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Carry on luggage only with a family travelling to Europe?

Carry on luggage only with a family travelling to Europe?

Jan 28th, 2014, 03:30 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 91,131
Another reason I don't like the idea (buy when you arrive) because you're often stuck buying full sized containers.

A 2 oz. plastic bottle that I fill myself with shampoo, and another 2 oz. with conditioner, last for a 3-4 week trip and easily fit on the 3-1-1 ziplock carryon baggie.
suze is offline  
Jan 28th, 2014, 04:17 PM
Join Date: Feb 2008
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Yes, the "buy it there" practice is fraught with peril. Those without sensitive skin or tricky hair can be as adventurous as they choose, but I will bring my tried-and-true products. PLUS, if you do plan to buy stuff there rather than bringing your own, you have to go shopping immediately upon arrival. It's one thing to try a little or this or that along the way or go buy something you ran out of - but to have to immediately go out and buy shampoo, moisturizer, makeup, etc. - no fun.

Regarding 4-wheel suitcases - that will be my next travel purchase.
november_moon is offline  
Jan 29th, 2014, 12:00 AM
Join Date: Jan 2009
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RE that hand baggage restriction: I notice you are going to London first - is this on a Qantas (QF1 or similar) flight?
If so then you are still allowed another small hand bag - only the Emirates flights (EK...) have the one bag restriction.
If this is the case it will make it easier on the way over and the children can then have the stuff they 'need' ready at hand.

I would be tempted to check baggage on the way home - but many on this forum are not happy with this idea.
We always check baggage on Qantas long haul and have only had a few short hold ups in over 35 years.

On another note, look into Rainbird brand lightweight jackets - they are wind and reasonably waterproof and very light.
Good colour selection too and fold up very small.

Happy planning.
love_travel_Aus is online now  
Jan 29th, 2014, 12:09 AM
Join Date: Apr 2006
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I would save a little room and buy a t-shirt or two for each child while you are traveling. They'll have something new and clean to wear and a great souvenir, too.
KTtravel is offline  
Jan 29th, 2014, 09:13 AM
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Where did you get that info? I wouldn't say most airlines have such a restriction, but I would guess you are concerned about the intercontinental flight. Because the trains don't matter. I fly Air France usually and they don't have a limit like that, theirs is 12 kg carry-on. I think a lot of US carriers don't actually have weight limits, only size. Within Europe, I like Easyjet, and they don't have any limit like that either (I don't think they have a weight limit, only size, for cabin bags).

So maybe you are choosing airlines with that limit, some probably have them, but many do not. If you fly from Paris to Malta on Air Malta, their limit is 10 kg, as is Vueling's (the only two airlines I think fly that route direct).
Christina is online now  
Jan 30th, 2014, 02:58 AM
Join Date: Dec 2005
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On our first trip as a family (kids 8 and 11) to the UK, each of us carried a daypack proportionate to our sizes that held our daily stuff: extra trousers, extra shirt, polo shirt, sleep wear, underwear, toiletries, book, snacks etc.

In addition, I carried a lightweight folding garment bag with a dressier outfit for each of us. It was nice to have something to change into at the end of the day, even if we were eating in modest places, and these clothes stayed clean. fFor everything else, we would stop for a morning and go to a laundromat every 4 or 5 days.
Ackislander is offline  
Jan 30th, 2014, 03:52 AM
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Brussels Airlines have a limit of 6 kg on handluggage, with their cheapest economy fares. I've never seen them check this, though.

