I’ve heard a lot of talk revolving around packing cells for a long time and I have to admit that I am rather late to the party. I kept wondering whether they were really worth the hype and it kept me from buying a set for a long while. The more I heard about them the more I got curious. Then I asked Shawn about it and he dismissed it saying that it probably wasn’t worth it either way. Curiosity got the better of me and I decided to try to use a makeshift packing cube just to try it out and I liked the way it helped me organize my stuff. So when it was time to head to Sri Lanka, I decided to take the plunge and buy a set. I must say this, packing cells really revolutionized the way that we pack out bags. Since they made travelling so much easier, I just had to write about it and share our experiences with our readers.
PACKING CELLS AND HOW THEY WORK
The concept of packing cells or cubes is rather simple. They are tiny cubes or cells that are made out of plastic, clot, net or a mix of the above three. When opened they can be used to help you organize your belongings in your bag. Once filled the cubes can be easily organized within a suitcase or within a backpack. I think that is the great part about the cubes. They can be used irrespective of the kind of travel you embark on. They do come in different shapes and sizes and I add a few tips on buying them below.
ADVANTAGES OF PACKING CELLS
As I mentioned before, Shawn and I were rather hesitant to buy packing cubes and it took us a long while to embark on this new trend. In retrospect, we see a lot of advantages of packing cells now that we did not notice or realize before. I think these advantages are what actually sold us the idea
- You have your own space: Shawn hates it when our clothes get all mixed together and I have to admit so do I. I like the concept of my own personal space in the luggage that I carry. Since we carry one large backpack for our clothes and daily requirements and one smaller one for our electronics, this becomes rather difficult to work around. Ever since we bought the packing cells, we realized that it enables us to have our own space within the bag. Sort off like allocating each other drawers within a cupboard if you know what I mean.
- It becomes so much easier to repack: Ever unpacked your bag and realized that things don’t fit back in as perfectly as when you started out on your journey? It happens to us so often and when you keep moving from place to place every two or three days it becomes annoying. Repacking your backpack or suitcase quickly becomes a chore that you dread. Ever since we started using packing cells, we found that repacking the backpack became easier as we had a spot for everything.
- Packing cubes keep things organized: If you are anything like me, you probably put everything in your bag and forget where you put it sometime down the lane. If I forget where I have put something means that I will invariably have to unpack everything to find it. Another alternative is that I know where I have packed item X but it is at the bottom of the backpack which leads to the same outcome. Everything has to come out and repacking becomes a chore that has to be tackled again. Luckily with packing cells, you know exactly where each item is if you organize things well. And if it is at the bottom of the bag, all you have to do is remove the cubes and repack them again which is so much easier.
TIPS ON BUYING PACKING CELLS
I think that the type of packing cells that you buy would depend a lot on individual to individual. I thought I would just give you a brief on the different options that are available and the ones we chose. One of the main factors that affect your choice would be what kind of luggage do you use? A suitcase or backpack? I’ll get into that in just a bit.
One of the biggest issues that I had when shopping for packing cubes for us was getting the size right. A lot of browsing ensued and that was when I realized that there were two ways in which I could buy the cubes. I could opt to have all of them in the same size or I could chose to buy a set of different sizes. Each of the options had its own pros and cons.
Pack Of Different Sized Cubes
I settled on a pack of different sized cubes because I wasn’t really sure what size I wanted but in hind sight the decision was great for Shawn and me because it allowed us to use the smaller cubes for things like cosmetics, electronics and swimwear. We each had our own cube for our clothes with Shawn taking the larger one and me the slightly smaller one. Our cubes were from Amazon basics. Another thing that I liked about the different sized cubes was that I knew what was in it based on what I packed in each size.
Pack Of Similar Cubes
I have to be honest, I was quite tempted to buy a pack of similar sized packing cells. That way Shawn and I would have equal space for ourselves. The thing is, I quickly realized that it is easier to fit different sized cubes in a backpack than same sized cubes. Similar sized cues are great when it comes to organizing stuff in suitcases though. They stack up and fill up the space evenly and efficiently.
Large Versus Small
Again, this is another subjective topic but by default you don’t want to choose too big a packing cell when you carry a backpack, or it won’t fit in it. Think about the measurements of your bag when buying. Suitcases are easier because their dimensions are fixed. The large version of the multi sized cubes just barely fit into our 60 l wildcraft backpack so that should give you something to start out with.
Depth Of The Packing Cube
Another interesting point to note is how deep is each cube. Not everybody requires a deep cube. I have noticed however that when packing denim or any think trousers/jackets deep cubes do come in handy. So I guess it also depends on what you want to pack. If you are packing light cotton clothes, then the depth shouldn’t matter.
And there you have it. Those are my tips on things that you should consider when buying packing cells. They definitely make a difference when you travel, and I have a feeling that ours are going to be really worn out by the time we are done with them.