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Carry on essentials, including bag, ipad, toiletries

What to Pack in Your Carry On

Getting ready for your trip south this winter? With some of the latest weather, many Canadians are packing it in and opting for a week or two somewhere sunny and warm. Most airlines now charge for checked bags on flights; so smart packing with that carry on is more important than ever. Start with the right bag. Choose one that is light-weight and meets the airlines size requirements. Then pack like a boss with these tips and make the flight to your travel destination that much easier on you and your travel mates.


Where are you going? Where will you be staying? It’s a good idea to have these documents including addresses and phone numbers on paper (that flat white stuff in the copier). Yes, you can store it on your phone – but as a back-up have a paper copy. Whether there is a language barrier or cell service interruption – it is nice to hand paper to a taxi driver and then you are off.


Leaving the country? You won’t get far without your passport. Some countries require a visa or tourist card. Know before you go – Government of Canada Travel Advice. Make sure these documents are in a safe part of your carry on with little chance of falling out or being vulnerable to theft.


One of the most important and often forgotten items in your carry–on is your travel insurance. Travel insurance is as different for every individual as your travel plans are, so shop around and get the policy that fits your needs and plans, and carry a copy of your policy with you. Don’t know where to start for a travel insurance quote? Talk to one of our travel insurance experts. In some cases you may already have coverage through a group plan or your even your credit card plan.

travel insurance photo



Your best bet is to leave your valuables at home (special jewelry etc.), but for those items you will need – wallet, money, phone, keys, camera – keep these items packed in your carry on.

Personal items

A change of clothes, a pair of pj’s and your basic toiletries are handy to keep in your carry on. Make sure your toiletries are stored in a clear, reseal-able bag and the containers meet the airlines specific requirements for size. If the airlines ever loses your checked luggage, you sure will appreciate having these items on hand.

Snacks and entertainment

A few small snacks and an empty water bottle will help keep that hunger at bay during the flight. Most flights offer complimentary drinks and will fill a water bottle for you. Also, chewing gum is helpful to have for take-off and landing to keep the ear popping to a minimum. Books, laptops or tablets will keep you entertained – don’t forget your headphones and chargers too!


Have your meds also stored in a clear plastic bag, clearly labelled.

loading airplane

Whether you are taking a short trip or a long flight somewhere tropical, these basic carry on items will help make the flight that much more comfortable. Your travel needs may require more or less of these items – just ensure you have what you need when you need it at your finger tips!

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