Category Archives: Kids & Travel

Traveling with kid presents unique challenges. We have tips, tricks, ideas and products that can help to make your travel with kids free from hassles and full of fun!

Your guide to international carry-on luggage

When traveling in North America which carry-on you need is simple; a domestic carry-on (22’’-14’’-9’’) is accepted by all the major carriers. However, things get murkier when traveling overseas. While many luggage makers sell international carry-ons there are no set carry-on sizes that each airline takes and very few rules regulating sizes overseas.

If you are flying direct overseas or using connecting flights, things nowadays are TP-4071667-01fairly simple. IATA Resolution 302 states that whoever the marketing carrier is (the company that you booked your flight from) their baggage rules must apply to all legs of your trip. So if your ticket says United, American, or any other major US carrier then your domestic carry-on will suffice. If you are booked on a major international carrier, refer to their website and follow their guidelines.

Things get murkier if you have multiple legs of your trip booked separately, especially if you will be using overseas regional jets.  Each regional airline overseas has a different standard for what qualifies for a carry-on and most have weight restrictions that really limit what you can pack in your suitcase. Please make note of any weight restrictions before packing and I recommend always having a luggage scale.

BR-TD445-47So if you are going be using regional overseas carriers you might have to rethink how you pack. My best recommendation is to consider not using a carry-on at all. For example, if you are going for several weeks and using several regional carriers, then a 25’’-26’’ suitcase plus a backpack, tote, or wheeled tote might be a perfect solution for you. You will have to check a bag either way so a smaller personal bag might be all you need to keep emergency items in.

For student’s studying overseas I really like convertible backpacks, especially ones without wheels. They can be carried either like a LGR-LG43-BLK_4backpack or a shoulder bag and have cinches that allow the bag to be adjusted to your specific needs and they usually weigh less then wheeled bags. My current favorite is the Lite-Gear Travel Pack. It can hold as much as a conventional carry-on and only weighs two pounds.

Finally, as always, less is more when it comes to packing for your overseas trip. Consider taking less then you usually pack, especially when it comes to shoes and accessories. You will be doing a lot of walking so plan on taking your most comfortable and easy to use clothing and shoes. The good news is planning for your trip in advance will help avoid nasty surprises on your trip, and that is something we all can appreciate.

 

College Luggage and Backpack guide

It’s the time of year every parent dreads; sending your kid off to college. First-time students will need items like backpacks, duffels, and other travel items. All this packing might seem overwhelming at first. However, a bit of planning can prevent the dreaded last-minute panic. Below is a handy guide of what you might need for the new college student.

Backpacks

A backpack in college can serve a very different function than they did in high school. TNF-CHK3-SSWThe days of having to carry all your books and lunch to school are over. The college student won’t have to carry as many books but they probably will want to carry a laptop to class and study groups. Make sure that any backpack you buy has a padded compartment for a laptop. The North Face backpacks have been popular with college students for many years, and still standard issue at many college campuses. For most fashionable students, brands such as Kipling or Knomo might fit their style. For the student who wants to major in business, backpacks that are designed for professional use will be perfect to use for internships and job hunting.

The Weekend

One famous college tradition that hasn’t changed in many years is the road trip. Students will need a bag for coming home or visiting friends at other college campuses. Weekender bags are very popular because they are lightweight and because their designs can hold lots of clothing and accessories. Small, non-wheeled duffels are popular too because of their structured look and durability. If a student will be mostly traveling by plane to get home a carry-on suitcase might be a more practical idea.

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Getting There and Back

If you are going by car then boxes and large duffel bags will suffice. However, if your student will be flying back and forth to school things get trickier. Wheeled duffels are a popular item due to their easy storage (they will fit under most beds). Luggage can be used too but take up more room in small dorm rooms. The next question is size. Duffel bags 34’’ and smaller usually will work with airline regulations as long as they are less than 50 pounds. Larger sized and overweight bags will usually incur extra costs so be careful if you are trying to minimize costs.

Final Thoughts

When I first went off to college over 25 years ago, my family and I had to buy and pack everything I would need to furnish my dorm room. With the advent of the internet and e-commerce now, things can be ordered beforehand and shipped to the school on the day they will arrive. This will save you from having to physically bring everything and speed up the moving process. Sometimes things do change for the better.

Hello Muddah Hello Faddah: A Summer Camp Duffel Guide

It might still be cool outside, but summer is not far away. For many kids, this means summer camp time and for parents, time to shop for a duffel. There are many choices and below is a handy guide to simplify the process.

