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View Full Version : Yikes! 5 kg carryon limit!



bchaplin
12-27-2010, 05:33 AM
Having finished a fun trip to Brazil, where I was allowed to take a ridiculous amount of stuff with me on the plane, it's time to start freaking out (um, planning) for my May 2011 trip to Hungary. I managed to end up with the final leg of the flight on what turns out to be a budget airline: Helvetic Air. Their carryon limit is one bag, 5kg (11 pounds). This totally screws up any ideas I had for one-bag travel. I guess the Tri-Star I'd been considering buying is totally out of the picture.

For the carry-on, the absolute minimum I need to take is my MacBook Air, Panasonic GF1 with one pancake lens and one zoom lens, mobile phone, Kindle, chargers for all this crap, snacks, vacuum bottle and one change of clothes. Now I'm wondering if, with an 11 lb limit, even a Western Flyer is feasible!

I've seen jackets with pockets mentioned before. If I could find something a little bit feminine and stylish, (probably not a Scottevest!), that would be suitable to wear for the entire two week trip in Hungary in early spring, it might help with any overload. Suggestions welcome!

blackfungi
12-27-2010, 11:09 AM
you know what, the tropical jacket with removable sleeves would be your solution. if they don't weigh what you have on your body then the jacket would solve your carry on solution. so put whatever is over 11 kg into the jacket. i can tell you that you can fit in quite a bit in the jacket internal pocket and there is a way of putting more inside the jacket, it's weird but your hand and arm has to do this loop thing inside the internal wall of the jacket and this space is huge, it goes all around the jacket. again, get the tropical jacket for women, it does not look too bad.

falconea
12-27-2010, 01:31 PM
I think a tropical jacket might be far, far too light for Hungary in early Spring! Last time I was in Hungary in January it was well below freezing and the Danube was starting to freeze. Early Spring will surely still be very cold?

Hm. Is May really "early" spring? (Just read read the original post.)

Audrey

bchaplin
12-27-2010, 01:58 PM
I think a tropical jacket might be far, far too light for Hungary in early Spring! Last time I was in Hungary in January it was well below freezing and the Danube was starting to freeze. Early Spring will surely still be very cold?

Hm. Is May really "early" spring? (Just read read the original post.)

Audrey

Well, whatever season you call it, the temperature should be between 52-72 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the BBC's weather site. Guess that's quite a range! I'd like a jacket that has some extra interior pockets deep enough for my camera and lenses, and cell phone, should I have to resort to wearing these items on the flight, but is also nice enough to wear out to dinners.
I'd rather layer a sweater underneath the jacket than have a super-heavy coat. Not completely sold on the Scottevest idea, though I'm keeping those on the list. At least I have a few months to research this.

flitcraft
12-28-2010, 10:53 AM
Hmmm...you may have reached a dead end as far as one bag travel goes. Your Macbook alone with take up close to two kilos (with charger and a sleeve). Add in the Kindle and camera and bits and well, is it a clothing-optional trip?

I'm sad to say I'm not a fan of the Scottevest line. My partner and I each bought the vest and a jacket apiece. (Trying to beat the Ryanair restrictions, which are looser than your budget airline.) Construction on them leaves something to be desired--loose threads, one seam missewn on my jacket, and the zippers are, frankly, crap. The jackets look fine for very casual wear and hiking, but they really can't double up for restaurant wear, in my opinion. And the neck area chafes because of the amount of velcro in that zone--I would sacrifice a few extra little pockets for comfort myself. I found the sizing on the women's jacket to be a problem--they only come in one size range and the sleeves are way too long for me. I ended up taking mine to my local tailor for retro-sizing, but that added 40 bucks to the cost! They also cater mainly to the svelte--I usually wear an 8 or 10, so I don't consider myself plus-sized, but I had to send the large back for an extra large. Honestly, I'm not sure why they decided that a more form fitting style was a good idea in their women's line--the whole point of the jacket is to disguise the fact that you are carrying a ton of stuff, which is easiest if the jacket skims the body and hangs straight. Bottom line was that the jacket seemed like a good idea, but it ended up going to Value Village in the end. The vest is a bit more versatile size-wise, though it carries a lot less. Still, it has stayed home and will probably end up at Value Village, too, once I convince myself that I will not use it again.

