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Business travel: carry-on bag comparison

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Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Here are Fink’s picks for business travelers:
ZeroHalliburton.jpg Zero Halliburton, 21” Polycarbonate 4-Wheel Zeroller ($275)
Shell is made of a polycarbonate, which makes the piece affordable, durable and lightweight. Integrated TSA lock system. Removable tri-fold suiter.
BriggsRiley.jpg Briggs & Riley, 22” Carry-On Superlight Upright ($299)
A light upright. Special pocket for hassle-free security checks. Built-in garment sleeve holds one or two suits. Good for a two- to four-day trip.
Pathfinder.jpg Pathfinder, Revolution 22” Auto-Expand Trolley ($249)
Affordable and well constructed. Expandability feature adds 30% packing capacity. Removable suiter. Good for three- to five-day trip.

In these days of long security lines and lost luggage, a good bag can make or break a business trip. Most business travelers prefer a carry-on, which minimizes the chance of airlines losing or mangling a bag. Emily Naslund-Smith, owner of Destinations-The Travel Store in Eugene, says she’s seen an increased interest in unconditional warranties for luggage. “Airlines can really do a number on bags,” she says.

Check size requirements for both domestic and international flights, as they often differ, and beware of weight limits, which will affect not only the size and type of bag you choose, but what you pack. Alex Fink, owner of Fink’s Luggage in Portland, says that a lighter bag means sacrificing durability as companies use lower-quality frames, parts and construction. He recently experienced success on a trip to Asia with a polycarbonate case that kept his suits crisp and weighed in under the limit.

In terms of security, Naslund-Smith recommends choosing a bag that offers easy access to two items: your laptop, which should be removed at the security gate, and the Ziploc bag filled with any containers carrying liquids (check tsa.gov for the latest restrictions). Also, consider using folders and cubes for your clothing when packing, which will make repacking after an encounter with a security screener a snap.         


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