The Best Packing Cubes, Compression Sacks and Vacuum Seal Bags
Once you start using packing cubes, you don't go back. These packing cubes, compression sacks and vacuum seal bags will help you fit everything you need into a smaller space and make your next trip the most organized yet.
Patagonia Black Hole Packing Cubes
Patagonia's Black Hole line of packing cubes certainly does its name justice. The medium and large sizes of these water-resistant packers both unzip flat, like a suitcase, revealing two separate zippered compartments. Sturdy webbing on the exterior of the cubes makes an excellent handle as well as allowing them to be lashed to the outside of a pack. Ultra-light packers and budget airline travelers may find that the 10L large Black Hole cube is all they need for packing a change of clothes for a summery weekend getaway.
Buy It: Backcountry.com, $40
Osprey Zip Sack Set
Keep your cables and cords organized with Osprey's set of zippered pouches, which will keep headphones, chargers, toiletries and more within easy reach. On a recent trip to Scandinavia, I used one of these small pouches to store a mini toiletry kit for the long-haul trek to Oslo. This way, I kept my main dopp kit stashed away in my duffel, reducing clutter and bulk under the seat in front of me for more leg room.
Buy It: Amazon, $30
Peak Design Packing Cube
Pull the two sides of these techy packing cubes to "tear" them open faster than you could unzip them. These two-sided compression cubes, which come in two sizes, make it easy to separate clean and dirty clothes.
Buy It: Peak Design, $30 - $40
Peak Design Wash Pouch
Peak Design's Wash Pouch might be the most organized dopp kit ever. It opens like an accordian for easy access to all parts of the pouch, including zippered areas, sleeves for tools like tweezers and nail clippers, and a toothbrush area that snaps closed with magnets.
Buy It: Peak Design, $60
Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Tech Shoe Bag
Prevent dirty shoes from messing up your clean clothes by storing them inside these ultralight shoe compartments from Eagle Creek.
Buy It: Eagle Creek, $19
Eagle Creek Pack It Specter Tech Garment Folder
Keep your clothing wrinkle-free by storing it inside this garment folder, which will guide you into making perfect folds. It packs flat so you can easily layer other packing cubes on top of it.
Buy It: Eagle Creek, $35
Nite Ize RunOff 3-1-1 Waterproof Pouch
Breeze through airport security with this see-through waterproof pouch designed to hold all your travel-sized liquids, gels and aerosols. Sleep easy on your flight knowing that your mini soap and shampoo bottles won't leak all over your clothes even if they do happen to burst.
Buy It: REI, $35
Topo Designs Accessory Bags
Topo Designs's stylish accessory bags are as great for organizing small items in your carryon as they are for everyday use as pencil cases and other must-haves. If you're looking for versatile organizers that easily transition out of your regular routine, into travel mode and back again, this is what you need.
Buy It: Backcountry.com, $15 - $19
Space Mates Compression Bags
Squeeze the air out of your clothes to pack more into less space with these travel-friendly plastic compression bags. You can also suck the air out of them with a vacuum through the ports in the center of the bags.
Buy It: Eddie Bauer, $15
Pack-It Specter Tech Compression Cube Set
Zip your bulkiest layers into Eagle Creek's Specter Tech Compression Cubes, then shrink the space you need for them. Each of these pouches features a second zipper to expand and contract the cubes as needed for easier packing.
Buy It: Eagle Creek, $40 (Set of 2)
Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Tech Stuffer Set Mini
Organize the tiniest items or pack down bulkier ones like lightweight down jackets into Eagle Creek's Specter Tech Stuffers. Most of the packing cubes on this list are more or less square, and these cylindrical sacks will squeeze into the empty spaces in your luggage.
Buy It: Eagle Creek, $23 (Pack of 3)