Compression Packing Cubes – Your Ultimate Travel Companion

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If you travel a lot and you haven’t heard about compression bags, you might just be like me. Living beneath a rock. It’s sad, but it’s the truth. But, I’m not talking about just any kind of packing cube here. We’re talking compression packing cubes. Keep reading to find out more about them.

Remember my horrible, horrible experience at the Dubai International Airport? The one that made me realize that travel pillows are a must-have for comfortable traveling? Well, I’m here to tell you about another disastrous airport experience.

Yes, I seem to gather them like trophies. Terrible airport experiences, that is. Honestly though, knowing about simple stuff like compression packing cubes (and travel pillows) would have saved me a lot of trouble.

So, yeah…compression packing cubes. Where do I begin? It was the summer of 2012 and we were travelling with the family. This time, the airport in question was Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA).


The Excess Baggage Problem

Now, KLIA is usually a sweet airport and it’s not as uncomfortable as some, which we’re not going to name. There we were with two kids, ready to go on a really long vacation. We suspected that we might have packed a bit too much, so we did the wise thing. We took a friend along so he could take any excess back home for us.

However, things didn’t turn out the way we thought they would. Oh, at the beginning, we thought we had it all planned out. This fellow went with us to the airport. As we suspected, we had exceeded our baggage allowance by ALOT.

No, don’t judge me until you know what it’s like to travel as an African. The expectations and pressure is killing. You dare not go abroad and then return home without a gift for everyone and their step grandkids. Literally.

Without Compression Packing Cubes, We Did the Next Best Thing

So yeah, we had exceeded our baggage allowance. Big deal. We had our very kind friend who was to take the excess back home for us. Feeling fulfilled, we took off on our trip.


Interestingly, we never for one moment thought that we would have any issues. I mean, we were so sure we would find our stuff when we got back. It made a lot of sense.

Alas, we did not know that compression packing cubes stick closer than any friend. But, I digress.

When We Got Back Our Stuff Was Gone!

Amazingly, the total opposite was the case. When we eventually got back and needed our stuff, it was nowhere to be found. “Bros,” (that’s how we call young men in Nigeria).

So, we were like, “Bros, where’s our stuff?” And he stared blankly at us. According to him, he had no idea he was supposed to go back with everything. So where was the stuff?

Well, after a lot of confusion, we eventually realized that he left our things right there in the airport. Right there! I can’t even begin to tell you how heartbroken I was.

clothes to pack in a compression packing cube

Till this day, each time I think about my cute pair of Levi’s skinny jeans, I weep. Not literally, but yeah…you get the idea. If only we had thought of compression packing cubes.

This Would Never Have Happened If We’d Had Compression Packing Cubes

And, that’s the crux of it. If we’d had compression packing cubes, we would have been able to travel with all our stuff. I won’t be here mourning a cute pair of jeans. Forget the fact that it fitted me perfectly.

When you’re constantly travelling, you learn just about every technique of packing. You know just how to fold and roll your clothes. You know which of the items you’re bringing fill in a gap to not waste luggage space.

But, in spite of our best efforts, there are always those moments that throw us off. Those excess baggage moments that not even the best planning can salvage. At those times, compression bags make it possible to carry everything.

This is when compression packing cubes come in handy. They make it possible to carry much more than you would normally have carried. And, you can still stay within your baggage limit. How awesome is that?

Compression bags for travel
The magic of compression bags

So, What Exactly Are Compression Packing Cubes?

You know, that’s a really good question. In case you were wondering, compression packing cubes are sort of a hybrid. If Vacuum bags and packing cubes had babies, they would be compression packing cubes.

Apparently, they are one of the world’s best-kept secrets when it comes to travelling. Or at least, they were to me anyway.

Basically, compression packing cubes are these zippered packs that allow you to compartmentalize your luggage. They come in different sizes and colours, and are often sold in sets online.

So, you can organize like items into respective cubes. That way, you’ll know exactly where to find them. And it will save you the trouble of having to re-pack everything after getting what you need.

But, this is not why I’m so gung ho about compression packing cubes. They are a bit different from your average packing cube in that they let you compress your luggage. This gives you more space.

Never again will I be travelling without a decent compression packing cube. There are so many awesome (and not-so-awesome) ones out there. So, I’ve decided to list the top recommended compression cubes. Some, I’ve used, others, I haven’t. But, they all come highly recommended.

Best Compression Packing Cube Deals on

For those who turn to Amazon, don’t we have a deal for you!

YAMIU Packing Cubes

Pros: By far, the most popular and well-liked product on Amazon when it comes to packing cubes. The set itself is hard to beat in price, and the different sizes will give you freedom to choose which ones to use for your travels. It also comes with a shoebag, and transparent cubes for toiletries!

Cons: There is a small chance that some of the cubes rip at the seams and the zippers fall off. Make sure to order well before your trip if you so happen to be the one to receive it. Also, it may feel a bit flimsy.

shacke pak compression packing cube

Shacke Pak

Pros: I really like the fact that it is lightweight and easy to compress. Also, the mesh makes it easy to see-through.

Again, their customer service is superior. Frankly, if more businesses realized how much depends on great customer service, they wouldn’t kid around. The Shacke Pak folk are not here to play, they mean business as evidenced by their customer service.

Although it costs a little more, it has surprisingly good quality. They look, feel, and are sturdy, making for a good investment for a constant traveller.

Cons: When the packing cubes are tightly packed, the seams get stretched and are visible. This can be a source of concern because you’re not sure if they will eventually give way.

Eagle Creek pack-it-specter compression packing cube

Eagle Creek Pack-it Specter Full Cube Set

Pros: If you’re planning on travelling with just a carryon, then this is the perfect solution! No, it does not perform miracles, but it will compress your stuff – within reason.

Of course, if you’re packing a lot of stuff, then you should probably try another compression packing cube. This one is really lightweight and compresses your things so that it saves lots of space.

High quality design, it is also water resistant and so far, very little complaints.

Cons: It’s pricey, but not dicey!

6 Set Packing Cubes from Bagail

Pros: Everything about these packing cubes makes me want to say YES. I’m not sure what exactly the question is, but I sure do want to answer with a Yes. It’s lightweight, sturdy and is almost magical in the way it saves space.

Also, they’re easy to clean and though they are not compression cubes, the mesh top makes it easy to compress. And, the zippers are super strong also. These packing cubes make packing much easier. No skinny jeans blues with these.

Finally, they have awesome customer support!

Cons: The zippers are so strong that they tend to get stuck, sometimes. This doesn’t happen for all the cubes, actually only a handful really. So it might not be anything to worry about.

Without a doubt, packing cubes are the way to go. And if you’re like me, then compression packing cubes are the answer. Think of all the agony and heartache you’ll save and get one today. If you want to get even more stuff, you should see this best checked luggage for amazing options.


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