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Old 01-24-2013, 04:14 PM   #1
LSUfan4444
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Suitcase packing tip for those who fly

Depending on the airline, baggage fees, etc., people travel with a wide variety of amounts and sizes of luggage. Me, personally, I usually fly southwest which allows me to take three bags, and usually use all three bags. Even if it is a short trip, we use one for food/snacks.

Many people prefer to travel lighter and may only be able to travel with one bag per airline guidelines.

Anyway, as a runner participating in the marathon last weekend, it is commonly spread advice to always fly with your running gear in case the airline loses your bag, you'll still have your gear and not forced to try and wear new shoes and clothes for a race. So, I did that...packed all my race stuff in my carry on.

Good thing too, because shortly after arrival and lunch, as I am boarding the marathon expo bus with a crying three year old I got a call from Southwest that my garment bag fell from the luggage truck and was drug down the tarmac ruining the bag and all of it's contents. Now, before this turns into a "cry me a river" type of post, this is how it may relate to you.

The bag that was ruined wasn't the suitcase with all of my necessities/things I need and HAVE to replace (jeans, shorts, underwear, etc.), it was my garment bag, with all of my nice clothes. Dress shirts, sweaters, some irreplaceable Ironman Finisher clothing, etc. I started to ponder which bag I would have preferred to lose if I had to choose. The method that would probably work best is packing my suitcases like I invest, very diversified.

Pack some of everyones items in different suitcases and mix it up so if one suitcase is destroyed, or lost forever, the hit is "minimal" to one single person and one specific type of clothing. I would have much preferred lose one sweater, one pair of jeans and a few polos than the amount I lost.
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Old 01-24-2013, 04:17 PM   #2
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Ummm.. thanks?
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Old 01-24-2013, 04:33 PM   #3
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OK.....

I hardly never check bags - we just returned from our WDW trip yesterday and flew SWA. Carry on only

Then again, I used to live with an F/A an learned how to pack - flying non-rev, you have to travel with carry on. Have vacationed for a week in Paris, 9-days in Croatia, week in Spain, etc on nothing more than a rollaboard and travel tote......
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Old 01-24-2013, 04:40 PM   #4
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Quote:
Have vacationed for a week in Paris, 9-days in Croatia, week in Spain, etc on nothing more than a rollaboard and travel tote......
#1- You are in the minority

#2- You didn't travel with small children on those trips

Also, traveling during times (like last week), when temps were in the 40's one day and 80's a few days earlier requires more clothes/luggage. It also very frequently saves money because you can bring more things with you, like our ponchos and umbrellas for when it rained, etc.

It isn't that I don't have the ability to travel lighter (when our daughter is not with us), it's that I choose not to. Even with a bag being destroyed this time, Southwest currently processing my claim for reimbursement, I don't see how me traveling lighter would be to my advantage, but I have no doubts it works for some.

In any event, regardless of whether you travel one with one or four bags, check or carry on...if you are traveling with someone else who has at least one bag, you might want to consider splitting up how some of the items are packed in the event a bag is lost, destroyed or stolen.
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Old 01-24-2013, 04:45 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LSUfan4444 View Post
#1- You are in the minority

#2- You didn't travel with small children on those trips

Also, traveling during times (like last week), when temps were in the 40's one day and 80's a few days earlier requires more clothes/luggage. It also very frequently saves money because you can bring more things with you, like our ponchos and umbrellas for when it rained, etc.

It isn't that I don't have the ability to travel lighter (when our daughter is not with us), it's that I choose not to. Even with a bag being destroyed this time, Southwest currently processing my claim for reimbursement, I don't see how me traveling lighter would be to my advantage, but I have no doubts it works for some.

In any event, regardless of whether you travel one with one or four bags, check or carry on...if you are traveling with someone else who has at least one bag, you might want to consider splitting up how some of the items are packed in the event a bag is lost, destroyed or stolen.
Actually, the Paris trip was with my young son at the time - a father/son trip. He was 10. And the weather last week varied between 40's at night and upper 70's during the day so we did have to pack accordingly

I don't call it traveling lighter but traveling smarter. I was simply posting another tip regarding those who fly - I may be in the minority but its just as valid as yours, ;-)
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Old 01-24-2013, 04:54 PM   #6
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How you pack is exactly how DW and i pack. We learned this tip a long time ago. Of course how we pack determines how many days we'll be gone for. Any stay that requires us to stay 3 nights or longer, we'll usually check a bag and do as you mentioned. If we'll be gone a whole week, we'll usually pack at least 2 days worth of clothes in our carry on. This way, if neither one of our bags makes it, we'll still have clothes.
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Old 01-24-2013, 04:57 PM   #7
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I think your suggestion is a very good one for those folks who don't travel frequently and/or have to check their luggage.

