Carry On Versus Checking Luggage - How Much Can You Stuff Into A Carry On Bag?

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    Oct 01, 2013 11:51 PM GMT
    I used to travel hardly at all for work. It looks like I am going have to start traveling more so I'm trying to get more efficient at packing.

    There are some folks that brag about being able to pack six or more days worth of clothing and toiletries into a carry on bag.

    So far, I'd say that anything more than four days and I am looking at checking luggage, especially if I'm wearing a suit, jacket, or blazer. I've found that packing cubes and sleeves help a lot - both at minimizing wrinkles and maximizing the amount that can be packed.

    What's the longest trip you've taken just using a carry on and what techniques did you use to maximize what you could fit? Let's share tips!
  • Fable

    Posts: 3866

    Oct 01, 2013 11:59 PM GMT
    I couldn't even go away for a weekend with a carry-on.

  • KepaArg

    Posts: 1721

    Oct 02, 2013 12:03 AM GMT
    Carry on bag-I usually bring a book, iPad, chargers for my phone and iPad, toiletries, small snacks, ear plugs, sleep mask, 1 set of clean clothes. I also bring a pillow.

    I mainly travel international and usually get up to two bags free checked so I take advantage of that and jusr travel with essentials til I reach my destination.

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    Oct 02, 2013 12:08 AM GMT
    Sashaman saidI used to travel hardly at all for work. It looks like I am going have to start traveling more so I'm trying to get more efficient at packing.

    There are some folks that brag about being able to pack six or more days worth of clothing and toiletries into a carry on bag.

    So far, I'd say that anything more than four days and I am looking at checking luggage, especially if I'm wearing a suit, jacket, or blazer. I've found that packing cubes and sleeves help a lot - both at minimizing wrinkles and maximizing the amount that can be packed.

    What's the longest trip you've taken just using a carry on and what techniques did you use to maximize what you could fit? Let's share tips!

    I almost never check in a bag. Wear a versatile pair of jeans (dark, slim bootcut, designer label) that go with clothing for casual wear and for nightlife. Wear a versatile coat (depending on time of year if necessary) that can also go with casual wear and for nightlife. Wear your biggest shoes, and put your lightest/smallest pair in your carryon. With all that done, your carryon is only needed for your shirts, underwear, socks and anything else you need.

    I'll be going to Europe this November/December with only a carryon and a personal item (laptop bag). It can easily be done.
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    Oct 02, 2013 12:16 AM GMT
    Well, two or three times I had to go straight from the office to the airport with just a briefcase, and bought some clothes when I got there. But I suppose that doesn't count.

    It really depends on what I'm doing on the trip, and if it requires any special clothes or equipment. Just regular urban meeting-room or casual life, I'd say up to two weeks in a carry-on. But I've had to go up to eight weeks with a single (checked) bag before.

    Use a layering system that you can mix & match to get several different outfits from only a few complete changes of clothes. Where possible, take synthetic drip-dry stuff that you can wash in a hotel room sink. And if you need to, you can always go to a laundromat or have a hotel do laundry.
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    Oct 02, 2013 12:20 AM GMT
    mindgarden said I'd say up to two weeks in a carry-on.


    I'm impressed!

    I've had luggage lost before which sucks - especially if the schedule at the destination is really tight. That is why I don't like checking if I don't have to.

    Anyone have any particular style or brand of bag that they have found maximizes what they can pack? I looked at the Tom Bihn stuff but I prefer something with wheels.
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    Oct 02, 2013 12:21 AM GMT
    fable saidI couldn't even go away for a weekend with a carry-on.



    Damn! How many outfits a day you go through? icon_lol.gif
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    Oct 02, 2013 12:55 AM GMT
    Sashaman said
    fable saidI couldn't even go away for a weekend with a carry-on.



    Damn! How many outfits a day you go through? icon_lol.gif


    A weekend? Jeez, how much room do you need for a speedo and sunscreen?
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    Oct 02, 2013 1:04 AM GMT
    Sashaman said
    mindgarden said I'd say up to two weeks in a carry-on.


    I'm impressed!

    I've had luggage lost before which sucks - especially if the schedule at the destination is really tight. That is why I don't like checking if I don't have to.

    Anyone have any particular style or brand of bag that they have found maximizes what they can pack? I looked at the Tom Bihn stuff but I prefer something with wheels.


    Doesn't pretty much every luggage maker have something that is exactly the size of the carry-on limit?

