POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Apr 7, 2013
» What it is: A wheeled bag with compartments for an umbrella, backup power for devices, a portable speaker, socks, underwear, electrical cords, magazines, a water bottle. The toiletries compartment is removable (Velcro), and the bag even has a laundry chute.
» The good: At first I thought this was just a bunch of gimmicks, but the compartments turned out to be very handy. And it helps to have a bag prompting you to pack things like socks, which can be forgotten if you wait till the last minute to pack. You can buy a backup battery, serviceable speaker and micro-umbrella from Genius Packer or provide your own to fit in the designated areas. The surprising plus was the laundry chute, accessed from an exterior zipped portal. The laundry goes into an interior zip-out bag, which can be rolled up and bound with ties, then removed when you get ready to wash the laundry. It gave me more room to buy a couple more garments on a trip. The wheels work easily whether dragging the bag or using the 360-degree feature in a security line. And the bag fit with room to spare in the overhead bin of a 737.
» The bad: The bag occasionally would fall over when standing. I'm not sure whether it was how I packed or the fact that most compartments are in the lid of the bag, making it heavier on that side.
» Cost: $198
» Available from: geniuspack.com
Ross Werland, www.chicagotribune.com