Are you packing your bags for a spring break escape? Perhaps it’s a business trip with the boss. A weekend getaway to celebrate a special event. No matter what you are packing for, you know the dilemmas. Is all that stuff going to fit in that suitcase? Can it fit into a carry-on so you can avoid paying checked baggage fees? What if Security opens up your carry-on? Is everything going to fall out?
If you’re a packrat who needs to bring your closet with you, avoiding checked baggage fees might not be possible. But with the Eagle Creek Pack-It System, at least you’ll have a fighting chance. And you might just fit everything in!
The Eagle Creek Pack It System
You might have read my earlier post, Five Tips For Efficient Suitcase Packing, where I state one of my favorite packing items is the Space Saver compression bag. I’ve been packing our family’s suitcases with these bags for years. I’ve even worn out bags – it happens with lots of use. During a recent quest to replace worn-out compression bags, I came across the Eagle Creek Pack-It System. I became intrigued with the concept, and decided to give it a try on my hubby’s next business trip.
The end result? I have new-found packing friends! Let me introduce you to them.
Eagle Creek Pack-It Folders
If you’ve traveled for business, or any destination that requires more “formal” attire than sweat pants, jeans and shorts, tee-shirts and sweatshirts, then you probably have faced the wrinkle dilemma. Packing is harsh on clothes that wrinkle. How do you pack your bag so that your starch-white shirt and silky-smooth dress arrive without massive amounts of wrinkles? Well, you can pack a steamer, you could iron them at the hotel, or you could pack them in the Eagle Creek Pack-It Folders.
Admittedly, I wasn’t convinced the Folder would work. I thought it was hype. Perhaps I was stuck in my old ways of rolling clothes and stuffing compression bags. But I needed a better packing method for hubby’s business trips. He wouldn’t use compression bags as they were “unprofessional-looking,” and he needed to arrive unwrinkled and ready to roll. So I took a risk. I bought an 18″ Pack-It Folder on sale. I packed a starch-white dress shirt, a business suit complete with pants, jacket, and tie, into it. Kissed hubby good-bye and hoped for wrinkle-free results upon arrival at his destination.
The verdict? He loved it! Yes, there were a few wrinkles at the juncture where the sleeves were folded over, but far fewer wrinkles than other methods I’ve used, including rolling. And the suit arrived with barely a noticeable wrinkle. He’s sold!
As for me, I am a changed packer! Will I use the Pack-It Folder on every trip? No, as some trips don’t require such fastidious packing. However, when my trip does, you can be sure the Pack-It Folder will be in my bag.
Eagle Creek Pack-It Cubes
Same story – business trip, no compression bags allowed. So I bought two Pack-It Cubes. They function much like my tried and true compression bags – roll and stuff clothes into the Cube. There is a major difference though. The suitcase has a much nicer, neater look with the Pack-It Cubes. Just what hubby wanted for his carry-on bag.
Can I accomplish the same thing with my compression bags? Absolutely! In fact, I can squeeze more into the bags. But it just doesn’t look as neat and orderly as the Cube, and I’ll admit – the Cube does allow for easier access to the items inside it.
The verdict? It’s a mixed bag. Seriously! I’ll be using both Cubes and compression bags in future trip packing. Each has an advantage over the other. The Cube is more neat looking, and provides easier access to items inside. The compression bag can stuff more clothes into the bag. However, for the traveler who might want a more “professional” look, the Pack-It Cubes are a great “stuff-that bag” solution.
Stuffing A Carry-On With The Pack-It System
Ok, so now I’m hooked. I’ll be using both the Eagle Creek Pack-It System and my compression bags. I’m all about down-sizing my suitcase strategy to avoid checked baggage fees. And if you don’t think it’s possible to pack for a ten-day trip in just one carry-on, then watch this video and see how it’s done.
I’ll admit I don’t see myself fitting ten days’ stuff into such small space, but I know my boys and hubby sure can. Hey, a girl’s gotta have that extra outfit and shoes you know! I’ll just “steal” some of their extra space.
Where to Buy
The Pack-It System might seem pricey, and well, it kind of is. If you pay full price. You should know me by now! Full price just isn’t going to cut it. Shop around and you are likely to find these items on sale somewhere. I picked mine up at Sierra Trading Post for a nice, steep discount off the retail price. Pack-It 18″ Folders are $16.95 – that’s 38% off the retail price of $27.50. Pack-It Cubes are $6.95, 44% off the $12.50 retail price. Then add in my 35% off Sierra Trading Post coupon, and I paid even less that that. I love a great score on a great product!
You can also check retailers like Amazon, TravelSmith, and 6pm.com, as well as other retailers who carry luggage and packing accessories. You can also purchase directly from the source at Eagle Creek. Don’t forget if buying online to check Mr. Rebate for cash back offers and Retail Me Not for possible coupon codes.
Price comparison with compression bags:
A set of two to four compression bags will cost from $10 to $30 depending on brand and whether or not you found them on sale. When you factor in that a compression bag over multiple uses typically becomes less efficient at keeping the air out, and most likely need replacement, the Pack-It Folders and Cubes are a decent deal. They don’t need to be replaced so it’s a one-time cost.
Now that I’ve used two Pack-It components, I’ll be buying more. I might even splurge and pay full price if I can’t find the ones I want on sale before my next trip. That’s how much I liked them. Which is still a surprise to me, that I’d consider full price!
How do you pack your suitcase? Do you use packing accessories like compression bags or the Eagle Creek Pack-It System? Let us know in the Comments section below.
All images and video from Eagle Creek.