May 12th, 2015

Eagle Creek 40th Anniversary Post: Packing Then and Now

Eagle Creek 40th Anniversary Post: Packing Then and Now

ELECTRONICS, SPACE ORGANIZERS AND TSA APPROVED LIQUID CONTAINERS ARE JUST A FEW OF THE ITEMS FILLING 2015 SUITCASES THAT DIDN’T EXIST 40 YEARS AGO. EAGLE CREEK’S JEFF SERMAK TAKES A LOOK AT HOW PACKING HAS CHANGED SINCE 1975.

Remember the days of free checked bags, airline journeys where you could bring your own full-sized water bottle, and flights with full meals in every cabin of the aircraft? Those were the days, right? Now before you get too nostalgic about the way things used to be, keep in mind that those days lacked certain comforts – like tablets, laptops and even noise-cancelling headphones. Besides, airline food wasn’t anything to write a postcard home about, anyway.

The truth is, the way we pack and travel has changed quite a bit since Eagle Creek was founded in 1975. As part of the company’s anniversary series, we’re celebrating packing progress. Eagle Creek expert Jeff Sermak takes us on a journey through the biggest changes in packing over the past 40 years.

How has the way people pack shifted over the past 40 years?

Eagle Creek created a revolution in packing organization with the introduction of the Pack-It™ System in 1996. The Pack-It™ System’s Packing CubesGarment FoldersStash Sacs and Toiletry Kits have struck a cord with travelers and they can’t seem to get enough. Today, there is no shortage of suitcase organization or packing fervor. In fact, you see people taking to the world wide web to write reviews touting how much Pack-It™ minimizes wrinkles and helps them to compress items in their luggage. If you haven’t been exposed yet, it’s not too late! Check out some of our favorite Pack-It™ organizers in this video.

Personal electronics have become indispensable to most travelers. How has the design of Eagle Creek luggage, travel packs, and day bags shifted to accommodate for new technology?

Eagle Creek has addressed this shift with the introduction of All Ways Secure™ functionality into their line in 2013 by integrating Anti-Theft features, Digital protection, and Personal Safety into luggage and day bags. Every piece of All Ways Secure™ gear has at least one sleeve designed to house an electronic device, such as a cell phone, tablet or laptop. We’ve also tackled device protection with the introduction of our laptop sleeves and eCubes, which offer padded protection and movable internal dividers to customize organization based on your device needs.

How have airline regulations changed the way people buy and pack luggage over the past 40 years?

Because of the check-in fee standards that have been adopted by most airlines, many travelers now choose to carry on. And when carrying on, bags are required to stay beneath a certain weight and size threshold. This has created an emphasis, for manufacturers, on creating lightweight bags within airline carry-on size limitations. Travelers need to know they can count on their bag to perform every time they travel, and do their due diligence of research to confirm luggage specifications.

On top of these new size and weight regulations, airlines have also imposed a carry-on liquid restriction for travelers referred to as 3-1-1. 3-1-1 indicates that all travelers must only carry-on 3 oz. bottles (nothing larger) that in sum all fit into one one-quart sized bag. Eagle Creek offers a 3-1-1 pouch with travel bottle set to help travelers abide by this rule while organizing their essentials.

TSA’s level of inspection also necessitates organized carry-on travel. Pack-It Cubes help travelers not only to organize their luggage, but speed through a TSA inspection all the faster. With everything organized, and visible, TSA doesn’t have to sift through personal items and expose your underpants to your fellow travelers.

In addition to preparing for organizational needs, Eagle Creek has also addressed the need of those who travel with laptops, which – due to TSA regulations – need to be completely removed from a travel bag when going through inspection. Eagle Creek has created a Checkpoint Friendly feature that allows travelers to simply open their backpack (or briefcase) flat and send the bag through security without having to remove their laptop. This helps save time and hassle at a TSA checkpoints.

Want to learn more about how travel has evolved over the past 40 years? Check out our blog for more 40th Anniversary posts, and follow Eagle Creek on Facebook and Twitter.

Caila Ball-Dionne is a freelance writer and full-time travel enthusiast. You can find more of her writing at CailaBall.com

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Pack-It™ Cube Set

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by Caila Ball-Dionne

Caila Ball-Dionne is a freelance writer and full-time travel enthusiast. You can find more of her writing at CailaBall.com.