Another (sadly non-Bihn) option might be to think about the Campmor Essential Carryon bag. It's somewhat lighter than the Western Flyer, though greater capacity. Not remotely in the Tom Bihn league when it comes to quality of construction and thoughtful design, but it will shave some weight and it only costs about 30 bucks.

bchaplin
12-28-2010, 12:32 PM
Thanks again for all the comments, and flitcraft, I appreciate you sharing your own experience. Since I am about your size and also have short arms, that's doubly helpful!

This has given me some ideas though. Since I need a new winter coat, I think I will first shop around and see if I can find a reasonably nice coat with internal pockets. Maybe a wilderness store like REI would have something. I'd rather be able to try it on before buying anyway. If I could store just a few of the heavier items in my jacket (let's say the camera and lenses, just for the purposes of boarding), I'd probably be OK.

Still fuming about this though. The idea of a weight limit is totally ridiculous to me. I can understand sizing restrictions for the sake of preserving overhead space, but if something fits under my seat, I can't see how it matters what it weighs.</rant>

flitcraft
12-28-2010, 01:49 PM
I don't think the weight restrictions have any purpose except to encourage the checking of baggage (and the enhanced revenue for the airline that checked bags bring.) *cue rant here*

But, it occurred to me that, assuming that your winter coat is not too form-fitting, you could add your own internal "pockets" by velcro-ing in Tom Bihn pouches. (Actually, sewing a few buttons on would be my preference, though I hate to mar the fabric of the pouches by putting in button holes.) That way, when you didn't need the extra storage, the pouches could be whisked out. The hooky side should be on the pouch, so that your coat wouldn't snag knit clothing when the pouch wasn't there.

Just a thought...

bchaplin
12-28-2010, 02:25 PM
Flitcraft, that is hilarious! I actually laughed out loud when reading it.
Maybe I could just sew some D-rings inside my jacket?

backpack
12-28-2010, 03:42 PM
Could you do without the Kindle?

Is it necessary for you to take the big camera, could you substitute a point and shoot?

Within Europe, it would have been better to opt for train travel but if your flight on Helvetic Air is direct check your Western Flyer just for this flight.

aiethabell
12-28-2010, 03:56 PM
Do you sew?

Take a look at this site from Oregon: http://www.saf-t-pockets.com/

Although the patterns are for women, the pockets for men would be the same. If you make sure to use plastic zippers with plastic pulls, they're even WTMD (uh, metal detector) friendly for flying. Jackets and overshirts with pockets will need to be removed fror the NudeOScopes. If you have a regular shirt with full pockets (even if it doesn't set off the WTMD) and get put through the NOS, you will be subjected to a pat-down. Wear a liner shirt underneath it and put it in a bin for security if you don't want groped by the TSA.

But wearing the stuff through check-in (and, later, boarding your plane itself) may save you from checking your bags - nobody from the airline is going to weigh your jacket (or your shirt) and it's amazing how many things you can squirrel away in good pockets.

Click on the 'patterns' tab for their current patterns. I have most of them, and they're quite comfortable. Make one of the jacketsor shirts out of fleece (use a matching nylon for the inner pockets - I shop at http://seattlefabrics.com/ for my outerwear fabrics) - sew or buy an ultralight waterproof jacket with an attached hood (or a hat) for over it, and with a silk liner under your usual shirt you'll be set for anything spring in Europe can throw at you.

If you do a lot of public transport, putting an extra pocket at shoulder height inside or outside for your bus pass or bus card comes in very handy (not that I use my shoulder pocket any more, my card resides in a Tom Bihn Clear Organizer Wallet on its 16" Key Strap).

If you sew your own, you can put on as many o-rings or d-rings as you like!

Maria
12-28-2010, 05:20 PM
What about a Tilly "tropical" vest? Or the "VOMP"?

http://www.tilley.com/Tropical-Blend-Multi-Pocket-Vest.aspx

http://www.tilley.com/Different-Drummer-Legends-TravellerCarry-On-Vest.aspx

http://www.tilley.com/The-VOMP.aspx
- the above will cause sticker shock, and it's unisex sizing too.


