lighter luggage

10 Top Tips for Lighter Luggage

We have taken it upon ourselves to try and pack as light as possible for our upcoming trip to Disneyland Paris because carrying luggage around on public transport is just a nightmare. We are attempting to do this with one bag per person plus a spare to help with any souvenirs should my daughter decide to spend her money on. So that means one bag for her with clothes, a dressing up outfit and entertainment, one bag for me and one bag for my partner. Both of us have quite generous sized backpacks to fit in our possessions and the less we take the less we have to carry.

We are a family of three, two adults and one five-year-old girl however as neither myself or my partner drive we are always having to travel on public transport and prefer to travel as light as possible. We were planning on travelling with a suitcase for myself and my partner plus one for my daughter and a bag each as well but it’s just going to be too much on the trains to London, the underground, the Metro in Paris and carrying all that way back again plus extras…packing is incredibly daunting in any situation so here are my top tips for traveling light.

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  1. Toiletries – take miniatures and check if the hotel provide things like soap etc. Disneyland hotels do however I like to take my own products, however, things like hand soap I rely on the hotel I’m staying in to provide. Some people have sensitive skin which means that hotel products may not be suitable therefore I would advise either getting some small plastic bottles to decant some of your regular products in or head to a local pound shop or Superdrug and get smaller items. This is particularly helpful with mouthwash & toothpaste which can be very bulky items in your wash bag. If you don’t mind sharing shower gels and shampoo’s and things like that then obviously that makes it easier too.
    top travel tips
  2. Check the hotel amenities – do you really need to take a travel kettle and a hairdryer? Can you not ask the hotel to provide one? Always ask before travelling or if it’s that important to you find a hotel that will always provide these things in your room.
  3. Towels – Most hotels provide towels however they might not be the right size, especially if you are planning on going swimming in the hotel pool. You can bring your own but it will take up space. Personally, I just use the towels provided.
  4. Clothes – Wear your heaviest items there and back as this will make room in your bags for other items. We are taking my daughters smallest dressing up dress which doesn’t take up as much space as some of the others. As long as I have enough knickers to keep me clean then everything else can be worn a bit longer. Pack items that can fold up small and remember to pack for all weathers. Fluffy socks and long sleeved PJ’s can replace dressing gowns and slippers whilst you’re away. It’s worth checking to see if a hotel you’re staying in has any laundry facilities as taking a few items and then washing them there can be quite handy.
  5. Pack Clothes Neatly – find a way to fold and wrap clothes up into the smallest spaces properly. This keeps them tidy and maximises room in the bag.
  6. PJ’s – Honestly, I’m not going to be seen outside my hotel room in my PJ’s so I’m only bringing one pair and we will wash after we’ve worn them. My partner and daughter are doing the same. We’ll be dressed before going down to breakfast so no one has to worry about seeing us in smelly, old PJ’s.
  7. Documents – I keep everything together in a folder, nice and neat and in order of when I will need them. I also have photo’s and screenshots on my phone for easy access. This can be folded and placed in the front pocket of my backpack.
  8. Purse – I have a huge, gorgeous Cath Kidston purse that I use every day but it’s so bulky that there’s no need for it on holiday. I take on debit card, cash and my licence. Nothing else is needed and I put those things in my boyfriend’s wallet. That way if it’s lost we both only have to replace a couple of things rather than worrying out all the cards.
  9. Makeup – This is probably one of the hardest things for me to downsize considering I’m in the biz and it’s so tough to leave things behind. However, I’m going to Disneyland, I’m not having a fancy time away so all that’s needed is the basics.ย Foundation, my contour palette for some colour and it doubles up as eye shadow, mascara and my lip stain pen. Add in some lip balm to keep lips from chapping and give a glossy look, small pack of makeup wipes and some serum for moisturising.
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  10. First Aid – this can be made very small. Mine will be painkillers, calpol, plasters and vitamins. Maybe a couple of sachets of Lemsip. Calpol tends to be the bulkiest item and I would keep this in the box with the spoon inside. Painkillers can be taken out of boxes though and keeping the sachets lose will save essentials

I hope you have found this all helpful but I would love to know your top travel tips!


  1. Great tips, thanks.
    We’ve only ever been on one holiday since the twins were born, in the UK, and we packed the car to the rafters. There was literally no space left free. It was a self catering holiday, so we had to think of everything we’d need as a home from home. And i still managed to forget all of my trousers I’d washed and put on the radiators to dry the night before leaving! Ha Ha! Luckily the resort was only an hour away so I was able to drive home to get them easily enough.
    The holiday was only for 4 nights, and i felt like we did take the whole house with us. I’ve no idea how I would have packed less. I always over pack though.
    But I’ll def remember these tips for when we head to Disney in a year.

    1. Author

      I know exactly what you mean…we did a self catering holiday to the Isle of Wight in October 2014 and whilst it was a fab holiday, dragging two suitcases and three bags on trains, buses, a ferry and walking about half an hour to find the holiday park was a nightmare. I think as soon as one of us actually learns to drive we’ll be doing a lot more UK based holidays, even just long weekends, and with all the things you have to bring with S/C holidays, I imagine we will be the same…but I probably won’t care as much then haha!

      1. Yeah exactly. That’s the great thing about having a car for UK breaks. Your only limit is how big the car is. Of course the more you take the more to pack/unpack twice!
        Our long term goal is to get a motor home (ideally), or a caravan. And then we’ll have everything we need, other than clothes, all ready to go wherever and whenever we want. Something we’re working towards!

          1. Let’s keep in touch to see how close we’re getting! Good luck!

  2. I don’t remember the last time I had to travel light! These are great tips though and I use them even when I have a suitcase to fill! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. A great tip my mum gave me was to invest in a coat that can be layered. I have one that is a fleece inner with a waterproof layer that can be zipped onto it. This is more flexible for cold/wet weather planning, and I donโ€™t have to pack a bulky jumper too!

  4. Love your tips. I use a medium sized packing cube for each family member’s clothes. We typically pack 3-4 outfits and wear 1, regardless of the size of trip. Learning to do laundry while on a trip makes it so much easier to travel light. If I won’t have easy access to a washing machine, I wash stuff in a sink or bathtub. It’s easier to wash a few pieces a day rather than let it build up. It really helps to pack clothes made from fabrics that will dry in 12 hours of hanging. Of course, jeans and sweaters can probably go the whole trip without washing, but we always wash sock, underwear, and shirts when we travel.

  5. Buy crease proof clothes that can be rolled up really tight. Wear jumpers etc on the journeys to and from the holiday.
    Thanks for sharing with us, Tracey xx #abitofeverything

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