What does your luggage say about you?

I’ve spent my day today hustling through airports on my way to New York. As an observer of people I’m always fascinated to see what sort of luggage they are bringing on their trips. Are they…

Business travelers? Easily identifiable by their tightly clutched Blackberries and their matching black luggage. Always small enough to carry on the plane and usually Tumi or Swiss Army. Matching laptop bags are di rigeur of course.

Vacationers? Look for multiple large bags. It’s like when American decides to go on vacation, they need to pack everything but the kitchen sink.

Fashionistas? They always carry designer brand luggage – Louis Vuitton, Goyard, Kate Spade or Diane Von Furstenberg. All pieces are small and cleverly designed to fit snugly together.

Rock stars? Either they’re carrying nothing but their toothbrush (what are roadies for anyway, right?) or they’ve got the full set of Alexander McQueen for Samsonite, a ghoulish white set of cases that look like a human skeleton when in use.

Families? You’ll see their small children all toting their own adorable, usually Disney inspired, wheelie bags and their favorite stuffed animal on board.

What do you carry? Myself I travel like a business person. That Swiss Army luggage is small, but it packs an amazing amount of clothes and toiletries. Besides with the addition of a bright luggage tag I can always tell when my bag is tumbling down the baggage claim. Best part, I always get respect from the cabbies who assume I’m traveling on the company dime.

Great travel accessory

I won’t get on a plane without my iPod. If you too are addicted to music you should check out Apple’s iPod shuffles. They’ve recently expanded the range of colors available. At about the size of a quarter, you can clip them on just about anywhere. Each shuffle holds 1 gigabyte or about 240 songs. That’s enough to keep you buys for most flights. You can even do some good with your purchase. Chose the RED special edition iPod shuffle and a portion of the proceeds goes to benefit the Global Fund to Fight AIDS. The (Product) Red campaign has raised $39.5 million already to fight AIDS.

Great travel accessory

For years now I’ve been a skittish flyer. I’ve also been a huge fan of Salon.com’s Ask the Pilot column. Patrick Smith (a.k.a. the Pilot), has a no nonsense way of addressing even the most ridiculous questions without belitting his readers. He’s collected his musings into a book Ask the Pilot. Now you too can share his wisdom. Pick up a copy from Amazon.com or at your favorite airport bookstore. It’s bound to be a gripping read.

For a peek at my own Ask the Pilot moment, click here.

Great travel accessory

If you’re like me you’re starting to feel guilty every time you charge your cell phone, iPod, computer and PDA. How much energy am I using? How much oil must be drilled to keep me working?

Don’t you sometimes wish you could harness a more renewable source of energy? Well now you can with the Solio hybrid charger. It uses solar energy to run your gadgets. You can place it on a cafe outside and charge while you enjoy lunch. You put it in the plane window on your flight and grab some power while you fly. You can even use it as emergency power in the case of a blackout. If the sun is still out, you’re charged and ready to go. When you’re done just fold it up and slip it in your pocket.

Great travel accessory

Tired of wrenching your arm dragging your wheeled luggage through the airport? Well now there’s a solution. TravelSmith has an ergonomic luggage handle that can be attached to your bag. It swivels up to 360 degrees, changing the angle of your wrist when you hold it to reduce arm strain. It even allows you to push or pull your bag along. Great for those times you decide to carry on and have to get down narrow airplane aisles.

Great travel accessory

Here’s something cool for those family trips where you go the extra mile and rent a cabin or room with a kitchen. You know you’ll be grocery shopping, but you don’t want all those pesky plastic bags. ChicoBags are $5 each on Amazon.com. They are made of sturdy nylon and shaped like your regular grocery store plastic bag. They even come with a pouch into which they can be folded and stored. Earth friendly and packable, brilliant!

Great travel accessory

Have you ever wanted to take your iPod to the beach, but stopped because you feared water and sand damage? Well no more. The Ego waterproof soundcase turns your iPod into a floating boombox. It’s shatterproof, waterproof and transparent so you can still see your video screen. It even has a click wheel membrane that allows you to operate your iPod without ever having to remove it.

Great travel accessory

Tired of packing cords for your laptop, cell phone, iPod and PDA? Well you can eliminate them all with the Callpod Chargepod. It’s a power hub for which you purchase individual adapter tips. The hub retails for $50, you’ll pay another $10 for each adapter. Free yourself from the tangle.