Ultimate Carry-On Packing List for Men - Bros Only

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Sup dudes. Planning a bro-cation? Heading off to a conference? Here’s where you will find the ultimate carry on packing list for men.

First things first we’re going to have to get past one mental hurdle: outfits are not only for chicks.

Using an outfit-based packing strategy with the help of compression cubes ensures you stay organized and not overpacked.

The right way to pack a carry-on

Separating different articles of clothing (pants, shirts) in various packing cubes requires you to open every single cube to access your gear every time you get dressed. Instead, we recommend organizing your clothes inside of packing cubes by activity.

We’ve taken both standard carry-on sized backpacks and rolling luggage and designed a 6 piece compression cube set to fit perfectly snug in the space. Since we’ve done all of the measuring for you, all you have to do is make sure your clothes fit nicely within the compression cube set.

Before you pack - choose plane travel outfit

the right way to pack a carry on

The trick to light packing is to wear your bulkiest outfit on the plane to minimize these items in your carry on! If you’re comfortable enough to travel in jeans, by all means save space and where them on the plane. If you’re not planning on even bringing jeans on this trip, wear your dinner trousers/museum wear/khakis while you travel.

Ok. Outfit one complete: plane travel in your bulkiest outfit (including shoes!)

  1. Large Compression Cube 1: Adventure

Whether you’re headed to Hawaii on your honeymoon or attending a business trip in Las Vegas, what you bring will definitely vary. We start this packing list with the large 14x10x4in cube (about the size of a large laptop). They will easily hold jeans, dress pants, and/or shirts and leave them folded nicely to boot.

In large compression cube number 1, pack for your “activity” day of the trip.

Are you climbing a volcano? Visiting a waterfall? Maybe you and your business buddies are heading out for a quick 9 holes between meetings. No matter your adventure level, your large packing cube will hold 1-2 days worth of adventure gear. We recommend:

  • 1 pair of activity pants: these pants are ready for your adventure outdoors

  • 1-2 activity tops: we recommend synthetic fabrics which are quick drying!

  • 1-2 pairs of socks

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2. Large Compression Cube 2: Dinnerware

Tripped compression cubes allow for items to either be folded and stacked (recommended) or rolled and lined up next to each other. To keep items such as dress pants nicely creased and pressed, opt for the folding option. The compression of the cubes will keep them in place and there will be minimal wrinkles.

Pants are typically the largest items that you pack, so being able to fit them into a compression cube that shrinks down to 14x10x1in will save you room and keep your items nicely packed as well.

What types of places will you be eating dinner? On a beach after swimming in the ocean all day? With your boss at a steakhouse?

Prepare 1 - 2 dinner outfits in the 2nd large compression cube:

  • 1 pair of slacks - need an extra pair? Consider wearing one pair on the plane.

  • 1 dress shirt

  • Dress socks - include socks and underwear right in the same compression cube as your outfit to ensure you’re not the guy at dinner in your gym socks

  • Accessories - only wear your nice watch at dinner? Throw it in the cube and you don’t have to find it as you’re running out the door.

If traveling for work purposes, this list may look a bit different. You may choose to pack an extra dress shirt or swap out a casual shirt for a nicer one. It is all dependent on what your plans for your trip are.

If going for a more spontaneous adventure, 3 solid shirts will work great. Nights are chillier no matter where you’re headed to so wearing a sweater, sweatshirt or jacket on the plane (which is always chilly anyways) is always a good idea to have one with you.

 3. Small Compression Cube 1: casual

 The 6 pack compression cubes also come with 2 smaller compression cubes that are 10x7x4in. These cubes are perfects for your casual wear. Throw your pajamas and undershirts into one and you’re all set!

 1st small bag:

  • 2 T-shirts

  • 2 Undershirts

  • 4 Underwear

  • 1 Pair of Socks

  • 1 Bathing suit (if applicable)

4. Small Compression Cube 2: extras

pack a small compression cube

But wait, there’s still a compression cube left. This is what we like to save for the “divide and conquer” type of dude. Leave one compression cube for a designated extra.

This helps you to ensure that this will stay together and is perfect for quick mornings so you know exactly what you’ll be wearing. This is perfect for a quick change as well. Throw it into a backpack for a quick change from your work meeting, or for dry clothes after hitting up the beach.

Have extra dinner plans? Heading out for an extreme adventure? Use this space to pack your “extra” hiking gear, dinner shirt, whatever you need.

 2nd small bag:

  • 2 Extra casual shirt

  • 1 Extra dress shirt

  • 1 Extra Undershirt

  • 1 Extra Underwear

  • 1 Extra socks

If you’re needing a few extra pairs, stuff them inside your shoes!

Once these bags are compressed, they will squeeze to a 10x7x1in size. The size of a thick iPad.

5. Slim cube: Gear or electronics

electronics organizer

If you’re anything like us, you can’t seem to leave for the weekend without 6 cords, charging cables and other various accessories. Instead of tossing them in to the bottom of your backpack or briefcase, let the slim cube be your guide. This is a great catch all to save you from rummaging around in your “under-the-seat-personal-item” with your head between your knees.

This slim cube is about the size of narrow men’s size 12 flip flops.

6. Laundry Bag

manage dirty laundry during travel

Ok so this bag is pretty self-explanatory. This bag isn’t a compression cube, but it does cinch at the top and open wide for easy in and out of clothes. Our favorite way to pack with this bag is to use it to hold shoes in! It protects your clothes from your shoes when packing and they can easily be taken out once you get to your destination.

Shoes are tricky to pack because they take up a lot of space and aren’t very easily compressed. Our best hack with shoes is to wear your most bulky pair onto the plane. Once you get to your destination, take the shoes out of the laundry bag and use the bag for, well, laundry.

Either flatten out or roll the full laundry back when you’re done with your trip and it should fit nicely back into your carry on alongside your shoes.

summary: tripped recommended packing list

 Ok so to break it down, here’s a full list of what we recommend you pack for a carry on trip inside the 6 piece packing cube set:

  • 1 Outfit to wear on the airplane: including shoes and accessories (hat, watch)

    Large cube 1

  • 1 pair of active pants

  • 1-2 activity tops

  • 1-2 pairs of socks

    large cube 2

  • 1 pair of slacks

  • 1 dress shirt

  • Dress socks

  • Accessories

    small cube 1

  • 2 T-shirts

  • 2 Undershirts

  • 4 Underwear

  • 1 Pair of Socks

  • 1 Bathing suit (if applicable)

    small cube 2

  • 2 Extra casual shirt

  • 1 Extra dress shirt

  • 1 Extra Undershirt

  • 1 Extra Underwear

  • 1 Extra socks

    slim cube

  • Electronics or flip flops

    laundry bag

  • 2nd & 3rd pair of shoes


Make sure to check the weather and climate of where you’re visiting and make adjustments to suit your needs. Our 6 piece set mentioned in the article comes in three different color options. Our most popular color for men is the grey & orange. Click here to pick up a set on Amazon.


Happy travels! If this was helpful, make sure to pin the image below to your favorite travel board and sign up to be notified of new Tripped products on our email list.


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