14 Best Packing Cubes For Simple, More Efficient Travel

Pack smarter with a set of packing cubes.

Looking for the best packing cubes to make travelling a breeze in 2022? You’ve come to the right place.

With travel now a very real possibility for the majority of the world following the dreaded years of The Spicy Cough, there has never been a better time to invest in a set of packing cubes to make travelling just that little bit more efficient.

But what are packing cubes we hear you cry? And which ones should you buy to seriously ramp up your travel game? Read on to find out.

What are packing cubes?

In their most basic form, packing cubes are fabric pouches with zips that are used to better organise the contents of your suitcase, duffel bag, backpack or any other bag you wish to take away on your travels. They are most commonly made of a fabric such as nylon or polyester, but more expensive packing cubes can be made of a compression material (more on that in a bit).

Packing cubes serve to make it easier to fit everything you want into your bag and make organisation a complete breeze. There are several styles of packing cubes to consider, however, and packing cubes are also available in a range of sizes to suit various purposes. So, choosing the best packing cubes for your travels isn’t always going to be the easiest of decisions.

Different styles of packing cubes

Packing cubes can be broken down into four distinct categories: budget, ultra-light, compression and specialist and figuring out each style’s USP shouldn’t be rocket science.

Budget Packing Cubes

Budget packing cubes are for those on a budget. They’re incredibly affordable and offer the most basic way to improve the way you pack your luggage. Budget packing cubes are highly unlikely to offer any form of compression and, in general, are going to be less durable than their more expensive cousins.

But, if you only plan to travel a few times each year, budget packing cubes could be just the thing you’re looking for. They’re most commonly made from polyester which, while it may be abrasion-resistant, won’t be as durable as something such as a ripstop nylon material.

But as we said, if you only plan to use your packing cubes a few times per year and don’t intend to go trekking off into the wilderness, budget packing cubes are the way to go.

Ultra-Light Packing Cubes

Ultra-light packing cubes are going to be the lightest packing cubes you’ll find in terms of weight. This makes them ideal for using with your carry-on luggage, as they’ll do little to make a dent in your carry-on baggage allowance. Ultra-light packing cubes will usually be made from nylon, with a low denier.

A low denier means the material is relatively thin and to some extent, a little bit see-through. This doesn’t mean it isn’t going to be durable, however, and for the most part, you can place your trust in ultra-light packing cubes that will be able to withstand several uses.

Compression Packing Cubes

Compression packing cubes are for those who want to be able to pack as much stuff into their bag as they possibly can. If your suitcase or duffel bag is on the smaller side, however, yet you need to travel with a fair amount of clothing, compression packing cubes can come to the rescue to ensure you’re able to fit it all in.

Essentially, compression packing cubes tend to feature an extra zip, in addition to the main zip, that compresses the packing cube even further, bringing its overall size down a notch. Compression packing cubes tend to be made from a material blend of nylon and polyester, but some may be one or the other. Ideally, you’d want to avoid compression packing cubes that are made from just polyester, as the extra stress placed upon the packing cube when it’s in compression mode could eventually cause the material to tear.

Specialist Packing Cubes

Specialist packing cubes probably won’t be essential for everyone, but if you’re planning to travel with some equipment, then using a specialist packing cube to keep it better protected could be a godsend. You can still use specialist, padded packing cubes for your clothes of course, and if you do, your clothes will likely suffer from fewer wrinkles during transit.

You can also find water-resistant packing cubes on the market, which are great if your trip is going to see you spending a lot of time outside.

How to use packing cubes

Using packing cubes couldn’t be simpler. Instead of packing your clothes straight into your bag, you instead put them into the packing cubes, and then pack the cubes into your bag.

You’ll find packing cubes come in a range of sizes, and so figuring out which clothes to place in which packing cube, should be relatively simple. You would likely put your underwear and socks into small packing cubes, t-shirts and shorts into medium-sized packing cubes, and sweaters, pants and shirts into large packing cubes.

You’ll be surprised by how much clothing you can fit into each packing cube and this is where they truly shine and make for an essential buy when travelling.

Best Packing Cubes

So, which are the best packing cubes to buy right now? We’ve scoured the internet to find some of the best packing cubes around, catering to the various types just mentioned, which also means all budgets.