How to Pack a Suit in a Backpack

  • April 6, 2020
  • / By Keith Terrell
Man in Blue Suit

Packing a suit is a challenge normally as well because you are worried that you might destroy the crease in it, especially when you do not have enough hanger space in your cupboard. This becomes a bigger problem if you have to carry your suit with you on a trip. Ideally, people who carry suits with them carry a suitcase, where it remains tightly packed, with little fear of the crease getting ruined.

Man in Blue Suit

If you are someone who goes on regular backpacking trips, you would scoff at the idea of carrying a suit with you on a trip. The idea behind a backpacking trip is to tough it out and make do with just what you are carrying with you. But what if you have to carry a suit with you sometime? Even if you consider yourself an adventurer, you need to attend business meetings or wedding functions sometimes. 

And if a backpack is what you carry the most, the question arises — ‘how to pack a suit in a backpack?’ Being an avid traveler, you know that the way to pack clothes in a backpack is by folding them in a particular way. And by a particular way, we mean rolling them up in neat little rolls. This is done because rolling is any day much easier than folding.

Here are some quick and easy solutions that will teach you how to pack a suitcase in a backpack.

  1. 1
    First off, while holding your suit upright, you need to reach inside one of the sleeves and pull it out, all the way. This way, one of the sleeves would be inside out. It sounds like a grotesque way to treat a suit but believe us, it’s the right way. Remember, the shoulder pad has to be inside out as well.
  2. 2
    Now take the right side of the shoulder pad, smoothen it a little, and tuck this part inside the shoulder pad you just pulled inside-out.
  3. 3
    Align this folded part along with the liner, and drape it along the side of your bag. While the suit rests in the side of the backpack, now is the turn for the pants.
  4. 4
    Hold your pants carefully without disturbing the crease, and fold it in quarters. Now tuck these pants inside the jacket. When this is done, fold the jacket over the pants.
  5. 5
    While you are draping the suit along the side of your backpack, make sure that the lining is facing outside, so that the front of your suit does not get dirty. And this is how to pack a suit in a backpack.
  6. 6
    Just remember the basics of folding; the sleeves should be as flat as you can keep them and that the suit is folded along all its natural seams. Otherwise, you might as well ball up your suit and pack it at the bottom of the backpack.
  7. 7
    To give your suit and shirt an extra layer of protection against wrinkling, you can put a thicker layer of clothing around and inside it which will maintain the shape of the jacket. Roll up a pair of jeans in a tubular structure, and wrap your jacket and shirt around this. Once this is secure, take one of your t-shirts, and tuck this bundle inside it.  
  8. 8
    To make it even more secure, you can tie a belt around it so it is not falling off the sides. Now you can put this bundle wherever you want in your backpack, though we recommend not putting too much weight over it.
Person with Brown Backpack

Folding the Shirt for the Backpack

You can fold the shirt in exactly the same way you have tucked in your jacket. Alternatively, you can bundle it with the suit, so that the crease remains intact.

You can also use a packing folder if you are going to be packing multiple shirts to go with the suit. For a single or couple of shirts, you can use packing folders or packing cubes as well, because they will make your shirts really compact and easy to carry.

Packing the Shoes

Backpackers everywhere agree that packing these could be a hard task. Most of the time packing is spent wasted over choosing which shoes to pack. Anywhere else, you would get away with wearing sandals or your pair of sneakers. But these are formal shoes we are talking about which are fancier and bulkier than your normal hiking shoes.

The solution is as simple as it sounds. Just wear the shoes you are going to wear with your suit, and tuck the other pair inside your backpack. Now you think you may look silly wearing formal shoes with your jeans, but trust us, you will not. Dress shoes actually look nice with a pair of jeans. Not only you would be wearing the nicest shoes (in the flight), but also stand out from the crowd!

Shoes and a Tie

Accessories and Ties

These are the easiest to pack and follow the same rules of organizing a backpack. Simply roll up your tie, and tuck them in the shoulder of your folded jacket. This will also help maintain the shape of the jacket. Another way of doing this is to put them in the extra pair of shoes that you have packed where they will sit undisturbed without getting wrinkled.

You can do the same with your pair of socks. Alternatively, make use of packing cubes if your jacket shoulders are running out of space.

Alternative Ways to Pack Your Suit

Now that we have successfully learned how to pack a suit in a backpack, let us look at some alternative (and logical) ways to do it.

Using a Suit Bag

This ideally should have been your best option, but this article is about how to pack a suit in a backpack. Regardless, You can pack your suit in a traditional suit bag and tuck it in neatly inside your backpack and then pad it up with a pair of jeans. This way, you will not have to put the suit bag in the overhead compartment and be constantly worried about it being crushed by other people’s luggage.

Wear the Suit!

This is another way you can keep your suit mostly wrinkle-free if you must bring it on a trip. You can simply change from your casual clothes to the suit while you are at the airport and wear it on the flight. Once you are off the flight, you can change back into your casual clothes and then carry the suit over your shoulder, or a suit bag (if you brought one). Though this is certainly not recommended if you are on a very long flight.

For the suit to survive its crispiness, use the first method on how to pack a suit in a backpack.

Men's Clothing

Send the Suit by Courier

You can pack your suit in the first method we showed, but instead of packing it inside your backpack, you can simply ship it your hotel using a fast courier. You will not have to worry about ruining it under all that pressure.


So now you know the correct method of how to pack a suit in a backpack. By following the basic rules we described, you should be able to do it in no time at all. Just remember that if you are going to wear the suit only once, do not bother lugging it around because there is only so much the suit can take. You can simply buy a new one at your destination!