A Sydney, Australia mom has been slammed online for taking 18 pieces of luggage on holiday.
Musical artist Joanne Hadjia – otherwise known as Joey Djia – shared a now-viral clip on TikTok about her journey of traveling to the U.S. with her two infant twins and husband.
The 32-year-old mom was flying with her husband Omar and their twin girls Ava and Aya from Sydney, Australia to San Francisco earlier this month.
The recording artist decided to document their entire experience on TikTok to show the realities of traveling across the world with their two eight-month-old babies.
In the now-viral clip that has reached nearly 2 million views, she shares how their family of four took along 18 pieces of luggage for the trip – something that made her comment section explode.
While many understood the reasons why they needed to take that many bags, others were bamboozled, and some were even angry over it.
“It’s incredible how bothered people were with our luggage,” Joey told news.com.au.
“I get that by looking at it, it might seem excessive. But I was honestly shocked at people’s comments.
“It is like they were paying for our flights and being asked to push around our luggage.
“I would never be irritated by someone doing something for themselves that didn’t harm anyone or anything, especially when it didn’t inconvenience me at all.
“Everyone online was telling me what I should have done instead. The airline had no issue with our luggage and neither did we.
“As a family of four, we were allowed 14 pieces free with our tickets, as each baby was allowed a pram, a baby bag each, and two pieces of baby luggage.
“Omar and I were allowed the standard carry-on bags and personal items and a suitcase each.
“We only spent an extra $300 [about $200 USD] on extra bags, two of which were filled without a portable recording studio set up for work.
“The third was for my husband’s golf clubs and the fourth was a huge load of my trusted organic Australian baby formula that you cannot get in the USA.
“The bulk of what we took was for the girls.
Many people in the comments suggested that the couple should have just “bought everything new” while in the U.S., however, Joey pointed out how wasteful and expensive that would be in comparison.
“People assume babies need less luggage, but the truth is they actually need more than adults,” she said.
“Small children obviously need less, as they don’t have prams, car seats, cribs, etc.
“But people were suggesting I should have bought everything new, but that would have easily cost me over $4,000. Why on earth would I do that?
“And as far as renting the items, this would have cost us over $8,000.
“We had no problems with the bags and were unpacked within an hour once we got into San Francisco.
“People online kept comparing and saying that they moved countries with far less, but everyone’s situation is different.
“I think people don’t like seeing others doing things that they can’t.”
Joey added that while traveling with two babies can be daunting, it can be a seamless experience with the right preparation.
“It is difficult with one baby let alone two, but it’s doable,” she said.
“We timed it so they could have a bottle during take-off to prevent earaches and crying, and we also secured bassinets for both girls ahead of time.
“We made sure to bring lots of snacks for the girls and for us and headphones to help muffle harsh sounds that would wake them up.
“I also separated things into clear zip bags so that finding things would be easier when you’re frustrated and exhausted.
“I organized a van on both ends to handle the luggage.”
The family will be in the US.. for just over three months, with Joey’s husband Omar being American and the pair actually first meeting in Los Angeles.
They own a music company together called Djia Media, as well as five recording studios dotted around LA called RecordBook.
They also own a trucking business.
“I like to share my experiences as a mother to help others feel more human about real challenges that women have,” she added.
“I never hide my struggles, and I shared my entire pregnancy and emergency birth of my twins online.
“After this particular video went viral, I was glad that I was able to explain the reason and logic of the bags to encourage more mothers to tackle the fear of traveling with their kids.”
“We are very fortunate to be able to work wherever we want in the world and run our companies,” she said.
“Omar’s parents and extended family live near San Francisco, so that is why we decided to go there.
“The twins are Australian born, but have their dual citizenship, and Omar and I have the ability to live in both places immigration-wise.”
While baggage allowances will differ for each country and individual airline, Qantas states that passengers with infants can take a collapsible stroller, collapsible cot, bassinet, car seat, or baby capsule on all of their flights.
Furthermore, customers traveling with infants or toddlers are permitted to take a reasonable quantity of liquid, aerosol, or gel products on board for the duration of the flight and any delays that might occur, but this will be at the discretion of the security screening officer at customs.