My take on this is to buy an Aeronaute and a Tristar or 2 Tristars or one Aeronaute and a Western Flyer or a Tristar and a Western Flyer.
We know that you can pack really light with the Brain Bag and your wife could try it using Lani's wonderful tips, she could even supplement her wardrobe in Europe.
With multiple modes of transportations, I strongly advice against check in bags. I was born in Europe and travelled there by trains, buses, boats and Ryanair before their stringent weight restriction.
There is no checking on train, bus and boats, you have to carry the huge rollaboard while navigating train stations stairs, the mazes that are bus stations and on steep boat ramps.
One good thing about that is your will be both very hungry for European foods and will be able to proudly show your newly gained muscles. The not so good thing, it gets exhausting pretty quickly.
Especially when jetlagged.
Ryanair and many local airlines force check in oversized and/or overweight luggages. Overweight meaning as low as 6 kg.
Which means you have to check the airline website for their current weight limit, with the price of oil rising, it might change, so you have to buy a luggage scale.
I think they also charge the check in luggage by weight, so wheels mean more expensive.
Because European airlines are busier than ever, there is a strong likeliness of routing the bag in the wrong direction
The best wardrobe bet in Europe is one or 2 neutral color basic pieces that can be dressed up and down. One pair of comfort shoes for traveling and walking and one pair of lightweight dressier shoes like a ballerina flat or a lightweight equivalent for men. (Europe has wonderful shoe makers, you can buy the extra there as well)
Make sure the walking shoes are waterproofed. One poster talked about Londrain, Amsterain and I can add Parisrain, Bruxellrain and Berlinrain.
You have more chance of sunny weather in Spain and Italy but I remember one picture taken by a Tom Bihn fan of Rome under snow in winter, which means they can get rain in the Fall as well.
Check the weather forecast now and periodically until the day of departure.
I have the trifecta - an Aeronaut, a WF and a TS. My Aeronaut and Western Flyer are Cardinal/Steel (TS is navy/Iberian) and I love this combination. Cardinal is a really attractive red.
It sounds as if you have decided on the TS but here are my observations on the three bags as "one bagging" options for a 3 week trip. It is relevant to note that I am a fit and active 5'6" woman since I am going to comment on carrying comfort. Also I try to avoid checking in whenever I can, although I am not really a true one bagger because I like to carry a separate handbag/daybag.
I am constantly amazed at how much my Aeronaut can hold. It could easily accommodate everything you'd need for a three week trip even if you didn't apply a lot of discipline to your packing list. However, when fully packed it can easily weigh in at 10kg++ (and that's even assuming you don't have a lot of heavy tech or photographic equipment). Everyone will have a different carrying comfort level, of course, but if you are trying to convert your wife to the merits of travelling with just carry on, loading her up with a bag this heavy is probably not the best way to start!
I love the WF and try to use it whenever I can - when fully packed it is usually under 7kg, which is perfect for me. However, for longer trips it requires a high level of packing discipline that is generally achieved only with time and experience! Would probably be a challenge to use as the sole bag for a three week trip (yes, Lani, I know you could do it easily! :cool:).
The TS is a great compromise bag, in terms of size, between the other two. I'll bet your wife could do a practice pack, you know, just for fun,:) into a TS and find that she could easily fit all she needed for the trip in there. However, this is another bag that gets heavy quickly, because it can hold so much. It can easily weigh 9kg fully packed (Typically when I travel with mine it comes in at around 7.8kg).
I would definitely echo others' comments about the packing cubes. They are really useful, whichever bag you choose, and help with organisation and compression (especially in the main compartment of the Aeronaut) and adding extra structure to the bag (in the TS and WF). I always use mine, even with non-TB bags...
I don't disagree. But ebags branded are far from cheap. They are made pretty well and a good alternative. Especially if you're looking for a rolling case. I have several of their bags and have had no problems. For everything else there is Tom bihn.
Originally Posted by backpack
Ahh, the Aeronaut restocked ahead of schedule - great! So, I was trying to decide between a Tristar and an Aeronaut, but the Aero was out of stock, so I was going to order the Tristar.
Now that the Aeronaut is back, which should I get? Does anyone have experience taking the Aeronaut as a carry-on on RyanAir or Wizz Air? I believe technically it may be slightly over their carryon dimensions/requirements?
Since it looks as if you already have a WF I'd get the Aeronaut as the two will complement each other very well. I have no experience with the Aeronaut on the airlines you list but if you left the end pockets empty I would think there'd be a good chance of squashing the bag down to size...
Originally Posted by Josh
Look at post 5 in this thread for a few photos of the aeronaut in bag sizers in Europe: http://www.tombihn.com/forums/travel...ry-limits.html
Hello Josh, In case your heart isn't totally set on the Tristar , I just ordered an Aeronaut in Forest/Ultraviolet and it was shipped on Friday! Have a great trip!
Nice! An Aeronaut it is, then! Ordering it today, and I'll make sure to report back and let everyone know how things go in Europe!