Travel Nurse Packing Hacks: How to Pack Light and Stay Organized

5 Best Luggage for Travel Nurses: Packing Hacks and Tips


Travel nursing can be an incredibly rewarding experience. However, it also comes with its fair share of challenges, particularly when it comes to packing. As a travel nurse, you may find yourself moving frequently between assignments. This means you need luggage that is both durable and easy to manage.

Moreover, packing light is very important. This ensures that you can carry your luggage around without any hindrance. Fortunately, there are several options available in the market that cater to the specific needs of travel nurses.

In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the best luggage for travel nurses and how you can pack efficiently to stay organized on the go.

Factors to Consider When Choosing the Best Luggage for Travel Nurses

When it comes to choosing luggage for travel nursing, there are several factors to consider. Let’s take a look at them:

1. Size and Weight Restrictions

Size and weight restrictions are important factors to consider. Many airlines have specific requirements for both carry-on and checked baggage. Thus, choosing luggage that meets these regulations is important to avoid extra hassle at the airport. 

Lightweight materials such as nylon or polyester can help reduce the weight of your luggage. On the other hand, a sturdy and durable material will ensure that your belongings are protected during your travels. 

2. Durability and Quality

Investing in high-quality luggage made of strong materials can save you money and hassle in the long run. Look for luggage with reinforced corners, sturdy zippers, and durable handles. This luggage can withstand frequent travel and last longer. 

Furthermore, you shouldn’t rule out the weight of the luggage when buying one. It ensures that it doesn’t add unnecessary weight to your travels. You must focus on the durability and quality of your luggage. That way, you can have peace of mind during your travels knowing that your belongings are safe and secure.

3. Storage and Organization Features

Multiple compartments are a must-have for keeping items organized. This is important especially when they’re on the move frequently. Compression straps can help condense and secure belongings. On the contrary, expandable compartments can be useful for packing extra items on the return trip. 

Selecting luggage with efficient storage and organizational features will save time. It will also prevent stress, and make your travels more comfortable.

Top 5 Best Luggage Options for Travel Nurses

When it comes to finding the best luggage for travel nurses, there are a lot of choices available. Each of the options has its unique advantages and disadvantages. So, you must consider your specific needs and preferences when choosing the right one. 

Option 1: Lightweight Rolling Duffel Bag

The Lightweight Rolling Duffel Bag is an excellent choice. This is for travel nurses who need a versatile and lightweight luggage option. This bag offers ample space to pack all necessary items. Maneuvering the bag with its wheels and retractable handle is also very easy. The duffel design also allows for flexible packing. This makes it easier to fit into tight spaces like overhead compartments. 

Additionally, it’s made from durable materials. This means that the bag can withstand wear and tear from frequent travel. It helps travel nurses stay organized while on the go without sacrificing convenience. Here are a few choices:

1. Rockland Rolling Duffel Bag, Black, 30-Inch

Rockland Rolling Duffel Bag, Black, 30-Inch - one of the best luggages for travel nurses

The Rockland Rolling Duffel Bag is a versatile and durable luggage option. It features a spacious main compartment with a U-shaped opening. This provides easy access to your belongings. The bag is made from sturdy polyester material. This means it can withstand wear and tear during travel. 

The bag also features several pockets, including two front zippered compartments and an extra side pocket. It means there is ample storage for all your essentials.

2. Olympia U.S.A. 8 Pocket Rolling Duffel Bag, Black, 22 inch

Olympia u.s.a. 8 pocket rolling duffel bag

The Olympia U.S.A. 8 Pocket Rolling Duffel Bag is a well-designed and functional travel bag. It provides enough storage space for all your travel essentials. The bag has eight separate pockets, including a large U-shaped zippered main compartment. This means it can accommodate several items of clothing and other personal belongings.

The build quality of the bag is excellent. The durable materials and reinforced stitching of the bag ensures long-lasting use.

