Many travelers choose to travel lightly due to the expensive cost of checking luggage and the hassle of collecting luggage at the airport’s baggage claim. However, traveling lightly also has its drawbacks. For one, travelers cannot pack as many personal belongings if they only travel with one carry-on bag. Second, carry-on regulations limit what travelers can and cannot bring onto an airplane. Additionally, there is always the chance that there will not be enough storage space in the cabin’s overhead bin for your carry-on bag, so you may end up checking your bag and paying checked bag fees even if you do not expect it. To help you understand the drawbacks of not checking luggage, and to help you determine whether you need more than a carry-on bag when traveling by airplane, the experts at GlobalEntryServices.org have put together the following helpful list.
#1 Limited Luggage Space
As per the group at GlobalEntryServices.org, one of the biggest drawbacks to traveling with only a carry-on bag is the lack of space. When a traveler boards an airplane with only a carry-on bag and no checked luggage, the traveler is forced to pack as lightly as possible. In some cases, packing lightly is not an issue, especially if a worker is traveling for business and will only be away for a night or two. However, other travelers may plan to shop while they are away, or they may plan to return with souvenirs for loved ones. Without checked luggage, it is much more difficult to return with gifts and memorable items.
#2 Carry-On Liquid Regulations
According to the expert team at GlobalEntryServices.org, one of the major drawbacks to traveling without checked luggage is having to follow the rules of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). According to the TSA’s Liquids Rule, travelers can only pass through the TSA security checkpoint with a quart-sized bag of gels, creams, liquids, pastes or aerosols. Additionally, travelers must transfer all liquid belongings to travel-sized containers prior to packing their carry-on bags. For many travelers, this may result in additional money spent on travel-sized containers, as well as additional time spent transferring liquids into these containers.
#3 Limited Storage Space in the Cabin
Depending on when you can board the airplane, there may not be a whole lot of overhead bin space leftover by the time you get to your seat. In this case, you will either need to store your bag wherever you can find open space, or you will need to have your luggage checked. Moreover, not all carry-on bags fit in the airplane’s overhead bins – even if the bag is labeled as a piece of carry-on approved luggage. Since the size of overhead bins varies depending on each specific aircraft, it is difficult to tell whether a carry-on bag will fit into the airplane’s overhead bin or not. Certain aircraft bins have the capacity to store a full duffel bag, while others only have the capacity to store a laptop bag.
To avoid issues during a flight, the team at GlobalEntryServices.org recommends packing an additional, smaller bag within the carry-on bag. If you end up needing to check your carry-on bag, at least you will be able to move several of your personal belongings into your smaller bag (such as a cell phone, laptop, phone charger and e-reader).
#4 Restricted Items
According to the team of experts at GlobalEntryServices.org, many personal belongings may be transported in checked bags but not in carry-on bags. For example, the following items may be transported in checked bags but not in carry-ons: ammunition (including for BB guns and compressed air guns), axes and hatchets, baseball bats, bear spray, bill clubs, bows and arrows, box cutters, brass knuckles, cigar cutters, corkscrews and crowbars.