If there’s one thing everyone hates about flying, it’s having to deal with pesky luggage policies.
Nearly every airline has different rules when it comes to both checked-in and carry-on luggage and trying to guess the weight of your bags can be nearly impossible.
However a group of organised frequent flyers have taken to forums Quora and Reddit to reveal their top luggage hacks to take the stress out of your flying experience.
Use vacuum bags
Instead of trying to stuff, roll or squash multiple items into your luggage with the hope you will just slide by the weighing process then this one is for you.
One Quora user said he usually gets a few vacuum bags, which are slightly bigger than his case.
Then he places the vacuum bag in the case and fills it up with clothes before sealing it shit and sucking the air out of it.
“Voila! You’ve daved at least half the space that your clothes would’ve occupied (especially winter clothes),” he said.
Become a frequent flyer member
Another Quora user said you should always sign up to frequent flyer programs with whatever airline you usually travel with.
“Keep your boarding passes intact until you are back home and collect the missing miles, if any,” the commenter said.
“I have a Jet Privilege silver membership which entitles me 10 kg extra luggage.
“That’s a relief.”
Fill toiletry containers to the top
If you’re like us and believe packing smartly means grabbing the half-used shampoo and conditioner bottles from the bathroom, then it turns out we’re all making a huge mistake.
According to numerous people on both Quora and Reddit, you should always make sure you bring full bottles with you in your checked-in luggage or you’re at risk of them leaking all over your valuables.
“Minimize the air in the bottle or tube by either filling it all the way up or squeezing out the excess air,” one user said.
“When the plane ascends, air pressure in the container will be greater than the air pressure in the rest of the plane, so it will try to push the liquid out of the container (it will leak).
“By minimizing the amount of air in the container, you reduce the chances of a leak.”
Dot your case with a few business cards
If you’re constantly worried about losing your luggage then this is where your work business cards might come in handy
One Quora user said they receive advice to always put at least one business card in their checked bags with your name, number and address.
“That way, the airline can track you down and give you the bag back,” he said.
“Every case I have, I put one of these in the side pocket - the first thing that the airline checks, and one inside the case itself.
“Remember, the airline genuinely wants to reunite you with your bag.”
Go as bright as possible
When buying your luggage, the black, navy or red case may look sleek and sophisticated but in reality the majority of cases on the conveyor belt will be those exact colours.
Instead, one Quora user recommends picking out the brightest and most outlandish colours you can find so you can easily spot your bag when it comes out on the belt after your flight.
The last thing you want to have to do is pick up each and every bag to check the name tag.
Give it more padding
While we’d all love to wrap our cases in fragile stickers, one Reddit user gave a handy hack when it comes to protecting your dainty items.
Instead of going out and buying bubble wrap, use a few jumpers to wrap around your valuables.
“If you’re carrying a laptop computer, use a t-shirt to wrap it to give it more padding in your carry-on,” one person said.
“Put socks and pants at the bottom of the carry-on, and then you’ll have a change of clothing in case your bag is delayed as well as protecting it better.”
Protect your expensive items
You may have a nice jewelry bag you bought just for your valuable diamonds or a dust bag especially to put your new Jimmy Choos in, but according to numerous people on Reddit, you should never pack your valuables.
If you must fly with expensive items, then it’s always recommended that you put them in your carry-on luggage.
That way you can check on them throughout the flight to give you peace of mind.
“Never, ever, check expensive things like a cell phone, or laptop. Have them in that carry-on,” one person said.
Don’t buy trendy luggage
Just like handbags, airplane luggage has now become a hot topic.
But according to frequent flyers, you should ditch the “four-wheel, polycarbonate luggage” in favour of something more reliable and resilient.
“They're terribly on non-smooth, flat surface, the dent and scratch VERY easily (just look at the floor models in your local luggage shop),” one user said.
“They're slow, and they have easy-to-break wheels.
“A durable two-wheeled roller is superior.
“Get one with nice, big rollerblade wheels. And spend money for a good one. It will last longer.”