They certainly aren't chic and lady-like, but I too am thinking of getting one when I have to fly with such weight restrictions for carry-on. (And I considered myself fairly tailored too and even I am considereing one of these. At least here in Toronto I can go to their stores and try them on, they even have on-site tailoring.)

This reminds me when I was looking into flights from Canada to New Zealand. I thought I would fly Air New Zealand...and looked into their restrictions. 7kg (15lbs) maximum only one piece of carry-on luggage. You can have a personal item like a handbag or something like that in addition to the carry-on luggage one piece. HOWEVER, if you are flying from the USA - even with just a stop-over, they are really strict about only ONE bag, no exceptions for even a small handbag as an extra. My travel dates were flexible, so I thought I'd just make sure I'd fly via Vancouver which has a direct flight and not have to worry about passing into the USA...then I saw the price difference! I think it was almost $1,200 more! (They have fewer flights via Vancouver and I guess the demand isn't there so they can charge more?) Yikes, I might as well ship my bags via Fed Ex.

I remember telling the booking agent on the phone that if the airlines charged by weight per passenger and not just per bag - they would make more money. She actually stated she wondered why they haven't thought of that yet. (And here was my attempt to say I should be allowed extra carry-on weight as I'm below average weight for my height....)

bchaplin
12-28-2010, 06:08 PM
Thanks again for the answers!
Maria, I'm intrigued by the Tilley line. I'm going to have a look; they are sold locally at a few stores here in the US. Crazy prices but I bet it is really quality stuff. My camera is actually very important to me, and is almost always with me. So it might be nice to have a way to carry it without having to wear a bag, for hikes and such.
Beth

Maria
12-28-2010, 06:33 PM
Beth - I've owned several Tilley pieces and despite being rather dowdy in terms of style or fashion - they are really well made (reminds me of Tom Bihn quality!). A friend of the family went to Afghanistan with a Tilley vest and wore it out every single day as it would hold a great deal and was secure. I think he got the "VOMP" - the rather expensive one! He packed his camera, lenses, sunglasses, etc. I have a picture somewhere - wish I could post it. If I'm not mistaken, there is a huge pocket in the back too.

Forgot to add - maybe the vest could be used for the flights / travel...and for hikes and such, and just bring a small light bag when you want to go out and about for dressier events. One presumes travel vests are not attractive in a fancy restaurant.

I tried a ScottEVest jacket and sent it back straight away. I don't mind spending money for quality, but this jacket was horrible - poor quality seams, haphazard sewing, missing seams and frayed edges, thin as in cheap material (and it was a coat for winter!), clumsy cheap zippers, and the jacket's arms were so long - I left like a gorilla. I ordered a larger size and yet couldn't close the jacket in the front when only half the pockets had items in them and were not packed full. (And I'm NOT a busty female either!) Okay I only tried this one item from the company, but I feel it is not a product line that lives up to it's own ad campaign. Great "gimmick" but poor follow through. Yet they were very nice to me, and took it back right away.

I wonder - if we tried to hook various organizer pouches to our clothing via key straps and just have them dangle from belt loops and so forth, could we get away with it? :D I'll say it's the new fashion (at least amongst one-baggers!)

bchaplin
12-29-2010, 04:03 PM
To follow up on a few of the other points:

aiethabell: It took me a while to catch on to what that site was. Very cool! I don't actually sew but that's a neat idea.

backpack: The GF1 is fairly small and light. It's an absolutely terrific DSLR alternative that I purchased specifically with this travel in mind. The trip is a heritage tour of places that some of my ancestors lived, and I want to bring back great photos for the people who don't get to join us.
The Kindle might get left behind, though, if it becomes a real crunch. I can read on my iPhone though that's a lot less pleasant.

