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Rick Steve's luggage

Do you suggest the rolling bag for a trip to Italy? I am thinking about getting one of the convertible backpack and one of the rolling bags. I'm thinking there should be enough instances where the roller will come in handy and will be easier for my wife. However, will I be carrying the bag more often through the streets of Florence, Rome, Venice etc? I see that the one bag is 3 pounds compared to 7. Thanks!

Posted by
6475 posts

I've traveled extensively throughout Europe and the States with Rick's Classic Travel Bag. It's ALL about not having to check bags when I travel. I do have a great travel bag from Eddie Bauer that has wheels but I use it very rarely. Well built but too heavy. Keep in mind that Italy is filled with uneven cobblestone streets and hills. Personally I'd opt for two Classic travel bags and pack the least amount of clothes that you can. Enjoy your trip. Italy is FABULOUS!

Posted by
769 posts

Brian - its personal preference (50/50). If you can handle 15-20 lbs on your back - go for no-wheels. Lighter and easier to work with. If you cant or dont want to wear it most the time (or carry over a shoulder)then wheel it. You sacrafice light-wieght convenience (add 5+ lbs)- but save your back health if thats a risk. And #2... just pack light in either case!

Posted by
1191 posts

My husband and I are going for our 3rd trip and have used the classic travel backpack with no problem. We are both 50. It is not heavy, but we travel when weather is warmer! You will be climbing a lot of stairs in the train stations, a backpack is so much easier! As far as carrying the bag through the cities, won't you be leaving the bag at your hotel?

Posted by
110 posts

Yes, we will be leaving bags at hotel and train stations, but we still need to get to the hotels.

I found a bag that is the same size and weight of Rick's that you can roll and use as a backpack. I think I am going to get one of those and get one of the convertible backpack. That way we should be covered. Thanks for all the advice.

Posted by
31524 posts

On the topic of using Rick's Convertible Pack as carry-on, I'm curious on how many have actually been able to do that? My venerable Eagle Creek Pack is about the same size as Rick's, but the airlines usually won't allow it for carry on (either for size or weight, not sure?).

Many airlines seem to be tightening their carry-on limits, probably due to fuel costs more than anything else. I got nicked by RyanAir recently for being slightly "overweight" with my checked luggage (there is NO leeway with them when it comes to weight!).

I've been thinking of trying Rick's Pack on a future trip, just to see if it "loads" any differently than my existing pack. It would be great to avoid the wait for the baggage carousel!

Cheers!

Posted by
11450 posts

Kent ,, re torso length, I understand RS used to make the bag available in a shorter length, good for women and shorter men I assume. Would back pack be good for what average sized person, what I mean is, if I am 5'6" am I too short for it??

Also, I know the large international airlines seem to allow more leeway in carry on, but, I am using Vueling air for an intra europe flight, and they are pretty clear about carryon size, and what I am finding is that every single bag I have looked at is just too fat! I can't remember now exactly, but I think they want a max. thickness of 7 or 8 inches, and I have yet to find a bag that would comply.

I guess I am going to have to accept I may have to check my bag.

Posted by
769 posts

Id also recommend a few of the packing cubs - they will help keep it all tighter along with the external straps. Likewise - the items dont shift around as much so you the bag will keep its slim shape better and not bunch up at the bottom!

Posted by
31524 posts

Kent,

I remember our previous discussions, but although it appears that the RS Convertible Pack won't work for me due to the "torso range" issue (I'm about 6'), I'm still tempted to try it just to see how it compares with my existing pack.

Some of the reasons I think it might work are:

  • I tried on a fairly well loaded RS Pack belonging to one of the other tour members last fall, and it didn't seem too uncomfortable. Of course, I didn't have the opportunity to pack this for any distance, and sore shoulders might have been the result?

  • I often only use the Pack for a short distance, from station to Hotel, so if I'm not carrying it for an extended period, the "limitations" might be tolerable.

  • If it is in fact a better size for carry-on than my existing Pack, that would be a huge benefit!

I was hoping to get to the Travel Fair this year, to actually look at them but due to the work situation, this doesn't look likely. I'll have to ponder this decision a bit more.

Cheers!

Posted by
31524 posts

One final thought on the RS Convertible Pack.....

As far as I know, the RS Packs don't have an internal frame? This might be one reason they don't work for some people? Without a frame, the pack will probably hang like a "sack of potatoes", putting most of the weight on the shoulders?

Just a thought.....