Where Do You Pack All Those Gadgets and Cables?


tom bihn snake charmerAs the number of gadgets and electronic devices in our travel bags has grown, so has the number of accompanying cords for connecting and charging. Even if you get around the manufacturers’ love of proprietary connectors with something like the Chargepod Callpod or the Kensington Power Adapter, you’re still left with a gaggle of USB thumb drives, memory cards, Skype devices, music earbuds, battery rechargers, and who knows what else.

On my recent two-month trip abroad, I managed to keep all this madness in check with the Snake Charmer from Tom Bihn. It’s basically a $25 elongated packing cube with two compartments, two zippers, and mesh on each side. Nothing fancy, but it does what it’s supposed to do: keep all your gadget accessories where you can find them.

I kept all my items with cords in one compartment and all the other items in the other. In the old days I would be brought to the brink of throwing things through windows when I couldn’t find that one particular accessory I needed in various pockets around my laptop bag/backpack, but this time I was a Zen master when it came time to locate what I needed. Everything was in one place and I could see through the mesh where it was.

This Tom Bihn item isn’t the be all and end all item of course: you could easily adapt a small toiletry kit or other two-compartment packing cube to accomplish the same thing. But this Snake Charmer seemed to be just the right size to hold everything and still fit easily in any open corner of my bag. It comes in four colors and is made in the USA.

It can only be ordered direct from the manufacturer, so click here for details and how to get yours.

About Author

Tim Leffel is editor of the Practical Travel Gear blog, as well as the Cheapest Destinations blog and the narrative webzine Perceptive Travel. He is the author of The World's Cheapest Destinations (now in its 4th edition), Make Your Travel Dollars Worth a Fortune, and Travel Writing 2.0. See more at www.TimLeffel.com.


  1. I really need to get something like this. My cords are always taking over my bag and it’s a complete mess. It sucks that we even need this though. There’s got to be an easier way.

  2. I carry around alot of RJ-45 connectors and phone lines. So instead of carrying them all around in my laptop case, it would be alot more convenient to use this instead.

    Thanks alot for sharing Tim, i really appreciate it.

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