Aloha packing Cubes! Everything you need to know to organize your luggage!

November 17, 2018

Aloha packing Cubes! Everything you need to know to organize your luggage!

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Aloha packing cubes! Welcome to your new secret weapon for travel. Packing cubes will revolutionize the way you pack and simplify how you travel. No, I’m not just saying that to make some bold statement and catch your attention. It's true, packing cubes are the truth

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 What if you could organize your life this neatly!

These little cubes of zippered goodies will give you back some of your sanity while you travel! They help you to stay organized, keep your belongings compact, and find what you need in record time from the abyss of your backpack.

This article will provide everything you need to know about packing cubes, as well as how to use packing cubes properly.

What are Packing Cubes?


Packing cubes are relatively small containers made of fabric, often in a rectangular shape, used for packing clothing. They zip closed and are small enough that you can fit several into a carry-on bag, suitcase, or backpack.

With different sizes and shapes, it is possible to find the right packing cubes to fit perfectly into your luggage (much like Tetris!). Some are squares, rectangles, or even long ones resembling square tubes. Others offer extra compression zippers, and some even have two sides, which are useful in keeping clean clothes separate from dirty.

Packing cubes keep your clothing compressed (to a small degree) and your packing organized. 

What are the Benefits of Using Packing Cubes?

It’s true that you can pack well (enough) without ever using packing cubes. I did it for years! Once I started using them, however, I discovered the numerous benefits. No more pulling every piece of clothing out of my bag to get to the one thing at the bottom! 

True Fact: During a recent trip to Madrid I watched my travel buddy get waved through airport security after they opened her perfectly cubed suitcase and saw it all neatly packed! Security looked at the cubes zippered tightly in her suitcase and closed her bag and she went right through.  WHHHAAATTTT -I thought as airport security began looking through my jumbled mess of a carry-on. Travel lesson earned.

Packing cubes do all of the following:

    • Come in a variety of sizes: While packing cubes are often rectangular in shape, they vary in length, width, and height, making them perfect for packing any type of clothing – or anything else you may want to stash inside. Differing sizes also mean they can fit in any size daypack, backpack, or suitcase.


    • Organize clothing: Packing cubes help you pack like items together. One cube for your bottoms, one for tops, travel underwear, etc. You can choose to further organize according to cube size, or even by choosing a specific color to signify which cube holds which belongings.


    • Keep clothes neat and minimize wrinkles: It’s unavoidable to have a few wrinkles, even when rolling clothing. By filling packing cubes to capacity with tightly rolled clothing or neatly folded garments, the items are kept in place from point A to B.


    • Make packing, repacking, and finding exactly what you need easier:When using packing cubes, you can pull that one specific cube out of your bag to get exactly what you need instead of flipping through piles of clothing in a suitcase. Some cubes have a mesh panel so you can see what’s inside each one.


    • Offer alternative storage solutions: Some travelers will use the smaller sized packing cubes as cosmetics bags, while others will use packing cubes to store their electronics cables and small devices. While we think there are better bags for these sorts of items, it’s so common we have to list it!


    • Maximize space: Packing cubes can keep your clothes a bit more compressed, meaning you can fit more into your luggage. Also due to the building-block shape of the cubes – they’re easy to stack and fit neatly into every available inch of your pack.


    • Serve as impromptu pillows: Sometimes the hostel pillow just doesn’t cut it. Or perhaps you find yourself on an impromptu trip or camping in the middle of nowhere. In situations like these, you might be able to use a large packing cube filled with clothing.


  • Store travel belongings between trips: There are certain items you might only use when you travel. Instead of taking everything out, only to have to track down the items again for your next trip, you can store them in a packing cube to make them easy to find.


How to Use Packing Cubes

There is no right or wrong way to use packing cubes– do what works for you! I like to roll my clothes before placing them inside – that way they are super compressed and stay that way during transit.

Once you have your packing cubes filled (but not overfilled), place them in your luggage in the best position possible. Remember what types of things you included in each cube so you can grab what you need in a flash!

If you’re using a cube to store your dirty clothes, it may be nice to throw in a few dryer sheets to keep the luggage smelling fresh.

Buying Packing Cubes

Which ones do I buy?

Some companies make their own packing cubes to fit the exact dimensions of their specific bags, which is handy since there are so many sizes and brands of cubes on the market. Besides that, the extra features and quality will help you determine which ones to buy.

Name Brand vs. Cheap Packing Cubes:
There is a bit of a debate as to whether to buy name brand packing cubes or cheap ones from dollar stores or Ikea for that matter. It’s up to you which route you want to take. Some of the name brand cubes will come with warranties or have added features you may enjoy (extra compression for example), but they can be costly.

That said, there is varying feedback from HPL readers. Some have been using their cheapo dollar store packing cubes for years. Others didn’t like how flimsy and low-quality they felt, and wouldn’t rely on them for long-term travel.

Large Packing Cubes:
If you’re just starting out and are unsure of which cubes to buy, I recommend staying away from the larger sized ones. They might take up more room than you need, and it’s probably best to have more smaller ones so you can organize and compartmentalize items better. They’re also more versatile if you end up switching up your luggage.

While sets are tempting because they come with a price break, they do often come with that very large packing cube so choose wisely.

Structured vs. Flexible Packing Cubes:
Some packing cubes, like Ebags original packing cubes, have a bit more heft to them. They tend to keep their shape more, which may or may not be what you’re looking for in packing cubes. Other packing cubes made of ultralight fabric are very easy to pack away when not in use, are compressible, and weigh next to nothing!

Double Sided Packing Cubes:
Double sided cubes, like the, make it easy to separate certain items from the rest. Dirty clothes and wet clothes can be placed in the water-repellent half, while clean clothes can be kept in the breathable mesh side. Great for beach trips!


Where do I buy packing cubes?

Glad you asked What-up-shop Travel has a great selection and is affordable. But, you can also pick up packing cubes at stores like Daiso, Muji, Ikea, The Container Store, Amazon and so many more!

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Women Size

Length (inches) 25 7/8 26 1/2 27 1/8 27 3/4 28 3/8
Width (inches) 15 16 17 18 19 1/2
Length (cm) 66 67 69 70 72
 Width (cm) 38 41 43 46 50


Men Size

Length (inches) 26 27 28 29 30
Width (inches) 20 22 24 26 28
Length (cm) 66 69 71 74 76
 Width (cm) 51 56 61 66 71