While the Pacum can't rival the compression power of a vacuum cleaner when using vacuum bags, it still achieves enough compression to make your clothes take up less room, so that you can fit more into your suitcase. We were less impressed with the inflation option, finding it too slow to cope with larger inflatables. Even so, if you want to make your packing neater, this is a great travel companion.
- Very small
- Can run from a powerbank
- Decent compression rates
- Quite slow
- Not ideal for inflation
- Review Price: £39
- Inflation and deflation modes
- Ball needle, two inflatable and vacuum bag attachments
Its small size and neat range of accessories make it an interesting product, but the Pacum can be slow, and it’s not ideal for larger inflatables.
The Pacum is tiny and has all of the attachments that you need
Measuring 87 x 46 x 48mm, the Pacum is small enough to fit into a suitcase without taking up too much room. Given that this is a device that’s designed to help you save space, that’s a good thing. There’s no battery with this model, so you can throw it in your suitcase without fear of getting told off.
The Pacum ships with a soft travel pouch, which is big enough to take the suction pump, the USB-to-USB-C cable to power it, and the accessories: a needle for inflating balls, two adaptors for inflatables, and the suction attachment that’s designed to fit over suction bags.
It’s neat to get so many accessories, as it makes the Pacum ready to tackle pretty much any job. You even get a single vacuum bag in the box.
The Pacum is quite slow but its compression is good enough to save some space
Powered via USB, the Pacum can run from a USB charger plugged into a wall socket or a power bank that you carry around with you. Once it has power, there’s a choice of two suction modes: Eco and Super. This seems a touch pointless to us: with a product like this, I want one mode that’s ideal for the job at hand.
To test, I placed a cushion into a vacuum bag, which was 85mm deep. Using a proper vacuum cleaner, the bag was decompressed in less than 20 seconds, resulting in the cushion measuring just 20mm deep.
With the Pacum in Super mode, the result was much slower. After 4m 10s no more air was being removed from the vacuum bag, and the pillow was 30mm deep. That’s worse than I got from the vacuum cleaner, but still good enough compression to make a difference in packing, saving space in your suitcase.
Compression test: Before delation (left) vs After inflation (right) – move slider to compare
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The Pacum is slow at inflating, so not ideal for larger inflatables
The Pacum has an inflation mode, too. Using one of the adaptors to tackle a large unicorn float, the Pacum took 30 minutes to inflate, stopping automatically a few times throughout the process. Using a standard £5 manual pump, the same inflatable can be pumped up in a matter of minutes.
As such, the Pacum can be useful for inflating balls using the needle attachment, but I wouldn’t bother using it for inflatables. In most cases you’ll have inflatables that are small enough to blow up using your mouth, or you need a more powerful pump to tackle larger ones.
Should I buy the Pacum?
The nearest competition is the Atmos Pump, which is battery powered. However, I found that the Atmos didn’t deliver the level of compression that the Pacum did, and the battery means that you can’t put the Atmos into your checked luggage.
The Pacum is a neater product: it can be stored in your checked-in luggage, can run from a power bank if you need portable power, and it delivered a greater level of compression in my tests.
If you travel a lot and want to compress what goes into your suitcase, this is a decent way to save space both at home and when you’re packing up at the end of a holiday. Don’t get too excited by the inflation mode, as I found it too slow to be of practical use.