I'm relatively new to the world of business travel, making a short trip (1-2 nights) every week or two. I'm also a One Bag devotee for non-business travel. Hoping to duplicate this for work, I even bought a Brain Bag last month, but just can't seem to get this right...
My work requires me to lead 3-hour hands-on events with equipment that is (usually) shipped from location to location and then hauled around locally either in my car or my rental car. Think two large Pelican cases of iPads and MacBook Airs. I have to be able to hook up an Apple TV to pretty much any projector in any space a customer has available for me. This means having a variety of dongles and adapters at the ready. For that reason, I was having a hard time keeping everything together in my ID when I'm local and then shifting to the Brain Bag when I'm on the road. Plus, the Brain Bag just doesn't work with a shirt and tie (for me, anyway).
I know I could "modularize" and I have to some extent with a Snake Charmer and pouches, I just hate the idea of flying somewhere and realizing I left something in my other bag. Too stressful.
And here's the other confession: When I'm traveling for work, I like to be comfortable. I want to carry a pair of running shoes so I can exercise or a pair of jeans to go out. I don't necessarily always want to be "minimal" when I'm away from my family for a couple nights.
So I'm actually thinking that for business travel, I may actually go with a rolling carryon (probably a 20" to keep it small - I have an old one I'm using now, but might spring for a Travelpro in the future) and maybe pop for a Zephyr or Empire Builder which is about the same size as my ID, but presents a more professional appearance for meeting with Superintendents and the like.
While the Zephyr looks a little smaller than my ID based on the specs, the Empire Builder looks enormous and, arguably, is not quite small enough to be my "personal item" if the airline really wanted to get picky. If I didn't need my 13" MacBook Air, I would go laptop-free; however a big part of my presentations involves using the Air. In addition to looking for professional, the Zephyr (and EB) also have the ability to go over the handle of a piece of rolling luggage.
I've been tempted by the TriStar, but then I'm also carrying my briefcase so I'm not sure how that would work. One on the back, one in the hand?
My main carry includes the 13" Air (in a Cache), two iPad Minis (one is mine and one is for demo purposes), and assorted cables, dongles, and other items like a Mifi, a WD Passport 1TB portable USB drive, etc. You know the drill. I'm thinking it's probably a little too much for a Cadet and no way it's enough to fill an EB.
So here I am. When most people are minimizing and going down to one bag, I'm thinking about expanding to meet my needs while on the road for business. Because of the amount of technology I need to carry for my job, I am still struggling to find the perfect travel setup...