In late October we wrapped up our house-sit in Ponte Vedra, Florida and returned to Minnesota to prepare for the holidays. Along with prepping for Thanksgiving and Christmas we also began making arrangements for three house-sits starting in January 2019. Often we have our camper with us and we keep our clothes in a small chest of drawers stored in the backseat of the car. When we arrive at a new house, we simply carry the chest of drawers inside and no unpacking is necessary. With our upcoming house-sits we won’t have our vehicle or camper in tow. We are heading to Australia again and Stephen and I each need a small and sturdy suitcase. Frayed zippers and shaky wheels describe our current luggage so with some reluctance we decided it was time for both of us to upgrade.
For several weeks I have been obsessed with all things luggage, searching and reading multiple travel articles about the perfect carry-on suitcase. There are a plethora of options with reviews about brand, size and price. Does a higher price equal a better quality product? Is it really necessary to spend $450 on a small piece of luggage? My head was swimming with too much information so I finally set four parameters and made the leap. Here is the criteria I set for our luggage purchase:
- Must fit in the overhead bin
- Must cost around $100
- Must weigh under 5.5 pounds
- Must receive at least four-stars on Amazon reviews
Even though we are not traveling in our teardrop camper we made the decision to continue traveling light. It takes some extra planning and forethought but we’ve pared our wardrobes to the basics. With the criteria set we finally settled on the Travelpro Maxlite 5 Expandable Carryon Rollaboard suitcase . What a mouthful! We have used our new purchase on the first leg of our trip from MSP to SFO and my first impression is positive. The weight was much lighter and lifting the suitcase to the overhead bin was less cumbersome. I will hold my full evaluation until we have a few trips under way and the luggage has been put to the full test. Can we really function for five months with just a carry-on suitcase?
Check out the map below with three circled cities…this is where we will be house-sitting in Australia. We depart in early January and our first stop is Cairns in Far North Queensland. With some trepidation we chose to purchase a one-way ticket to allow for flexibility and more spontaneous travel. We are packed and ready to explore.
Stay tuned for news from the Great Barrier Reef.
Happy New Year