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2 wk trip to Europe, can you do it in carry on?

2 wk trip to Europe, can you do it in carry on?

Apr 5th, 2006, 10:40 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 90,938
Heavens, in your mind sort those little "mistakes" into two categories, then you can leave at least 1/2 at home! it is incredibly easy to buy a corkscrew or umbrella in Paris, for example.

also i take a flashlight OR a booklight, one can substitute for the other you don't really need both.
suze is online now  
Apr 5th, 2006, 01:21 PM
Join Date: Jul 2004
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We spend a month in Europe every year and we each only take a 22"" suitcase on wheels.
SuQue is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 01:41 PM
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Hi H,

A couple of hints.

As noted a small flashlight serves as a book light. If you have a camera that uses AA batteries, you can use the same rechargeable batteries in your flashlight as in your camera.

You can buy an umbrella very cheaply in Europe, should you need one, and leave it. Same is true for a sunhat.

>Except for Chicos, where do you buy these black clothes ....<

You are wearing black in the Summer? Warm clothes? (Furry slippers? )

If you don't have a Chicos, look at www.landsend.com

A good rule of thumb is to pack your suitcase and then take out half.

Another good rule of thumb is to set your budget and double it.

ira is online now  
Apr 5th, 2006, 02:11 PM
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TravelSmith has some nice clothes (mail order or online).
suze is online now  
Apr 5th, 2006, 02:23 PM
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I do pretty much what kswl does. I bring a 21" rollaboard and a medium sized black backpack. I also carry an extra bag for purchases and such that can be checked on the way home - actually, I carry that one on and check the 21" on the way home.

I wear one pair of shoes on the plane (the bulkiest) and bring 1-2 other pairs. I tear out pages from the guidebooks and print up stuff from the internet so it doesn't take up much weight or room. I usually don't bring an umbrella (I did for London in December). I think about packing for trips when I buy clothes, opting for materials that travel well and fold up small.

I bring minimal make up and almost no jewelry except what I wear in one day (maybe an extra pair of earrings or two, but they don't take up any room). I put all my toiletries in small bottles and bring travel sizes of deodorant and toothpaste and stuff. I don't bring a hair dryer as most of the hotels I stay in have them...and, if they don't, then my hair doesn't look great in that city - oh well.

I bring a couple of paperbacks for reading and leave them for others as I go. A few scarves or different colorful shirts that match my black or brown or khaki bottoms seems to work well.

Hope this helps.Happy travels!
fun4all4 is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 02:50 PM
Join Date: Apr 2005
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I didn't think I could do it either, but after reading all the inspirational stories on this site, I did it! Several years ago we went to Italy for a 2 1/2 week vacation and I took a 22" expandable. Of course I did have an extra bag on the way home, but on the way there, my husband and I did not check any luggage.

I'm considered a fashionista by most of my friends, so when we met them in Italy, they were so surprised. (meanwhile they showed up with 2 huge 26" suitcases and numerous carry ons).

Actually, this is fairly easy to accomplish in the summer. I did make sure to bring my favorite outfits, and wore the hell out of them. I brought about 6-7 tops and 2 pairs of pants along with 1 skirt and one sweater and I had 3 pairs of shoes, one of which I deliberately left in Italy. Everything was packed tiny (we stayed mostly in hotels). I did not bring any tennis shoes and I figured that with all the walking, why would I need to exercise. I'm so glad I did this as some of the train transfers were tight and it was so much easier with my one small piece of luggage.

kangamom is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 04:15 PM
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I think it's a lot easier in the summer, since you'll bring lightweight clothes. If you're female, bring shirts and skirts made of silk, or another lightweight type of fabric. Carry a sweater on the plane, and pack a nylon jacket in your bag. Buy toiletries there, and buy the trial/travel size ones. Just keep buying the small bottles & use them up at each hotel. Get pocketsized guidebooks, and a few laminated maps from Borders, etc. You can always pick up tourist guide mags at each city (in a hotel or at the currency exchange booths). You can also buy another bag at the end of your trip for souvenirs & other acquired objects (or you can get rid of your clothes at the last stop, and buy souvenirs and pack them!)
amp322 is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 04:22 PM
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Let me clarify something here. My friends are traveling to Rome this summer. Warm weather almost assured. WE are leaving on our trip to Dublin Ireland, then on to Paris, with a side trip to Bayeux on the coast, which many have told me can be quite cool and damp. At the end of April, early May, chances seem pretty good that we will see some rain somewhere.

