As you put the final touches on your summer vacation budget, don’t forget one often overlooked line item: airline baggage fees.
Unless you’re an airline credit card holder or a frequent flier with elite status, which may grant you a pass on those fees, it will cost you—usually at least $25 each way—to get your luggage on the plane. And that can add up.
Last year, U.S. airlines made a whopping $3.35 billion in checked bag fees, according to a report from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics. One surefire way to avoid these pesky surcharges? Stash your luggage in the overhead compartment. You’ll save cash—and time at the airport.
We know what you’re thinking: You’re a notorious overpacker, and there’s no way you could stuff everything you need into a bag small enough to fit in an overhead bin.
To prove it can be done, we asked organization and travel pros to share their smart packing tips for any vacation—from a big city sojourn to a getaway in the great outdoors. The consensus among our packing experts: It’s as easy as picking (and mixing and matching) just a few key items.