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Packing Cubes, Folders, Pouches, Pencil Pouches

I am a fan of packing organizers. They are real space savers. I like ebags.com and eagle creek packers. I roll my shirts and pants and put them in packing cubes. I also buy pencil pouches from office supply store for
maps and papers. I use a pencil pouch as a first aid kit.

Posted by
260 posts

Eagle Creek now makes the lightest possible organizers. They really weigh nothing! Just wish they came in slightly larger sizes. Of course, you can also use two gallon baggies as organizers as well. Really cheap!

Posted by
921 posts

I use all size of zip lock bags as packing cubes and that works really well for me. Whether it's real packing cubes or make shift ones like zip lock bags, I do really like having everything organized into some sort of "packing cube" system. It makes it so much easier to find things, and prevents me from constantly having to repack my bag. The pencil pouch idea is another good one.

Posted by
6869 posts

I too use organizers, however I only put underwear and non-clothing items in them. I got my organizers at RickSteves.com on a special sale--cheap. Gallon zip lock bags are good to keep everything together, also.
I have my laundered clothes heavily starched (wrapped in plastic), and I put them in the bottom of the suitcase.

Then, my organizers go in the middle and the rest of my clothes are wrapped around and over the top of the organizers. I have no wrinkles upon my arrival.

Posted by
1446 posts

I used the Ebags packing cubes for the first time this past Aug/Sept 2013 & will never travel without them! It was so much easier to take the cube out of my luggage than fishing for the necessary item towards the bottom of the suitcase & messing everything else up in the process. I love the Ebags cubes because they are very lightweight and come in a variety of nice colors so you can color code your items if you want. I also rolled my pants & shirts and put them into the cubes and it worked out really well. Have packing cubes, will travel!

Posted by
8767 posts

I have the Rick Steves packing cubes, as well as a couple from Eagle Creek. I like Rick's cubes better. Being all mesh you can easily see what is inside and they are very light weight. I don't travel anywhere without my packing cubes!

Posted by
18302 posts

I'm also a fan of organizers, but to me, packing cubes are overkill. They are too big for a truly light packer. I could probably put everything I take in one cube. How is that organization?

The two pair of slacks I take fit nicely in the bottom of the bag before I put anything else in (it helps to have a bag that opens flat). I found a Tide washing bag that is just right for my clean shirts, folded flat. Everything else fits in the mesh bags I got from ETBD, except my electronics, which I put in a stronger stuff bag.

Posted by
524 posts

I use a variety of pouches, mesh bags, file accordion holder, ziplocks and other misc. I have tried the eagle creek packers for domestic travel. They work great. The drawback is the added weight they bring with using them. So I don't use them for carrry-on to Europe.

Posted by
1549 posts

I like the double sided cubes. Clean clothes in one side, and dirty on the other side. Shirts in one, pants in another, underwear/sleep t's in a third. Fleece or sweatshirts are packed cube free. Since we don't take that many clothes it's easier to remember which side is clean/dirty based on what I wore yesterday. I find that staying organized in the cubes helps reduce the time to pack as we move from one hotel to the next. We also throw a cube with a change of clothes in our day packs in the event we are "forced" to check rollers at the gate due to space.

Posted by
2712 posts

I'm in the ziplock bag camp. The big ones (2 gallon?) with the zipper, not just the seal are great for clothes . Gets out excess air, super cheap, and easily replaceable. Then smaller ones for things like toiletries, jewelry, power cords, etc.

Posted by
1178 posts

I save the packing "bags" that t shirts, underwear, sheets, etc come in these day. Zippered, and right size. A different bag for each item....and they are free!!!

Posted by
223 posts

I now keep an 'emergency outfit' in the Eagle Creek 15" folder, as full flights mean you must gate check your carryon (or at least last week it did) and they can lose it. I used to use the largest ziplock, but then it seemed that I was going through them awfully fast. The systems are not so much for the trip there, but to me it's for when you are living out of your suitcase.

Posted by
1 posts

On a whim, I picked up a three cube set.
The largest one is one third of the interior size of my travel bag. (Which fits UNDER the seat, no overhead worries for me. So I pack very light, based on the thought that a long trip is really a series of short trips, thus what works for five days works for five weeks.)

My next trip will be in the mountains of Colorado in spring (snow) and NYC for a trade show. And my mode of transport is my feet.
The cubes are working out great in prepack: largest is cold weather, including a parka in a stuff sack, yes, in the cube; medium is the tradeshow/NYC nights; and the small is tech gear (cords, spare power, earbuds, iPad and iPhone, and some comfort gear like neck pillow and Vapur collapsible water bottle.

The cubes corralled things well enough that my crossbody bag, one spare pair of shoes, and toiletries, added to the cubes, all fit with, get this, room to spare.
My outer bag is a redoxx extra small aviator duffel. I see purses larger than this.
I do think having what I think of as removable pockets allows me to get what I need in a smaller space.

With my backpack, which still might go on this trip as the redoxx has no cross body strap/shoulder strap, I use two cubes.

Posted by
70 posts

I use an Eagle Creek packing folder and several cubes on my trips, and they are wonderful!

Posted by
1437 posts

Each trip being different, I tend to mix and match between RS & eBags cubes in different sizes. I use a pencil case for cables & charger, etc, and I picked up a couple of useful cheap neoprene cases/pouches from China on eBay.

I now also use a SpaceSaver bag for bulky winter items. I find a flat chair and sit on the bag's content to squish most of the air out... My light down coat got squished enough to add it to the stuff I already had in my RS wheel-aboard, last December.

I always carry a lightweight folded nylon stuff sack, especially for the plane ride: On the outbound, I pre-pack it with the stuff that I may need to quickly grab, should my wheel-aboard be gate-checked or goes under. Then it often doubles as a carrier for extra stuff for the return leg. While I'm out and about, I sometimes need it for carrying items I bought or packing a lunch in it. It usually sits at the very bottom of my little daybag.

Posted by
191 posts

No one has mentioned a packing FOLDER from Eagle Creek or elsewhere. This is perfect for nicer clothes, and especially if you are going on a cruise. I use a medium sized one that holds a dozen or so pieces, and fits nicely into the lid of my 16x20x7" Briggs & Riley carry-on rolling suitcase. It contains blouses, dresses, skirts, and slacks -- all the things that might wrinkle. They are folded flat and stacked. I also use three packing cubes, a medium one containing knit shirts and sweaters, small ones for lingerie, and anything else. They fit like a puzzle over the bottom of the suitcase. My shoes (in shoe bags) go along the edges, my personal items in ziplocks on top. This weighs about 25 pounds, whether I am going for a week or a month, and I can lift it into the overhead bin if I decide to carry it on.

Now, I have been known to buy a few souvenirs and gifts, so my bag expands to 9". I always take compression bags and use them for the return trip for dirty clothes and clean ones separately. I always check it in this state, because it will weigh 30-35 pounds! I just found a great 19" duffle bag at REI that folds into a 12" circle, just 1" thick, so I plan to take that when I travel to Europe this summer, and will use that as a carry-on if I need extra space for souvenirs. (I have 7 grandchildren, and like to bring them things from our travels!) It may get even flatter if I put it into a compression bag.

Jan