After finally reaching the airline (their phone center was backed for a few days due to the storm), Swiss Air claims that their higher limit of 8kg applies for both flights, including the Helvetic one. Well, we'll see what actually happens at the gate. I'll take a small compact bag (probably the Tri-Star) and, if it gets challenged over weight, temporarily place a few items in my pockets. The Tri-Star actually meets the size requirements for both airlines; in fact in height and length it is significantly less. Depth is 5mm over but I'd imagine that since it squishes a little, that would be OK.

backpack
12-30-2010, 04:10 PM
Beautiful camera! I recommend Padded Pouches for it and the lenses.

They are like Caches for electronics.
They weight nothing and are so protective, a wonder of engineering!

I hope your MacBook Air has a Cache.

I read everything on my netbook.

My suggestion for the jacket is to buy one made for outdoor photographers.
They have pockets and velcro straps for lenses, etc...

If you find one in black or sand (no camouflage), it will be nice looking enough to wear under a big wrap.

As others say, do plan for cold weather if you are average size, you can find well made clothes in Europe. Most countries support artisan knitters who sell their one of a kind pieces at permanent city markets or weekly farmer's markets.

falconea
12-30-2010, 04:19 PM
I don't think the weight restrictions have any purpose except to encourage the checking of baggage (and the enhanced revenue for the airline that checked bags bring.) *cue rant here*

Actually, it's about reducing injuries from excessive weights falling out of the overhead bins onto the heads of the passengers sitting below.

Audrey

backpack
12-30-2010, 04:46 PM
Actually, it's about reducing injuries from excessive weights falling out of the overhead bins onto the heads of the passengers sitting below.

Audrey

If it was the case, they would have banned all rollaboards from the cabin a long time ago.

flitcraft
12-30-2010, 06:10 PM
OK, in my less snarky mood: I would guess that weight limits might have a safety basis (though why they have been largely ignored by most airlines does make me wonder...) I also appreciate that, from the point of view of flight attendants, heavy bags frequently mean that they are called upon to assist passengers in getting their bags stowed, which means greater odds of strains and sprains for them, too. One of the reasons that I started packing light was that it was becoming harder and harder for me to hoist a heavy bag well over my head on my tiptoes to get it stowed.

bchaplin
01-09-2011, 07:44 AM
Thought I'd follow up.. There was an amazing sale on Lands End stuff near me, and I got a few jackets that I was in need of for the winter anyway. They do not have very large pockets but they all have some. I may get a tailor to add two large internal pockets to the one coat I anticipate taking to Hungary.

I also bought a Tri-Star which I will try out on a domestic U.S. flight this weekend. It was a real toss-up between that and the Western Flyer but in the end I decided I like being able to consolidate everything in one place. I intend to pack it lightly, and put my really important stuff in a smaller bag that will fit right into the center pocket for quick retrieval. Hopefully having one bag only will make me look streamlined enough so that no one will want to weigh it. If they do I'll make use of the coat pockets...

For the Europe trip I will just end up checking a small bag in addition to the Tri-Star. I'm not that minimalist a traveler! However I'll be comfortable knowing all my essentials are with me.

Lani
03-22-2011, 01:42 PM
I realize this is an old thread, but I wanted to add that you can TOTALLY do this!

Your absolute easiest solution is to wear a ScottEVest... they have like 20 pockets and you can carry all of your electronics in your jacket and completely lighten up your carry-on.

Other than that, it's really important to choose a bag that by itself is very lightweight. Until such time that Tom Bihn starts selling Tri-Stars or Western Flyers in their wonderful Dyneema nylon (one can always hope!), you might find that those bags take up too much of your weight allotment to use.

My husband and I flew Virgin Atlantic a few years ago to Europe, and they have a rather strict 6Kg limit... a little more generous than yours, but we did it!

You can go read about it at my write-up here: http://www.travelite.org/?p=90

Hope you managed it get everything packed up in a carry-on!

