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THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO TRAVEL LUGGAGE


Are you getting ready for your next epic adventure? Whether it’s a city break, European escape, or you’re planning a trek in a far-flung destination, the right luggage will make all the difference to your getaway. Here, we guide you through the different options, so you know what will work best for your trip. Plus, we’ll check out the accessories you need to help your trip to run smoothly.


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Duffel bags

If you won’t be travelling far on foot or moving locations multiple times on your trip, a duffel bag is your go-to. Available in a range of sizes, from around 30L to 120L, it’s easy to pick the right option to suit your getaway.

 

Sturdy, spacious and flexible, they're ideal for throwing in bulkier items like snow boots or camping gear. Plus, their less rigid structure makes them great when luggage space is limited as they can be crammed into spaces wheeled suitcases would never fit.

 

They usually come with shoulder straps and grab handles to make carrying easy, and many can be opened from either side, making them a doddle to pack and unpack at a moment’s notice.

 

Duffels deliver the goods on expeditions as they are usually made from durable, hardwearing and abrasion-resistant materials and offer some water resistance, in the event of rain.

 

Another big plus for duffel bags is that they make great sports bags when you’re not out exploring. So instead of collecting dust in the attic not getting used, you can make the most of them all year-round.

 

There are some things to consider though. We’d be lying if we said duffel bags are easy to carry over long distances, and while they are great for just chucking things into, it can be hard to keep your gear organised, especially if you’re packing and unpacking every few days. 

 

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Wheeled luggage

Your typical holiday suitcase, wheeled luggage is easy to transport and helps take a load off. They’re also great if you’re travelling with multiple bags, as you can  use them to balance additional luggage on. 

Most wheeled suitcases come with two wheels, but four-wheel versions are becoming more common and tend to be more stable.

 

The sturdy structure and easy access of a suitcase means it's easy to keep your gear organised when you’re on the move. In fact, we’d argue that wheeled suitcases are the easiest to live out of when you’re moving about every few days.

 

However, wheeled suitcases are best in environments where you can pull them along, like in an airport, and can be tricky to carry up steps or over rough terrain. Another thing to consider is that wheeled cases have a more rigid structure, which adds weight and makes things tricky if you need to cram your luggage into a loading compartment.

 

You may have seen wheeled rucksack hybrids, and for some people these can be great. Just bear in mind that what you gain in maneuverability, you lose in structure, so you need to weigh up your needs.

 

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Rucksacks

The versatile all-rounder, rucksacks are a firm travel favourite. With tons of space, they’re designed to enable you to carry everything you need , be durable and withstand the rigours of life on the move. Features like breathable back panels help maximise comfort and come into their own when you’re carrying the pack for long periods.

 

With internal sections, dividers and plenty of pockets, it’s easy to separate clean and dirty kit and even muddy shoes. Some come with padded sections, which are perfect for storing your laptop or tablet, or hidden internal pockets to allow you to stow away any valuables.

 

Carrying your gear on your back is the best option when you’re active as it leaves your hands free, and they’re undoubtedly the most practical solution if you’re moving around a lot, especially in more remote areas. However, with traditional top-loading rucksacks, you may find yourself rooting around for a particular item or having to unpack and repack  at every stop. To counter this, look for backpacks that zip open fully and allow easier access. 

 

With a rucksack, finding the right fit is important too. Lugging around all your gear in a pack that doesn’t fit will soon get uncomfortable, but we can help. Our free, expert rucksack fitting appointments ensure you get the right advice on what’s best for where you’re heading, your activities and what you’ll be carrying. Find your local store now. 

 

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Day packs

Whether you’re looking for a carry-on for the plane or want a smaller bag for your daily essentials, a versatile daypack is a must. With all the comfort and functionality of larger rucksacks, they’re great for shoving in the gear you need to keep close by.

 

Sizing is key - make sure you get one that is big enough for everything you need but won’t be so large it weighs you down when you’re exploring.

 

If you’re planning to use your day pack as a carry-on, avoid packs with frames as they add unnecessary weight and bulk, and won’t be as easy to pack into the overhead storage.

 

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Ski/snowboard Luggage

Your ski and snowboard equipment is a significant investment, so if you’re hitting the slopes and taking your own gear, you’ll want to protect it. The best way to do that is to invest in specialist luggage that has been designed to carry your ski, snowboard and even boots. Designed to offer padding in all the right places to protect damage from knocks and bangs or even drops from airline baggage handlers, you can be confident your beloved ski gear will land in one piece. 

 

For the best protection, lookout for armour-panelled bags, extra-durable tearproof fabrics and ultra-tough stitching, which will keep everything together trip after trip. 

 

When it comes to skis, slim-line options are perfect for single skis. For group trips, ski holders capable of carting multiple skis are ideal, while split-tier carry systems are worth considering if you need to carry skis and snowboards together.

 

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Luggage accessories

PACKING SOLUTIONS

 

Packing cubes are a must if you’re looking to make the most of your luggage space. Using different cubes allows you to separate out your gear and keep it organised, so you can grab what you need, when you need it. 

SECURITY

 

When you’re travelling, security shouldn’t be taken lightly, so looking out for features that will help protect your gear should be a top priority. Interlocking zips are great as they mean you can padlock your bag and deter opportunistic thieves. Combination locks remove the dread of lost keys, while TSA locks allow airport authorities to open your bag without damaging it.


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DRY BAGS

 

Whether you’re heading into the wilds and downpours are a risk, or you’ll be hitting the water and need somewhere to store gear you don’t want to get wet, dry bags can help. Designed to ensure your possessions stay dry and undamaged, they’re available in various sizes, and can also be used to help separate gear in your pack.

RUCKSACK ACCESSORIES

 

When you’re on the move, chances are your rucksack will take a hit or two, so it’s a good idea to get the right accessories to improve protection from the off. Rucksack covers are great as they can prevent the straps from getting damaged, prolong your rucksack’s life and add an extra layer of security.

 

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Find your perfect travel companion

Book a free in-store appointment and let our experts help find you find the perfect luggage solution for your travels.

 

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