Fodor's Travel Talk Forums

Fodor's Travel Talk Forums (
-   Europe (
-   -   ladies, is it better to travel with a purse or bring a small pouch (

orzo808 Nov 9th, 2004 03:27 PM

ladies, is it better to travel with a purse or bring a small pouch
I was wondering if I should bring my purse with me on my trip or should I just use one of those travel pouches that they sell in luggage stores. anybody have any ideas or suggestions would be most appreciated...

alg Nov 9th, 2004 03:51 PM

All I can offer is what I have been using on recent trips: it's a Longchamp bag with two zippers that, when unzipped, increase the size of the bag so you can have as much space as you need. It's nylon so I don't worry about it getting wet or dirty. It has an inside zippered pocket (good for cash and credit cards) and the main purse also zips closed...this is important! It's big enough to carry my camera, map, guidebook, super-small umbrella and a light sweater as needed. Don't know how I'd fit all that in a travel pouch. It fits nicely under my arm.

cigalechanta Nov 9th, 2004 04:18 PM

Alg, which model is that? Mine only has a snap but my Prada hs three zippers, but couldn't fit a sweater with the few maps,film, camera, and other paper products I may carry.

crefloors Nov 9th, 2004 04:20 PM

I use an Ameribag...they have a website so you can look at them...It has tons of zippered pockets to keep things as safe as anything can be kept, it's comfortable to use and has place to stick my umbrella, a water bottle, and anything else I can't live without. This is the bag I use all the time at home or traveling. When I travel I take everything out of it that I won't need on my trip, leave in and add what i do need and it works for me. I think everyone eventually finds out what works best for them. My Ameribag in one of the leather ones.

Scarlett Nov 9th, 2004 04:26 PM

It really depends on what you plan to carry. I could not manage to be out sightseeing most of the day without a purse..maps, guidebooks, tissues, pens, lipstick, Purell, gum, notes, should I continue? :)
Then if I shop, I can stuff a small bag into my bag..
I carry Longchamp when I travel. I have a couple, they are made for travel. Big roomy lots of pockets and zippers. I have one leather, one leather with nylon and one of those wonderful totes that holds a sweater, lunch and a book easily :)
good luck with your decision`

alg Nov 9th, 2004 04:36 PM


It is called the Le Pilage Extensible (per the website: reference 2614...the one where the zipper panels are vertical). I purchased mine at the summer sale in Paris like a good tourist :) but have also seen them at the store in San Francisco.

Postal Nov 9th, 2004 04:41 PM

I stopped carrying purses of any kind when mine was snatched in Rome many years ago. Now I use a money belt under my clothes for the valuable stuff and a clear tote bag for everything else - so that the potential thieves see there is nothing worth stealing!

cigalechanta Nov 9th, 2004 04:43 PM

That's what mine are in three sizes but only one main zipper with the snap and no zipper inside, but mine were bought long before they became popular. I'll have to check out our shop here, to see if they have thre sippers. Thanks for answering:).

djkbooks Nov 9th, 2004 05:31 PM

I don't usually carry a purse while out and about, and never bring a wallet. The passport stays in the hotel safe (I carry a photocopy), along with all but one credit card and my ATM card. I wear only slacks or skirts with very deep front pockets. A bit of cash goes in one, a card or two in the other in a very slim business card case, all virtually invisible (pickpockets only go after the obvious). Then, I carry my "stuff" in a microfiber tote. I tuck two of these folded up in my suitcase. One just large enough for a bottle of water, the maps, tour guide, camera & cell phone (carried in inside zipper compartment or in a case with a strap that hooks to the tote strap, but tucked inside) and other essentials. I use the larger one if the weather calls for a sweater, jacket, raincoat, so I can tuck one inside. Usually, my husband drags the tote all about.

