Packing & Luggage

Graphic with suitcases set on a vineyard background

In our last blog post, we talked a little bit about packing but now that travel is really taking off, it’s time to get serious about great luggage. 

When I travel I don’t check a bag to my destination, ever. The only time I’ll check a bag is on the way back from a trip and that is almost always with booze from my destination that I can’t find at home. One time, I even chose a winery in Italy to visit because I knew that my local shop carried his stuff and I could taste it in person, then buy it at home. Well, I fell in love with a Vermentino he made that I COULDN’T find in the US, I checked my luggage. Then there were the 15 mini scotches we brought home as souvenirs from this cute place in Scotland. I could have brought home the whole island on that trip.
  • If you do want to check your bag you can use this Apple Air Tag to keep track of it.
  • You can also bring these travel wine bags with to keep the good safe on your way home.
  • If you do check a bag, and you know you will shop while you are away, you can get this set or something similar and put the smaller bag in the larger bag while in route.
But this blog is about great suitcases (we’ll have a booze blog soon). In 1999, I had a long-distance boyfriend, who now happens to be my husband. Once I realized that neither of us were budging from our cities then (and we’d also meet in Las Vegas!), I realized that I should have a good suitcase. I didn’t realize what a good suitcase costs, but then those ‘in the know’ begged me to buy something good and not cheap. 23 years later, I still love my little Delsey. I nicknamed it R2-D2, for obvious reasons. Back in the day, it used to fit under my seat. I’d look defiantly at the Southwest Airlines flight attendant when she’d try to argue that it didn’t. But it did. (This is also a great under the seat option.) I’ve since had the handle fixed, but it’s still in perfect shape. Spend the money.
This is my latest suitcase. Most of the travel people I know have this one, the TravelPro softside. It’s pretty indestructible, moves well and has lots of compartments for those who like to travel tidy. I got it as a wedding gift, and sadly my cute Delsey was relegated to weekend trips. This one could take me at least 10 days on the road.
The absolute game changer for me was a gift from my then-company, a tech-med firm where even the CEOs carried backpacks – the Patagonia Backpack. I used to carry a super cute, designer leather bag that I’d get a million compliments on. I could fit a lot but not like this backpack. So I ditched fashion for practicality when packing. Here is a list of things I fit in this backpack and it still fits under the seat:
  • Stuffed dopp kit
  • Bag of 3oz toiletries (something like this although mine are often stuffed into the above bag)
  • Food (always carry food)
  • 17″ Macbook Pro
  • iPad
  • Magazines
  • Hoodie
  • Pens/Biz Cards/paper clips
  • Hand/surface wipes (did this even before Covid)
  • So many chargers (laptop, phone, iPad, 2 portable, converter)
  • Weather-dependent – coats that fold into themselves (Uniqlo, raincoats)
  • Gift for my parents
Seriously, this is the bag that I would have taken with me on Oceanic Flight 815.
Final advice on packing that I repeat from my last blog post and will probably repeat in every subsequent blog:
  • Roll your clothes
  • Bring only 2-3 pairs of shoes (and even that’s a lot)
  • Bring mostly one neutral color + jeans with a couple of unique things thrown in.
  • DO LAUNDRY on the road. Clean clothes, guaranteed adventure, less packing.

Off You Go, Then!

Categories: Travel Tips

1 Comment

Kristin · April 28, 2022 at 10:01 pm

I love the backpack idea!! Love this blog! Can’t wait for the next blog!

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