Top Packing Cubes For Carry Ons and Checked Bags
Here’s our picks for the best packing cubes on Amazon! Most are available in multiple colors, so be sure to click though to take a closer look if you like the style but not the featured color.
True to their name, the eBags Ultralight packing cubes are even lighter than the other eBags set on this list, in a more modern, streamlined design (they’re cubes in the photo at the very top of this article). Every pound counts when you’re lugging a suitcase up and down metro steps, or up 5 flights of stairs to your charming European walk-up. They also feature a mini frame design that helps them to stand up and keep their shape when packing.
WHAT WE LOVE: Attractive modern design, super light weight, and frame that helps the cubes to keep their shape.
WHAT WE DON’T: We’re nitpicking here, but additional color choices (there’s currently just 4) would be nice.
2Shacke Pak Packing Cube Set
Shacke Pak’s cubes are a great all around choice! They have awesome design and 8 color options, and the 4 piece set (plus handy laundry bag) should accommodate most travelers’ needs. The set is durable, versatile, well loved by reviewers, and moderately priced.
WHAT WE LOVE: Cool design, plenty of color choices, high quality, and reasonable price.
WHAT WE DON’T: The heavier duty fabric isn’t quite as lightweight as some of the other options, but this isn’t likely to be an issue for most people.
3Flight 001 Spacepack Undergarments Cube
Flight 001’s Spacepak for undergarments is designed for just one thing; storing your unmentionables. The organizer will hold up to two weeks of lingerie, socks and pajamas, and features a separate compartment for dirty laundry. One way air vents allow you to compress the cube for ultra compact packing.
They also offer quite a few other Spacepak designs for clothing and toiletries, with colors and prints geared towards men as well. The Spacepaks are at a higher price point, but you can’t go wrong with these if you want to splurge.
WHAT WE LOVE: The stylish design and compression vents, both things you don’t see on the average packing organizer.
WHAT WE DON’T: The Spacepack is a little pricey for just one cube.
4Amazon Basics 4pc Packing Cube Set
This 4 piece set by Amazon Basics offers great features at a lower price point than many packing cubes. They’re lightweight, with mesh panels and carrying handles, and include a nice variety of sizes.
WHAT WE LOVE: Value pricing with all the features found in most other packing cubes.
WHAT WE DON’T: One reviewer complained about the red cubes’ color bleeding onto clothing.
5Eagle Creek Pack It 3pc Set
Eagle Creek’s Pack It set may not be quite as lightweight as some of the other options, but it makes up for that in durability and ability to hold their shape. In addition to the useful mesh panels, these feature carrying handles, and are covered by a lifetime warranty.
WHAT WE LOVE: The high quality and lifetime warranty.
WHAT WE DON’T: Some additional color choices would be nice.
6eBags Packing Cubes 3pc Set
eBags 3 piece set features lightweight design, great quality, and comes in a rainbow of color choices. Features include premium YKK zippers, mesh panels so you can easily see what’s inside, and a lifetime warranty.
WHAT WE LOVE: High quality guaranteed by a lifetime warranty, and 10 color choices!
WHAT WE DON’T: Don’t hold their shape well (a downside of lightweight design), so they’re less easy to pack than cubes that have built in structure.
7Travelon Lightweight Cubes
For those who find that they never use all of the cubes in large sets, or only need to pack for shorter trips, these Travelon packing cubes are a great choice. The 3 piece set is lightweight, with handy see through mesh, and lightweight wire frame to hold their shape when packing. These organizers are also great for keeping shoes separate from clothing in a backpack or small bag.
WHAT WE LOVE: They’re lightweight and attractive, and perfect for carry-ons.
WHAT WE DON’T: Some won’t like the wire frame (though we think it’s nice to have a little structure).
8Flight 001 Go Clean Heels
So yes, these are not strictly speaking, packing cubes. But if your cube set doesn’t come with a shoe sized cube (or it’s too large to be efficient for women’s shoes), you might want a shoe bag. Shoe bags like Flight 001’s Go Clean Heels bag set keep you shoes scuff free, and dirty soles away from your clean clothing.
Flight 001 offers a variety of shoe bags for men and women, so check out the entire selection if bright pink isn’t your color.
WHAT WE LOVE: Simple, colorful, and functional, these keep everything clean and organized without wasting space.
WHAT WE DON’T: As with other Flight 001 products, you’re paying for design as well as quality, so they’re a tad pricey. See some of Amazon’s cheaper travel shoe bags here.