3. Ripstop Wheeled Duffel, Telescoping Handle, 30″, Black

Ripstop Wheeled Duffel - one of the best luggages for travel nurses

The Ripstop Wheeled Duffel with Telescoping Handle is a versatile luggage for travelers. The ripstop fabric construction provides added strength and durability. The telescoping handle and smooth-rolling wheels of the bag make it easy to transport. 

The spacious interior can accommodate a variety of items, and the multiple pockets allow for organized packing. Additionally, the duffel features sturdy handles for easy lifting and carrying. This product offers a reliable and functional solution for travel needs.

Option 2: Compression Packing Cubes

When it comes to packing, space is always a concern. Compression packing cubes can be an absolute game-changer. It allows you to maximize the available space in your luggage. These lightweight and durable cubes come in various sizes. This makes them perfect for different types of luggage. Not only do they help keep your clothes organized, but they also prevent wrinkles. 

Furthermore, compression packing cubes can store other items like toiletries or medical supplies. It keeps everything in one place and makes it easy to find what you need on the go.

1. 4 Piece Packing Travel Organizer Cubes Set, Black

4 Piece Packing Travel Organizer Cubes Set

This particular luggage, offered in small, medium, large, and slim sizes is a practical option for travelers. It helps to streamline their packing process.

The different sizes allow for flexibility in packing. The slim cube is particularly useful for fitting into tight spaces or for packing smaller items. 

This set is a great investment for anyone who wants to simplify their travel experience. It keeps their belongings organized on the go.

2. Veken Suitcase Organizer Bags Set for Travel Essentials Travel Accessories (Pink)

Veken Suitcase Organizer Bags Set

The Veken Suitcase Organizer Bags Set is designed to enhance the travel experience. This set includes six individual bags of different sizes. Each of the bags has its own unique function. The bags are made from high-quality waterproof nylon material. This makes them durable and easy to clean.

The various bags in the set can be used to organize different items. Those items can include clothing, toiletries, electronics, and other travel essentials. The bags feature sturdy zippers and handles. This makes them easy to open and close and transport around.

3. TravelWise Luggage Packing Organization Cubes 5 Pack, Black (2 Small, 2 Medium, 1 Large)

TravelWise Luggage Packing Organization Cubes

The TravelWise Luggage Packing Organization Cubes is a well-designed set of packing cubes. It can help travelers stay organized and efficient during their trips.

The set includes five cubes of varying sizes. It allows users to pack items of different sizes and shapes with ease. The cubes are made from durable and lightweight materials. This means they are easy to handle and store when not in use.

Option 3: Carry-On Backpack with Multiple Pockets

Carry-on backpacks with multiple pockets are a popular choice. These are for travel nurses who want to stay organized and pack light. These backpacks offer the convenience of carrying all your essentials on your back. Thus, leaving your hands free to navigate crowded airports or hospitals. The multiple pockets make it easy to access everything you need without having to rummage through the entire bag. This precious time during busy work schedules. 

Moreover, backpacks distribute weight evenly and are comfortable to carry. They are even used for extended periods. When choosing a carry-on backpack, consider the size, material, and number of pockets. This is to ensure it meets your needs and airline regulations.

1. JanSport Backpack, with 15-inch Laptop Sleeve, Grey Letterman

JanSport Backpack, with 15-inch Laptop Sleeve, Grey Letterman

The JanSport Backpack is a stylish backpack that is designed to meet the needs of students, professionals, and travelers. The backpack features a 15-inch laptop sleeve, which provides ample space for most laptops and tablets. The laptop compartment is padded to protect your device from scratches and bumps.

All in all, the JanSport Backpack is an excellent choice for anyone who needs a functional backpack with plenty of storage space.

