We set those limits on size and weight after the first few European trains we boarded required getting us and the bags up steps made for giants and through midget-sized doorways within the few minutes allocated for the train stop and doing it as two dozen other travelers were all clamouring to accomplish the same task.
Smaller and lighter, is now our suitcase mantra.
While it still seems at times that our bags are too heavy, we laughed when reading the packing list given to Mark Twain when he set out on his transatlantic cruise on the steamship, Quaker City, back in 1867, because it included:
- light musical instruments for amusement on the ship,
- saddles for Syrian travel,
- green spectacles and umbrellas,
- veils for Egypt,
- substantial clothing for use in rough pilgrimizing in the Holy Land
- and a few guidebooks, a Bible and some standard works of travel. *
Speaking of fees, did you know that in 2010 airlines made $3.4 Billion in their airline fees, which, of course, included charges for checked bags?
Tip: A good one-stop source of airline fee information is:
*From Twain’s Innocents Abroad