The Best Personal Item Bag

Whether you’re flying minimally and looking for the best way to maximize the efficiency of what you can carry or you want to keep certain items accessible, there are a number of factors in picking out a personal item, how did I pick mine?

The Difference Between Personal Item Vs Carry-On Bag

Airlines generally allow one carry-on bag that is placed in the overhead compartments during the flight. Being that I (almost) never check a bag, this will contain all of my clothes, toiletries, and other things that I won’t need access to on a flight.

They also allow for a personal item that can be stowed under the seat in front of you. These could be a purse, tote, or other small bag. Size restrictions vary per airline, but some of the commonly allowed sizes are:

  • American Airlines – 18″ x 14″ x 8″
  • Delta Airlines – 22″ x 14″ x 9″
  • Spirit Airlines – 18″ x 14″ x 8″
  • United Airlines – 17″ x 10″ x 9″

This would be the place to store things you need access to on a flight like snacks, headphones, or a book. I use my personal item to store my diabetes supplies because of everything that I have, this is the stuff I need to keep the most secure.

What Were My Initial Requirements

Although I am already carrying an Osprey Porter 46 as a backpack, I wanted to stick with a backpack for my personal item as well. After dropping our stuff off, we’ll likely still need to carry some items with us – passports, phrase books, etc. I like to keep my hands free, so being able to use the personal item as a daypack is super valuable to me.

I don’t need a lot of space on the inside, but a little bit of organization tends to be helpful, although not necessary.

For our upcoming trip, we’ll be taking (and I drew the straw for carrying) two large bottles. Our Grayl GeoPress Water Filter will go in one pocket and my new 4AllFamily Insulin Cooler will go in the other.

I have had many small daypacks in the past and most of them that claim to have a water bottle holder is usually just an extra sewing of fabric on the side…

Why I Chose The Osprey Daylite Totepack

I had previously been using a daypack from Tortuga that came complimentary with one of their carry-on bags, but it was essentially a sack of vinyl that was ripping apart at the seams at this point. I also had an Adidas sling bag that I was considering taking, so if my searches fell fruitless, I had a backpack plan. Fortunately for me, the Osprey Daylite Totepack checked a lot of marks on my list.

It’s a durable, recycled material with breathable straps that are very comfortable with a full pack.

The interior is spacious, yet well-organized, so I don’t have to rummage through all of my belongings just to get to that one pen that I need. The inside is a nice, light gray color, which makes seeing inside a lot easier.

I mentioned water bottle holders? Yeah, this thing delivers. I can fit both of my hulking bottles in the side with no fear that they’ll fall out.

The Osprey Daylite Totepack

I tried not to go with the Osprey bag for two big reasons:

  • I already have an Osprey carry-on and I don’t really like to be solo-branded. But they make a great product that fit my needs.
  • I didn’t want to have the same bag as Rachel from The Virgo Voyager, but that girl does some really good research and finds winning solutions.

I got over myself and found a new pack on eBay for a solid discount and snatched it up. I’m super excited to try it out in the coming months! I’ll be sure to share my thoughts as we go.

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