How To: Pack for Two Weeks in China in a Carry On

packing cubes

Cesar and I leave for China tomorrow and we are so thrilled! We decided early on that we would pack for our entire two week trip in a carry on and a backpack each. We like to travel light and have learned from years of consulting that checking a bag isn’t an option. As a self-proclaimed “fashionista” and two very different climates, I knew this was going to be a challenge.

packing efficiently

We are visiting four cities: Seoul (during a layover), Macau, Hong Kong, and Beijing. Beijing will be chilly during the day and colder at nights, and the others will be hot and humid throughout.

When I start packing I always start with the smaller items: underwear (I always bring at least one per day. the idea of rewashing underwear never appealed), socks, tank tops, and bathing suits.

packing in a carry on

I then move on to tops. I brought 4 colorful, light tank tops that could be mixed and matched over dresses, with skirts or over jeans. I tend to stick with solids so that they can easily be rotated between bottoms.

Packing for China in a carry on

Finally, I moved on to dresses. I knew I wanted to bring my ASOS floral dress from this post. It is amazingly lightweight and a great piece for all-day walking. My Club Monaco maxi dress is so comfortable and good for cooler days. I also brought the J.Crew skirt from this post.


Finally, I moved on to long sleeve tops. I always bring one lightweight sweater (similar) for layering and decided to add one lightweight blouse for Beijing days.

Packing for 10 days in a carry on

Shoes were the hardest for me to narrow down. I knew I had to sacrifice style and take my tennis shoes. “Cute” walking shoes just don’t cut it for me when it comes to all-day walking, so these were a must. I brought my Tieks for a bit more fashion and sandals for Macau pool days.

packing for 14 days in a carry on

This is everything laid out, excluding two pairs of jeans: my JBrand high waist skinnies and my BDG black skinnies. You’ll notice I didn’t pack any shorts. While I love the idea of shorts, I hate how they look on me and find them terribly uncomfortable, so I left them out. Finally, I brought one piece of costume jewelry that matches everything: this Sole Society necklace.

One last note: these packing cubes are life savers. Really the greatest way to pack and keep organized!

Wish us luck on our flight! Communication might be a bit delayed for the next few weeks but posts will go up regularly.

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  • Wow!

  • Are the packing cubes really worth it? I have been contemplating picking up a few. Have a great trip!

    • thepearshape

      they are SO worth it. I’ve had them for years and take it from someone that used to travel for a living every week, they are essential.

  • Christina P

    I am in awe of how you nailed everything down to a carry on. I don’t fly very often (maybe once a year), but I ALWAYS over pack when I do. When I visited my brother in California earlier this summer, I brought a 28″ bag for 5 days!!! So embarrassing, haha. I will definitely have to use some of your ideas next time I pack!
    Have a wonderful trip!

    • Christina P

      PS – LOVE the print on that ASOS dress.

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