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Old May 22, 12, 10:58 pm   #1
 
Join Date: May 2012
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Beginner Consultant

Hey everyone,

This is my first post here. I am sure I will be visiting this site more and more over the coming months. I just graduated college, and I will be starting my career as a technology consultant in July. I will be traveling frequently, so I need to find the best luggage for my needs. AFAIK, most consultants will not check a bag for a four day trip. (M-R). So my priority is to find a great carry on that can hold all of my clothes. I am not a great packer (I'm sure I will learn fast), so the bigger the better. I also will need a regular luggage for longer trips, and I guess a toiletry case.

I recently received a Tumi brief case as a graduation present. I know there is so much discussion about brands on this forum, so I don't want to start another thread like that. But my question is, what features should I look for in a good carry on? Does anyone have any good suggestions? I saw someone mention a carry on that had a hanger hook so you can leave your clothes on a hanger and then just take it out and hang it up when you get to the hotel. This seems like a cool feature. What does everyone think?

Also, what is everyone's opinion on Delsey? I don't see them talked about much here. I am able to get their products at wholesale cost, which is great. Should I stick with them, even if they may not be as good as a Tumi bag?

All advice would be appreciated!
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Old May 22, 12, 11:49 pm   #2
 
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Welcome to FT! I recommend that you start by browsing the forum. Read the stickies, use the search function to explore whatever interests you. Objective information on what vendors have to offer is easily found. Your real challenge will be figuring out your own needs and tastes.

Would you be happier with a rolling carry-on or a shoulder bag? Backpack straps? One large compartment or several smaller ones? Which color?
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Old May 23, 12, 12:32 am   #3
 
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The hanger feature is very useful in making packing/unpacking easier but when it comes to selecting a bag make sure to check the service package that comes with the bag. Replacement, repair (who pays for parts/shipping).

When it comes to toiletry kits I have gone smaller over the years. Shampoo and such come from most hotels. Toothpaste, Electric Toothbrush in case, contact solution, contact case, Floss, 1 small bottle of mouth wash but most hotels provide these days, precounted out vitamins/meds+2 day extra and Q tips.

I tend to travel with 1 standard roll-a-board and a cabin bag/laptop bag. Between those two items I have no issues.
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Old May 23, 12, 9:49 am   #4
 
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Thanks everyone. I definitely want a rolling carry on, I won't want to carry it. Would I be better off with a hard case or soft? What are the advantages and disadvantages of both be?
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Old May 23, 12, 11:05 am   #5
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jss381 View Post
Thanks everyone. I definitely want a rolling carry on, I won't want to carry it. Would I be better off with a hard case or soft? What are the advantages and disadvantages of both be?
Hard cases can be heavier than soft cases (although with newer materials, not necessarily!) Soft cases with expandable middles are nice to squeeze extra material in (for regular trips). I dislike spinners and prefer the larger radius wheels. I have a soft case Samsonite expandable carryon and tend to buy a new bag every 2 years or so due to wear and tear.
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Old May 23, 12, 11:40 am   #6
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Welcome to FlyerTalk.

I don't feel that bigger is better. I personally (personally, some will disagree) get a carry on that is larger than 20 inches. Anything bigger than that and to me it becomes a hassle to get them in overheads, the trunk of rentals, etc. You lose a couple of inches of space, but, again for me, it's totally made up with how much easier it is to get around with it.

Your choice of luggage depends on your needs. Personally I prefer pack it folders for shirts to keep them wrinkle free, a carry on with a hanger hook does not work as well for me. Hangers take up space and add weight.

I would get something fairly inexpensive right now. Get some trips under your belt, figure out what you really need (no matter what anybody says, nobody has a clue what your needs are, only you can determine that) and take some time to figure out what you are looking for.

I would also recommend soft side. Hard side ones can't be mashed into a small space, or overstuffed when necessary.
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Old May 23, 12, 11:47 am   #7
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Simple answer: The $50 carry-on bag of decent quality you buy from Marshalls/TJ Maxx will last you a long time. In terms of hanger hooks etc, the one feature I would recommend you find is a carry-on with a built in toiletry bag...makes life easy.
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Old May 23, 12, 3:32 pm   #8
 
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Black Tumi

Thats what most consultants get. You'll write it off as job expense.

Unless of of course you want to be a little different. At your age and the stage of your career, however, you are probably more worried about not screwing up the firm's partners' image. Right now you have to fit in with the culture and the look. At least I hope you have good shoes and are not running around with douche bag stuff like Kenneth Cole, or Aldo.

If you need some style advice check styleforum.net.
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Old May 23, 12, 4:01 pm   #9
 
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Originally Posted by jss381 View Post
Thanks everyone. I definitely want a rolling carry on, I won't want to carry it. Would I be better off with a hard case or soft? What are the advantages and disadvantages of both be?
Hard case is simply not needed unless you transport fragile items. When you do hard case, do spinner and also do rigid frame (no zipper between the hard shells). This is the most rigid version and it really pays big dividends in protection but mostly in how easy it is to move the luggage around even when it is heavily loaded. At that point your choices are rather limited (Rimowa, Samsonite, Titan (Maybe), Delsey). I don't know of any others making real hard cases with hard frames and four wheels.

Hard cases basically never have exterior pockets. However, those are super practical to slip a last minute laundry item or newspaper and to store file folders. They won't get crunched in the flat exterior compartments and access is easy.

Don' t get a monopole (single pole) extension handle. They are bad for attaching a briefcase. Get a standard two pole handle and a suitcase with a hard flat top so the briefcase can sit on it easily.

