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Lawchick May 7th, 2007 08:20 AM

Ziploc Bags
This is not really a european topic but I'm very interested to know why every visitor coming to Europe seems to have Ziploc bags on the essential packing list.

I have never brought a ziploc bag out of the country and actually rarely use them at home anyway except for bread in the freezer.

Could someone enlighten me?

JoeTro May 7th, 2007 08:24 AM

For all of your liquids below 100 ml. They need to be placed separately in a quart-size ziploc bag out of your carryon.

anchoress May 7th, 2007 08:26 AM

I wonder that too as we have people coming in from Canada and they seem to think we cannot get these here in Ireland.. We can....

ira May 7th, 2007 08:26 AM

Hi L,

Where do you put your dietary supplements, medications, cosmetics, damp washcloths?


BTilke May 7th, 2007 08:26 AM

Because they're useful, cheap, come in many sizes and the Ziploc bags sold in the U.S. are much better than their European counterparts.

Lawchick May 7th, 2007 08:30 AM

So what if they're cheap or great or whatever....most people in Europe don't use them...I think

Re washcloths - we don't tend to bring those on holiday with us.

Cosmetics/medication etc - goes in the "necessaire" - or washbag or whatever.

I am aware of the liquids rule - OK we have one use...(though I don't put any liquids in the carry on)

Rhea58 May 7th, 2007 08:31 AM

ditto Btilke's comments. if you stay
in hotels w/mini-fridges or apartments
there are a myriad of uses. and def.
for that washcloth one brings.

BTilke May 7th, 2007 08:35 AM

I gave you the perfectly valid reasons why people coming to Europe use them. That doesn't mean YOU have to use them but it also doesn't mean you should high-handedly dismiss the reasons that people DO use them.

CarolA May 7th, 2007 08:37 AM

Because you need a spare in case your "TSA approved" bag breaks?

Lawchick May 7th, 2007 08:37 AM

High handed. I'm sorry if I appear that way.Perhaps I wasn't clear.

I would like to know the uses of the bag. I have gotten a few answers but I'd like to have more if thats ok as I am curious.

Lawchick May 7th, 2007 08:39 AM

I wasn't dismissing the uses either. I was answering the question posed by Ira.

My we are a bit snippy today!

BTilke May 7th, 2007 08:39 AM

Well, they're also useful for containing any damange if liquids in your checked luggage leak out of their container. Has happened with my shampoo and styling gel on more than one occasion even when they SEEMED tightly sealed. I'd rather have a ziploc bag that's gooey on the inside than a gooey silk blouse.

where2 May 7th, 2007 08:40 AM

I am an American living in London and every trip back to the states I bring TONS of these back with me. You can't get the bags with the zipper zips (that you pull) here. And it is not easy to find any bag at all that has a ziploc like closure. I use them all the time for various uses from sandwiches and other food in my daughter's lunchbox, marinading meat, cookies, and non-food uses such as putting all the barbie shoes in one, polly pocket outfits in another, etc.

I imagine Europeans don't use them much b/c the ones they sell here are awful.

BTilke May 7th, 2007 08:44 AM

Ditto 2 where2. Whenever I go to the U.S., a British friend asks me to bring back a box or two. The ones sold in Europe are so lousy I wouldn't use them either.

cupid1 May 7th, 2007 08:56 AM

What's NOT to like?
Ziplocs are lightweight, flexible, see-through, and available in a range of sizes and thickness, making them endlessly useful for organizing and ensuring potentially messy things stay contained. And although inexpensive, they are reusable. As great as they are around the house, when travelling and space and weight are at a premium they are the natural choice to keep everything clean and neatly organized.

I agree the American ones are much better than what you find in Europe. Also, many places in Europe don't provide washcloths, necessitating packing your own. Even the microfiber ones aren't always dry when it's time to pack, so what else would you put it in?

thereyet May 7th, 2007 08:56 AM

I have used ziplocks for years but have seen there use unusually stressed on this forum. Now I know why. Curious and funny that our EU friends havn't demanded better products when such exist. thereyet

likeswords May 7th, 2007 08:56 AM

They are wonderfully handy for many things.
1. A quart-size (or litre-size) one is required by the airlines for any gels or liquids you want to carry on with you (including toothpaste, hand creme, etc.).
2. You can wrap all of your liquids and gels (shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, etc.) in them and when the change in air pressure inevitably squeezes some out of the top of the tightly sealed or capped container, it won't get on anything else in your luggage).
3. You can pack scarves, blouses, socks, stockings, and almost anything else in them efficiently by squeezing or otherwise removing the air from the bag after you have placed your article(s) within it, thus saving space in your luggage and making it much easier to unpack and keep track of your things. I found this very, very helpful on my last trip, when I didn't have much of anyplace else besides my luggage to keep my things.
4. You can triple-wrap the lovely but awkward bottle of olive oil your daughter gives you in Europe so that it doesn't wind up all over everything else you are carrying home.
5. You can pack dirty clothes separately and they don't affect the clean ones.
6. You can pack shoes without worrying that the soles will be touching your other clothing.

Dukey May 7th, 2007 08:59 AM

I know people who use the largest ones (2.5 gallon or some such) to pack their clothes in because they separate their packed clothes by "type" putting socks into one, underwear in another, etc., and they like them because they can see what is in each one.

They are cheaper than Pack-It Cubes but serve the same purpose.

hetismij May 7th, 2007 09:01 AM

I can buy genuine Ziplock bags in my local supermarket here in Holland. I only use them for the freezer, though OH has bunged his camera in one before now.
I too am interested in other uses for these bags!

BTilke May 7th, 2007 09:03 AM

Hetismij, unfortunately even the true "ziploc" brand bags you can get in Europe simply aren't as good as the ones you can get in the U.S. They're a lot flimsier, I don't why that is. I bought them once or twice in Belgium and stopped using them, they just didn't cut it.

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