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This came from an idea I saw on another website's thread that wasn't getting much love. When travelling, especially in hot, humid regions, you tend to sweat - especially in the back area where your daypack presses against your body.

My latest daypack goes some ways to prevent this by having another layer with a gap between the pack and the body, but it only goes so far.

As a result of all this, there can be 'an interesting aroma' emanating from your daypack. Worse if your stored food also suffers from the heat. Any solutions for dealing with this while on the go?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 17 down vote accepted

Use sodium bicarbonate. To translate that into English, use 'Baking Soda'. Sodium bicarbonate is the main ingredient for baking soda and it has this magical effect on bacteria, especially the ones that live in humid areas. Just put some sodium bicarbonate inside your backpack where it gets humid and leave it overnight, then remove it in the morning and NO brave bacteria would dare to live there.
By the way, you can use it on your shoes as well and it will eliminate the bad smell and it's totally odourless and safe.

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I've been using this on my shoes and it does indeed work wonderfully (unlike other things I've tried, including the freezer trick below and commercial "odour-killer"). In addition it's also found everywhere and is dirt cheap. –  Ingmar May 25 '12 at 17:50

If you stay in a place with a freezer, freezing overnight will kill most warm-environment bacteria.

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how to put backpack in freezer? :D –  Rudy Gunawan May 23 '12 at 5:42
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@Rudy to put it in a freezer follow these steps: 1- open the freezer. 2- grab the backpack. 3- put it in the freezer. 4- close the freezer. xD :D ;) –  MeNoTalk May 23 '12 at 16:29

The bacteria-killing recommendation by @MeNoTalk is excellent.

What I do to take care of smells when I travel is carry some dryer sheets. I'll fold the item (clothes) over the dryer sheet or in the case of my suitcase, put a couple of dryer sheets in it and zip it up. The more dryer sheets you use, the more it'll smell like, well, dryer sheets. But I prefer that smell over the sweaty stench.

I also carry a couple of packets of wet wipes and clean off my daypack if necessary.

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