packing tips

Pack smarter on your next getaway. (Photo: Getty Images)

Tips + Trends

Pack Smart: The 7 Best Luggage Space Savers

You’re not alone if you’ve felt anxiety when approaching an airline check-in desk: Will my bag be overweight? Will I have to pay an extra bag fee? Not to mention the strain on your back as you try to lug your overstuffed luggage from one place to the next.

These seven space-saving, tech-forward items make packing a lot easier for your next adventure.

Ultralight Compression Sack

If you watched your grandmother or great aunt use plastic zip-close bags to freeze leftovers, then you know that pushing the air out of those things also helps save space. Now there is a way to use the same concept with clothes in the reusable ultralight compression sack that reduces packed volume in luggage by almost 60 percent.

High-Tech Travel Backpack

(Photo: KeySmart)

Whether you need a sleek, weight-stabilized backpack for travel or simply commuting to the office, the Urban 21 Commuter Backpack from KeySmart wraps up all your needs in one tidy package. The water-resistant bag with comfy, memory foam shoulder straps is designed to minimize heat and sweat as you carry it (buh-bye, sweaty back); has a padded, interior laptop sleeve; a hard-shell compartment to protect your glasses, phone and wallet, and features sneaky anti-theft and RFID-blocking pockets.

Packing Cubes

Organization will be your middle name when you unpack in your final destination: Underwear, clothes and personal items will be kept neatly folded inside Eagle Creek’s Mixed Cube Set. These lightweight, washable and water-resistant fabric pouches can be slid easily fr your luggage into your hotel dresser.

Hanging Travel Shelves

packing tips
(Photo: Stow N Go)

Multitiered Stow N Go Hanging Travel Shelves save up to 30 percent of the space in your suitcase, and upon your arrival, you can do a dramatic flick of your wrist and watch the portable system fold down and expand, holding items like belts, shoes and folded clothes.

A convenient, built-in hook at the top of the shelves allows you to hang the system on the back of your bathroom door or inside the closet. The only thing left to do is toss your soiled socks into the zippered dirty-laundry compartment.

Peekaboo Toiletry Bag

Toothbrush? Check. Toothpaste? Check? Soap, shampoo and conditioner? Check, check, check. The Travelpro Essentials Split Case Toiletry Bag allows you to see inside of it with its clear pouches. The exterior zipper lets you close the bag securely for compact storage of your essentials.


packing tips
(Photo: Tortuga)

Coming in handy for getting all of your gear packed for a long adventure, the Tortuga Outbreaker 45L Backpack has soft padding and a removable hip belt that lets you get around with all of your gear in a comfortable place on your back. The bag is said to fit enough clothes for up to one week, a laptop, tablet, toiletries and accessories — all in its cleverly compartmentalized design.

Tri-Fold Carry-On Garment Bag

Those snazzy clothes you needed for the ballroom dance lessons you booked in Austria, your cousin’s wedding in Napa or that business trip you flew halfway around the world to attend? You could be packing them using Tumi’s Garment Bag Tri-Fold Carry-On, which fits up to two suits or gowns with room for toiletries and folds up neatly into a slim fit.

Washable Laundry Bag

We all have travel days where we get a little messier than on other days, and who wants their dirty laundry touching the fresh-smelling clean clothes in their luggage? The TravelPro Essentials Washable Laundry Bag has a large compartment and smaller mesh compartment for soiled duds. After you get home, throw the bag in the laundry and air dry before for your next trip.