Fat Crip
03-22-2011, 02:52 PM
If you want large pockets in winter wear, try Barbour waxed cotton coats and jackets ( www.barbour.com ). Most have one or two 'poachers pockets' originally for stuffing a couple of poached rabbits or pheasants in, but nowadays great for cameras iPads or any other goodies.

bchaplin
03-22-2011, 06:16 PM
Thanks for the tips!
First of all, I LOVE those jackets. Much more stylish than some of the multi-pocketed vests I've seen. I will check them out. Turns out they have a store in my city, too. Wonderful!
Lani, thanks, too. I have seen your post before and it has some wonderful tips. I have actually bookmarked and re-read it a few times. Thanks for sharing your knowledge!
My carry-on just needs to fit my electronics and some minimal clothes and toiletries that would allow me to not panic if for some reason my checked bag didn't make it. However since I'll be traveling a lot within-country and don't want to be weighed down with stuff, it makes sense to keep everything as lightweight as possible.

peregrina
05-05-2011, 10:01 AM
are you going to business? is the laptop essential?

lotuseater
05-05-2011, 11:26 AM
If you want large pockets in winter wear, try Barbour waxed cotton coats and jackets ( Barbour - authentic country and lifestyle clothing fit for the outdoors (http://www.barbour.com) ). Most have one or two 'poachers pockets' originally for stuffing a couple of poached rabbits or pheasants in, but nowadays great for cameras iPads or any other goodies.

I have far too many Barbour jackets for my own good. They'll probably not see the light of day again until October, but I consider my Beaufort to be my go-to travel jacket in all but the coldest conditions. The poacher pocket is in the back panel and easily fits an iPad and other stuff. I tried a full size laptop in the poacher pocket once, but it definitely made my bum look fat :-)

Yonkdaddy
05-05-2011, 04:32 PM
Regarding the Laptop question. Get. An. iPad.

Seriously, I've had an iPad for about a year, and I am finding more and more worthy apps which really make it a legitimate device for anything but the most substantial document processing.

Shiva
05-05-2011, 04:39 PM
Yonkdaddy: i have been vacillating between a MacBook Air and an Ipad for several reasons, and I am wondering if you can help me make a decision!
here are some questions:
1. like most, i am a bit hesitant about the keyboard. I can manage the Iphone, but not for long. I am a "blind" qwerty typist--:) don't use two fingers, and I found it really difficult to type on screen because of this. Makes me think I would be better off being a two finger typist. I know there are "keyboards" available--like the Kensington ones that are built into the IPad case. Do you have any experience with this and whether some are better than others?

2. has the lack of a usb port been a problem? maybe it will not be, but i am wondering. I do have Mobile Me access--so should be able to download and access most things.

3. the only other hesitation i have is about PRINTING capability. Does the IPAD 2 have it?

I could not tell.
thanks
shiva

Yonkdaddy
05-05-2011, 04:54 PM
Hey, Shiva... here you go:

I actually spent a fair bit of time practicing with the onscreen keyboard. I am almost as fast touch-typing on the soft keyboard as I am on a hard keyboard. It can be done. The biggest problem is that most of the punctuation and number keys are on separate keyboards; for example for that last semi-colon, you've gotta switch to the numeric keyboard. it's a little slower but I was definitely able to get the swing of it. And, you can also get a Bluetooth keyboard; Scosche just came up with one that actually rolls up! I actually take my iPad only to conferences these days for note-taking... it's all I really need. (Hint... if you like "mind-mapping" style of note-taking, try iThoughtsHD... it's really good).

The iPad Camera Kit comes with two adapters: One for SD cards and another for a USB connector. That USB can actually connect anything that communicates that way. I use Dropbox and Box.net as cloud-based storage areas; both have free accounts, 2Gb at Dropbox and more than that at Box.net. Almost every application that stores a document will go out and sync with those services. Same with Mobile.Me. We got one of the camera kits; we've had it for at least 6 months and I JUST got it out of the box.

The iPad supports AirPrint. It "Officially" only works with a series of compatible HP Printers. But we have one of those and it works flawlessly. Also, there are some fixes to Apple's final, crippled AirPrint implementation... google "Airprint Hactivator" and you'll find one of them. Of course if you were traveling you could just (1) email the doc to yourself and (2) pick it up at your hotel's business center and print from their PC.

