How to Pack for Norwegian Air’s 22 Pound Limit

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If you’re flying on Norwegian Air with a LowFare or LowFare+ ticket, it’s important to know that this airline has some rather strict guidelines when it comes to carry-on luggage.

The LowFare ticket allows one piece of hand luggage, which must fit under the seat in front of you and weigh no more than 10kg (22lb).

The LowFare+ ticket allows one personal item (must fit under the seat in front of you) and one larger carry-on that can go in the overhead compartment. For the LowFare+ ticket, both of these items combined cannot weigh more than 10kg (22lb).

This article will show you how to pack for Norwegian Air’s 22 pound limit on the LowFare+ ticket. You’ll have everything you need for your trip without having to check a bag.

Choose the right carry on

The most important part of packing light is to make sure that your bag isn’t weighing you down. You’d be surprised at how much of those 22 pounds can be taken up by just choosing the wrong carry-on.

Below are some lightweight options for hard shell suitcases, soft-sided suitcases, and travel backpacks.

Hard shell suitcases

Hard shell luggage has traditionally been thought of as sturdier, but also heavier, than soft-sided luggage.

However, materials have come a long way and you’ll find that there are some polycarbonate hard shell suitcases on the market that are both sturdy and surprisingly light.

Our top choices for lightweight hard shell suitcases are The Carry-On from Away, the Rimowa Essential Lite Cabin S, and the DELSEY Paris Helium Aero 19″ Carry-on Expandable Rolling Luggage.

The Rimowa Essential Lite Cabin S is the lightest of these, coming in at an amazing 4.6 pounds. That’s almost half of what other lightweight hard shell suitcases weigh!

SuitcaseAway The Carry-On (Standard)Away The Carry-On (Battery)Rimowa Essential Lite Cabin SDELSEY Paris Helium Aero 19″ Carry-On
Dimensions21.7″ x 13.7″ x 9″21.7″ x 13.7″ x 9″21.7″ x 15.8″ x 7.9″21″ x 14″ x 10″
Weight7.1 lb8.1 lb4.6 lb8.2 lb
Capacity39.8L39.8L31LN/A

Soft sided suitcases

Soft sided suitcases give you a bit more flexibility when it comes to packing since they’re not as rigid as hard shell suitcases.

A downside to this flexibility is that it makes it easier to overpack. For this reason, it’s even more important to choose a lightweight suitcase if you are flying on Norwegian Air.

Some excellent options include Lipault, IT luggage, Aerolite, and Travelpro.

SuitcaseLipault Original Plume 55/20 Carry-OnIT Luggage 22″ World’s Lightest 8 Wheel SpinnerAerolite Large Capacity Maximum Allowance 22″ Carry-OnTravelpro Maxlite 5 20″ Carry-On
Dimensions21.6″ x 14.9″ x 9.4″22″ x 14″ x 9″22″ x 14″ x 9″21.75″ x 15.75 x 7.75″
Weight4.9 lb4.07 lb4.41 lb5.4 lb
Capacity35LN/A41L45L

Travel backpacks

When we know we’re going to be traveling from city to city on a trip, we prefer to do so with travel backpacks instead of rolling suitcases.

For us, they’re more convenient when it comes to carrying them up and down stairs to take a subway or metro and are also easy to manage on trains.

As a bonus, we don’t have to worry about wheels breaking or being difficult to roll over cobblestone streets.

We personally have traveled on Norwegian Air with an eBags Mother Lode Junior and a Tom Bihn Aeronaut.

The eBags Mother Lode has tons of thoughtful organizational touches that make traveling with it a breeze. And we love the sturdiness of the Tom Bihn Aeronaut.

I have used and abused the Tom Bihn Aeronaut for 8 years now and it still looks as good as new.

BackpackeBags Mother Lode JuniorTom Bihn Aeronaut 45Osprey Fairpoint 40*AmazonBasics Carry On Travel Backpack
Dimensions19.5″ x 14″ x 9″21.9″ x 14″ x 9.1″21″ x 14″ x 9″ 15.75″ x 21.50″ x 8.25″
Weight3.31 lb2.4 lb – 3.06 lb3.17 lb3.64 lb
Capacity41.59L45L40LN/A
*Details listed for the Osprey Fairpoint 40 are for the Medium/Large size.

Pick your day bag wisely

Your personal item will probably be the bag that you use while out and about every day.

This means you should pay attention to its weight, not only to avoid going over Norwegian’s weight limit but also because it will be the bag you carry all day.

The last thing you want is to be miserable and not enjoy your vacation because your purse or backpack is weighing you down (literally).

When it comes to lightweight day bags, nylon is one of our favorite materials. It’s durable but also extremely light. We’re big fans of packable backpacks made out of nylon, such as the Hikpro backpack.

