I’m headed out of town for a visit with family tomorrow, and naturally, that got me thinking about what I’ll be carrying to travel and what the best options are. Air travel is an unglamorous activity that requires careful accessories planning and maximum functionality, but the best inspiration for solutions comes from an unlikely spot: celebrities.

Usually, I’m very much against the idea that celebrities are somehow “lifestyle” experts. I don’t want to hear a supermodel’s skincare or fitness tips because they’re not applicable to my life, in which I am not particularly rich or genetically gifted and do not have the luxury of spending time to stay perfectly fit and laser-smoothed as part of my job. Travel, though, is the great equalizer: celebrities go through the same airport security, boarding procedures and airplane storage situations the rest of us do, and they do it far more than the average person. When it comes time to choose a carry-on, their choices are worth noting.

Because of massive paparazzi presences at LAX and JFK, we have a pretty good idea of the kinds of bags frequent-flying celebrities use when they’re in the air, and the most popular, by far, is a simple, large, lightweight tote bag that fits on the shoulder easily. I’ve always looked for zippers and pockets in my travel gear, but most celebs don’t seem to care much for those features, which makes me wonder if I’m overthinking their necessity. If I’m being honest with myself, I usually just end up throwing everything inside and leaving the zipper open anyway.

With all that in mind, I went to some of our favorite online retailers and picked out the best of the best when it comes to choosing a travel bag like your favorite star.

Alexander McQueen Skull Nylon Shopper Tote
$1,245 via Nordstrom

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Balenciaga A4 Papier Zip Tote
$1,835 via Balenciaga

balenciaga-a4-papier-zip-tote

Chloé Keri Tote
$1,550 via Neiman Marcus

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Coach Gotham Tote
$595 via Coach

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Elena Ghisellini Miky Tiger Shopper Tote
$650 via Neiman Marcus

elena-ghisellini-miky-tiger-shopper-tote

Gucci GG Blooms Leather Reversible Tote
$1,250 via Gucci

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Kara Tie Tote
$495 via Net-a-Porter

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Lanvin Shopper Tote
$1,550 via Net-a-Porter

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Liberty London Marlborough Tote
$595 via Neiman Marcus

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Loeffler Randall Tasseled Suede Tote
$450 via Net-a-Porter

loeffler-randall-tasseled-suede-tote

Louis Vuitton Neverfull Tote
$1,340 via Louis Vuitton

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Madewell East-West Transport Tote
$178 via Nordstrom

madewell-east-west-transport-tote

MCM Kira Medium Visetos Shopper Tote
$690 via Neiman Marcus

mcm-kira-medium-visetos-shopper-tote

Prada Baiadera Stripe Tote
$1,990 via Neiman Marcus

prada-baiadera-stripe-tote

Saint Laurent Shopping Tote
$995 via Net-a-Porter

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Tod’s Gypsy Tote
$1,425 via Net-a-Porter

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Tory Burch Kerrington Stripe Tote
$295 via Tory Burch

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Emily
Emily
5 years ago

I need a good travel bag that could also be used for client meetings, and that Balenciaga looks perfect, but can it fit on one’s shoulder? The straps look short and a little too thin for that sort of use.

laura
laura
5 years ago
Reply to  Emily

I own the Balenciaga A4 without the zippers and it’s a great quality tote, love the leather and it’s super light but, honestly, I don’t recommend it for traveling. It doesn’t stand up unless it’s completely full, which makes it too heavy, and the straps are not long enough. I prefer the Neverfull or the Saint Laurent tote.

Safa
Safa
5 years ago
Reply to  Emily

Balenciaga is best fit for what you have in mind! The perfect all-function bag and lasts a lifetime…go ahead with the purchase…good luck 🙂

katrina
katrina
5 years ago

Surprised to see that the trusty LOngchamp pliage tote didn’t make the cut 🙁
In addition to being the most visible designer tote at any given airport, it’s indestructible, lightweight, weather resistant, roomy and stylish. Not to mention under $200. Can’t beat that!

jackie
jackie
5 years ago

Nothing like a Longchamp, I say!

lili22
lili22
5 years ago
Reply to  jackie

I know, agree!

Saf
Saf
5 years ago

I don’t think the Longchamp makes the cut of “traveling like a star”

lili22
lili22
5 years ago
Reply to  Saf

In Europe, it’s actually the choice of many old monied royals, from various countries. But in the states, it is probably too understated, not obvious enough… I prefer the leather variety, much better wear and tear 🙂

Katy ;P
Katy ;P
5 years ago
Reply to  Saf

There are quite a lot of celebs who carry it. Even A listers like Amy Adams, not to mention royals like Kate Midddleton.

Sparky
Sparky
5 years ago

Guessing celebs don’t need zippers because they fly 1st class in some kind of VIP fast-track. Their bags aren’t getting stuffed into the overhead along with baby bags and backpacks! I prefer a zippered bag but I’ll still check out some of the ones in this post.

heartpurse
heartpurse
5 years ago

The Liberty London Marlborough Tote is knocking off Goyard with no shame…

seresy
seresy
5 years ago
Reply to  heartpurse

Actually, Liberty’s been using that pattern since they designed it in the 20s. So it may be the other way around…

heartpurse
heartpurse
5 years ago
Reply to  seresy

Goyard dates from the mid 1800’s and has been using the iconic chevron pattern since the 19th century by Edmond Goyard.

Justice J. Srisuk
Justice J. Srisuk
5 years ago

Sigh. This list would’ve been perfect for my trip a week ago. Hrm. What if… I buy a new tote, then plan a whole another vacation just so I can use said tote? Is that excessive? Didn’t think so…

Lucy Watson
Lucy Watson
5 years ago

the lanvin and the tod’s look SO similar….

Aliza Zibkoff
Aliza Zibkoff
5 years ago

The Balenciaga A4 in red is really something to look at. Tod’s is nice, too. The rest kind of yawn worthy.

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