View Full Version : Packing ??'s, Vacuum Bags

01-03-2003, 11:32 AM
Okay, we're about 35 days out from our land/sea, and I'm getting figidity. Hopefully, our cruise documents will arrive in the mail this weekend and give me something to focus my energy on. . .

I've been intrigued by some of the packing lists and hints I've seen here. Since we're going to be at WDW when you need everything from sweatshirts and light jackets to swimwear and shorts, followed by a cruise that involves island wear and dressing for dinner -- I think we're looking at more luggage than our usual 7-10 day trip to WDW in the Spring. I'm thinking about giving the vacuum bags a go.

For those experienced folks out there who have used vacuum bags:

*Has anyone used them on a land/sea?

*Do you separate out your land clothes from your sea clothes, to minimize the opening and closing of the bags?

*I understand you can borrow a vacuum on the ship to "reseal", how about at the resorts? Do you just call housekeeping, and how quickly do they respond? We'll be at the Polynesian.

I'm thinking that I can at least save space by packing our dinner clothes in these bags, since those will be "ship only". I'm actually dying to break out the suit cases and start organizing, since most of the clothes I'll be packing won't be needed in January in DC.

Thanks for all the help!!


tkd lisa
01-03-2003, 11:39 AM
Instead of vacuum bags, we just used zip locks. The 2 gallon ones work okay for most adult short type outfits, and the gallon size are perfect for my kids outfits including underwear and socks.

I just fold up the outfit, slide it in, start the seal closed, then sit on the bag (it looks pretty funny)!!That makes it easier re-packing on the other end.

As far as packing, when we went last May, I was completely packed by February. Like you say, we had no need for those clothes in Southern MD in the winter!!

This year, we're going in January, so I've got the summer type clothes packed, and I'm throwing in a couple pair of jeans the last day before we go.

Have fun!

01-03-2003, 12:19 PM
I have to agree with tkd...I have tried both and I have to say the zip lock work just as well, if not better. I spent a lot of $ on those vacuum bags "as seen on TV" and I have to say it was a HUGE waste of $.

01-03-2003, 12:49 PM
I love the "spacebags". We bought the travel ones though.....they don't require a vacuum....just roll the air out. You can get ziplocs to do the same basic thing but I like the spacebags better and the sizes were much larger than ziplocs.

We did separate our cruise clothing from our 2 days at Kennedy space center clothing......but we had a car to leave the unneeded stuff in while on the cruise.

01-03-2003, 01:31 PM
Thanks for all the good info!! I forgot that we'll have a rental car parked at the port -- no need to drag everything on-board!!

Of course, it is the in and out of the airport that gets interesting -- especially when you get the 9 year old involved in lugging the suitcases. We could always just get a cart -- but I thing DD would be offended if we didn't let her lug her case through the airport.

I might try a little bit of both bags -- I've noticed that CostCo has some version of the vacuum bag -- I'll look at it more closely the next time I'm there. I've already bought a big box of the 2 gallon ziplocs, and I have my over the door shoe holder ready for all our toiletries.

I am just so ready to go! I'm having major WDW withdrawal, and this is our first cruise. . .:wave:

Bev J
01-03-2003, 02:33 PM
We have been using bags that are similar to the vacume bags but have a double zip at the top and you roll the bag to force the air out through vents that reseal at the bottom of the bag. These work great and you don't have to hunt down the vacume. These bags will really extend the amount of stuff you can pack and hopefully with the new packing requirements if your bags are opened they will be able to just see everything and not unpack.
When we cruise we always have a seperate bag that we pack for the prehotel stay that way we are not repacking all the time.
If we have a car we just leave that case in the trunk.
I have found the above bags at wallmart and sometimes target. Also advertized on tv but for more money of course.

Have a great trip.

01-03-2003, 04:02 PM
Just a word of warning on the vacuum bags. If you by chance fly out of an airport where they will manually search your bags - the vacuum bags can be a big hassle. They will have to be opened to allow the security people to search the contents.

We used them on a trip to Las Vegas and they work great - but since they back so hard & tight - the security officer had to run them through the x-ray machine. If the airport had been busy we would have had to open them up to be searched.

