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Old Jul 19, 11, 9:41 am   #1
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
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Best type of carryon for multiple-leg travel

Hello ladies!

At the end of August I will be traveling solo from New York to Genoa, Italy, with a layover in both directions. I have traveled solo before but only to one airport, and I was living in that city for months so I had tons of things (and a bus to pick us all up)! My trip is 10 days so I was planning on bringing a smaller suitcase that would be checked, as well as one carryon bag. The set I have had for years includes a pretty sizeable duffel-type carryon or I have a separate one that is a very large tote that I have used before but can be cumbersome. I wonder if something more messenger bag or backpack style would be more appropriate for me since I will be doing everything alone? I am 24 and 5'1" on a good day, so I don't want to be struggling in case the layovers are in terminals far from one another and involve some kind of transportation like a shuttle bus etc. I was planning on having in there a sweater or sweatshirt, perhaps an extra outfit (shirt, underwear) in case bags are misplaced, iPod, travel documents and the like. Thank you for your help!
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Old Jul 19, 11, 11:45 am   #2
 
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People have different preferences for carry-on & checked bags, so there's no one "perfect" solution for you. Personally, for most of my trips (certainly international) I have a small rolling bag (makes those occasional long immigration lines or treks through terminals easier since I don't have to hold the weight of my bag) and a thin tote that goes under the seat in front of me and holds my in-flight essentials.

I have a 19" Eagle Creek (http://www.amazon.com/Eagle-Creek-Ho...1097387&sr=8-2 )

Typically I'll use a LeSportsac nylon tote, but I also have a Briggs & Riley tote and a Timbuk2 tote I might use, depending on the trip. LeSportsac fits easiest under the seat since it's thin - the other bags are stiffer nylon and don't smush as easily.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 12:00 pm   #3
 
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I use a 22" rolling bag as my main suitcase and try to carryon as I don't like to check and wait
I also use a large purse/tote for personal items, phone, camera, baggy for liquids,etc

prefer to not have lots of luggage and focus on what is needed BUT when I need to travel last minute or not enough time to really think through what I need I find I end up with too much and use a bigger bag that needs to be checked
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Old Jul 19, 11, 4:17 pm   #4
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As small as you are, you shouldn't have too much trouble limiting yourself to just 1 rollaboard, plus a large purse for your sweatshirt and electronics ... and skipping the whole checked bag situation.

Pack layers, lots of black, and do a load of wash while you're there.

You can pick up a good rolling suitcase (I prefer the 4 wheel drive kind) for $40-50 at a Kohls/TJ Maxx/Ross/Marshalls type store.

I like to throw in a thin nylon duffel to use as my laundry bag, and if I've overshopped, I can check it full of dirty laundry on the way home and put more fragile stuff into the suitcase.
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Old Jul 22, 11, 10:02 am   #5
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Be sure and take a look at the many threads about luggage in the Travel Products forum, too.
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Old Jul 23, 11, 12:25 pm   #6
 
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Whatever you decide on, don't try to carry something too heavy. There's plenty of luggage combos you could use given the particulars but the key is to keep weight in mind.

You'll need to schlep it across terminals, pick it up and put it in the overhead bin if it is too large to fit under your seat, and possibly tackle long flights of stairs.

I find backpacks or reasonably sized tote bag with wider straps to work the best. Messengers tend to strain my back if the weight is greater (camera, laptop, book, clothes, 311, water all make it heavy). A side body flap type bag can be improved with the Tom Bihn Absolute strap or the Op Tech Neoprene strap. Crossbody type purses can also work well if they have a nice wide strap.

Last edited by freecia; Jul 23, 11 at 12:34 pm.
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Old Jul 31, 11, 10:21 pm   #7
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
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Delsey helium Pro H-lite carry ons would be ideal

Looking at your requirements, I think that the Delsey helium Pro H-lite carry ons would be ideal. I've had mine for years and they've held up pretty well with all the rigors of travel. Also Delsey luggage are really light weight so it doesn't get in my way.
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Old Aug 2, 11, 2:57 pm   #8
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by missydarlin View Post
As small as you are, you shouldn't have too much trouble limiting yourself to just 1 rollaboard, plus a large purse for your sweatshirt and electronics ... and skipping the whole checked bag situation.

Pack layers, lots of black, and do a load of wash while you're there.

You can pick up a good rolling suitcase (I prefer the 4 wheel drive kind) for $40-50 at a Kohls/TJ Maxx/Ross/Marshalls type store.

I like to throw in a thin nylon duffel to use as my laundry bag, and if I've overshopped, I can check it full of dirty laundry on the way home and put more fragile stuff into the suitcase.
I would love to just do carry on only or do laundry there, but I am staying at a friend (and her fiance's) apartment and not a hotel, and I believe she wants to visit some of her fiance's family while I am there (meaning going to Milan, Pisa or Florence) and I fear being stuck having to do laundry if it's available while visiting for a day or rushing to do it at her place. I value your insight though and if I could get it to work I'd love to.

I have a rolling suitcase already, a pretty cheap but sturdy one, that I was planning to be my main bag but I may just go with the large purse situation like you said!
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Old Aug 2, 11, 2:59 pm   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freecia View Post
Whatever you decide on, don't try to carry something too heavy. There's plenty of luggage combos you could use given the particulars but the key is to keep weight in mind.

You'll need to schlep it across terminals, pick it up and put it in the overhead bin if it is too large to fit under your seat, and possibly tackle long flights of stairs.

I find backpacks or reasonably sized tote bag with wider straps to work the best. Messengers tend to strain my back if the weight is greater (camera, laptop, book, clothes, 311, water all make it heavy). A side body flap type bag can be improved with the Tom Bihn Absolute strap or the Op Tech Neoprene strap. Crossbody type purses can also work well if they have a nice wide strap.
This was my problem when I went to study abroad in London, my carry on was much too heavy and I felt like I was schelpping it all over along with my two suitcases and it was a hassle (I was there much longer though, and had things like my laptop/cords and school items) and I figured that there would be distances between flights but I like the idea of adding another strap to a crossbody bag, I am going to look into that!
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Old Aug 3, 11, 1:53 pm   #10
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If the OP has a layover, why does she need to schlep bags across terminals? It's getting to the check-in desk & handing one over, and then taking the small duffel/backpack/roll-aboard w/ her on-board. The airline will take care of getting the bag to the other plane.

I actually think the OP's original plan is a good one.

Cheers.
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