I don't have a MacBook Air (wish I did), but I can tell you that I don't get my MacBook Pro 13" out more than once a week any more. And if I don't think I have to use my specialized MSProject work software on a trip, I don't bring my work laptop any more either.

Shiva
05-06-2011, 07:45 AM
hello back: thank you for taking the time to give me the best answers I have ever received for these questions! Truly appreciate it.

I have been asking the same questions for a while on other forums--and got back either "unusable high techie gobbledygook" (and i am fairly techie myself!), or worthless soft answers! So this is truly truly helpful and practical advice.

1. Good to know about the Camera kit. I use Mobile Me and Dropbox--so that takes care of that.

2. What APP do you use for Word, Powerpoint, and Excel? i know there is Iwork, but I am still more comfortable with Excel for example.

3. Will look up what you suggested for note taking---that is something I am definitely interested in.

4. Keyboards: do you have any thoughts on the Kensington or Logitech integrated keyboard versus getting an external bluetooth keyboard vs Apple's own bluetooth + dock? I know the dock only does vertical orientation. The Kensington gets good reviews, but is quite heavy. seems to defeat the purpose. I have not looked at the Logitech--it looks very sleek; it is aluminum. I only need this if I am going to do long hours of typing...

5. Battery life: how has this worked for you?

shiva

Yonkdaddy
05-06-2011, 08:11 AM
Hi... glad to be of service! Here's what I think about your other points:
I use QuickOffice and DocsToGo for quick edits to simple Word & Excel files. I keep a copy of DocsToGo on my iPhone as well. It does come in handy sometimes. For more heavy-duty processing I have Apple's Pages & Keynote. None of this is perfect, but I have been able to do basic text processing and do some edits on a science-based powerpoint deck. I don't do much with Excel but at least with simple spreadsheets, QuickOffice works pretty well.

I have never hooked up a keyboard to my iPad. BUT I think part of the coolness of the device is how thin & light it is; I can't imagine "permanently" attaching a bulky case/keyboard combination to it (making it into a substandard MB Air). If it was me, I would explore one of the folding keyboards.

You didn't ask about cases... of course the iPad 2 has the very cool "Smart Cover"... that seems really cool. I use a Dodocase cover... kind of makes the iPad take on the Moleskine vib. I really like that one.

Battery life really is at least 10 hours. I almost never turn mine off... just put it to sleep. I pick it up first thing after I get home every night and it gets used for emails (I've got 3 different accounts on it, including my work), random web browsing, controlling my uVerse DVR, etc. I charge it every 2nd or 3rd night. The only time I've gone through a whole battery charge is on return flights from Europe... after reading, playing the iPod, watching a movie or two, and playing a game or two, it's pretty tapped. I've got a Richard Solo 9000 mAh "Mobile Charger"... it basically connects to a USB cable and will charge anything you can plug into the other end, and it will almost put a full charge on an iPad, and I carry that with me if I'm gonna be on a plane for a long time and want a full charge on the other side.

One thing... they really are about worthless in bright sunlight. While I really like my iPad better than my Kindle for book reading (I haven't bought a book on paper in at least 2 years), I keep the other device for sitting around the pool.

BTW, I've got the 64g/3g device. It's definitely worth it to go for the gusto. I have used the cell plan while traveling; it's very easy to turn it on/off at will. And the 3g device also has GPS. I have Navigon on my iPhone; it's a "universal" app and is also usable on the iPad... it is VERY cool navigating with all of that screen real estate.

Hope this all helps.

Yonkdaddy
05-06-2011, 10:11 AM
A bit more on the iPad... one of the major weaknesses of the device is that there is no internal filing system. If you are not connected to the cloud, files that you create/edit get stuck basically within a file system inside every app. BUT this problem is definitely relieved with the use of cloud services like Dropbox & Box.net. These places basically become your file folders, and of course they work very well. And just about every app that I've used that creates/edits a document (except, believe it or not, the Apple ones... Pages & Keynote) will save them to these cloud services, and some are moving toward "real-time" syncing too. So while this is something everybody needs to be aware of, I still think that the iPad is a very worthwhile Laptop alternative for what many of us do while on business or personal travel.

