Please sign in to post.

Compression Bags Can be Ok!

Greetings, I am, as most are here, ever trying to further reduce what I pack whether for an international trip or within the US. I have never been team compression bag because 1) you are technically taking more than fits in your suitcase, so it's still added weight and extra stuff and 2) at least for me, everything gets badly wrinkled.
However, my past two domestic flights they've been a game changer for the return flight. I used to use plastic hotel laundry bags or a couple of my compostable big ones from home, flat on the bottom of each side of the clamshell suitcase, for laundry. As it accumulates I put pants and heavier items in one and tops, etc. in the other.
Packing to go home is simplified- I just reshuffle the contents to fit within the compression line marker and roll/zip. There's been room for small purchases with the space created, and when home it's easy to just put the bags in the laundry room.
(I like that I can reuse them, too- turned inside out to air a few hours.)
Hope someone else might find this useful! Happy travels!

Posted by
6671 posts

That's exactly what I do with laundry coming home. It's about the only thing compression bags are good for, since anything soft will wrinkle and anything hard won't compress. But I don't agree that "you are technically taking more than fits in your suitcase." It fits.

Posted by
427 posts

The big risk of compression bags and you’re probably not going to have this if you’re just using them to come home is that they can make your luggage overweight. I have seen that happen. “Look how much stuff I can get in here” and if you get to put that on the scales, It’s overweight.

Posted by
847 posts

A tip for using your compression bags. Put your clothes in it and then put it under your mattress and sit down and then zip up the closure. Easier than rolling to expel air and maybe clothes will not get wrinkled as much.

Posted by
6383 posts

treemoss2, I use 2-gallon freezer bags, and compress them by sitting on them. It makes my husband laugh, but it works!

Posted by
115 posts

:) Thank you for the responses- and compression tips! I have only resorted to using my knee to shmush out the air, but sitting on the contents is a good suggestion!
I agree that weight restrictions for carry on is the reason for the careful packing selection and Tetris-like fitting to pull it off. Along with taking less I now also re-wear what I bring 3 times- or more. By the final wearing I really don't mind adding it to the slowly accumulating laundry bag. I fold to fit inside but if not compressed it starts to take up space.
I have a clamshell style bag. As the lumpy laundry bags grow I swap the remaining items to their own side.
For the trip home, though, compression makes it so much easier, and I did discover creates some space for random things I didn't begin with.

Posted by
498 posts

Jane! I used to do the exact same thing! I used to travel with a smallish 5 lb samsonite bag that was just about the same size as those big ziplock bags. I’d put tops in one , bottoms in another and undies pjs in another, sit on them closing the zipper. They’d look like freeze dried whatever and then I’d slip them in the bag easy peasy. They’d re-inflate somewhat but it worked great.

I eventually came to worry about the extendable handle because it was sort of the under the seat size bag, it was extra long and it just seemed rickety and every trip I’d worry about it so I ended up with another more traditional shaped bag and switched to traditional packing cubes. But I did love those big ziplocks!