01-04-2003, 02:11 PM
Originally posted by tkd lisa

I just fold up the outfit, slide it in, start the seal closed, then sit on the bag (it looks pretty funny)!!That makes it easier re-packing on the other end.

ROFLMAO Lisa! I thought I was the only one looking really silly sitting on the ziplock bags to get as much air out as possible! I tried rolling the air out, but it looked like quite a bit of air was still in the bags. I ended up sitting on it on the floor (hard surface) and it looked like all of the air came out. I could have packed 12 complete outfits (4 outfits for 3 people) in one carry-on bag! But, even with the air out of the picture, the clothes were still pretty heavy and I didn't want to lug that much weight around. DH was amazed at how little luggage we took last time.

01-04-2003, 03:03 PM
We thought we came up with this idea but I saw American Tourister selling them on late night TV and now I see it on the boards. LOL. We used ziplock bags for DLP but only for underwear and socks for 4 of us and it was great. Have a stupid guy question. Could I pack dress pants, shirts, suit in zip locks or am I gonna have major wrinkle problems? I think I know the answer but wishful thinking.

01-04-2003, 03:11 PM
ziplocs and the space bags for our trip in November and they were nice. With us having 3 kids and doing WDW before, Cruise, and then WDW after we took 3 suitcases. I packed stuff for each "leg" of the trip in each suitcase so basically I packed all the stuff we would need for WDW before the cruise in space bags and ziplocs in one suitcase (and I put an outfit for each kid in a ziploc bag complete with underwear and socks and their name on it) so that in the morning we werent looking for a shirt or socks or something we just used a new package every day. Then at the end of the day I put them all back in their respective ziplocs and put them in a drawer in the hotel or the ship. When it came to packing up to go to the next location or home I just chucked all the bags into the suitcase along with souveniers and we were off. I did the same thing for the clothes we would need on the Ship and also after at WDW again. I think this was the most hassle free vacation as far as clothing goes ever for us (and we have taken ALOT of trips in the last 2 years) but it was nice because we only had to open one suitcase at a time and the others stayed in the closet until we needed it. I have heard that the space bags make the delay at the airport longer because of the new bomb sniffing equipment in most airports but I think you could call the airline and ask their specific requirements or what they would suggest.


01-05-2003, 04:42 PM
Well, I spent the weekend experimenting with all options. Gotta say, I love TKD Lisa's approach. It was fairly theraputic to body slam each ziploc full of clothing, while watching the 4-6 inch "light dusting" of snow in my yard. My daughter has a friend over, and they are already talking about a "no school" sleep over (We live in the DC area, it doesn't take much snow to close schools -- I grew up in Cleveland, where we never heard of a snow day).

Anyway, I love having each day's clothing organized and ready to go in a space efficient manner. It's also a great solution to shoving the mountain of dirty clothes into the suitcase at the end of the trip and hoping they fit.


01-05-2003, 08:46 PM
Everyone is talking about 2 gallon sized Ziplock bags, here in Canada we have litre bags. Is a 3.7 lt. bags the same as the 3 gallon bags in the U.S. or are they bigger in the States?

01-08-2003, 03:40 PM
hi tigercat, I think the 3.7 litre bag would only be about 1 gallon. Where do you get 3 gallon bags, I could get all my clothes in one of those. LOL.

01-08-2003, 04:32 PM
Sorry disneykins I meant to write 2 gallons not 3.

01-08-2003, 04:33 PM
Where does anyone find the 2 gallon size? I've searched and I can not find them in my stores?!:confused:

01-08-2003, 05:02 PM
ldb1030- I used to find the 2 gallon size at Walmart, but I haven't looked for them in a while. I am going searching for them tomorrow, so I will let you know!

01-08-2003, 07:30 PM
I've searched everywhere, including WalMart for 2 gallon bags and over the door shoe bags and haven't been able to find either.

Does anyone have any ideas where else I should look?


01-08-2003, 09:56 PM
We just bought a pack of 14 - 2 1/2 gal bags at Target. They are made by Hefty and called "jumbo" size.

