Thought that traveling couldn't get any more expensive? Think again.
The world's major airlines may soon change the requirements for carry-on bags, according to the International Air Transport Association. In a press release, the business association announced its plan to trim the maximum size of cabin luggage to 21.5 inches tall by 13.5 inches wide and 7.5 inches deep, down from its current size of 22'' x 14'' x 9''. This recommendation, while not mandatory, might influence the policies of major carriers that want to optimize cabin storage space.
The new guidelines might seem benign, but those 595 cubic inches are a potential game changer: If airlines adopt these size restrictions, you might have to buy a whole new set of luggage. In that event--or if you just want to cram as much as possible into your suitcase--here are a few ways to save some money by packing more efficiently.
We've all been there: work piled up on the day before your vacation and you have to board a red-eye in three hours, and you haven't even started packing (though you've thought about it very hard). You're probably still reeling from the thrill of casual Friday, but it's worth the effort to start packing neatly while your suitcase is still empty. Folding and bundling your clothes in an organized fashion can save a lot of space. Here are a few tips on how to store your clothes from some packing experts (yes, they exist).
Try to plan in advance what you might need on your trip. Think about what events you might need to go to, and if any of them will require a unique style of dress. It's also a good idea to look at the weather: if you're going to Dubai, for instance, you probably don't need your winter coat. And if you know you'll be able to do laundry, don't bring more than a week's worth of clothes (but do bring enough underwear).
Ok, so you're morally opposed to the idea of "packing light" and refuse to travel anywhere with less than half of your wardrobe. Or maybe you're required to go to five events that all have different dress codes. Either way, folding your clothes properly isn't going to cut it. In that case, you might want to invest in a set of space-saving travel bags. These bags can be used with a standard vacuum hose to compress their contents, and allegedly can triple total storage space.
Wear Your Luggage
If you're going somewhere that requires particularly bulky apparel, try wearing it while you travel. Wearing your rain boots on a flight to London or Seattle, for example, will free up a lot of space in your suitcase. You might look a little silly, but your puffy down jacket and giant trapper hat might also provide an auditory buffer when the person next to you on the plane starts rattling off the details of her latest colonoscopy.
Hopefully carry-on sizing regulations will remain as they are, but these tips will help you pack like a pro.