9Eagle Creek Pack It Compression Sac Set
Again, these aren’t exactly what you might think of when you think packing cubes, but Eagle Creek’s Pack It Compression Sacs are fantastic space savers. The one way air vents allow for easy compression of bulky items like coats (and allow me to rationalize traveling with my pillow).
WHAT WE LOVE: These are great space savers, and the multiple sizes let you compress even large coats.
WHAT WE DON’T: The plastic slider that helps to zip the top of the sacs can easily slide off the end and get lost, an irritating design flaw. However, the bags still “zip” without the slider, you just need to press as you would with a ziploc bag.
10Victorinox Muse Toiletry & Cosmetic Bag
After searching for ages, buying and discarding a dozen travel cosmetic bags, we finally discovered the Victorinox Muse. It’s a bit of a hidden gem, because it doesn’t seem to be tagged or titled in a way that makes it easy to find when searching on Amazon.
If you’re a very light packer, this isn’t for you, but for those who need to pack skincare and cosmetics, plus shampoo and conditioner, there’s plenty of room.
WHAT WE LOVE: The Muse holds a lot, while maintaining a slim profile, so it’s easy to fit in your suitcase.
WHAT WE DON’T: It’s a bit of a splurge at $50+, and some additional color choices would be nice.
Not sold on the idea, or not sure why you’d want them? Here’s some reasons to use packing cubes:
They keep you organized! Rather than having everything floating around in your suitcase, cubes help your clothing to arrive organized and wrinkle free.
You’ll be able to find things more easily: Think of your cubes like dresser drawers at home.
They protect your clothing from dirt – and help to quarantine your dirty laundry.
You’ll save space: Packing cubes let you compress more clothing into a smaller space.
They make security easier: No one likes to think of the TSA rooting around in their bag, but it’s a fact of life when flying. Having all your stuff organized will make it easier for TSA to search your bag without unfolding everything.
They make it easier to share a suitcase: With organizers to keep your belongings separate, you and your travel partner may be able to use just one suitcase.
They’re re-usable: Some travelers use ziploc bags to keep small items organized, but they aren’t meant for that purpose, and won’t last as long as packing cubes.
They make a great pillow in a pinch! If you find yourself without a pillow, just grab a packing cube full of (clean) clothing.
Packing cubes are incredibly easy to use. In fact, you’ll probably find it easier to pack with cubes compared to just a suitcase. However, there is a technique to optimal packing.
Once you’ve organized to your heart’s content, separating, clothing, accessories, shoes and toiletries, it can be useful to throw in an empty packing cube to separate clean and dirty clothing. Some cube sets or suitcases include laundry bags, which will work just as well.
Use common sense and keep toiletry items that can leak away from clothing. Most packing cubes aren’t watertight, so when it comes to liquids, it’s best to stick with bags (and bottles– see our picks here) made specifically for toiletries.
When it comes to the nitty-gritty of packing, the consensus around here is that the rolling method is best. I like to fold clothing in half, then carefully roll each item tightly, smoothing out wrinkles as I go. This minimizes wrinkled clothing upon arrival, and saves space.
When it comes to cube sizes, the choices can sometimes feel overwhelming.
Most manufacturers offer a small, medium, and large size, though these aren’t standardized, so measurements differ. Fortunately, packing cubes generally come in sets, giving you a good variety that should cover most of your packing needs.
Think about what sizes will best fit in your bag, and accommodate the items you need to pack. For example, backpackers probably won’t have much use for a large size cube, while a traveler with bulky winter clothing may want to search out extra large cubes (or give Eagle Creek’s compression bags a try).
Debating between that big set, and just a couple cubes?
Most travelers are fine with 2-3 cubes, and I find that I rarely use all of the organizers in my 5 piece set, with the smallest cubes being used least often. I most frequently use the medium size, and the small rectangle that’s perfect for shoes.
However, your packing habits may be completely different. If you’re not sure how many cubes you might use, it can help to make a list, or even lay out everything you plan to pack.
It’s also worth noting that returns on Amazon are incredibly easy, so if a packing cube set isn’t what you expected, just send it back.
We’re not here for the hard sell, this is totally up to you.
Packing cube sets can be pricey, but we’ve tried to include a good variety on this list. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a packing cube set that works for you.
I get great satisfaction out of organization, so I’d consider my eBags Ultralight packing cubes worth every penny even if I only took one trip a year.
Others who are ok with a bit of messiness might not see the point of packing cubes. If none of the points on the “Why Do I Need Packing Cubes” list appeal to you, that’s ok. Nothing terrible will happen if you travel without packing cubes.