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Suitcase psychology: what does your luggage say about you?

21st August 2012 Print
Multiple suitcases

The next time you head to the airport you might want to think twice before shoving your swimsuit and sunscreen into a hold-all that's seen better days.

Research released by Virgin Atlantic reveals that the luggage we carry says a lot about the type of traveller we are, and we find out which celebrity suitcases are most like our passengers'.

The study shows that one in five of us (20%) can't remember the last time we bought new luggage, while more than half (55%) would only upgrade their suitcase if it was worn-out or broken. That said, the lifestyles of the rich and famous are quite likely to influence us at the wheelie shop; 25% of 16-24 year olds admit they'd buy a bag based on what their favourite celeb's been seen toting at check-in.

Paul Bushell, Vice President of Airport Operations for North America at Virgin Atlantic, commented: "Virgin Atlantic carries over six million bags a year to London and beyond, and we've seen a lot of changes since our first flight in 1984. The standard black case with a colourful pom-pom has taken the backseat as more and more of our passengers choose to show off their personality and make a fashion statement with their bags. Our crew carries almost anything, from leather holdalls to leopard print cases, and too many designer trunks to mention. And following the focus on athletes in London we're seeing more and more travellers taking along their sporting equipment, which Virgin Atlantic carries for free." 

So what exactly does your luggage say about you? And which high profile jet-setter's style do you channel?

The Designer Trunk

This luggage is beloved by those who enjoy showing off a bit; their Upper Class style is reflected from limousine to the lounge, and everywhere there's flashbulbs to be found.

If you won't leave home without your beloved collection of LV luggage, double-check the name tag upon arrival to make sure you aren't picking up Paris Hilton's, Karl Lagerfeld's or Victoria Beckham's.

The Corporate Case

This traveller has been there, packed that, and is as used to breezing in and out of hotel lobbies as a concierge. They like to opt for something practical, low-key and convenient for all those airport runs.

They tend to be rather focused and determined, too, meaning a time-managed flight that includes working on the laptop or catching up on some well-earned power-napping rather than putting on the headphones and chilling in front of a movie. One of our favourite celebs who cops a corporate case is the beautiful Miranda Kerr.

Crazy Colored Luggage

Either attention-seeking, or just keen to instantly recognize their personality piece as it makes its way around the carousel, this type of traveller is zany and fun. You never know what to expect when you share a vacation with this character, or what they've packed (though you can count on a sombrero and fluorescent bikini regardless of the destination).
Keeping up with any of the Kardashians means having bling bags at the ready.

The Hold-All

This is the Indiana Jones of travellers, the one who manages to pack everything they need into one piece of hand luggage, finding space for things the rest of us forget like adaptor plugs and chargers, and yet they still have room for a different pair of flips and cover-alls for every day of their break. Frighteningly practical and fabulously confident, this optimist will tend to be the most seasoned traveller of the lot because for them it's all about low-drama planning rather than last-minute panics.

One-bag wonders include worldly mom Angelina Jolie, our favourite royal rascal Prince Harry, and 007 Daniel Craig.

The Backpack

Meet the eternally young at heart traveller, who enjoys a freewheeling, commitment-free lifestyle. They hate being pinned down and treasure the ability to go anywhere the wind takes them. This frequent flier is a true explorer, a stout-hearted adventurer who will make the best of any situation.

Generally a packing option for teens and college students (who roll with an entourage), Justin Bieber's famously flown with little more than what's required for most folks' morning regimine.

Multiple Suitcases

This 'real housewife' refuses to leave home without every pair of shoes she owns (hey, you never know where you'll end up when you travel!). With little regard for excess baggage fees and maximum need for personal creature comforts, this sort of packer might one day end up on an episode of 'Hoarders,' but at least she'll look good on air!

Along with the entire cast of 'The Real Housewives of New Jersey' other reality 'stars' such as Snooki have been famously snapped at arrivals, totally dwarfed by their duds.

For further information on flying with Virgin, visit

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Multiple suitcases