Monday, September 13, 2010

Review: The Packing Book: Secrets of the carry-on traveler

As I was reading The Packing Book: Secrets of the carry-on traveler by Judith Gilford, I kept getting more and more disappointed. Then it hit me: my main problem with the book wasn't the content, it was the subtitle. Had it been titled a beginner's guide to carry on travel, I'd be all set. Instead, it promised to contain secrets, and secrets I did not find.

I've got to give Gilford credit for creating a comprehensive book, though. If you're just starting to do extensive travel, or if you're unsure how you can go from 2 large checked bags to 1 carry on, this is your book. If anything, the book is too comprehensive, providing gear lists that give you plenty of opportunity to bring stuff you won't need (office supplies, anyone?).

At times, too, the fact that this is a published book at all works against it. Some of the material seems dated (travels checks and cassettes, anyone?) and while I appreciate the complete discussion about the bundling packing method, YouTube is clearly a better way to learn this technique.

All in all, if you're looking for a comprehensive packing resource, this is probably it. Just understand that it's more Travel 101 than anything else.

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