I've just had an opportunity to try out two products that can provide travelers with sizable savings. While they're unrelated, they each offer ways to fight those extra costs we encounter while traveling.

The carry-on overcoat

Images When I packed for a recent weeklong trip to Japan, I struggled to fit all my clothes into a wide-body, 20-inch carry-on wheeled suitcase, the largest capacity allowed for a carry-on. So my choice was to take a bigger suitcase and check it, and possibly pay a baggage fee, or to leave some of the stuff behind. But I found a better option. I could take the carry-on and "wear" the clothes that didn't fit in my suitcase. No, not wear them on my body, but wear the new SeV carry-on coat from ScottEVest that's designed to hold a huge amount of goods in its 33 pockets.

From the outside it looks like any attractive, conventional, full-length beige overcoat. But inside are pockets of many shapes and sizes designed to carry everything from shirts to shoes, ties, underwear, as well as electronic devices. There's a special waterproof pocket for a water bottle, a pocket for eyeglasses with a pullout cleaning cloth, a camera pocket with a slot for memory cards, and an attached keychain. There are several huge pockets designed for packing clothes, as well as a pocket for shoes. There's even a pocket to carry your liquids in the standard TSA zip-lock bag.

I packed several folded shirts, pajamas, socks, underwear, magazines, a Nook Color e-reader, and a pair of Bose headphones into the coat lining. The coat hung straight and did not appear unusual. As a result, I reduced my suitcase load by about 30 percent. Had I needed more room in my suitcase, I could have also packed my toiletry kit, and even an extra pair of shoes in the coat.

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