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Thread: Question from an old timer: brain bag/aeronautic combo for travel?

  1. #1
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    Question from an old timer: brain bag/aeronautic combo for travel?

    Hey, all! Old timer here... Haven't been on the forums in ages! Looks like everyone is doing well!

    I haven't had much to post in a long while... But that's because my Brain Bag has served me well (along with some assorted accessories) for over two years now! It's been all over the world with me, for work and pleasure, and still looks as good as the day I bought it. Now it seems that my work requirements are going to require some steady travel, and we all know what that means: the return of TB anticipation syndrome!

    I'm going to be traveling pretty regularly (once a month), and plan on using a carry-on only strategy. Here's my question for you road warriors:

    - what are your thoughts on using the brain bag/aeronaut combination for overseas travel? I have had no problems using my brain bag as my carry on item and storing it under the seat during domestic flights; can the same be said for international travel?

    - what about recommendations for packing cube accessories? I was thinking about getting one of the packing cube backpacks to double as a light daypack during my journeys. What combos do you find the most useful?

    - finally, which size packing cubes can serve double duty in the brain bag and aeronaut if you are switching things up?

    Thanks in advance for your advice!

    --Bob
    ----------------
    Bob P.
    Magic Tiki Studios

    Empire Builder (black/steel), Brain Bag (steel), Small Padded Organizer Pouch, Clear Wallet, Soft Cell, Snake Charmer (cayenne) and assorted trimmings.

  2. #2
    Volunteer Moderator Badger's Avatar
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    Bob, in regards to your first question, it really depends on the airline. Some will allow a bag + personal item, but some won't. I'm flying Alitalia next week, and I'm limited to one bag of 11 kilos or less.

    When I bought my Aeronaut, I didn't buy any packing cubes because I wanted to see if the large packing cube from my Western Flyer would work (it does). It looks like that packing cube would also fit in your Brain Bag. Obviously, the small/end pocket cubes from any of the bags would work in the BB too.

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    I use a Western Flyer packing cube in my Brain Bag. There's a post about it somewhere, but I'm feeling lazy ... welcome back to the fray!

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    You can easily get the large packing cube with a small one on top of it (Aeronaut sizes) into the brain bag, depending on how tight you pack everything I can get my snake charmer crammed in as well in the same compartment.

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    It really depends on the airlines that you will be flying.

    In my experience:
    - US Legacy Carriers (AA, UA, DL) - You will be OK
    - British Airways - You'll be fine as long as you don't fumble around the entrance of the security checkpoint at Heathrow.
    - Japan Airlines - International flights - OK; Japan Domestic flights - probably not
    - Other asian international carriers - Probably OK
    - QANTAS - Should be OK as long as you're not on their 767.
    - European Value carriers - Not a chance

    Something to remember. International aircraft often have additional electronics under the seats for the in-flight entertainment systems. This can make storing your brain bag more difficult, depending on the seat you select. Sites like seatguru.com or seatexpert.com often help determine where the electronics boxes are installed.
    Last edited by adamki; 12-20-2011 at 06:47 AM.
    ~Adam
    ~~~~~~~~
    Bags: Aeronaut, Tri-Star, Super Ego, Buzz, Brain Cell Size 4Z & 6X, {Small Cafe & Synapse - Controlled by Wife!}
    Accessories: Backpack packing cubes (aeronaut, tri-star), Various Packing Cubes, Passport Pouch, Absolute Straps, QAM, Various Other Pouches, Freudian Slip

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    Registered User xtal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adamki View Post
    Something to remember. International aircraft often have additional electronics under the seats for the in-flight entertainment systems. This can make storing your brain bag more difficult, depending on the seat you select. Sites like seatguru.com or seatexpert.com often help determine where the electronics boxes are installed.
    This is excellent advice. Though, I've found that seatguru sometimes misses the electronics boxes, but it usually gets it right. Another issue is that the airline is free to change the airplane at the last minute, which throws a lot of the pre-planning in seat selection out the window.

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    A Packing Cube Backpack for Aeronaute fits in each pocket of the Brain Bag or 2 Packing Cube Shoulder Bag stacked on top of each other.

    They are the only Packing Cubes I use with my Brain Bag, the Packing Cube Shoulder Bag do not look like purses but are like End Cubes with a front zipper and the ability to have a Simple Strap or a Long Key Strap clipped to them as handles. This is an extremely handy feature in any hotel room, especially small ones.
    I come from Europe and small rooms is what you are going to get unless you use international chains or multi-stars hotels. (small for American standards and for somebody who is 5'7".


    I absolutely loove my Brain Bag(S), one for me, one for husband and another one for me in a cute color.