Forget about the outside handle systems like Briggs Riley uses them. They are in principle more fragile and cost a lot of packing space while increasing the exterior volume. Otherwise BR is an excellent brand, though.

Delsey is very good. Buying a higher-end Delsey bag at wholesale price sounds like a really good idea.

I second the advice to go with nothing bigger than a 20" suitcase. And do watch the weight, the empty weight. Every pound you save there is worth gold.

As a material you want 1080d ballistic nylon. Or 1000d Cordura nylon. Accept nothing less. A waterproof warranty on the other hand is not that important if you actually never check the bag. But it is nice to have.

Don't bother with a toiletry case. Useless weight. Instead use two ziplock baggies. One for hardware (brush, comb, etc) and one for liquids (gel, cologne, etc).

Forget about extra garment bag features and such. Just an Eagle Creek shirt folder will be a good investment.

I also second the advice with good shoes. Not only will your feet thank you but you will look much better and feel much better. Allen Edmonds make a very good shoe at a very reasonable price.

IMPORTANT: Do read/STUDY the Masterpacking Thread Sticky on top of this forum. It will tell you all you need to know on the subject.

Congrats on the new job, welcome to FT and good luck,

Till
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Old May 23, 12, 4:08 pm   #10
 
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Oh, dash it, tfar, you always just pip me to the post.

So yes, exactly what tfar said, plus a third voice to get some good shoes (and good suit). As for the luggage, look for all the features that tfar says, but visually, as long as it isn't offensive it'll be fine.

So the *look* of the luggage isn't important, you want to concentrate on the practicality. However, for your shoes and suits then looks (rightly or not) *will* be important.
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Old May 23, 12, 4:29 pm   #11
 
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as a side note...

Whichever brand you choose, I would suggest a soft case. It can be very helpful to stuff items that you would take off and put into a bin into the front pockets. This can save a few minutes if in a rush to get to the gate.

Never under estimate the effectiveness of using the hotel's bathroom with the shower running on hot to steam out the wrinkles from your packed suits/shirts/pants. I have used this tip several times when packing didn't go quite as planned.

Welcome to FT and the road!
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Old May 23, 12, 7:07 pm   #12
 
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Originally Posted by NeverFirst View Post
Oh, dash it, tfar, you always just pip me to the post.

So yes, exactly what tfar said, plus a third voice to get some good shoes (and good suit). As for the luggage, look for all the features that tfar says, but visually, as long as it isn't offensive it'll be fine.

So the *look* of the luggage isn't important, you want to concentrate on the practicality. However, for your shoes and suits then looks (rightly or not) *will* be important.
Saved you some typing.

+1 to the looks. As long as the luggage isn't freakish it's alright. You're already off to a good start with the Tumi briefcase.

Shoes and suits will indeed make a difference both in how you see yourself and how others see yourself. Clothes make the man. For the rest you let your professionalism speak for itself.

Till
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Old May 24, 12, 1:20 pm   #13
 
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I'd reiterate the suggestion of getting something cheap from TJ Max/Marshals and figure out what works for you (or doesn't). Use it for a few months then buy something nicer. If you're traveling a bunch and your nice bag is out for repair you'll have a backup.

If you're on a lot a regionals get a non-roller soft side, if not a roller keeps the weight off your shoulder (and suit jacket). I've got both and what I use depends on the trip/planes.

Also packing aids (bags, folders, etc) help a lot if the TSA wants to rummage through your bag, not to mention separating out items for different types of trips. I'm a big believer of packing folders rather than bundle packing since I can get to the shirt I need w/o unbundling/rebundling.

Toiletry bags; I've looked at a bunch and tried a few but nothing was the right size and nor allowed items to dry out. Standard quart size ziplock for liquids and a plastic mesh bag for loofa, toothbrush, comb, q-tips, powders, etc.
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Old May 30, 12, 4:15 pm   #14
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Originally Posted by Mellonc View Post
Thats what most consultants get. You'll write it off as job expense.

Unless of of course you want to be a little different. At your age and the stage of your career, however, you are probably more worried about not screwing up the firm's partners' image. Right now you have to fit in with the culture and the look. At least I hope you have good shoes and are not running around with douche bag stuff like Kenneth Cole, or Aldo.

If you need some style advice check styleforum.net.
HAHAHA!

I'd love to know if you learned this from past experience or from someone telling you otherwise...and additionally - what firm you work for. Classic!
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Old May 30, 12, 5:10 pm   #15
 
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If you can get a deal on some Delsey stuff, go for it. It's lightweight and decent quality. As long as you don't abuse it and avoid checking it when you can, it can last a very long time. I've been using the same Samsonite rolling bag and generic duffle bag for the last 4 years and both are still in great shape.

Also, while Tumi and B&R might be great bags, I personally cannot justify the cost. Like I said, my Samsonite suitcase is in great shape and was probably $50 in 2007. It is on the heavy side so I am looking at replacing it, but not because of its condition.

By the way, "most consultants" don't buy Tumi stuff and, I don't know about where you'll be working, but the consultants with whom I work are not so hung up on "style" and whether or not you wear "douche bag stuff". You can look nice without spending a fortune on fancy brand name everything.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonFlyer1624 View Post
HAHAHA!

I'd love to know if you learned this from past experience or from someone telling you otherwise...and additionally - what firm you work for. Classic!
I'm right there with you, buddy. The whole thing is absolutely ridiculous!
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