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Reader Email: What type of bag do you carry in the parks?

An email I received over Christmas.


My husband and I are going on our first trip to Disney World next month and I’m looking for a bag to carry in the parks.  Do you have a favorite?  I’m thinking my usual handbag (big, more expensive than my husband knows) is a no-no, but I don’t want something “dorky.”

By the way, we liked your Hertz review.


Melissa A.

Dear Melissa:

Thanks for your question and for reading my blog.  I carry a Sherpani Vida, which is a small but (I like to think) stylish backpack.  If you hike or climb, you’ve probably heard of the brand.    It’s small but big enough that you can throw in your wallet, a brush, a water bottle and a few things for the kids, if you have children.  On the last trip, I even had my raincoat in there.  It’s sporty while still being feminine.

Here’s a photo of the Sherpani Vida I use:

I’ts not technically waterproof, but I’ve carried it in the rain and everything stayed dry.   It’s a fairly small backpack, which is important to me as I’m pretty short.  The flaps all have magnetic snaps, so it’s really convenient to just throw things in there. There’s a little coin purse on a string and a couple of pockets inside.  It’s just a great all-around bag.  I don’t carry a backpack style bag at home, but it works really well in the parks to have my hands free and to not constantly be looking for a place to store it when I’m getting on attractions, the way I would be with a regular purse.
I like this Sherpani as well, although I don’t own it. It’s feminine without being too fussy:

You can find either of these bags at the Sherpani website.  I bought mine at Zappos.

There’s a good reason for not carrying your regular bag in the parks, particularly if it’s expensive. For one, it’s probably too bulky and the strap will slip off your shoulder.  The last thing I want to be worrying about in the parks is my handbag.  Just as importantly, I’ve found that a regular handbag gets too much wear and tear in the parks.  Chances are it will get wet and knocked around.  If you’re not careful, it could even end up falling out of an attraction.  So a studier bag, regardless of style, is a better option.

I know a number of people who carry full sized backpacks, but that’s just too much bag for me.  I’ve seen people on message boards touting a brand called “Baggalini” but it has the same problems as a regular shoulder bag, not to mention the annoying name.  Oh, and it’s kind of “dorky.”

I hope this helps. Enjoy your trip!


  1. I carry my baggalini, I love it, small, but has two front pockets (one large one for my camera, one for phone) two zippered pockets inside, spaces for credit cards, money etc but still big enough to hold a wallet if you so desire. It comes in alot of different colors and I have washed them successfully. Not horribly stylish though, but I like the cross body better than the backpack which I have to remove to get my camera or sit on a ride etc… anywho…here is the link:


  2. Nancy, I hadn’t seen that one. I like it, I have to admit.

    Thanks for the link.

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