socks :: I love to slip into Gold Toe’s Ultra Soft, Oh. So. Soft. socks right before it’s time to remove my shoes at the TSA security checkpoint, so I keep two pairs in my tote for Tot and myself. They are magically soft and always look nice brand new even after numerous washings. I wear them again throughout the duration of the flight since I normally wear ballet flats sans socks while traveling. They are great to have, and take up minimal space. I can’t pass up affordable luxury and these reign supreme. Not only do they have a great feel, but they are amazing because they keep your feet cool in warm temperatures and warm in colder climates – they are perfect for our unpredictable lifestyle.

What to Pack in your in-flight carry on



I know it might sound like a lot, but look – it’s really not. Everything fits so nicely in this bag and the straps are so durable that it evenly distributes the weight so it is not heavy. It also lies flat underneath the seat in front of me so I can sit back, relax, and even enjoy some leg room.

There you have it! All of my must-pack items for your in-flight carry-on bag. Ironically, add a few more magazines, take out the ticket wallet and it’s my road trip car bag as well!

How to Pack your In-flight Carry-on Bag OhSoSoft

Wheels up!

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Photo credits: Nicole Standley

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Gold Toe. On occasion, contributors of The JetSet Family receive products, compensation and/or services gratis or at discounted rates. This practice does not hinder the influencer’s point of view. All descriptions are factual and accurately reflect the overall experience. This post may contain affiliate links.

Review overview
  • valmg @ Mom Knows It All August 1, 2015

    I pack everything I need close at hand and things I won’t be separated from (ie table) in my carryon. Right now I am using a gorgeous Epiphanie bag and it’s perfect.

  • Terri Ramsey Beavers August 1, 2015

    Thanks so much for the helpful tips. I try to pack most of these but have always said I’m going to pack socks in my carry on but I always forget. I need to print your list so I’ll be better prepared on my next flight.

  • Lisa August 1, 2015

    I agree, the pashmina is one of the greatest things ever! And I love Gold Toe socks. They are so soft and comfortable.

  • tammileetips August 1, 2015

    My carry on is almost identical to yours!! I also have one with all my camera gear in it though. I also pack extra socks sometimes you just need fresh socks when chasing flights all day.

  • Shelley Zurek August 1, 2015

    I have a terrible time packing light. I think from now on I am going to pack my carryon and then make myself carry it around the neighborhood so I can make sure my shoulder doesn’t hurt.

  • Jenny August 1, 2015

    I am actually making my list to pack for a carry on for Friday!! My list is super similar to this one plus my laptop and a bag of camera gear. I normally wear flip flops and then keep tennis shoes and socks in my bag.

  • aimee fauci August 2, 2015

    That Pashmina sounds awesome! Something I would love to take everywhere with me, especially a movie theater!

  • Tamara August 2, 2015

    I always pack socks for airplanes because my feet always freeze!

  • Mama Munchkin August 2, 2015

    Great list of essentials. I too love having a fresh pair of socks… something so comforting about slipping them on while in the air. And, I agree with you on the notepad. I love to write!

  • DC August 2, 2015

    I always bring my laptop with the intention of getting work done when I’m flying. Nine out of ten times, however, I end up reading or listening to music instead. When I’m on a plane, I just feel like relaxing.

  • Melissa Pezza August 3, 2015

    These are great tips. I always pack the barest minimum when I’m flying. I don’t want to pay those crazy fees!

  • Katie August 3, 2015

    Excellent tips. I keep an amenity bag with stuff not provided by the airline (gum, Advil, Tylenol for the kiddo in case of pressure issues) within arms’ reach at all times that goes in the carry-on, obv.

  • Allison August 5, 2015

    I’m with you on packing a magazine, just in case. And, cozy socks are welcome everywhere!

  • Marysa October 8, 2015

    Thanks for the list! I tend to pack so much stuff! This is a great list of the basics.. love the pashmina idea 🙂 I have to learn to pack a little lighter.


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