No Room Overhead? No Problem

We all know our primary storage area is underneath the seat in front of us. Yet it took months of trips frequently flying across the country for me to realize that those savvy luggage makers actually make rolling bags that fit under the seat in front of me. Meet the Samsonite Underseaters. 


The Samsonite bags come in small, large, spinning and other varieties. They have plenty of room to hold an outfit or two, toiletries and a laptop. If you are a very good packer, a small one will hold all your gear and fit well under the seat. And if you’re looking for a small rolling bag for your child, buy this one and you’ll be able to share it much easier than you will be able to share one that is shaped like a ladybug or emblazoned with a super hero.

Amazon.com carries dozens of “underseat” bags so click around for a style, price and size you like. After buying a cheaper one which began to fall apart after a year, I recently splurged on the Samsonite “Spinner.” I love it but it’s wheels make it 17” tall so sticks out a bit into the area where your feet inhabit – even in a roomier premium economy seat on United.
But be aware: Bags marked as “underseaters” don’t always fit under the seat. Be sure to check not only the underseat dimensions of the specific airline you are flying but the specific type of plane you are flying – even the room in aisle vs. middle seats can be different.  And for gosh sakes, don’t accidentally book the bulkhead or another spot without a row ahead of you – as I have done several times – or you’ll be back fighting with the masses for space in the overhead bins.


by Maryann Jones Thompson, December 2016

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Keywords: family vacation, family travel, travel with kids, best family travel bags, best family travel gear, gifts for family travelers, travel gifts, best underseat bags, best rolling bags for kids, best samsonite bag, samsonite underseater, samsonite spinner


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