A carry on only packing list – skiing in Norway


Carry on only packing list Norway skiing
I really should insert (sort of) into the title of this post. Never has packing carry on only for a trip challenged me the way this one did. Packing carry on only for a city break is a breeze, packing carry on for a ski break is tough but do-able, packing for both at the same time? Almost impossible. For the first time, I’m going to advise that you’ll need a travel buddy with a little extra room in his or her case to pull this one off – or you’ll need to hire your ski boots in the resort.

The Norweigen weather (currently -12 degrees) was at the forefront of my mind when I was cramming this lovely lot into my tiny case and I’ll admit there was a point where I had some serious regrets about selling my extra large four wheel spinner. But it all turned out just fine thanks to J having a little room left in his case for me to pack my helmet and goggles in there.

I might have needed a little help this time but I still wouldn’t travel any other way than carry on only. There’s a certain sense of freedom that comes from travelling with so little that I couldn’t bear to part with now I’ve seen the light.

Hiring ski boots when I got to the resort would’ve solved my problem instantly, but I have this thing about having my own boots. Sharing shoes with strangers doesn’t exactly fill me with enthusiasm. Sharing aside, if you’ve ever felt the pain of ill fitting ski boots you’ll understand my reasoning. Perhaps I’ll learn to share and spare myself the hassle in future? Not sure yet, but it’s food for thought.

The second thing on my mind was how much we’d be doing on this trip;  2 nights in Oslo followed by 7 nights skiing in Trysil. That’s a lot of coffee stops, winter wanderings, hours on the slopes and time spent curled up by the fire to plan for. The key is to keep things as simple as possible, take things that are multifunctional and only take what you really need.

Carry on only packing list

Carry on only packing list Norway skiing

Ski jacket
– I’m usually one of those people that wears their ski jacket to the airport so I like something that isn’t too loud and looks like a very normal winter coat

Hoodie – a mid-layer to wear when skiing for extra warmth

Ski pants – non negotiable

Base layer top – Merino wool is warmer and doesn’t get smelly like the polyester stuff

Base layer bottoms – See above

Wool coat (alternative) – I wouldn’t normally take this but as we were doing a city break too I decided to wear this to the airport and in Oslo

Skinny jeans – If I do venture out at night (which isn’t often) these are my go to

Cardigan – to wear at night or down to breakfast in the mornings

Roll neck sweater – For wearing around the city and again on the rare occasion I venture out at night in the ski resort

Joggers – comfort is king after a day of skiing and these go really well with the cardigan

Scarf – For the city or to wear at night in the ski resort

Ski socks – One pair usually last me all week as long as they’re merino wool. I’ll wash them as needed

Swimsuit – For the sauna or pool

Gloves – Like the scarf I took these for the city or to wear at night in the ski resort

Snood – I love being able to pull this over my face to stop any windburn

Ski goggles – Essential for better visibility and protection from the cold and any debris

Helmet – There aren’t many people who ski without a helmet now, I’d never be without mine being a safety queen

Ski mittens – I’ll wear these on their own or with the liner gloves if it’s really cold

Snow boots – For the airport, city and ski resort, these things are like slippers.

Liner gloves – I’d wear these on their own on sunny days but in this case they’re for extra warmth and I’ll wear my mitts over them

Ski boots – Can easily be hired and doing so will free up half your case. Having your own is a personal choice (tip: roll and pack as much as possible inside the boots)

CARRY on extras


DSLR Camera and charger
Laptop and charger
Phone charger

Hair and BeautyMascara, liquid eye liner, brow gel, lip balm
Travel size toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, toothbrush, solid deodorant

Cleanser, serum and face oil
Spf 50 (please please don’t ever ski without SPF on)

Other Clothing

6 x pants
1 x sports bra
3 x cosy socks
(all are easily washed as needed)

Personal Essentials

A good book
Notebook and pen
Sunglasses (UPDATE – I’ve no idea why I took sunglasses to Norway in January 🙈)

This is EVERYTHING I took including what I wore to the airport. Really hope this helps any other carry on only enthusiasts out there. Any questions, just let me know in the comments below – I always reply.

Happy packing x

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4 comments on “A carry on only packing list – skiing in Norway”

  1. Love this post Jess! I’m so impressed that you squeezed all of this into a hand luggage case.

    My favourite tip for smuggling more onto budget flights is to take a backpack as well as your case, then buy something small like a bottle of water or a magazine at the airport. Ask for a large carrier bag and shove your backpack inside – voila! You can now take your backpack onto the flight as an extra bag!

  2. This is a great list – I’m so impressed that you fit it all in! Do you have any pictures of how you packed it all? I only know from experience that squeezing a snow jacket and pants, plus ski boots into a carry-on size case is about all I can get in. I am just curious as to your packing technique, because you fit in SO much more than I think I could! I love that cardigan BTW, so chic!

    1. Thanks! So glad you liked it. I’ve toyed with both the folding and rolling method and I still haven’t made up my mind which is best. I folded this time. I did a video but it was my first attempt and a bit naff. It might work ok as a time lapse though so as soon as I get home I’ll try and get it on here. I did wear a lot of this to the airport too! Packing stuff inside and around the ski boots was essential.

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