Packing isn’t always the most fun part of travelling. Sitting on suitcases to make them close, stuffing last-minute items into carry-on bags, and struggling with luggage scales can make for a stressful start to any holiday.
Using packing cubes can help to streamline your packing process and organise your luggage efficiently for fuss-free travel. Available in a variety of sizes and designs, there’s a packing cube to serve every need and suit every style. So, what should you be looking for (and avoiding) when purchasing these products?
The Recommended spoke to an organisation expert who gave us her take on the dos and don’ts of buying packing cubes, along with some useful tips that will help you pack smarter and stress less.
Jump to the best packing cubes:
- Best packing cubes for families: Bagail Packing Cubes Set
- Best waterproof packing cubes: Veken Packing Cubes
- Best affordable packing cubes: Vicloon Packing Cubes
- Best packing cubes for carry-on bags: Bago Packing Cubes
- Best lightweight cubes: Amazon Eono Packing Cubes
- Best compression cubes: LeanTravel Compression Packing Cubes
- Best premium packing cubes: The Away Insider Packing Cubes
- Best packing cubes for shoes: Paravel + NET SUSTAIN Nylon Shoe Cubes
Our packing and organisation expert
Homefulness has been featured in the pages of The Telegraph, Woman & Home and recently won the Victoria Green 2022 award for Best Lifestyle Organisation Tips. Homefulness offers an array of personalised organisation services, from the wardrobe to the pantry, to entire home projects, with each service designed to complement each home’s aesthetic style.
What should you look for when buying packing cubes?
When asked what to look for when shopping for packing cubes, Jessica advised us that when buying packaging cubes, there are a number of things you should consider:
- The size of the items you need to pack. Packing cubes come in a range of shapes and sizes, and you want to ensure that the packing cubes you choose will be able to accommodate the items you pack. Bulkier items, such as thick jumpers and shoes, require larger packing cubes, while swimwear and underwear require smaller packing cubes. A mix of small, medium and large packing cubes tends to be the best combination for a fully organised suitcase!
- The shape of the packing cubes. It can be a good idea to buy packing cubes in a set rather than individually as the sets are often designed to be packed together in a suitcase to fully optimise space.
What should you avoid when looking for packing cubes?
Jessica told us that when shopping for packing cubes, it is best to:
- Avoid purchasing packing cubes that are too large. Measure the internal size of your suitcase and aim to buy packing cubes that will fit the space. Buying packing cubes that are too big will only take up excess space in your suitcase and may even cause you to overpack!
- Avoid buying poor-quality packing cubes. Instead, look for high-quality packing cubes crafted from breathable mesh to avoid your clothes wrinkling.
Which are the best packing cubes?
When asked which packing cubes she personally recommends, Jessica called out two brands she has found to be “the most durable, practically sized, and aesthetically pleasing”. Jessica gives her first vote to The Away Insider Packing Cubes, telling us, “these fantastic packing cubes come in a set of 6 with a variety of sizes to accommodate small, medium and large items and are stylish and sleek. The bonus with these packing cubes is that they come in a lovely range of colours, so you can choose to match them to the rest of your luggage for a streamlined look!”.
Jessica also recommended the Paravel + NET SUSTAIN set of two nylon shoe cubes, telling us how “these cubes are excellent for packing shoes, but they’re also multi-purpose and can protect shoes in your wardrobe at home from dust. They’re also a great sustainable choice, as their material is sourced from seven upcycled plastic water bottles”.
Tips and tricks for packing efficiently
We asked Jessica for some insider tips and tricks to pack smarter. She gave us the following rules to live (or pack) by:
- Make a packing list. A well-made packing list will ensure you pack all the essentials for your holiday without excess clutter sneaking in!
- Use labelled packing cubes. Grouping your clothing by category inside packing cubes will allow you to know exactly where to look when you need a bikini, dress or a pair of shorts from your suitcase.
- Give important items a home. Like having a place where you put your car keys in daily life, designate places where your travel essentials ‘live’ For example, always place your passport in a specific pocket in your bag etc. By doing this, you’ll always know where to find these key items.
- Pack light. Resist the urge to overpack! Use the formula of 1 outfit per day for adults and 1.5 outfits per day for kids. You’ll be glad for the souvenir space.
- Use toiletry and make-up organisers. They are a godsend when travelling. A bit of preparation before your trip will pay dividends when you know all essential products are on hand when you need them after a long journey!
The best packing cubes
For stress-free travel
This durable, 6-piece packing cube set comes in a variety of colourways to suit every taste and features various-sized cubes for optimal efficiency.
These packing cubes are made with super-strong zips and reinforced, double-stitched seams for long-lasting use. The mesh-top design allows you to identify items easily, and the varying sizes accommodate all items, big and small, for efficient, fuss-free travel
These waterproof packing cubes are a great choice for backpacking or adventure holidays as their durable and weather-proof material protects your belongings come rain or shine.
This set of six packing cubes is made with durable 290D nylon and are 26% thicker than the many 230D nylon or polyester competitors. The fabric of these packing cubes is also recyclable, and each cube is stamped with a unique logo identifying what’s inside for ease of use.
Value for money
This set of 6 packing cubes is equipped with everything you need for perfectly organised luggage and comes at an affordable price.
These packing cubes come with three dedicated laundry bags that help keep your clothes organised while you travel. The cubes are made of durable, waterproof nylon and have mesh top panels to help you quickly and easily identify items.
A place for everything
This 7-piece packing cube set is equipped with three zip-lock bags to help keep liquids and electricals separate for an efficient airport experience.
These lightweight packing cubes are made with durable, waterproof and tear-resistant fabric and strong zips for long-lasting use. These cubes are also designed with convenient carrying handles and mesh tops for easy use.
These lightweight packing cubes are made with tear-resistant, waterproof fabric for reliable protection that won’t weigh you down.
These packing cubes are made with breathable, see-through mesh tops, and convenient carrying handles for ease of use. These cubes are also each made with durable, double-stitching and strong zips for long-lasting quality.
For the best use of space
These innovative compression packing cubes allow you to pack more into less space. This six-piece set features various-sized cubes to suit every need.
These packing cubes are made with thick, durable materials and strong zips, as well as a reinforced structure ensuring the cubes retain their shape, leaving clothes wrinkle-free. This set also includes a waterproof zipper bag to protect electricals and other valuable items.
A worthy investment
These premium packing cubes come recommended by our expert Jessica for their practical and stylish design.
These packing cubes feature an entirely mesh top panel for easy item identification, and the varying sizes work together for the optimum packing solution. These packing cubes offer a sleek, stylish design and come in a variety of colourways to suit every taste.
These packing cubes are designed specifically for packing and storing shoes and were recommended by our expert Jessica for their versatility and sustainable materials.
These packing cubes come in a set of two and are made with a transparent top panel for ease of use. These cubes are made with durable nylon made from seven upcycled plastic bottles, blending sustainable practices with efficient organisation.
If you would like to read more travel and summer product round-ups, check out our Summer Essentials page, where you’ll find more recommendations, including the best fans to help you beat the heat and the best sun creams.