Looking for durable, secure car top storage? Want the perfect bag for cross-country travel? We have the tips you need to get from Point A to Point B without losing a single item.
Travel Bag Woes Be Gone! The Fringe Benefits of Road Tripping
One of the benefits of traveling by vehicle is freedom from luggage worries. While airlines have cut bag loss by 50% in recent years, there are still bags that are misplaced or delayed due to missed connections. A checked bag might even be the reason you have to wait around for a new flight.
Airlines aren’t the only one suffering mishaps. My Mother-in-Law took a surprise, short Greyhound trip from Iowa to Missouri, and her luggage was lost. It took over a month to get her bags back!
Set It and Forget It — Aerodynamic Carrier for Whether You Have a Roof Rack or Not
The RoofBag is the best option for cartop storage we’ve found to date. Namely because it’s:
- Big enough to store a WHOLE LOT
- Easy to install (With or Without a Roof Rack!)
There are sleeker, sexier, more aerodynamic hard-case carriers on the market for a few hundred dollars that I would recommend after this product, which says a lot. We’re affiliate marketers, so we’d obviously make more if you bought one of those! (I mean, go for it, if you like.) I just feel this is sufficient for protecting your stored items while on the road.
Of course, there are some drawbacks to roof top storage including:
Small impact on fuel efficiency
Difficult for shorter people or those with shoulder and back problems
Potential for roof damage
If you’re just plain not comfortable storing your luggage on the roof of your vehicle, consider a rack behind your car instead.
Best Behind-Car Luggage Solutions for Drivers With a Hitch
A Reece folding luggage carrier are wonderful for vehicle that have a hitch attachment, though they’re a little more expensive than the RoofBag (and a lot less expensive than a Thule hard-case carrier).
I love them because they’re relatively out of the way when you’re not on the road.
Having a large tray permanently jutting out from behind your car seems like a hazard. Especially if there’s nothing sitting on it. (Then again, a woman once rear-ended my husband and said she was distracted by his custom brake lights to stop in time.)
Unfortunately, depending on the type of vehicle you’re driving, this might interfere with your hatchdoor. It’s just an issue of checking out the specific measurements and getting the one best suited to your car, SUV or minivan.
The construction of this carrier is super-sturdy and comes in a number of sizes. You’ll find a solution to your needs, whether you’re toting luggage, camping gear, pet supplies or anything else you’re taking with you on your adventure. Note, you’ll still want to use some kind of weatherproof cover and straps to hold everything down securely.
Choosing the Best Luggage for Car Top Storage
I’ve never really been too snobby when it came to selecting luggage. We live in a town where every year, there’s a “Junk Day” where people set out their gently-used-but-often-in-perfect-condition items they don’t want or need in the hopes that someone saves them from the guilt of having to throw it away. We’ve picked up several nice suitcases this way! It’s so much easier to pick the best luggage for road trip travel vs. flying. I’m guessing every single bag we’ve ever picked up for free cost someone extra fees by surprise.
As long as luggage:
- securely stores your belongings
- is relatively comfortable to carry around
- doesn’t look 100% Hillbilly
it’s probably fine to ride on the roof of your car.
Car top storage can make all the difference. It represents one of the biggest benefits to traveling over-the-road vs. by train, plane or boat. It doesn’t have to be a pain either.