2. Amazon Basics Laptop Backpack Fits Up to 17-Inch Laptops, Black

Basics Laptop Backpack Fits Up to 17 Inch Laptops - one of the best luggages for travel nurses

This backpack is designed to provide secure and comfortable transport of laptops up to 17 inches in size. The backpack has a durable polyester exterior with padded straps and a back panel for comfortable wear. The main compartment includes a padded laptop sleeve with additional space for books, documents, and other essentials.

Exterior pockets provide convenient storage for small items such as keys, pens, and phones. The backpack also has water bottle pockets on the sides and a reinforced bottom panel for added durability.

Option 4: Hard-Shell Spinner Suitcase

When it comes to durability, hard-shell spinner suitcases are the way to go. These types of suitcases are designed to withstand the wear and tear of frequent travel and protect your belongings from damage. The spinner wheels make navigation through crowded airports a breeze while multiple compartments provide ample space for packing. 

Be mindful of the size and weight restrictions when selecting a hard-shell spinner suitcase as some options can be quite heavy, which may impact your ability to pack everything you need.

1. KENNETH COLE Out of Bounds Lightweight Durable Hardshell 4-Wheel Spinner Cabin Size Travel Suitcase

Lightweight Durable Hardshell 4-Wheel Spinner Cabin Size Travel Suitcase

This particular suitcase is a high-quality travel accessory that offers impressive durability and functionality. Constructed from durable ABS material, this hardshell suitcase ensures reliable protection for your belongings while also being lightweight and easy to maneuver thanks to its four-wheel spinner design.

Measuring 20 inches in height, this cabin-sized travel suitcase is suitable for use as carry-on luggage for most airlines. The interior features ample space for packing your essentials and includes a fully lined main compartment with garment restraints, as well as multiple zippered pockets for additional organization.

2. Kenneth Cole Reaction Renegade ABS Expandable 8-Wheel Upright, Rose Gold, 24-Inch

Kenneth Cole Reaction Renegade Collection

The Kenneth Cole Reaction Renegade is a high-quality luggage product that offers both style and durability. Made from durable ABS material, this luggage has an expandable design which provides plenty of space for packing and the 8-wheel spinners make it easy to maneuver. 

The rose gold color adds a touch of elegance, making it a perfect choice for any type of travel. Additionally, the luggage comes equipped with multiple pockets and compartments for storage and organization, ensuring that your belongings remain secure and easily accessible. 

Option 5: Under-seat Luggage with Laptop Compartment

For travel nurses who want to stay organized and easily accessible, under-seat luggage with a laptop compartment is a great option. This compact and lightweight luggage allows you to store all your essentials in one place, including your laptop. With a designated laptop compartment, you can easily access your device without having to dig through the rest of your belongings. 

Besides, this type of luggage is often made from durable materials that can withstand frequent travel and rough handling. When choosing an under-seat suitcase with a laptop compartment, consider the size and storage capacity to ensure it meets your needs.

1. Samsonite Underseat Carry-On Spinner with USB Port 

Samsonite Underseat Carry-On Spinner with USB Port, Ocean, One Size

The Samsonite Underseat Carry-On Spinner is a well-designed product that offers a range of features to make travel more convenient and comfortable. With its compact size and lightweight design, this carry-on spinner is ideal for short trips or as an additional bag for longer journeys. 

The built-in USB port allows you to charge your devices on the go, while the multiple pockets and compartments provide sufficient storage space for all your essentials. The spinner wheels are smooth and easy to maneuver, making it easy to navigate through busy airports and crowded streets.

2. Underseat Carry-On Rolling Travel Luggage Bag, 14 Inches, Navy Blue

Basics Underseat Carry-On Rolling Travel Luggage Bag, 14 Inches, Navy Blue - one of the best luggages for travel nurses

The Underseat Carry-On Rolling Travel Luggage Bag Blue is a versatile luggage option for travelers. With its compact size and under-seat design, it fits easily into overhead compartments and tight spaces on planes and trains. 

The bag is made from durable materials and features multiple pockets and compartments for efficient storage and organization of your belongings. On top of that, the navy blue color adds a touch of style to the functional design.

