herald

Tuesday 29 July 2014

What a carry-on ... my verdict on Ryanair's no-frills luggage

SMALL, no frills and navy blue with a bright yellow trim -- there is no mistaking the result of the new carry-on luggage collaboration from Ryanair and Samsonite.

The airline looks keen to shake off its reputation for endless penalties, measuring and weighing everything from laptops to handbags by encouraging the use of its new bag, which complies with cabin luggage dimensions -- when properly packed.

The Herald nabbed one of the first pieces to put it to the test and see if it's worth the €79 investment.



BUDGET

It was never likely to be super chic, but it is aimed at reducing the stress of travelling for budget passengers -- and the compact new wheelie could be worth every cent.

But you'll need to be a ruthless packer to get everything you need for a weekend away into the basic case because basics are all it will hold.

There will be no missing the blue and yellow budget carrier bag on the carousel, although you might be mistaken for one of the airline's cabin crew.

With just one zip compartment, there is no doubt how light Michael O'Leary intends his passengers to travel.

Forget front pouches or sections for toiletries or extra shoes, this luggage might get you off the ground sans extra charges but it won't fit more than a toothbrush, one change of clothes and a towel.

It will definitely fit all the necessary bits and pieces for a short stint away but no extra essentials -- Ryanair probably deems those luxuries anyway.

Laptops will be a struggle so it's not the best business buy. If you're planning on bringing all the items necessary for a glitzy night on the tiles or like to pick up a few airport bargains -- then this bag is not for you either.

Hairdryers, no matter how compact, will be best left at home because the airline itself surprisingly warns that due to its soft-side casing, the bag can be stretched to make it larger than will be permitted -- aka utterly pointless.

"As this Samsonite bag is soft-sided, if over-packed it may not fit into Ryanair's baggage sizers and in such cases Ryanair will require it to be carried as checked-in baggage," the press release states.



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Ladies and gents who enjoy a fresh set of clean clothes daily might be better saving the €79 for several check-in bags instead.

For minimalist travellers, who don't already own a suitably sized carry-on bag, it could be the perfect accessory; it's light, cheaper than several similar-sized Samsonite bags and be easy to spot.

But bear in mind you will be a walking advertisement for the airline.

Ryanair's approved Samsonite carry-on bag is available at www.ryanair.com

aanderson@herald.ie

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