The only thing worse than a disorganized suitcase is a lost suitcase. That's why we opt to just bring a carry-on whenever we can — especially with the current chaotic state of the airport. But packing a carry-on is an art. Unless your vacation only involves perusing fabulous beaches on a spectacular Caribbean island, you probably need to fit more than just bikinis in your bag. That's where these nifty pack hacks come in handy.

First off: Start with the right bag. Look for the Goldilocks of carry-ons — not too big and not too small — and keep useful features in mind, like built-in compression pads and zippered pockets. Then, get organized with useful, pack hack accessories. Packing cubes may be the best thing to ever happen to us. It may be an extra step when you're packing, but it's well worth it to keep all of your items organized. We like to use them to keep outfits together, so getting ready in the morning is a breeze. 

We've been away from travel for so long that we're all a little bit rusty. But these essential pack hack items will get your luggage in tip-top shape. Now we just need a solution to having to take our shoes off... 

Pack hacks: Bags, accessories and packing cubes to help you make the most of your carry-on

Pack hacks | Monos Carry-on Pro Plus

Carry-on Pro Plus, $374

No more sitting on your suitcase to close it. With built-in compression pad, inner pockets and zippered pouches, this functional carry-on makes packing a breeze.

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Pack hacks | Forward with Design bags

1. Pleated Pack 18L, $65

Keychain, cord pockets, water bottle holder and pouches for phones and laptops: Is there anything that this sustainable backpack can’t carry? Well, there’s only one way to find out.

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2. On The Go 24L Duffle Bag, $80

Internal organizer pockets keep things ship-shape, while the padded strap will give your shoulder a break as you’re dashing to your gate.

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3. On The Go Hip Pack, $40

We’re keen beans for this hands-free beauty, also available in lime green and shell coral. It comes with two strap options, plus there’s a secret back zipper to hide your valuables.

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Pack hacks | Monos compression packing cubes

Compressible Packing Cubes, $110

Want to avoid checking luggage? These packing cubes can compress by as much as 60 per cent — so even the most overladen packers can squeeze their belongings into a carry-on.

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Pack hacks | Away hanging toiletry bag and jewelry box

1. The Hanging Toiletry Bag, $95

Forget fishing for your toothbrush every morning. Hang this cute toiletry bag in your bathroom — and store liquid products in the removable, clear pouch for smooth sailing at security.

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2. The Jewelry Box, $115

Don’t risk tangling your finery or leaving your precious earrings in a hotel room. Keep things tidy with organizational compartments, plus clasps and slip pockets.

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