Back Pack or suitcase? 15th Sept 2016

For those of us of a ‘Certain age’ there are some additional factors to be considered when taking your ‘Gap Year’.

Not the least of these is:-  Suitcase or Back Pack?

What you don’t want to do is look like you’re trying to be a ‘Young Dude Back Packer’. I  mean, I know thats exactly what we want to be, inside at least, but we don’t want the world to look at us and think.”That bloke should get an Allotment.”

Also, a modern suitcase has wheels and a handle so it can be pushed or dragged subject to reasonable surfaces whereas a back pack, has to be carried in all circumstances.

You can, if needs must, sit on a suitcase, use it as a card table and lock it up reasonably safely.

There is also the issue of space. How much can you carry in a suitcase as compared to a back pack?

But the thing that swung it for me was, Memory.

In a suitcase there is one zip, and one compartment. So if I’m in sudden need of a Phyllosan (fortifies the over forties) I know exactly where to find it.


With a Back pack there are so many pockets, zips, nooks and crannies that I would be all day trying to remember where I’d put my Passport.

So the decision was made. The next step was to decide which one and how big?

I bought Jaki a really nice one for her Birthday in July. A Delsey Hellium. I did my homework and this one they claimed was almost indestructible, though it ought to be at £179.

She used it to go to Jersey with her mum and the case came back in one piece. Pity I couldn’t say the same for the content. Her Kindle screen was cracked and her hair straighteners were snapped in half.

We contacted Fly Be  and made a claim but apparently they lost our application for compensation. Well, theres a surprise!

I couldn’t justify paying that sort of money for my case, not to carry 3 x T shirt’s, a Pair of sport’s socks and 2 x pair’s of underpants. (I travel light.)

So I settled on a Tripp from Debenham’s at about £65. Slightly smaller but made of the same material and almost identical in design.

Lets hope  I made the right decision.

The other thing we ‘Older Traveler’s’ have to consider is “Medication‘.

If, like me you are required to take a fist full of pills in the morning to stop your blood pressure from bursting through the wall of your veins and another bunch at night to stop the growth of your Prostate, you’ll know just how much space this takes up.

Last time we went to Australia, the GP prescribed 3 months supply which needed a set of sack trucks to carry.

This time I called into the surgery and explained to the receptionist that I would be away for several months and she printed out my repeat prescriptions forms and said I should write a note on the back asking for sufficient med’s to see me through the dates I was planning to be away.

I did this and after a few day I went to collect the supplies from my local Chemist.

Sadly they had only been instructed to dispense my usual order which meant I had 56 days supply rather than the 84 I needed. One of the Meds was missing altogether!

So I set off for the Doctors surgery to get this resolved.

After standing in a queue for about 15 minutes I explained to the Receptionist and she agreed to facilitate another months supply. Result. Only wasted the best part of the morning, but a result.

As long as you discount the soaking I got on the way home.

That will teach me to get my bike out!




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