The magic ‘three-layer’ packing rule that lets passengers skip hand luggage fees

PACKING experts have unveiled a three-layer packaging system that will help passengers save money on their carry-on luggage.

Airlines increase revenue by charging their customers additional fees for larger baggage. That means passengers have to be smart about packing.

The layering allows passengers to maximize the space in their suitcases


The layering allows passengers to maximize the space in their suitcasesPhoto credit: Getty

Therefore travel experts at Wild packs have shared what they think is the best way to pack suitcases, warning that overweight luggage can end up costing up to £65.

They recommend packing suitcases in layers to have as much luggage space as possible and to reduce the chance of clothes wrinkling.

The layering of items also helps to evenly distribute the weight of the case and prevent it from tipping over, protecting delicate items such as necklaces, earrings and other accessories.

Bottom layer: shoes, toiletry bag, electronics, makeup

The first thing to pack are shoes at the bottom of the suitcase, near the wheels.

Stuffing them with socks will help free up as much space as possible. This also helps to keep the shape of the shoes as much as possible as they can get squeezed through the other layers of clothing.

Make-up should also be stowed in the bottom of the suitcase, as should toiletries in a secure, waterproof, zip-top bag to prevent leaks or spills from ruining the contents of the suitcase.

Certain electronic devices such as phone chargers may be located at the bottom of the suitcase along with shoes and toiletries.

Distributing the heavier items at the bottom of the suitcase will help you center the weight and prevent the suitcase from tipping over.

Liquids and gels should be packed in a separate waterproof bag and placed near the top of the case.

Middle layer: jeans, sweaters, t-shirts, shorts, accessories, underwear, socks

When you roll clothes instead of folding them, you take up less space and reduce the risk of wrinkles and creases.

Filling empty spaces and crevices with underwear, socks, and accessories can minimize overpacking.

Stashing accessories in these spaces between clothing also reduces the risk of them breaking during travel.

Top layer: suits, dresses, jackets, towels, liquids, gels

Carefully fold suits, dresses and jackets so that they do not crease and carefully lay them on top. Be careful not to stuff them in the suitcase to avoid wrinkles.

Certain toiletries that are easily spilled, such as Items such as liquids and shower gels should be stored in a separate waterproof zip-lock bag at the top of the case to prevent them from being crushed when the case is closed.

Suit jackets can be placed over already packed clothing, possibly with crossed arms to avoid wrinkling.

This is also possible with beach towels.

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In the meantime, this practical item can help ensure that more fits in the suitcase.

And here are 11 more space-saving techniques that can help you make the most of the space in your suitcase.

Effective packaging can prevent people from having to pay for excess baggage


Effective packaging can prevent people from having to pay for excess baggagePhoto credit: Getty

Russell Falcon

Russell Falcon is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Russell Falcon joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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