Why: You may think that the whole "sitting on an overstuffed suitcase and baaarely being able to zip it up" thing is a movie cliche… until you try to pack for that week-long trip. Then you realize how much stuff you actually use on a day-to-day basis, and how unwieldy most of that stuff is.Getting it all to fit is like playing a game of Tetris, where you're required to fit odd shapes into one another, leaving no space unused.
Enter eBags' packing cubes. To me, these suitcase organizers seem like they'd just be excess baggage, but more than 4,000 travelers were enamored enough to write glowing recommendations on the site.
Basically, you pack your larger clothes (dresses, slacks, blouses) in the large cube, your undies, pj's and swimwear in the medium cube, and your toiletries, appliances, or cords in the small cube. Then, when you reach your final destination, boom—large cube goes in the closet, medium cube in the drawer, and small cube on the bathroom vanity. They do sound like they would make unpacking easier, but once you take the clothes out, wear them, get them all wrinkly and dirty, are they easy to repack?
Being a Tetris master, I'm a pretty great packer but I'm admittedly a terrible repacker. As much as I'd like to think these cubes would work both ways, and that I'd have a nice, easy, throw-in-the-laundry-room cube instead of a suitcase full of balled up dirties to dig through when I get back home, I'm not sure I'm disciplined enough to make the most of these. Still, some reviews mention how helpful the packing cubes' accompanying tips guide is, so perhaps with the proper motivation, I could learn to become a cube packer.
Price: $25 for a 3-piece set (a small, a medium, and a large)