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The best packing cubes for keeping your travel bag neat and tidy

The key to packing like a pro is to invest in packing cubes. With the right set, your items will stay organized and in their place. Shop them here.

Published Oct 16, 2023
5 min. reading time
Image of Paravel and Eagle Creek packing cube sets

If you haven’t tried out packing cubes, here’s your sign to start.

These handy little organizers will keep your items in place — even when you need to fish something out of your suitcase.

How? With your shirts, pants and undergarments packed separately in different containers, you can get access to exactly what you need without undoing the rest.

If you’re ready to get in on this travel hack, keep scrolling. Below, you’ll find the best packing cubes to bring along on your next vacation. 

Read more: Shop our top options of travel neck pillows

Browse our list of cube packs

Calpak packing cube set in pink
Best overall
Calpak Packing Cubes 5-Piece Set
$57.80 at Calpak
Light blue packing cube set of six
Top choice for carry-ons
Gorilla Grip 6 Piece Packing Cubes Set
$16.89 at Amazon
Black packing cubes stacked on each other
Top compression pick
Travelpro Essentials 3 Pack Expandable/Compressible Packing Cube Set
$59.49 at Travelpro
Hanging packing cube in light blue
Best hanging option
ARTOS Hanging Luggage Organizer
$30.99 at Amazon

Best overall

Calpak packing cube set in pink
Photo: Calpak
Pros & Cons
  • Organizing labels attached

  • Many color and pattern options

  • Only one water-resistant pouch included

These Calpak Packing Cubes will make a huge difference to the way your luggage is organized. The set includes four packing cubes — ranging from small to large — and a water-resistant envelope pouch for storing laundry and swimwear.

Additionally, it boasts an organizing label feature so you can mark what’s inside each cube. And they have built-in mesh panels, which allow you to quickly identify the contents. 

With more than 10 color and design options to choose from, these are our favorite travel packing bags to date.

Top choice for carry-ons

Pros & Cons
  • Mesh window to view items

  • Slip-resistant

  • A few reviews say they’re not compression cubes

If you’re looking to keep your carry-on suitcase organized for a last-minute outfit change before disembarking the plane, this Gorilla Grip set will do just the trick. With different-sized packing bags, including a shoe bag and one specifically for laundry, picking out an outfit for the day will be a speedy job.

Made from tear-resistant polyester and a high-quality zipper, it’s durable enough to last multiple trips, making it a good long-term investment. And we love that they help reduce wrinkles in your clothes, too.

Top compression pick

Pros & Cons
  • Stackable when expanded

  • Wraparound zipper for easy compression

  • Only available in black

These compression cubes for packing from Travelpro make the perfect travel companion if you’re looking to save space in your luggage. The sets come in medium to extra-large sizes for bulkier items like sweaters.

The best part is, these cubes come with a wraparound zipper so you can compress items easily, no matter how bulky the items are. Tend to overpack? You’ll be happy to know the cubes can be expanded, too.

Because of its versatility, this set from Travelpro is the best compression packing cubes for carry-on luggage and checked luggage.

Best hanging option

Pros & Cons
  • Fits perfectly into carry-on luggages

  • Segmented compartments

  • Might not be compatible with backpacks

Looking for hanging packing cubes that will make getting dressed easier during your trip? Look no further than this hanging luggage organizer by ARTOS. It’s got segmented compartments to store all your shirts, a large compartment for your pants and bigger items and a bottom compartment that functions as a toiletry bag for your shower essentials.

It has two hooks to ensure stability when hanging and a grab handle to make it easy to carry. We recommend getting this set of packing cubes if you want easy access to your clothes when getting ready in a new place.

Top eco-friendly choice

Pros & Cons
  • Made from recycled plastic bottles

  • Custom embroidery option available

  • Reports of poor quality zippers

With this eco-friendly packing cube set from Paravel, you’ll be able to save space and the environment at the same time! (Just kidding, but it’s at least better for the environment).

Its negative nylon material is made out of recycled plastic bottles and it’s Oeko-Tex-Standard-100-certified, so safe to say, it’s a responsible choice.

This four-piece set includes two small cubes, one medium-sized and one large cube to fit all your essentials. We also love that you can personalize it with an embroidery of your initials.

Best water-resistant option

Set of 3 packing cubes in white
Photo: Amazon
Pros & Cons
  • Water resistant

  • Machine washable

  • Not a compression set

Even the most careful packers sometimes have to deal with accidents involving liquid spills that could ruin their clothes. But with the Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter set, that could be a thing of the past.

These waterproof packing cubes are made with lightweight nylon ripstop material to guarantee your clothes stay dry and wrinkle-free in your luggage. And if the cubes ever get dirty from a spill, simply toss them in the washing machine to clean.

Most compatible for backpacking

Pros & Cons
  • Made with recycled materials

  • No handle on packing cubes

Enjoy backpacking and outdoor activities? We recommend getting the Osprey Ultralight to stay organized on your trips. It comes in three sets of small to large compartments and it’s perfect for storing a variety of items from shoes to jeans and shirts.

You’ll also love that it’s made from 100% recycled high-tenacity nylon, which isn’t just sustainable but durable for the wear and tear that comes with traveling, too. Plus, because it is ultra-lightweight, it’ll fit into any travel backpack easily.

Things to know before buying packing cubes

In order to get the right ones, you’ll first have to understand what are packing cubes, why are they beneficial — and assess which set would best serve your needs.  To help guide your purchase, we answer some commonly asked questions.

Are packing cubes worth it?

If you’re a frequent traveler and you tend to overpack, packing cubes are a great investment. Not only will they help you stay organized, but some packing cubes can help you save space and keep small items easily accessible.

Are compression packing cubes better than packing cubes?

Compression travel cubes have an added advantage when it comes to space. Depending on the type of luggage, they help you pack bulky items, such as sweaters and jeans, more compactly. However, if you’re a light-packer, normal packing cubes would suffice.

How do you maximize space in packing cubes?

While packing cubes helps you to stay organized, maximizing space will still require you to properly fold your clothes. For example, rolling your shirts will allow you to fit more in than folding them. You should also pack extra small items separately as this will allow you to access them quicker and leave plenty of space in large packing cubes for bulky items.

Should you wash packing cubes?

Unless you spill liquid on your packing cubes, it typically doesn’t require washing. However, if you prefer to stay on the safe side, most packing cubes are machine washable. That said, remember to read their cleaning instructions to avoid ruining them.

How do you prevent wrinkles with packing cubes?

Packing cubes are great at preventing wrinkles as they keep your garments compact during travel. Of course, how you pack your clothes will play a big role in preventing wrinkles. Make sure you fold your clothes properly before fitting them into packing cubes. Rolling is also a great way to prevent wrinkles, especially if your packing cubes are not compressed.

Which packing cubes are our favorites?

When it comes to organization, all of the packing cubes on our list are great options. However, these two sets get our vote as the best ones overall.

  • Calpak Packing Cubes 5-Piece Set: We love that you can label your packing cubes so you never have to guess what’s in each cube. Plus, it’s made from high-quality material and it will stay with you for the long run.

  • Gorilla Grip 6 Piece Packing Cubes Set: This set comes with a shoe bag and a laundry bag, which will be handy for long trips. It’s also affordable, which is why it’s one of our favorites.

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Prices updated on 10/16/2023. We are not responsible for any changes to the prices mentioned above.

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Written by
Afina Najib

A journalism graduate from Curtin University, Afina Najib specializes in writing tech, finance, automotive and wellness content. Now residing in Kuala Lumpur, Afina spends her weekends hitting the gym or watching Formula 1 races.

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