And some airlines insist on one bag only - including handbag, and strictly enforce that (Easyjet, for example).
Tulips is offline  
Jan 30th, 2014, 10:54 PM
Original Poster
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Thank you all for all of your comments - you have all been a great help! Lot to think about and excited to plan our trip!
emmamarie is offline  
Jan 30th, 2014, 11:25 PM
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I agree the Rainbird coats are a good idea. They are light, roll up small and not expensive. Available at Aussie Disposals. Our family has multiple in different colours. When I took my son cycling in Germany we chose the brighter colours for visibility. (Black or beige for Melbourne, naturally!)
dreamon is offline  
Jan 31st, 2014, 02:46 AM
Join Date: Jan 2004
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We always go carry on only. My kids are 16 and 13. Last summer we tried new bags. My 16yo son tried the Rick Steves backpack bag (the most basic one) and my daughter had a generic rollerbag, as did I.
After travelling across the US by train, I came home and bought all new bags from Ikea. The backpack and regular bags were just too heavy.
In December we spent 10 days in Italy with 3 Ikea bags and it was great! We even had people ask us where they were from. Here's a link to the US site. http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/50209083/
These bags look small but they hold a lot, and are very light and seem to be sturdy.
rebeccaastone is offline  
Jan 31st, 2014, 09:46 AM
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Those Ikea bags are cute but still awful heavy. 7lbs 13 oz. for a 20" roller is very heavy. I have a new 25" (not carry-on) from IT that only weighs 4 lbs.
suze is offline  
Jan 31st, 2014, 03:50 PM
Join Date: Oct 2013
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About the only problem I've had, travelling with children using just a small roll-a-board and backpack each, has been getting the bags stowed! I travel on my own with the children quite frequently, often for 7-8 weeks in the summer, and on previous trips I was the only one tall enough to stow the roll-a-boards in the above compartment. Thankfully, my 15-yo son is tall enough for our next trip, plus my husband is travelling with us, so I might not even have to stow my own bag, LOL.

My daughter, 12, has become an expert at packing a capsule wardrobe - she's much better than I am at combining colors and a natural with a scarf. My son has become an expert at taking as few clothes as possible so he can take his scooter and helmet in his suitcase ;-)
AlysonRR is offline  
Feb 1st, 2014, 05:44 PM
Join Date: Jun 2013
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We traveled quite a bit on European budget airlines last summer and got used to packing for a week in a tiny bag (one size under that allowed by Ryan Air). It was so liberating not to be weighed down by a bunch of stuff. Follow the excellent advice as above, and you won't regret it. We saw lots of (even) tiny tykes trundling along with tiny roller bags in airports and in tourist places--so cute and no tantrums. I think they enjoyed the sense of responsibility that comes along with taking care of their own luggage (sized appropriately, of course). I did carry along one of those pack-down shopping bags to unfurl for day-to-day touring, shopping, etc. Came in very handy. Good luck and have a great time. Your kids will never forget this trip.
harriet_hughes is offline  
Feb 1st, 2014, 06:56 PM
Join Date: Jan 2014
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Our family rules are that only 21" rolling bags are carried. A purse or small backpack is allowed.
Every person handles their own luggage at all times.
No luggage is ever checked with airlines.

When we rent cars, there's only usually enough room for 1 21" bag in the trunk per person.

And we travel very efficiently.
Bamaman is offline  
Apr 24th, 2014, 11:02 AM
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Thanks for all the tips...
Makeithappen is offline  
Apr 24th, 2014, 05:44 PM
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Rebecca - I also have that Ikea bag and love it! It held everything I needed for 3 weeks with wildly diverent temps last fall (Barcelona 75 and bathing suits to Prague in snow!) Also, want to second the importance of color coordination. By taking nothing but black pants, shoes/purse match everything and go with brightly colored tops.
Donna_Demaree is offline  
Apr 25th, 2014, 09:48 AM
Join Date: Jan 2011
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No one in my family has checked a piece of luggage now for 25+ years. Our daughters never have.

If we can make it for two weeks in Europe with twin teenaged daughters, you can definitely do it with your two.

One thing we did on our "big" trip is that I used a small backpack (smaller than some women's purses), which freed me up to shoulder someone else's load for a few hours ... on those rare days when we were between hotels and had to keep everything with us for the day. It made a big difference.

You've gotten great tips here from others. It's totally doable, and once you've packed light there's a good chance you'll realize how much time and energy are wasted in lugging arounds tons of stuff during travel.

Kandace_York is offline  
Apr 25th, 2014, 09:49 AM
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Oh, a PS -- invest in GOOD backpacks, the kind hikers use. The right padding, strap placement, etc., all make HUGE differences.
Kandace_York is offline  
Jun 9th, 2014, 01:37 PM
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What is the Ikea bag? Sounds like a must-have!
writegirl18 is offline  
Jun 9th, 2014, 03:46 PM
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Jean is offline  

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