JonP
05-06-2011, 12:37 PM
A couple more ipad questions, since we're on the topic.

1) Have you been able to use a regular flash/usb drive with the camera connection kit? I am unable to do this on my original ipad. I am assuming that this is due to the lack of file management as you mentioned. Itunes really makes a dreadful document management system, so I am working with Dropbox.

2) Have you used the data plan in Europe? I am looking to use mine for a trip this summer without the hassle of hunting for wifi. The plan seems pricy, but it seems I can upgrade to a larger data plan if I get close to the limit. My trip is 17 days so I'm also concerned about running over the cap.

Thank you!

Badger
05-06-2011, 01:05 PM
Shiva, I'd recommend just the Apple bluetooth keyboard--not the one with the dock--because it's responsive and very lightweight. It takes 2 AA batteries and takes a lot of use before you need to replace them. I think I've had mine in for 2 months, for example.

For note taking, I use Evernote. I have Penultimate, which is a handwriting note app, but I like Evernote the best. Maybe I'll like Penultimate more once I get a stylus with a finer tip.

On the iPad, I use Google Docs and Pages for word processing and Keynote for presentations (don't use spreadsheets if I can avoid it, so sadly I'm no help there). If Literature and Latte came out with a Scrivener app for iPad, that would be sweet.

JonP, re: USB storage, I've never tried it because it's really easy to store photos in Dropbox galleries. I see that it could potentially be a problem if you have a ton of RAW files to upload. I've solved this by taking along a couple extra memory cards and saving most of the editing for home, though the iPad can certainly manage some of it. If you plan to do a lot of photo editing on the go, I think the 64GB is your best bet. For what I use my iPad for, I'm way fine with 32GB.

Shiva
05-06-2011, 01:34 PM
Yonkdaddy:

Ok. cool. am getting a much better sense of this. I can save files to Mobile Me which is pretty good for file management--basically folders/files. I am assuming this is usable on the iPad. On my Iphone, the IDISK shows up as a drive, and I can read and email files, though not edit. I am assuming therefore that the Ipad will do more with the Idisk. I need to check on this.

I was planning on just getting the WiFi one. I have an iphone, and the cost of getting another 3G plan seems a lot. I do know that you can turn it on and off as needed, but I am not sure....and the 3G versions for a 64GB come close to the cost of a basic MacBook Air...!

Yonkdaddy
05-06-2011, 01:49 PM
I agree with the USB storage comment... I've never felt the need to try. Like I said earlier in the string, I've had the camera kit for just about as long as the iPad and just got it out of the box the other day... We're heading out on a vacation and want to use the iPad as a clearing house for family photos.

Regarding ex-US data plans, I have a hard enough time keeping within the plan constraints with my iPhone. I fear how much data I could grind through on the iPad. My ex-US practice has been to use the iPhone for cell data and seek out wifi for the iPad.

Shiva, I don't use mobile.me because I don't store enough in the cloud yet so can get away with the free stuff for now. But if you can use it on the iPhone you can on the iPad. The ability to edit files on mobile.me is probably more about the apps you've got on board. If you had docstogo, for example, you'd have an option to open and then edit compatible files there. Also understand about the cost relative to the MBA. I do like the flexibility, and having the gps is really good when using the iPad versions of OpenTable, Yelp, and Urbanspoon. Some of these apps really do make use of the big iPad screen real estate.

Badger
05-06-2011, 02:01 PM
Yonkdaddy:

Ok. cool. am getting a much better sense of this. I can save files to Mobile Me which is pretty good for file management--basically folders/files. I am assuming this is usable on the iPad. On my Iphone, the IDISK shows up as a drive, and I can read and email files, though not edit. I am assuming therefore that the Ipad will do more with the Idisk. I need to check on this.

I was planning on just getting the WiFi one. I have an iphone, and the cost of getting another 3G plan seems a lot. I do know that you can turn it on and off as needed, but I am not sure....and the 3G versions for a 64GB come close to the cost of a basic MacBook Air...!