I still think that all of you who do this are pretty amazing...
Heavens is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 05:00 PM
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Well I took 2 full sized carryons, one hard, one soft. With laptop, ipod, camera, shaver and other stuff but only one pair of jeans and a couple of shirts other than what I was wearing, those carryons get packed full.

And the hard carryon was about 34 pounds.

Now, that's okay for Delta and for most overseas flights. But intra-European flights it doesn't work, although they let me board on the connecting flight.

But for the return, they policed it and forced me to check in the bigger carryon because of weight.
scrb is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 05:07 PM
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Marcy...I went to look at your Paris pix on OFfoto and am I dreaming that their are albums there entitled Stone Pony and BTX party???
Or..possibly some pix I had looked at earlier from other sites??
StLSusan is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 05:23 PM
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We travel with carry-ons only - even the kids. The rule is, if you can't fit it in your rolling, carry-on bag or your little backpack, you can't take it. As for souvenirs, I buy Christmas tree ornaments and tuck them into corners.
Marsha is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 05:40 PM
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When I started checking my small suitcase instead of carrying it on, the biggest relief was not having to schlepp it thru connecting airports. Since I often travel solo, for me it is worth risking that it will arrive safely to travel lighter while in transit.
suze is online now  
Apr 5th, 2006, 08:07 PM
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Hi...I took a wheeled tote(small personal tote bag size with wheels) with a regular size tote which I can pack on top of the wheeled tote. I check both pieces(I'm too old to mess with carry ons)I can leve one of the bags at my primary destination hotel which is usally also my departure city. Then I take the smaller one with me. I traveled this way for 3 weeks and had 4 pairs of Mephistos with me. Make up is down to pencils, sharperner and 1 lipstick. I take "throwaway" undies. Buy cheap ones, or take older ones from home and pitch on a daily basis. All clothes work together. Wash in hotel as needed if weather permits or use laundomat. It really isn't all that bad and much better than lugging luggage. I also have a large mesh bag that I pack for my return. Check the other luggage and use the mesh bag for your carry on. have a grest trip
tamsaness is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 08:10 PM
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Personally, I would say no....but then again, maybe my clothes are just bigger or I dunno...but I know that people who have very light and thin clothing (small skirts, tank tops, thin shorts) can pack a carryon very easily.

When I go to wash clothes...two pair of pants, three tops, a towel or two, and already my clothes are like 9 or 10 pounds easily.
ilovetotravel29 is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 08:14 PM
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It is me again...just remember that you are going to Italy..there are stores, they sell toothpaste and corkscrews if you really end up needing anything. Granted, last year, in a hurry, I paid something like 4 euro for a deck of cards...but heh...They we of the vatican...
tamsaness is offline  
Apr 5th, 2006, 08:15 PM
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My family has made a number of 2-3 week trips to Europe with one carry-on per person. My father-in-law was an international meeting planner and a packing genius. My husband travels every other week and has for over 15 years. Between the two of them they know every trick. The first and most important thing is to pick clothes carefully. Lightweight, non-wrinkling fabrics not only pack well (roll, don't fold), but can also be rinsed out and hung to look like new. "Shirt folders" (Eagle Outfitters) are lightweight and keep shirts looking great. Coordinating pieces by color and style can allow you to combine them in many versatile ways for different activities. Scarves weigh nothing and are great for changing your look. Almost any hotel can find someone to do a little laundry or ironing in a pinch. I sometimes take a laundry break the midpoint in a trip. One of my fondest travel memories is of doing laundry near Rue Cler in Paris while my family went up the Eiffel Tower (for the second time). A lovely woman took pity on me as I tried to figure out the machines. We spent an enjoyable couple of hours communicating in broken French/English and sharing pastries. It was a genuine travel experience. If your bag is ever lost in transit, and you're stuck rescheduling your plans for days while waiting for it to catch up with you, you'll be persuaded. Carry on is the only way to go!
mtnmama is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 12:22 AM
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I have been in Italy more than once for two months at a time. I didn't have a 22inch bag, think it was a 26inch one. Plus a carryon of course.