If we're dressing up and my pockets are not adequate, I have a small leather shoulder bag (with double zipper pulls that can be positioned on the bottom of one side, twist tied together if necessary) just large enough for the evening's essentials, with an inside zipper compartment for cash/cards) that I wear over one shoulder and under the other arm. I also use the purse going and coming. It has a zipper pocket on the back outside (perfect for boarding pass and passport).

ninasdream Nov 9th, 2004 06:17 PM

I hate carry stuff, but I have one of those ergonomic shoulder bags, sooooo comfortable. Mine is LLBean leather, 3 exterior pockets, plus for cell phone, 2 interior pockets in other words a place for everything. A lifetime guarantee for repairs. They do a beautiful job, no questions asked. So, I carry that with me all day, plenty of room for map, glasses, water, incidentals (passport carrier goes around my neck with money and papers). I have a nylon shoulder tote that can roll up to the size of a scarf and pop in there for purchases, guide books, or a jacket.

nytraveler Nov 9th, 2004 07:28 PM

I use a smallish Sportsac shoulder bag during the day - light and weatherproof - and can expand to hold a bottle of water, umbrella, guidebook, camera etc while we're touring. For a nicer restaurant in the evening - or play, opera - I have an oversize leather wallet on a thin shoulder strap - large enough to hold passport, comb, lipstick etc - as well as normal wallet stuff.

artlover Nov 10th, 2004 12:34 PM

I never travel with a purse--I let DH use his moneybelt and I carry a credit card and small cash in a pocket. This way I don't even have to think about pickpockets.

radiofanatic Nov 10th, 2004 12:39 PM

no purse, no purse, no purse - and I say once again, no purse. They are nothing but trouble and a big sign to pickpockets that you are ready for them to come and get you. Not to mention how liberating it is to be able to tour around museums, monuments, etc. w/o a purse dragging you down. When I go on vacay, I don't need hairbrushes, lipsticks, etc. while I'm touring - having to worry about those things is not a vacation to me. I get up in the am, shower, dry and brush hair but no makeup thank you!

mamc Nov 10th, 2004 12:54 PM

I never carry a purse of any kind during the day. If I can't fit it into a pocket, it doesn't go with me. I carry one credit card and a little cash. We take turns carrying the camera and the map. Both will fit into my pocket. It saves time and hassle. More and more, your purse or other bag will be searched at security checkpoints and it is just nice not to be carrying something.

flygirl Nov 10th, 2004 01:02 PM

I have a handmade BIG leather bag I bought in Italy 4 years ago. It is simply and utterly gorgeous. I tend to use that more as a carryon though, and carry a small purse during the day for regular stuff. If I happen to go shopping while I am out, I will buy some sort of "tote" while I'm out - which are great to use when you are home! for instance, I bought a cute straw "tote" with bright pink handles in Nice... and a sturdy woven straw tote with leather handles in Paris. believe me, when you are shopping, you do not want to carry regular shopping bags around when you are walking - eventually the handles will cut into your palms. get something with a thick handle you can sling on your arm/carry in the crook of your elbow, for instance. or just carry - the thicker handles will feel much better after a while, trust me!

Tess_Durberville Nov 11th, 2004 07:20 AM

I'm a big fan of the "healthy" shoulder bag --- think I bought it from LL Bean, however several other catalogs have similar products. In addition to being ergonomically designed for comfort, it's got LOTS of zippered compartments making it an excellent choice for travellers. And another thing I like about the bag is that it's double-zippered; well, not two zippers, rather two tongues (?), so that you can use a small lock if you need to have addl security.

Sally30 Nov 11th, 2004 10:11 AM

I don't understand the no purse comments. I live in a major city in the US and always carry a purse. When I travel I do the same. Most women - tourist, local, young, old - carry a purse or some kind of bag. I think you look like less of a tourist (and potential pick pocket target) carrying a purse, rather than wearing a weird looking travel pouch or sticking your hand down your pants to reach your money belt every time you need some cash.

suze Nov 11th, 2004 10:18 AM

I always use a normal pocketbook, just like I carry everyday at home. I feel secure with it and have never had a problem at home or traveling. Alternately, when I want hands-free, I also have a small sturdy leather zippered pouch style bag with a strap that goes across the torso, big enough for passport, cash, and a few small personal items.

lucygirl Nov 11th, 2004 11:24 AM

I must be getting really tired...I misread your post. I thought you were going to bring a small POOCH. Guess you can do what you want but I'd advise against it. He might get cranky in your purse all day. :)

happytourist Nov 11th, 2004 06:22 PM

Another vote for the "healthy back bag." It has a double zipper which I close with a small travel padlock. You can wear it diagonally across your chest like a messenger bag. It can't be cut off because the strap is so wide. I also like the Baggallini messenger bag, available at They have lots of options--check their website and read the customer reviews.

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 06:42 PM.