This is a post in an ongoing feature on Her Packing List called “The One Little Thing“. Each week or two, I’ll be interviewing a traveling lady to find out the one little thing she just can’t travel without. This one comes to you from Sarah Morgan.
What one little thing can you not travel without?
When traveling, a lot of people like to pack so they are prepared to handle a variety of possible situations. However, the only thing you can really expect when you are traveling is the unexpected, if that makes sense! That’s why the one little thing I cannot travel without is a carabiner clip. It might sound silly, but these little guys have come in handy so many times, I never travel without a handful of them!
Why has this one item been so important to you?
Carabiner clips are super nifty because they can be used in a variety of ways. Have you ever been out and about for the day and the strap on your purse broke? I have, and it is the worst! Use a carabiner clip to reattach the strap (depending on how the bag broke, of course!) and you can carry on with your day, problem solved! Maybe you went a little crazy shopping and juuust have enough room in your backpack for your new purchases. Use a carabiner to connect the zippers on your backpack so they don’t slide open. Nobody wants to see your backpack explode and rain underwear all over Paris, so clip that baby closed! If you are worried about pickpockets, use a small carabiner clip to discreetly attach your purse to your belt loop or clip the zipper closed, making it more difficult to open your bag. I’ve come to rely on these little guys because they can be used in so many different ways!
How packable is it? Does it take up much room? Is it heavy?
Carabiner clips are so great. They don’t even need to be packed, you can just clip them to the outside of your luggage! They come in a variety of sizes, but even the largest of carabiner clips will take up little-to-no room in your bag, and they weigh next to nothing! You can buy carabiners equipped with combination locks, flashlights, and super strength for a variety of prices, but the most basic carabiner clip can be purchased for less than $5.
Why would you recommend this to your travel friends?
You never know what you will encounter on the road, so it’s nice to have a tool that can alleviate the stress of whatever weird situations you encounter, like broken luggage. If you know there is something out there that can make traveling and the unexpected easier to deal with, why wouldn’t you buy it? It’s also so small and inexpensive, you have no excuses not to buy one, or ten!
Can you name one incident or situation where you were so happy to have this item with you?
I think anyone who has ever traveled with a backpack can agree that the less you have to carry, the better. When I was in Ecuador, I was traveling with my backpack and a sleeping bag. After carrying my sleeping bag around in my arms for a week, I used two small carabiners to attach my sleeping bag to the bottom of my backpack, and what a difference it made! Although I was still carrying the same amount of luggage, it felt like I was carrying less because I wasn’t holding anything in my arms. Using carabiners to minimize the amount of luggage you have by connecting loose items is my favorite way to use these clips. I’m also notorious for losing track of my water bottle, so it’s great to clip it to my backpack so it can’t run away from me!
How did you hear about this item?
I stumbled upon these little beauties in a sporting goods store when I was buying my backpack for my trip to Ecuador in 2007. There was a basket of carabiner clips near the checkout line for about $1 each. I didn’t know what I might use them for, but I grabbed a handful because they were so cheap (and had little flashlights in them!) Since that fateful moment in the checkout line, I’ve never looked back!
What sort of traveler is this item perfect for?
Carabiner clips are perfect for every traveler! Whether you are traveling with a backpack, suitcase, one bag or three, you’ll definitely find a handy way to use a carabiner clip. Keep calm and clip on!
>> Search for carabiner clips on Amazon
About the Author: Sarah Morgan is a twenty-something, recent graduate of the University of Delaware. During her time at UD she studied abroad three times in Puerto Rico, Greece, and England, among other travels. Sarah is a self-diagnosed travel junkie and will be moving to Ireland in August with a Working Holiday Visa. Keep up with her on Twitter @SarahMorgan65.