If you take clothes for a week you have clothes for as long as you are gone. As it has been said here time and time again, coordinate your colors and styles. If I take a skirtsuit (to wear to dinners) the jacket can be worn with jeans for example. If you want to take a skirtsuit if possible try to find one that also has pants with it. A pantssuit look is great for travelling. But finding a three piece suit is getting more and more difficult unfortantly. It does take some planning and organizing but it can be done. Three pair of shoes, no more. A sweater that can be worn with the suit, with jeans with another skirt or pants. All tops interchangeable. If weather is going to be cold pack some silk underwear. If you are taking a heavy jacket or coat wear it on the plane. A couple of silk dresses hardly take up any room at all. One dress I have has a jacket with it. Material is a silk suede look. The jacket also looks great with a slim pair of pants and a tshirt. Again, if you pack for a week you have enough clothes.
LoveItaly is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 02:45 AM
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I agree Loveitaly. Once you pack for one week, you really have plenty of stuff for two or three weeks. A couple of things we like are 1. an immersion coil vs a coffee maker- heats water blazingly fast..2. we take a set of scrubs apiece- it is sleep wear, bathing suit cover up, standing in a laudramat washing every piece of clothing wear, and fire drill wear- a lot better than a see through nightie...3. extra spices like salt free creole for those picnic lunches-film cannister with those camping shake top lids...4. we always carry bubble wrap in case of some souvenir that I have to have and finally 5. we pack clothes which we have bought at the end of season sales so that if I have to jettison some clothes in favor of great souvenirs, I can. I just leave the clothes a the local thrift shop. I have packing lists for every season and length of travel from an afternoon motorcycle ride to 3 weeks in Europe. We leave on the 21st with one 21" rollabout and one rolling backpack a piece for one week in Venice, one week in Cinque Terre, and 4 nights in Bruges.
lynclarke is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 07:24 AM
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I did 3 weeks in China with only carry on bags. You have to know how to pack. First photocopy relevant pages from the guide books before you go and toss as you travel, or make a computer summary before you go which is what I do, and then it is a record of your trip. Take magazines for reading and then toss, making room for souveneirs on the way back. Pack an extra small bag for purchases. Make sure your roll on is expandable. Pack for carry on the way over, put your expensive/fragile items in the extra bag, and check your expanded carry on bag on the way back. Take only clothes that can be worn 3 times each, with 3 other items, in one color scheme. For 2 1/2 weeks, 17 days that is only 5 changes of clothes, wear 1 on the plane. I always take enough underwear and socks for each day as they don't take up much room. Wear your heaviest pair of shoes on the plane, usually sneakers/walking shoes on the plane, and pack one pair of dressy flats in your carry on. Make sure it has rubber soles as thin leather soles in Europe are terribly uncomrfotable on cobblestones. Pack an umbrella and light jacket and think layers, t-shirts, sweaters, jackets, etc. A few accesories completely changes a look, like scarves, jewelry (costume only) and don't take up much room. Take only travel sizes of toiletries and toss as you go. Most hotels provide, soap, shampoo, lotion, so you don't have to bring those, or you can buy wondeful products in Europe if you run out. Remember it is one large bag, and one personal item. I don't carry a purse, but use the personal item as a larger tote bag, with a zipper that has my camera, film, wallet, reading material and toiletries fit. You can buy one that fits overt the handle of your rolling carry on for easy transport. Make sure your rolling bag is soft sided. You can fit more and it is lighter. Finally check your airline luggage rules before you travel for dimensions, weight allowances and number of pieces. International travel is more generous, particularly if you are flying business. Watch out for connecting European flights, not on major airlines. Their overhead bins are much smaller, weight allowances less. Finally if it does not fit, don't bring it. I usually wear darker colors on the bottom, navy. brown, they don't show stains, and lighter colors on top. Bring stain remover for small spots. Pick netural colors that go with everythng, white, khaki, brown, black, navy, and throw in a few accent color for fun, like red, turquoise. Try on everything before you pack it so it fits, and make sure it is not too tight in case you gain weight on vacation. Bring a sewing kit for loose buttons, and a few safety pins for emergencies.
LeeMickus is offline  
Apr 6th, 2006, 08:04 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
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I agree with the prior poster who noted that different people's clothes are different sizes. My husband is an "extra large" and one pair of his pants take up as much room as 4 complete outfits for my 10 year old daughter. My son wears a size 13 shoe, and a pair of those takes up a huge portion of a 22" bag!
missypie is offline  

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