Hand luggage: Never fly without this item – seasoned travellers reveal must-have

Travel by plane is one of the most popular forms of travel, approximately 39 million flights taking off around the world in 2019 according to the latest data from Statista. However, as more airline boost their offerings, more stringent rules are coming into place surrounding hand luggage. With often limited size and weight allowances for bags on board, passengers must pack wisely. Seasoned travellers took to Reddit to share their top tips on ensuring the perfect cabin bag, with one small item deemed a make or break addition to any joinery.


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Passengers listed all manner of things that are known to boost their inflight experience, however, it was a small pack of chewing gum that reigned supreme.

across the board, travellers said this was a go-to item when packing their bags, with some saying that forgetting it could dampen the whole experience.

“Chewing gum is really the most important thing,” said one frequent flier.

“I regret it every time I forget to bring some! It helps so much with the pressure in your ears.”

Not only is chewing gum great for freshening up breath before departing from the plane, but it also helps alleviate the pressure build-up which occurs when the plane descends rapidly.

Passengers often experience a “pop” in their ears as the result of the plane ascending and descending through the air space.

Air high above the surface of the Earth is less dense than air near the surface, and as the atmospheric [pressure changes, it can cause pressure on the eardrum.

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Chewing gum can help ease the sensation as the chewing motion can also help to open up the eustachian tubes situated within the inner ear.

Other hand luggage must-haves that were mentioned by travellers include tissues, make-up, a pen and a book or magazine.

However, even with these necessities laid out, some travellers are over-packers by nature.

Luckily another traveller revealed their top tips for getting more items on board while beating airline baggage weight restrictions.


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The passenger posted to Reddit to share their handy hack.

The frequent flier wrote: “My hack is that they don’t weigh you. I have a SCOTTeVEST that I load up with all my heavy stuff and electronics. Once I’m through security I repack everything into my bag.”

The suggestion recommends wearing a garment with a lot of pockets and fill those with heavier items at check-in.

It means that when the hand luggage is weighed by staff, it is a lot lighter.

It should be noted, though, that although this is a great tip for check-in, at security passengers will have to empty their pockets.

Airport security requires all items to be placed into trays to pass through the x-ray machine, meanwhile, people are required to pass through a magnetic scanner or a larger x-ray machine in some flight hubs.

The passenger adds: “While it’s not comfortable carrying stuff like this, it gets me past the weigh station and onto the plane as long as I have room in my bag.”

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