    But... Europeans airlines set strict luggage dimensions And weight which, is the a real pain.


    I also read on two different travel forums, that singling out a passenger at the gate and mis-tagging bags on purpose is done by "legacy" airlines gate agents as a power trip.


    I would suggest buying a Tristar as an all purpose carry-on or

    a Cadet (which look like a briefcase)
    or a Co-Pilot/Imago/Large Cafe Bag (they all look small enough to be personal size bags)
    paired with an Aeronaute that you would UPS or Fedex prior to your departure.
    Last edited by backpack; 12-20-2011 at 03:28 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by backpack View Post

    I absolutely loove my Brain Bag(S), one for me, one for husband and another one for me in a cute color.

    But... Europeans airlines set strict luggage dimensions And weight which, is the a real pain.
    I'm a little mystified here. Are you saying the Brain Bag is too large to be a carry-on for most European airlines?

    I hope not, as I'm hoping to use mine as carry-on for a trip to Italy next year.

    Thanks.

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    The Brain Bag is perfect but... some airlines have strict height, length and width requirement, in Europe there is an additional requirement, weight.

    They also, as I pointed out, force passengers, to gate check their bags if they feel like it.
    Even passengers with smaller bags, it is totally random.


    A Brain Bag is not a check-able bag because the shoulder straps have no protection, they are just there, unlike the shoulder straps of the Tristar or the Aeronaut which can be stowed in the back compartment of the bags, thus transforming either into a easily gate checked bag, if necessary.
    Last edited by backpack; 12-21-2011 at 07:53 AM.

  10. #10
    mjo
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    Ryan air
    Easyjet
    Cityjet

    They all do gate checking. City jet is gate checking troleys, except the horizontal "tumi" trolleys. Brain bag + aeronaut is definitely not working. I would take the tri star on european value carriers; that works all the time on budget airlines. Also some seats in the smaller aircrafts have enveloppe sized overhead compartments: dont pack too heavy. If you are frequent traveller get a local dry cleaning service and arrange with hotel to leave your stuff, you will be amazed how flexible hotels are..

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    Thanks, everyone!

    So -- if I am reading this all correctly -- the Tri-star will fit in places that the Aeronaut and/or Brain Bag will not? Maybe a Tri-star/small messenger is the better way to go...
    ----------------
    Bob P.
    Magic Tiki Studios

    Empire Builder (black/steel), Brain Bag (steel), Small Padded Organizer Pouch, Clear Wallet, Soft Cell, Snake Charmer (cayenne) and assorted trimmings.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MagicTiki View Post
    Thanks, everyone!

    So -- if I am reading this all correctly -- the Tri-star will fit in places that the Aeronaut and/or Brain Bag will not? Maybe a Tri-star/small messenger is the better way to go...
    I travel with a TriStar + Super Ego (or sometimes Buzz) and it works very well.

    The nice thing about this combo is that the TriStar will fit under the seat of most regional jets and I can then cram the Super Ego in the narrow overhead bins on those planes. I think the Aeronaut is too long to fit under those seats.
    ~Adam
    ~~~~~~~~
    Bags: Aeronaut, Tri-Star, Super Ego, Buzz, Brain Cell Size 4Z & 6X, {Small Cafe & Synapse - Controlled by Wife!}
    Accessories: Backpack packing cubes (aeronaut, tri-star), Various Packing Cubes, Passport Pouch, Absolute Straps, QAM, Various Other Pouches, Freudian Slip

  13. #13
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    An answer to the sizing bins MAY be to underpack a Brain Bag, and use the side straps to cinch it in a little. My son used this strategy on a small airline this summer, to his immense smugness and the gate agent's (fortunate) amusement. Do check those weight limits, of course.
    tCook likes this.
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    I like Sera's suggestion. A fully packed Brain Bag is only four inches shorter than the Aeronaut with the same dimensions the other two ways. A not-fully packed BB can cinch down to a much more manageable (crammable!) size.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tCook View Post
    I like Sera's suggestion. A fully packed Brain Bag is only four inches shorter than the Aeronaut with the same dimensions the other two ways. A not-fully packed BB can cinch down to a much more manageable (crammable!) size.
    I suggested the Tristar because I tried to slide my fully packed Brain Bag under the middle seat of a Southwest plane and it didn't fit.

    Transatlantic airlines have entertainment boxes similar to Jet Blue airliners, the space under the seat is so tight , there is only space for one's feet and a small bag. But a Tristar would squeeze in the overhead beautifully.

    The only way to take a Brain Bag and an Aeronaute like MagicTiki wants to do is to fly in the higher tier of the European National airlines or to get a higher class ticket for the transatlantic flight and take the train within Europe.

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