Never the Right Suitcase

Do I need a new suitcase for this trip?  Probably!!

TwoBlueSuicases-CruiseandTourPlannersSome people loves shoes.  Some love purses.  I love suitcases.  My most favorite store in Seattle is Bergman Luggage.   Why have just one suitcase, when I can have many?  The new colors and fabrics are so pretty.  But with the new airline regulations, some of my older suitcases have had to go into storage.  Or better yet, donate them to a women’s shelter.  So, how do you decide what suitcase is best for your trip.

First I decide about my carry on.  What weight and size will the airline allow for this trip?

Also, how long the flight is and how many connections?

I only have suitcases with wheels.  Then I can attach other parcels or suitcases onto it.   For instance, I take a lap top in a case.  It can be attached to my small carryon with a strap.  My purse goes inside the carryon, so now I have just 2, the maximum most airlines allow.  However, on some trips, I see some people with really large wheeled carryons, a backpack and a lap top.  Most were not stopped.  Those who were, let their carryon be checked at the gate and avoided the “more than one” checked rule.  They also avoid paying for checked bags.

Backpack on Wheels…

TheRightSuitcase-CruiseandTourPlannersOn red eye flights, I have a back pack type with wheels.  It cost $79 and is the best suitcase I own.  In it I have   my  ½ pillow rolled in a vacuum bag,  a sweater because you never know about the temperature on the plane   my glasses case with an eye mask, ear plugs and lip salve, a bottle of water I buy before boarding the plane (some airlines fill up water bottles from the plane’s tank and tell you it is bottled water)  a quart sized zip lock bag with toilet seat covers, packets of wipes, hand sanitizer, a few bandaids, and panty liners (then you can wear your underwear more than once, if necessary), tooth paste, tooth brush, a change of clothes and if I am landing in a rainy place, a rain poncho.

This bag also acts as a footrest under the seat in front of me, unless I am in business class with a foot rest.  Don’t forget the fold up bag for all the treasures you will be bringing home.  Or you can pack a small bag inside a larger bag.  Watch your weight on that one.

With that done, then I can move onto the larger bag which depends on the length of time I am gone.  Less is always better and I never seem to get that right.  The main reason is I don’t want to spend every evening doing laundry in the bathroom sink.  Many times it doesn’t even dry before I have to pack it.  Speaking of laundry, I love the old fashioned Fels Naptha bar of soap.  It rinses out quickly and is easy to pack.  It goes into a baggy with my clothes line that has suction cups on each end for hanging in a shower or even between 2 chairs on a deck.

Miscellaneous Packing Needs

LaptopSuitcase-CruiseandTourPlannersGoing through security is becoming more difficult or maybe as we get older it is more difficult.  At any rate, if you have a CPap machine, it must come out and be put in a bin.  Since my husband and I each have one, I now put them both in a carryon bag.  The masks and hoses go into zip lock bags so no one touches them  Then the lap top has to come out of it’s case and into a bin.  Or get a new lap top case that can be xrayed.  Then my husband has a pacemaker/defibrilator so he gets handchecked.  But all of his pockets need to be emptied before they take him away.  This leaves me to gather up everything at the other end of security.  Just give yourself a lot of time, put on a smile (especially to the poor soul who is behind you), say a lot of thank yous and it will make it easier on you and everyone else.  Above all else, don’t cut your time short.

One time I questioned why I had to take my underclothing-wallet out when men didn’t have to take theirs out.  Quick as a wink I was locked in a glass cage and made to stay there a very long time.  Just keep your mouth shut and do what they tell you.

Here are some great packing tips…

Do you have a special suitcase?  Let’s talk packing.  Cruise & Tour Planners

***originally published  8/16/2011

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