We learned the lesson the hard way too, when one of our suitcases went astray (it took a different vacation than we did). So now we try to spread each of our things between our luggage pieces.

It's fine if you are able to drive and can pack everything but the kitchen sink (we drive to WDW now). And it's great if you can pack all of your needs into one carryon bag (we've done that a couple of times on trips to Europe- really great when you're taking trains and subways).

But sometimes you just can't do that- circumstances require you to pack "heavy", so you have no choice but to check bags. Your suggestion makes a lot of sense when you're travelling as a pair or a family.
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Old 01-24-2013, 04:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
And the weather last week varied between 40's at night and upper 70's during the day so we did have to pack accordingly
I know, I was there with my three year old, which is how I know I could not have packed her (or probably my wife) in a carry one for an 8 day trip in a manner which would have been beneficial to us.

I don't wear jeans to a nice dinner, I wear slacks. And I don't go straight from the parks. We take our time and dress as we feel appropriately, which means we don't look like we just stepped off Main Street when we sit down for some dinners.

Also, a ten year old boy and a three year old girl are not in the same ballpark when it comes to what they need to have packed. Heck, they're not even in the same sport.

Quote:
I don't call it traveling lighter but traveling smarter.
I have no doubts you believe that to be true. Of course you believe your preference to be smarter, regardless of whether it works for someone else or not. I sincerely believe that's how you think.

Problem is, I think packing lighter is only smarter for some people in some instances, not all the time. When it causes me to spend more on food and do more laundry, alot of the time, it is not smarter.

All this is irrelevant and doesn't address the main point that packing things in different bags no matter how many bags you have or how you fly with them is probably a good idea for most people.
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Old 01-24-2013, 05:00 PM   #9
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I feel like I entered a thread on the Restaurant board asking for the "Best Steak at WDW" and I'm reading form vegetarians telling the OP that their diet is deficient.
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Old 01-24-2013, 05:19 PM   #10
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This is completely off topic from what you posted BTW but I am generally an overpacker. I can fill a minivan plus a car for a week at the beach, 2 adults, 2 kids. That being said, I have both my 4 year old and 2 year old packed for the first week of March in a carry on size rolling suitcase. There is no way I could pack my 11 year old stepdaughter in the same size suitcase for a week. The amount of space her clothes alone take up would well exceed the space in the suitcase. Therefore, a 3 year old girl and a 10 year old boy can indeed be in the same ballpark. It's all in what you choose to pack. Getting offended when someone else feels that packing less is smarter isn't really necessary.
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Old 01-24-2013, 05:28 PM   #11
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You should look up packinglightdotcom!!


I swear it works..
I packed our family of 4 for a 10 trip.....in 3 roller bags, 3 personal bags, and one diaper bag!

Worth the time it takes to watch it..
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Old 01-24-2013, 05:28 PM   #12
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Quote:
It's all in what you choose to pack.
Exactly. Which is why saying one way is smarter as a general statement doesn't make sense.

It can be smarter, for some people in some instances, but lighter doesn't mean smarter.

And I'm not offended just because I disagree. The difference is, I don't believe my way is smarter just because it's my way.
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Old 01-24-2013, 05:41 PM   #13
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I think a "Post your packing tips" thread would be awesome on the Transportation board. Someone should start that!
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Old 01-24-2013, 05:47 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JulyGirl View Post
I think a "Post your packing tips" thread would be awesome on the Transportation board. Someone should start that!
There are actually several threads already like that.

My Mom always taught me to pack at least 1 days worth of clothing in my carry on bag.
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Old 01-24-2013, 06:00 PM   #15
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Good idea when checking luggage....never thought of that!

But regardless I would still be screwed! We pack for all 6 of us in 2 suitcases. My girls are 18 and 14 and taller than me. My boys are 7 and 3. In each suitcase is clothing for 1 parent, 1 teenage girl, 1 boy. We pack this way is we're flying or driving ( no room for more than 2 suitcases with 6 people in the van! )

DH and I are doing a few days at Disney before our cruise next week. We're each just doing carry-on because I don't want lost luggage! I don't want to lose vacation time shopping for replacements if stuff gets lost.
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