Sleeping under the stars

The first step will be to determine what your camp’s guidelines are. For the classic overnight camps, where the kids will be transported by bus, most camps will require a large non-wheeled duffel bag. In this case the recommendation will be a 40’’or larger duffel bag. Being non-wheeled, it will still be easy to store and your child will be able to use the same bag year after year.

Game on

For specialty camps (such as sports camps), or in the situation where you will be driving TNF-CWV7-KZ3_1your child to camp directly you might want to consider purchasing a large (36’’ or larger) wheeled duffel. The advantage of using this type of duffel will be the maneuverability that having a bag with wheels will offer. Imagine having to carry a 50 LB bag hundreds of feet!!! While a wheeled duffel isn’t quite as easy to store they will usually still fit underneath a bed.

Learning is fun

Older kids nowadays often go to academic camps which are hosted on college campuses. These camps tend to be shorter in duration, but might require flying to your destination. A wheeled duffel is still a good idea for these students; however, you will have to keep in mind airline regulations which are typically 62’’ (this is determined by measuring a bag adding together length plus with plus height) and a max weight of 50 LBS. If you go over this size or weight you might be hit with significant fees by the airlines. If your child needs to take more, then it might be cheaper to ship some items ahead.

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Those who fail to plan plan to fail

Camps almost always provide a packing guide that lists what your child will need for the summer. Once you purchase your bag do a practice pack to make sure everything fits and do it well in advance. If organization is an issue, packing cubes can help. Last minute packing is no fun and finding out the bag you purchased isn’t correct can lead to unnecessary panic. I would try to have your list complete and the practice pack done at least 3-4 weeks in advance.

Final Thoughts

One final tip is summer camp isn’t the time for your son or daughter to bring out their new fashions. Old clothes will be nice and comfy and if they get ruined or misplaced they won’t be missed. At the end of the summer your kid can just throw them away rather than having to repack their items. Remember, simple packing equals more time for fun.

 

 

The IT gifts for everyone

Summer is here at long last. It means afternoons at Wrigley, boat tours on the Chicago River, nights grilling on the patio, and full on party season. Don’t you feel like your social calendar is always busiest this time of year? It’s like everyone saved up all their celebrations until now, and it’s madness. The temperatures rise and everybody wants to let loose. We have Father’s day, graduation, birthdays, engagements, weddings and they all seem to fall in these three months under that scorching summer sun. The only thing you have to think about is whether or not you packed your sunscreen. Well that and the gifts you need for every event. We’ve all been through the cycle and have ended up with that quick and easy gift card because we left it to the last minute. Worry not- we have your back. Whether you’re heading out to that engagement party or father’s day brunch, we have the ultimate IT gift to bring with you.

 

The event: Father’s Day brunch

The gift: Andrew Phillips leather tie case

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The event: college graduation party for your niece

The gift: Victorinox charisma tote

 

The event: high school graduation party for your nephew

The gift: High Sierra sportour backpack

 

The event: engagement party for that couple finally getting hitched

The gift: Royce wine carrier

 

The event: your best friend’s birthday bash- poolside mimosas required

The gift: Amy Butler for Kalencom everything bag

 

The event: thank you’s for your bridal party

The gift: PurseN travel bag

 

The event: thank you’s for your trusty groomsmen

The gift: Osgood Marley leather money clip

 

The event: extra special birthday for him- the type he doesn’t announce

The gift: David King weekend leather duffel

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Something you need that didn’t make our list? Let us know, and we’ll send the perfect idea your way!

Max Toy 3D Roller Bags – A Great Gift for Kids

At Irv’s Luggage we make it a point to find unique merchandise and then provide it at the best deal for you, the customer.  Just in time for the holidays, we added MaxToy 3D Roller Bags to our shelves!  This kids luggage/roller bag is normally at $125.00 but right now marked down to $99.95, a 20% savings!

The MaxToy Roller 3D Bags come in a variety of styles, including familiar children’s TV shows such as “Dora the Explorer,” “Spongebob Squarepants,” and “The Backyardigans.”

 

Each bag comes with a coordinated lunch bag, tupperware, and water bottle, and has an innovative three wheel system to assist the child rolling it along a staircase by either the top carry handle or retractable longer handle.

 

The bags are fun, adorable,  and almost guaranteed to light up a child’s face when they open their presents.  With the additions and special features it shows just how much thought went into designing this bag to have both utility and entertainment value for children.  Do not let the cartoon characters deceive you, these bags are built with a tough aluminum frame and a durable exterior, it would take some effort to significantly damage them.  The 3D styling gives them just a little extra storage as well.

 

With the Max Toy 3D roller bags, you’re not getting just the always Irv’s Luggage low price, you’re also getting a unique, tough, innovative, and fun product that your child will love for long after it is first opened.  When it comes to a kids roller bag, this is definitely in a class of its own.