    I prefer internal-frame backpacks that zip up to convert to soft suitcases. I have a pair somewhat like the following (but much older). One is carry-on size and one checked-bag size. The larger one has a much smaller carry-on that zips onto it to form a single backpack. Sometimes, you just have to hoof it, even when you hadn't planned to. (Once had to drag a regular suitcase five miles. Never again.)

    58e7db81-7db6-4aa9-9ff1-40aa6faf95eb.jpg
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    Oct 02, 2013 1:14 AM GMT
    ^^^^^ You're right that most manufactureres make at least a couple of 20-22 inch carry on sized bags. However, depending on how it is designed it could allow you to pack more. Personally, i dont like luggage with too many internal compartments or pockets. just give me a big open space.

    Some of those backpacks with wheels that can also be rolled look interesting. I wonder if they are a good option or just add more weight to the backpack?

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    Oct 02, 2013 4:50 AM GMT
    Don't go for the rollable carryons. The wheels and the supporting infrastructure just add weight and bulk, and consume volume that could be better devoted to packing.

    I've got one of these: Timbuk2 Wingman. It's made of ballistic nylon, making it incredibly light at 3 pounds, and you'll have no problem stuffing it into the overhead bin, where hard-sided luggage wouldn't fit. (The medium size Wingman satisfies the carry-on restrictions of just about any airline.) You can wear it as a backpack, sling it like a messenger bag, or carry it like a suitcase. It's got a laptop compartment, too. And it has one big internal compartment, just the way you like it icon_smile.gif


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    Oct 02, 2013 4:53 AM GMT
    _zed_ saidDon't go for the rollable carryons. The wheels and the supporting infrastructure just add weight and bulk, and consume volume that could be better devoted to packing.

    I've got one of these: Timbuk2 Wingman. It's made of ballistic nylon, making it incredibly light at 3 pounds, and you'll have no problem stuffing it into the overhead bin, where hard-sided luggage wouldn't fit. (The medium size Wingman satisfies the carry-on restrictions of just about any airline.) You can wear it as a backpack, sling it like a messenger bag, or carry it like a suitcase. It's got a laptop compartment, too. And it has one big internal compartment, just the way you like it icon_smile.gif

    < iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/pxTFyop9CNM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen">
    I have the Wingman also. Soft cases are awesome. Can't stand the hard shell rollers. Also, I hear too many horror stories of airport luggage handlers stealing stuff. Or luggage disappearing.
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    Oct 02, 2013 5:09 PM GMT
    _zed_ saidDon't go for the rollable carryons. The wheels and the supporting infrastructure just add weight and bulk, and consume volume that could be better devoted to packing.

    I've got one of these: Timbuk2 Wingman. It's made of ballistic nylon, making it incredibly light at 3 pounds, and you'll have no problem stuffing it into the overhead bin, where hard-sided luggage wouldn't fit. (The medium size Wingman satisfies the carry-on restrictions of just about any airline.) You can wear it as a backpack, sling it like a messenger bag, or carry it like a suitcase. It's got a laptop compartment, too. And it has one big internal compartment, just the way you like it icon_smile.gif




    That looks like a really functional bag - maybe better than the Tom Bihn one I was looking at which seemed like it almost had too many pockets and dividers. I might consider getting that as a backup to my 21 inch wheeled bag.

    I have to admit though, I wound up buying a 25 inch bag last night to replace a 28 inch one that has a wheel that is giving out. I have a 6 day trip to Vegas coming up so I'll have to see if I can fit everything in my 21 inch carry on or breakdown and just check the bag and hope it doesn't get lost!
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    Oct 02, 2013 5:32 PM GMT
    One thing about the backpacks - you have to carry them on to the plane in suitcase mode. There is not enough room in the aisle to shrug it off your back without smacking someone in the head.
  • Fable

    Posts: 3866

    Oct 02, 2013 5:33 PM GMT
    Sashaman said
    fable saidI couldn't even go away for a weekend with a carry-on.



    Damn! How many outfits a day you go through? icon_lol.gif



    a couple!
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    Oct 17, 2013 9:07 PM GMT
    marlene+d.jpg
    My s.o. thinks I'm the epitome of high maintenance because I take a lot of baggage on trips. I'm nothing compared to Ms. Dietrich.
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    Oct 17, 2013 9:27 PM GMT
    You guys need to think outside the box

    article-2013408-0CF6104D00000578-919_468