Re: iDisk. Yonkdaddy is correct, as far as I know: if you have the appropriate apps to edit, then you can edit on the iPad. I like using MobileMe to keep certain apps like Omnifocus all synced up, although I do use Dropbox a lot too.

Re: 3G. You can buy 3G access by the month, if you want, so you don't necessarily need to commit to a plan. It's $14.99 on AT&T. I found this really handy when I was staying a hotel where wifi access was $25/day and I needed to edit a conference paper and get it to the rest of my panel.

Fat Crip
05-06-2011, 04:56 PM
A couple more ipad questions, since we're on the topic.

1) Have you been able to use a regular flash/usb drive with the camera connection kit? I am unable to do this on my original ipad. I am assuming that this is due to the lack of file management as you mentioned. Itunes really makes a dreadful document management system, so I am working with Dropbox.

2) Have you used the data plan in Europe? I am looking to use mine for a trip this summer without the hassle of hunting for wifi. The plan seems pricy, but it seems I can upgrade to a larger data plan if I get close to the limit. My trip is 17 days so I'm also concerned about running over the cap.

Thank you!

Where in Europe do you plan to use it, and for how long?

I use a 1 month at a time plan from Vodafone in the UK. It costs 10 per month for 1GB of data. However, if I use the same SIM in mainland Europe the cost in 10 per day and that only gives 25mb of data, then another 10! This soon mounts up! In theory you can buy pay as you go cards in each country, but my attempts to get one in Spain were unsuccessful. I now have broadband in my Spanish house and it costs me less for the whole year than for one month of 3G! There are free Wi-Fi hot-spots all over the place in both the UK and Spain, and I'm sure that in most Western European countries the same applies. Many shopping centres, cafes and all McDonalds and Burger King stores have free Wi-Fi.

Yonkdaddy
05-06-2011, 09:23 PM
ATT ex-US data plans are exorbitant. Don't know about Verizon.

JonP
05-06-2011, 10:26 PM
Thanks for the information on the data plans. I agree that the AT&T international plans are exorbitant. The Verizon ipad is not compatible on the European network the way I understand it (CDMA vs. GSM). Most of the places I am staying have Wi-Fi, but my experience has been very uneven in the past.

I am going to Germany and Switzerland, with overnight stays in Prague and Salzburg. The entire trip will be 17 days.

Shiva
05-07-2011, 07:25 AM
Thank you everyone for all the feedback on the Ipad. I think the biggest challenge in travelling overseas is the lack of WiFi everywhere. Actually, you can get WiFi pretty easily in Korea, Japan, and major urban areas in India, but Europe is still a challenge, as is Africa. For me, I will be using the Ipad primarily in the US, and so I have not worried myself too much about overseas travel. As for rates: the Data plans are cheaper and less constrained for the Ipad than the Iphone which is truly annoying. I just can't see how carriers are going to be able to continue with such expensive data plans----as more and more customers switch to smart phones and tablets like Ipad.

The old monopoly rears its head again, it seems!

I read somewhere there is an adapter that allows one to connect to a hardwired ethernet cord--does anyone know anything about this?

bchaplin
05-13-2011, 10:31 PM
This thread has drifted!
But just to comment back on the original query... I finally took my trip and am now in Hungary. I ended up carrying on a Western Flyer and a small messenger bag. The larger Swiss flight from Boston>Zurich was no problem and they allowed a carryon and a personal item anyway. Interestingly, when I boarded the Helvetic Zurich>Budapest flight which had the stricter limits, (1) They did not test anyone's bag for size or weight, perhaps because the flight was already running a little late, (2) The sign at the gate said 8kg although their website said 5kg, (3) There were no problems with finding overhead space because Europeans seem to travel light anyway.

Overall it was one of my easier flights. I've traveled to Brazil and Africa before and that's a different story, with everyone struggling to bring on huge carry-ons, and fighting for overhead space.

I did cheat and check a few items as well, so if they had weighed my carryon bags at least I would have been within the 8kg limit. Since I'm not really a light packer my compromise is to carry on the essentials so that it wouldn't affect my plans too much if my checked luggage was lost. That way I don't need to worry, as I've had airline lose my luggage in the past.