For women who prefer to carry a purse, we recommend the Pearl from Lo & Sons. It’s made out of leather but manages to only weigh 0.9 lb. It was created with travel in mind and it truly shows.

My favorite features are the built-in key leash and the passport-sized slip pocket.

For more information on how to pick the perfect travel purse, check out our guide here.

Pack a versatile wardrobe

Pick items that you can combine into a variety of outfits. Think of it like a travel capsule wardrobe. Each top should be able to go with each bottom, or at least with most of them.

This way you get the most outfit combinations possible out of the smallest number of clothing items.

For a 10 day vacation, I usually pack about 4 tops, 2 bottoms, and 1-2 dresses.

Tip: Wear your heaviest pieces on the plane.

Washing your clothes while traveling

Unless we are staying at an Airbnb or apartment rental that has an in-unit washer, we normally hand wash our clothing items.

We wouldn’t want to waste valuable vacation time on going to a laundromat, so instead we find other ways of cleaning our clothes.

Some of our favorite methods for washing our clothes while on the road are:

Washing in the bathroom sink

  • Plug the sink and fill it with soapy water. Don’t worry if you don’t have detergent, dish soap or hand soap will do just fine.
  • Put your dirty clothes in the soapy water and swirl them around.
  • If you have any serious stains, make sure to get those out by scrubbing fabric against fabric.
  • After you’re done swirling or scrubbing, let the clothes sit in the water for a bit.
  • Then drain, rinse out with clean water, and find a place to hang them to dry.

Using a Scrubba bag

The Scrubba bag is like a tiny travel washing machine.

This wash bag has little nubs on the inside that get your clothes cleaner than just swirling them in soapy water in the sink.

You put your clothes inside the bag, fill with water until the indicated line (depending on how much you are washing), add your soap or detergent, then close up the bag and rub it to clean your clothes.

It’s super light and lets you wash your clothes virtually anywhere.

Washing clothes while you shower

This is our favorite way to wash our clothes while we travel. It doesn’t require that you bring anything extra and is the least disruptive to your routine and vacation time.

Basically, take the items that you need to wash into the shower with you, give them a good scrubbing with soap and water, rinse, hang up, and continue on with the rest of your shower.

Shoes

Shoes can be pretty heavy, so to stay under Norwegian’s weight limit, we recommend that you limit yourself to 1 to 2 pairs of shoes.

If you are packing two pairs of shoes, wear the heavier or bulkier ones on the plane and pack the other pair.

Much like your clothes, these shoes should be as versatile as possible. They should go with all of your outfits.

For our trip to Spain on Norwegian Air, I wore a pair of trendy sneakers on the plane and packed a pair of nice sandals. Both were comfortable enough to walk all day in, and the sandals gave me the option to dress up my outfits a little.

Toiletries

With such a strict weight limit, we usually only take the toiletries that are absolutely necessary.

We pack those that are difficult to find or that we need one specific brand of. Anything else such as shampoo, conditioner and the like, we buy after we land.

This also lets us experience the city that we’re in differently. Going out to buy such commonplace items lets us experience a little bit of regular local life.

Electronics

Downsize your electronics.

If you’re used to traveling with a laptop, ask yourself whether this is something you really need to bring. If you do feel the need to bring it, consider whether an iPad or other tablet would be sufficient for your needs.

Unless you need to work while on vacation, a smartphone should be enough to get you through your trip.

Medications

Use a travel-sized pill organizer to pack your medications instead of bringing the whole bottle.

I like to bring a bit more than what I need just to be safe or in case I accidentally drop a pill on the floor and can’t find it. Unfortunately, I am very prone to doing this and it happens more than I’d like to admit.

We also recommend you take a picture of your medication bottle so that you have the exact name and dosage of what you take.

Should anything happen and you need a refill or a replacement, you’ll want to have this information handy.

Traveling with medical devices on Norwegian Air

If you travel with medical devices such as oxygen tanks or a CPAP machine, these won’t count against your carry on item limit.

However, you should note that Norwegian requires that medical equipment be packed separately from other baggage so it can be presented at the check-in counter.

Norwegian also recommends that you carry a medical declaration or other documentation which shows you have a need for this equipment.

You can read more about Norwegian Air’s guidelines on medical equipment here.

Conclusion: How strict is Norwegian Air about their 22 lb weight limit?

The answer, based on our experience, is that it varies by airport.

In Paris, our carry on and personal item were weighed together to ensure that they did not go over the limit. We saw a lot of people who ended up having to repack and stuff things into their pockets to avoid being charged a fee.

Meanwhile, in Barcelona, the agents only weighed the bigger of the two bags to check that it did not exceed 22 pounds.

Still, our recommendation is to always assume that Norwegian Air will be strict about the weight limit.

This will save you the headache of having to repack in a frenzy if you happen upon a strict gate agent. 

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