With summer looming and restrictions slowly starting to ease, we can all start to think about embarking on some road trips to whet our explorer appetites. To make preparing for a trip easier, we’re sharing our top tips for choosing the right luggage bag for your next escape. Read on to discover how to find the right bag below.
Types of Bags for the Road
First things first, what types of bags are there to choose from? If you’re heading on a road trip you might be tempted to throw everything into random bags and into the boot of your car. But in the interests of preserving your sanity (and your stuff), we would suggest investing in either a backpack, duffle bag, or luggage bag that can offer more organisation and protection.
A backpack is great for outdoor adventures such as camping or hiking. It pays to look for a versatile backpack such as the Road Warrior that has a durable outer that is water-resistant and has comfortable straps.
A duffle bag is a great all-purpose travel bag that can be used as your main bag, or as a secondary bag to carry bulkier items because of its spacious interior. A foldable duffle that can easily fit into your luggage, backpack or even your handbag can be handy for unexpected situations on the road – like a shopping trip to a local market!
A suitcase can also work well for most road trips and is particularly useful because of how roomy and easy to transport they are. Hard luggage bags that open in a split book style such as the Titania Spinner Suitcases are good for protecting your items and give you easy access as the bag opens up entirely.
Consider Your Packing List
This might seem obvious, but it's surprisingly easy to get wrong. Before you set out to buy a bag, write your entire packing list out first. This will help you gauge how much you need to pack as well as what bulky items (if any) you need to consider.
For example, if you already have a small backpack that you frequently use on weekends away you might think that this will suffice for an overnight trip away for a wedding. It’s just one night so you won’t need to fit much in. What you may not think about is keeping your shirt and suit pressed while it’s stuffed in with your dress shoes, toiletries, laptop and sleepwear. What would be better in this situation, is a small hard-shell suitcase that neatly fits a garment bag with minimal folding.
It’s not just about ‘fitting’ everything in. Your bag should be able to carry all your items in a logical manner without ruining them!
Your bag should make your trip easier. Travellers going on a messy outdoor adventure may want a backpack with lots of compartments that can keep their items organised on the go. Business travellers might want to bring a bag with special compartments that can keep their laptop and documents secure. And wedding guests might appreciate spacious luggage with interior straps that hold clothing in place without squashing it to reduce wrinkling.
Keep Transit in Mind
Your destination might be at the top of your mind when packing, but when it comes to choosing the right bag, you should give some thought to your transit. Are you able to drive right up to your accommodation? Will you be carrying your bag through cobbled driveways or streets? Will you need to lift your bag in and out of your car often?
These sorts of factors will determine what sort of bag and features you might want to look for. In general, you’ll want your luggage to be lightweight. This will make any trip easier and will save you carrying around the weight of your bag instead of the weight of your baggage. However, if you‘re transporting anything fragile something with more of a protective outer might be more suitable.
The weight of your luggage is a major consideration particularly if you’re going on a road trip with multiple stops. The last thing you want is to dread arriving at a new destination because you know you need to heave your hefty bag out of the car.
Understanding your transit will also make choosing between rolling luggage or bags that can be carried on your shoulder or back easier. If you’re going to be walking your bags through dirt roads, uneven paths for a remote escape you may want to carry your bags rather than try and roll them through rough terrain.
Pack Your Packing Cubes No Matter What
If you want to maximise your time away and minimise the stress of luggage, packing cubes are a must. They compartmentalise your items and keep everything organised and easy to manage. This will mean that you’ll spend less time rummaging through your stuff and more time enjoying your trip.
Packing cubes are available in many different sizes to suit different items – for example, smaller cubes might be used for undergarments or accessories while larger cubes can separate your tops and bottoms.
Purchasing sets of packing cubes in different colours or patterns is also a handy way to organise a family and easily recognise what cube belongs to who. Panels for labelling will also help you to recognise what each cube contains which will make searching for items easier and neater.
Packing cubes are essential for any trip and will make the world of difference to the organisation of any bag.
Don't forget your car needs organising too!
Keeping your car organised can be a lifesaver on a road trip. After a few hundred kms it can become a disorganised mess! Finding something in a hurry can be a nightmare, whether it's sunscreen, a water bottle or medication. With 18 storage zones, including 2 insulated bottle holders, our new Car Boot Storage Organiser is the perfect way to keep your car organised for a trip to the shops, or across the country.
The versatile design makes it flexible enough to use in the boot or back seat. Made from heavy-duty, water-repellent materials it's built tough. The easy grab handles make it great to you use outside of the car for picnics and shopping too. Perfect for cars, vans, caravans, 4WDs and more!
Think About Future Travel
Many Australians are now making plans to reunite with loved ones or dreaming up their next overseas holiday as Australia starts opening it's borders to the world. We’re still hanging onto the hope of travelling to far-flung destinations without too many hassles very soon. If you need to purchase luggage for your road trip, consider making it useful for future (flying) trips too.
Your weekender or smaller road trip bags could also make for good carry on bags. So long as they fit within the carry-on dimensions. This differs from airline to airline, but for most Australian carriers, a bag that is 56 x 36 x 23cm should be allowed.
Also consider any safety features that you’d want for bags on international trips. Slash-proof straps, RFID-blocking technology and anti-theft zippers may not be high on your priority list for domestic travel bags, but if you intend on using the same bags abroad, these features are definitely worth investing in.
Do you have a favourite baggage type or road trip packing hacks?
Credit: Photo by Steve Freling of Motor Oomph