3. TPRC 15-Inch Smart Under Seat Carry-On Luggage with USB Charging Port

TPRC 15-Inch Smart Under Seat Carry-On Luggage

The TPRC 15-Inch Smart Under Seat Carry-On Luggage is a highly functional travel accessory that has been designed to meet the needs of modern travelers. This carry-on luggage features a smart design that allows it to fit comfortably under most airline seats, making it an ideal choice for short trips and weekend getaways.

One of the standout features of this luggage is its built-in USB charging port, which allows you to charge your smartphone or other electronic devices on the go. This feature is especially useful for travelers who need to stay connected and charged up while on the move.

Packing Hacks to Maximize Space and Stay Organized

When it comes to traveling as a nurse, packing light and staying organized are crucial. Fortunately, there are a plethora of packing hacks that can help maximize space and keep your belongings in order. 

Tip 1: Use Packing Cubes to Separate Clothing and Accessories

Traveling as a nurse can be difficult, and organization is key to making the experience as stress-free as possible. One way to stay organized while packing is by using packing cubes. These nifty accessories can help separate clothing and accessories into designated compartments, which not only makes it easier to find what you’re looking for but also saves space in your luggage. 

By using packing cubes of different sizes, you can neatly pack everything from undergarments to shoes without worrying about misplacing items or creating chaos in your suitcase. Plus, they are affordable, reusable, and come in various colors for added organization and style.

Tip 2: Roll Clothes Instead of Folding

One simple way to maximize your space is to roll clothes instead of folding them. This trick not only saves space but also reduces wrinkles and makes it easier to access items in your luggage. To make the most of this technique, consider rolling smaller items like socks and underwear into larger items like shirts or pants. 

You can further organize and compress your clothing by using packing cubes or compression bags. By rolling your clothes and utilizing these tools, you’ll be able to pack more efficiently and stay organized during your travels.

Tip 3: Pack Multi-Use Items

Multi-use items not only save space but also reduce the number of items you need to pack. For example, consider packing clothing items that can be worn in different ways such as a scarf that can double as a headband or a dress that can be worn as a skirt. 

Furthermore, using travel-sized containers for toiletries and medication will not only save space but also help keep everything organized. By utilizing multi-use items, you’ll be able to pack efficiently while still having everything you need for your travels as a nurse.

Tip 4: Utilize Empty Spaces

To maximize space in your luggage as a travel nurse, it’s essential to take advantage of any empty spaces. Shoes and hats can easily be filled with smaller items, like socks or toiletries, to save space. 

These small steps can make a significant difference when it comes to staying organized and packing efficiently while traveling as a nurse.

Read more: The 10 Best Cities for Travel Nursing.


Travel nurses have to be prepared for anything, but that doesn’t mean they need to lug around heavy bags. For this reason, packing hacks can help maximize space and keep your belongings in order. With the right luggage, travel nurses can pack light and stay organized while on the go.

As established before, consider factors such as size, durability, and quality. and storage and organization features when choosing the best luggage for travel nurses. If you thoroughly follow our guide, you’ll be ready for any adventure that comes your way.


Why is durability important when it comes to suitcases?

Durability is a crucial factor to consider when selecting a suitcase because it affects the longevity and usability of the product. A durable suitcase is made from high-quality materials that can withstand the wear and tear of travel, such as bumps, drops, and rough handling by airport staff.

Why roll clothes instead of folding them?

The primary benefit of rolling clothes as opposed to folding them is that rolled clothes take up less space and are less likely to wrinkle. When clothes are folded, they stack on top of each other, which can create bulk and take up more room in your suitcase or drawer.

Is travel nursing hectic?

The level of hecticness can vary depending on the specific assignment and healthcare facility, but with proper preparation, time management skills, and a positive attitude, travel nurses can successfully navigate the challenges of their profession while enjoying the many benefits it has to offer.


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