01-08-2003, 10:22 PM
I am packing now for a cruise next week- question - WRINKLES????? How do the clothes, cotton dress shirts, matching kids short sets, etc. look when you pull them out of the bags? I have packed Downy Wrinkle remover and hope that helps with clothes that wrinkle from regular packing, but sqishing (sp) them scare me. So tell. how much work do theclothes need when you pull out of these bags?

01-08-2003, 10:56 PM
This is going to be a dumb question but why do you use the bags for your clothes? Is it just a convenience thing? I like the idea of having the whole outfit including underwear and socks for the kids in one bag. But doesn't everything get all wrinkled that way?

tkd lisa
01-09-2003, 07:44 AM
I did use the wrinkle release for a few things, and it worked great.

I didn't put nice dress shirts in there or anything. Basically it's the kids play clothes. As long as the clothes are pretty flat when they go in the bags, they don't really get wrinkled.

As to why we use them, it takes up MUCH less space. Our first cruise, I had packed the kids clothes before I thought of the zip locks. Their clothes filled up one kids suitcase and most of a small rolling carry on bag. When I put them into the ziplocks, everything fit into the carry on, so we brought one less bag!

Since I'm the kind of parent who lays out the kids clothes at night for the next day, putting the outfits into a zip lock let them just grab a set out of the drawer, saving space on the counters for other things.

tkd lisa
01-09-2003, 07:47 AM
jdm, you can also find the over the door hangar at the dollar stores.

I had a bit of trouble finding the two gallon ones. I eventually found them at Wal Mart, but they don't always have them.

The one gallons work fine for my kids clothes, unless they are really bulky. I used the 2 gallons when my DD went to a horse riding camp and had to wear long pants every day.

Good luck! And see you on the 19th!

01-09-2003, 09:03 AM
Thanks tdk lisa:D What a GREAT idea. I'll have to try this on our Cruise (Not for a while)

Have a great trip!

01-09-2003, 10:26 AM
I just got back from our Walmart and they had Ziploc Freezer bags in the 2 gallon size, 10 to a box for $3.37.

They didn't have any other brand or variety in the 2 gallon size, but I see that jdm_dkm found some made by Hefty at Target.

Also, we found clear, over-the-door shoe hangers at Target, on sale for $5!

I also found a soft-sided cooler at our Walmart, holds "12 cans plus ice," and folds up pretty small for $6.33.

Thanks for the reminder about wrinkle release! I didn't have that on my packing list!

01-09-2003, 10:42 AM
I actually folded the clothes like I would at home and put them in the bag, then I rolled the ziploc up really tight and then sealed it and unrolled it. The clothes to my knowledge (I am not super fussy about wrinkles...we are on vacation and all) but I didnt notice anything so wrinkled that I had to do much about it. We did use Wrinkle Releaser on a few things and other times we hung the "garment" in the bathroom while we showered and it got "steamed" but we didnt do much to them. I packed my 7 year old's nice clothes (as well as the 3 year olds) in the ziploc method and didnt notice much wrong with them. In fact hubby and I commented on how much less wrinkled the clothes were for the kids coming out of the ziplocs than when we just packed them regularly (since we arent the most complulsive packers) but it was SOOOOO worth it to have all the kids stuff together and not have to worry about where that pair of socks went or where is their underwear! Our kids liked it too because they had their own freedom of picking what THEY wanted to wear that day (I made sure all the items were coordinated in the bag) and they got to choose!


01-09-2003, 12:38 PM
What are the over the door hangars used for? Couldn't find it when I went through all the postings? Ziploc bags? Great idea! Actually, DD was told to do that for a girl scout camping weekend and it worked great!

01-09-2003, 02:22 PM
kimruth - I, too, wondered how people could be taking so many shoes that they needed a door organizer! I finally realized people were hanging them on the bathroom door instead of the cabin door, and they suddenly made so much more sense!

Use the door hanger for toiletries, cosmetics, hair brushes, kids toys, shoes, room keys or walkie talkies when not in use, etc. Any small items that could be kept in a central place to make them easy to find!