Combination Lock -
Advice and Advantages

What Is A Combination Lock?

A combination lock is a lock made up of several rotating dials that is opened by a particular combination. It is a cheap and easy way to keep your belongings safe from thieves. They are small, and can fit on most types of luggage, including backpacks and suitcases. Although in our opinion padlocks are more secure than combination padlocks, there is no risk of they key being misplaced.

While locks are a great deterrent against things being stolen from your bags, remember, if a thief is desperate to get into your bag it can usually be cut open with a knife or scissors. If you want an even greater level of security, check out our page on mesh security products.

Tip: Try to buy a lock where you can set the combination yourself. This way, it will be much easier to remember, but be sure to use all different numbers in your code!

Tip: A single dial lock (one that looks like the lock on a safe) is more secure than a multi-dial lock (a typical luggage/bike chain style lock). If you are looking for better security, go for a single dial high security combination lock. NOTE: It is very difficult to find a TSA compliant single dial lock!

Combination Lock Features

When choosing a lock be sure to think about what you need it for and get one that will suit your purposes.


If a lock is is too light it may be very easy to break, however, if it is too heavy it will add extra weight to your luggage. Think about where you will be travelling - if you are trekking, a light lock may be enough. If you are traveling in 3rd world cities, a heavier lock may be a better option.


Combination locks come in all different colours, shapes and sizes. Make sure that your padlock fits the zippers you want to lock on your piece of luggage.

Also consider that a bigger lock, while is more more secure than a smaller one, it is also more obvious. It is a good idea to have a few different sizes so that your lock that can be used on the door of any locker.


Combination locks range greatly in price. Single dial locks are more expensive than multi-dial locks. If you need a TSA lock (an essential if you are travelling to the US) it will also be more expensive.

Cost: $15-$40

Combination Padlock Uses

Locks are a great security accessory for keeping your luggage and belongings safe. Other great situations you can use your combination padlock for include:
  • Lockers in hostels.
  • Locking bags together in a cloak room to make them hard to pick up.
  • Extra security on your laptop or camera bag.
  • Great for use on any type of transport, such as planes, trains or buses.

Any kind of lock will help to give you peace of mind that your belongings are safe. Some other great security accessories to think about are padlocks, TSA locks and cable locks.

A smart traveller has their belongings protected with security accessories. A smarter traveller will have all their belongings protected with the right international travel health insurance also!

Read more advice on great Travel Security Accessories.

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