 

North Face Backpacks Take You From School To College And Beyond

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The North Face Recon Backpack

When summer ends, it means school begins and time for a new backpack. What is wrong with my children’s backpack from last year?  Nothing.  But they tell me it is just not as exciting as the new North Face Recon backpack I can buy at Irv’s Luggage.  I think they may be right.  The colors are awesome.  With the Fiery Red Plaid and the Leopard Yellow, I will always be able to spot them from the carpool line or at recess. My kids love the comfy FlexVent shoulder straps.  The large compartment is perfect for all their books.  No excuses for leaving anything at school. (Well, I’m sure there will still be some.)  There is even room for their laptop.  It’s great to see student backpacks with style and functionality.  This year I don’t mind buying a new backpack. Leave it to those boys from North Face to know how to design a backpack.  After all, the company has been designing backpacks since 1968, when gas was only .33 cents a gallon.

Did you know you can use your North Face backpack to learn about geography?  The  company’s logo is the 1/2 Dome Rock at Yosemite National Park. Today the North Face logo — the 1/2 dome — is probably as recognizable as Mt. Rushmore. Let your kids show you where Yosemite is on the map.  Can you find it?  Just be careful.  Next summer’s trip maybe to Yosemite.

 

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The North Face Jester Backpack

Don’t worry.  North Face has a backpack for everyone.  Snacks, gear, and travel items can all be easily stowed in the the large and roomy North Face Jester laptop backpack.  If viewing beautiful nature isn’t enough and you need your laptop,  this backpack can safely accommodate a laptop.  There is a handy front side electronics organizer too. Take your iPod and your phone and you’re ready to go.

 

College students are also flocking to buy the North Face Jester.  With 2015 cubic inches of space, students can pack all their books for class and eliminate extra trips back to the dorm. Students may not be skipping to class, but the lightweight design won’t slow them down either.

 

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The North Face Surge II Backpack

My next trip I am taking the North Face Surge II backpack. As a travel bag, I can fit several days of clothes and toiletries.  When I arrive, I can unpack and easily use the Surge as my daybag. This backpack meets airline regulations for a carry-on even with its roomy size.  Travelers give this bag a thumbs up for the comfortable padding. It’s easy on the back.  The great inside pockets let you organize and find pens, maps and other small items.

TSA regulations require you to pass everything through airline security.  This can slow you down if you have to dig for your laptop.  With this laptop backpack, you can easily grab your laptop from the padded sleeve and breeze through airport security.  Every minute saved, lets you start your trip sooner.

Baggallini Baggs Are The Ultimate in Organization

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Baggallini Dublin Crossbody Bagg

I lost weight — and I am still eating ice cream.  All l I did was buy a Baggallini Bagg from Irv’s Luggage.  My purse usually feels like an elephant around my neck.   I gave my old, heavy handbag away for the stylish, lightweight Baggallini Dublin Bagg.  The nylon, crinkle material is lightweight and easy to clean.  I love that I can wear the bag two different ways — depending on my mood and destination.  I can use the shoulder strap or wear the bag cross body. People are always stopping me on the street and complimenting me on my handbag.  It not only looks great, but it helps keep me organized.  The inside is roomy and there are slip pockets for small things.  The zippered pockets in the front and back help my organization even more. The handbag comes with a matching wallet with zipper enclosure.  This is a great travel accessory and bonus.

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Baggallini Touring Tote Bagg

I am not worried if I get caught in a light rain shower.  The bag’s water-resistant nylon will keep my things dry.  I wish I could stay that dry.

The Baggallini collection also features a touring tote bag in nylon. This bag can also be worn over the shoulder or cross body. My favorite feature about this bag is the zippered cell phone pocket.  Now I won’t miss a phone call because I can’t seem to find my phone, which is usually on the bottom of my bag with my junk crammed on top.

Baggallini handbags and travel bags are about organization.  Each bag features pockets and zippers to keep everything neatly and safely in place.  Baggallini’s motto is order and beauty.  You should not have to sacrifice style for functionality.

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Baggallini Sydney Bagg

For the ultimate in organization, check out the Baggallini Sydney Bagg. It contains a key fob, credit card slots, lipstick and pen holders and an easily visible ID window.  The bags zippers wide open so that you can get a bird’s eye view of the inside. Hard to believe, but this bag weighs a little more than .5 pound. It will not weight you down as you travel around.

I have ruined too many handbags because they get dirty and I can’t clean them. Now that I have a Baggallini with its incredible nylon material, my bag will stay looking brand new.  It is so easy to wipe it clean.