Best small travel cable organizing system?

Subject says it all. I want something that can live in a desk drawer most of the time that keeps cables etc under control but that can be easily slipped into a backpack for travel. Ideally it would be folded out in the drawer but pick up and fold up somehow for travel.

This is the current drawer

I looked at the old thread and the closest thing I found was the Cocoon Grid It system but I was wondering if there were other similar choices now that people prefer.

IMO, the old thread pretty much covered it. My experience is cables cannot be controlled, only contained :slight_smile:
I vote for zip lock bags.


I use the BUBM universal travel gear organisers available through They’re brilliant.

I use zip lock bags. The bag will have one cable and battery power brick. Never had a problem with TSA. I take the bag out, and place it on the laptop or the iPad.

I use this bad boy:

It’s fantastic because I like to switch bags a lot, and I don’t have to move cables. The Tom Bihn Snake Charmer (large) is also great:

I use that for my travel podcasting/recording gear.

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Just bought the first one. Thanks!

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I use the grid it organizer

I personally find the solutions where I am supposed to tuck something under an elastic band to be too much for me, it’s fiddly and annoying so doesn’t get done. With that in mind I bought 100 Velcro ties and recently bought some fabric/fake leather strips with a popper on, these mean I can take one cable and keep it tidy, and when I throw a
cable in the drawer that’s the only step involved.

I just use zip mesh bags for cables most of the time. I have a small Tom Bihn Q Kit which my travel laptop charger lives in and have been looking at the snake charmer too!


I love these things. They’re the best solution I’ve found to keeping cables orderly. When I unwind the cable to use, I just leave a loop and keep the snap on it. No Velcro, no elastic, no twisties.

I bought a set of Patu Mini Zipper Mesh Bags, 4" x 5", Size S / A7, 5 Pieces, Beauty Makeup Lipstick Cosmetic Accessories Organizer, Small Travel Kit Storage Pouch, Black : Beauty

Or, as I call them, “Little Zipper Bags”. (I think @RosemaryOrchard recommended them to me. Not this specific brand, but the idea in general.)

They have a variety of sizes, but the 4x5 inch ones work very well for me.

I’ve got one that has my Luna Display, Yubikey, and a tiny USB-A-to-USB-C adapter plus a very cool USB Thumbdrive with both USB-A and USB-C connectors.

Then I have another one with a USB-C-to-Lightning and USB-C-to-USB-C cable and a Anker wall charger with both USB-A and USB-C ports.

You get the idea. I group related items together, and then I can pull out a bag and tell fairly easily / quickly if that’s the little bag that I need/want or not.

Last but not least, I have some Attmu 50 PCS Reusable Fastening Cable Ties, Microfiber Cloth 6-Inch Hook and Loop Cord Ties, Black: Electronics (or, as a sane person would call them: “Velcro zip-ties”). These are handy because they are re-usable, unlike regular zip-ties. But I only use them for a few things, like my really-long lightning cable and really long USB-C-to-USB-C cable.

I have the luxury of “travel cables” and “home cables”. Just like I have a ready-to-go wash bag.

But then I do quite a lot of travel. Sometimes at short notice.

And I left my one travel watch charging cable at home on a recent trip because it belongs in my carry on but I wasn’t flying. (Fortunately a friend had a spare one and we were at the same conference so I borrowed it off her.)

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If you travel a lot this is a must. I have a few travel bags, there’s the “going somewhere and may need to charge” which has USB C to Lightning and USB C to C, a small battery pack, and USB A to Micro USB as well as an Apple Watch cable. This, combined with a two port plug (one USB A, one USB C), is perfect for days where I have a workshop, going to a café to do “nerd work” after “work work”, and overnight or day trips.

These kits all have their own (zip mesh) bags, but I have collected cables over the years and built my kits up from them.


This is what I do too - at home all cables stay in place, so I know where I can charge or connect at any time. What’s in the bag stays in the bag until I travel. It is just a simple nylon bag with a mesh front so I can see the contents a little. This holds a charger, battery pack and all the cables I need for my devices.

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I prefer the retractable cables. I have these in the car and in my tech travel pouch.


Small Zip Loc bags with masking tape descriptions, inside bigger Zip Loc bags.

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I have retractable cables for a few use cases, primarily my travel Ethernet cable! But also my travel Nintendo Switch cable…

Back on topic, I do have something like the organisers @geoffaire mentioned, but I’m not too keen on those. I got something intriguing with my Away suitcase though, it’s a mesh square that you fold in half and zip closed. So you get the benefit of the lie flat, plus visibility!

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I’m a big fan of the mesh bag method and I’m like @MartinPacker in that I have several cable-bag set ups. I have one in my briefcase that is always with me, and another one with an expanded set of items in case I’m doing more things than my everyday setup, e.g. wireless presentations.


I tried the grid system and it worked terribly for me. I found it very inconvenient to use in practice, although it looked great when everything was in place.

Anybody else find their backpacks are ridiculously heavy? :slight_smile:

So heavy, in fact, that I don’t care how heavy my MacBook Pro is. :slight_smile:

Actually, I don’t trust airlines enough to check my cables etc. I always carry them on. So a cable organiser I can offer to pull out at Security is a must. (They never want me to and then quite often pull my backpack over because of the cables.) :slight_smile:

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I own a ton of Bellroy products and backpacks. They are worth every penny

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