The Perfect Carry-On Bag + What’s In My Carry-On

The Perfect Carry-On Bag + What’s In My Carry-On

768 1024 samantha

I get sort of romantic about traveling. Really, I do. Traveling to me is like adding another color onto my canvas and treating my life like art. It’s filling up my cup a little more. It’s broadening my horizons. I always come back from a trip feeling renewed and with a newfound sense of understanding about something.

But before anything too revolutionary can happen, we have to worry about what to pack in our carry-on. I’ve become a carry-on packer pro of sorts, I even traveled to Switzerland for almost two weeks with just a carry-on (crazy, I know). But I wanted to show you guys what I pack in my personal carry-on bag (the one under my seat on the plane) and show you the inspiring tote bag that’s up in my shop that I am obsessed with! The quote says, “She turned her cant’s into cans and her dreams into plans.”  This could not be a more perfect travel tote. How many times have you told yourself you’ll go to that dream destination you’ve had in your head? This is all about just doing it. Stop thinking about traveling somewhere and make. It. Happen. You can shop this bag here.

Now, what’s in my carry-on? Click the photo above to shop (some) of the items on liketoknowit or you can also shop everything via the links below if you’re interested.


  1. My laptop. I recently had to upgrade laptops because my other one was from 2011 and it would take me 2.5 hours to do something as simple as open a word document haha. I have the 2014 Macbook Pro now and love this one, it goes everywhere with me.
  2. Laptop soft cover case from Etsy. The cutest cover case that prevents my laptop from getting scratched. It has pockets in front too so I conveniently keep all my pens in there, because I’m a pen nerd.
  3. My Planner. Type-A over here, so yes this goes with me when I travel. Especially if I’m getting some work done while I’m traveling I like that I still have my calendar there or to make to-do lists in. I’m a fan of larger planners and this one is very similar (same brand).
  4. My obsession with notebooks is a slight problem, but when I travel I try to keep it simple. I like just a regular school-style notebook so that I have lots of room to write everything I need. Whether I’m taking a break from my laptop and writing down blog ideas in here, making lists, taking notes on a podcast I’m listening to, or jotting down ideas for my next script, a notebook goes where I go.
  5. The 7-year pen. I wrote about this pen in my September Favorites post, but this is the best pen I’ve ever owned. I’m going to Asheville on this trip and that’s where the store is so I cannot wait to spend too much money there!
  6. Currently have The Nightingale with me (so excited to read it!) but I also have a book on writing subtext in screenwriting with me and my Your Best Year 2018 workbook too.
  7. I really don’t like that Apple keeps changing the headphone ports so now I take headphones that can easily plug into my laptop and ones that can go into my iphone too. Here are the headphones I have.
  8. Sunglasses and glasses. I’m a creature of habit in the sunglasses department and I’ve had this style of Ray-Bans for years. It’s a winner in my book. My glasses are necessary for distance. So, if you ever see me and it seems like I’m looking at you but I don’t say anything…it’s because I am blind haha. This happens to me all the time, it’s bad. At the gym, at the store. I should probably get contacts honestly. The pair I have are also Raybans and I got them at Lenscrafters.
  9. I am a snacker if there ever was one. I always need to have snacks on me or I reach a level of starvation and can’t function. Besides what’s seen in this photo, I also took a few more snacks and tried to keep it as healthy as possible. I don’t like feeling like a blog after eating airport food all day, but hey it happens sometimes. On this trip I also took Justin’s Snack Pack Almond Butter With Pretzels, a small Ziploc bag of Trader Joe’s Organic Popcorn with Olive Oil, an orange, a ThinkThin Oatmeal Individuals (6 Count) for in the morning (so I wouldn’t spend 1 million dollars at Starbucks in the airport) and this time my Mom and I took it a little far. We also got our favorite vegetable rice bowl from Aroma Coffee & Tea Company in Studio City the night before and took it as our lunch. I also take my own Jasmine Green Tea tea bag so if I’m on the plane I can have a pick me up instead of coffee if I’m feeling something different.
  10. My HydroFlask . I don’t leave without it. It keeps my water SO cold (or my coffee super hot) and I’d rather drink out of this than plastic water bottles if I can help it!
  11. Advil/Excedrin. I get really bad headaches and sometimes migraines. At times they can get so bad that any sound or bright light is excruciating pain. I try not to take these a lot, but if my headache is that bad while traveling I just want it to end.
  12. Beauty: I pack my makeup bag in my suitcase, but I usually have a few things to freshen up with if I’m going somewhere straight from the airport. This time I took my L’Oréal Paris True Match Lumi Healthy Luminous Makeup, N4 Buff Beige, 1 fl. oz., NYX Butter Gloss PRALINE, Bobbi Brown Telluride Shimmer Brick Compact – Sunset Pink, Costco Kirkland Signature Daily Facial Towellettes, 4.53 Pound, and Jergens Shea Butter Deep Conditioning Moisturizer 3 oz (Pack of 2).
  13. A sweater. I get cold very easily and I always find myself freezing on planes, so this is a must for me. This sweater cardigan is comfortable yet warm enough to snuggle up in. Here is a similar one.

So by now you’re probably thinking that’s way too much and yes my bag does weigh a lot haha but I am the kind of person that would so much rather have the option of having something than being disappointed that I didn’t bring an item. What’s in your carry-on that I should know about?



Leave a Reply

Get free tips & tools to harness your constant creativity!

(Don't worry — I hate spam just as much as you)

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!