Bags, Slots, and Bank Tabs:
Bags do not have level requirements for using them. The cheapest bags to craft are typically from leatherworking. All crafted bags require a Rune of Holding of some kind, bought from a crafting vendor. They represent the largest part of the cost of crafting bags and put a floor on their price. To check to see if a particular bag is cheaper to craft or to buy, checkGW2Spidy.
Cheap 20-slot Bags
There are several ways to get 20-slot bags for less than market price. Several of these involve collections, which are a newish type of achievement that involves procuring items. You don’t have to keep the items in order for them to “count”, ever having had them in your inventory is enough to satisfy the requirement for most of them (there are exceptions, sometimes they must be consumed/used). For a guide to collections, see Dulfy.
- Uncanny Canner Collection: This is kind of a pain, but very cost-effective. You have to run around buying jars with karma, and then pick up a couple off the trading post (for very little).
- Bandit Weapons Specialist Collection: This is just all the bandit skins, most of which can be gotten for cheap, either using karma in WvW (cheaper on lower level characters) or from the TP or Silverwastes. You’ll also need to first unlock this collection with a Bandit Combat Journal, which is a purchasable with Bandit Crests.
- Halloween Pail: Sonder the Seller in Lion’s Arch sells holiday items for holidays not currently happening. One of them is a 20-slot bag you can buy with 3,000 candy corn. This is usually cheaper than buying a crafted 20-slot bag (right now, it’s 4.5 gold vs 11 gold, so a big savings).
- Fractal bags: If you run a lot of fractals, you can use your spare fractal relics on 20-slot bags. The bags you get are all specialty bags that can mess up using the Compact option, but they are still fairly popular.
Invisible or hidden bags are bags whose contents do not show up at a vendor, and whose contents are protected from bag operations like Deposit All Materials and Compact (more on those later). They are great for the stuff you always carry around, like alternate weapon sets, salvage kits, and consumables. There’s a few other types of specialty bags like junk bags and equipment bags, but the hidden ones are more all-purpose and useful in my opinion.
The hidden bags allow me to do this with my inventory: Inventory Screenshot
As you can see, I’m using the all-in-one bag view (using the Show/Hide Bags toggle). My hidden bags are at the bottom of my inventory, meaning when I get loot it’s separated from “my” stuff visually. It also allows me to make good use of the “Compact” option (more on that later).
Bag Slots and Bank Tabs
Bag slots and bank tabs can only be purchased with gems. Of the two, bank tabs are considered more economical because you get the benefits on all your characters, whereas unlocking bag slots is done on a per-character basis. Cost-wise, it doesn’t make sense to buy a bag slot until you’re already using all 20-slot bags for a character and you still want more room. A 20-slot bag costs around 11 gold (other than the cheap ones listed above), whereas a slot costs 400 gems, which is currently around 60 gold. So it’s much cheaper to buy bigger bags than new slots.
If you’re really concerned about cost but need more bank space, there’s a few options. One is having a bank alt, which I find cumbersome and don’t bother with, but many people find it a good option for hoarding a lot of materials. Another is making a bank guild. Since you can be in up to 5 guilds at once, making your own guild and using its guild bank as your personal stash can be a good strategy, although unlocking the bank is neither fast nor free. It’ll take several days to build the feature and unless you have a lot of influence consumables you’ll have to buy them in order to get enough to build the things you need (and make sure you’re Representing the correct guild when you use them!). Also, you can’t put account-bound stuff into a guild bank, so that’s another limitation of the option.
If you’re not concerned about cost and just really want more space, there’s also Storage Expanders for 800 gems. Each one increases the maximum stack size for your materials tab by 250, up to a maximum stack size of 1500.
Note: All the gem store upgrades go on sale periodically. If you want to buy bank tabs/bag slot/storage expanders but don’t need them urgently, wait until they’re on sale for 20% off. It happens a few times a year.
Deposit All Materials and Bag Options
All your bag options can be found by hitting the little gear icon in the upper right corner of your bags. You can do some really handy things with these:
- Deposit All Materials: The best thing ever. It sends all your crafting materials straight to your bank from wherever you are. Best inventory clearing function of all time.
- Compact: Shoves everything (except items in hidden bags) toward the left/top. Great for using right after Deposit All Materials, especially if you’re using the All-in-One view + hidden bags at the bottom setup I described above.
- Show/Hide Rarity: You’ll probably want to toggle this to Show, so you can see outlines of items indicating their quality. Very useful when salvaging.
- Show/Hide New Item Highlights: I toggle this off since it’s not necessary for me, but if your bags are cluttered this could be nice for seeing new items.
- Show/Hide Bags: This is how you can see your bags as all one giant bag, which I recommend doing.
The most important part of inventory management is learning what to salvage vs. sell, and always having salvage kits on you. I carry a Mystic Salvage Kit for rares, a Black Lion Salvage Kit for exotics, and then either the Copper-Fed Salvage-O-Matic (which is the best gem store item hands-down) or 2 basic kits if I’m on an alt without the CFSOM.
Salvage all greens and blues for the luck (unless you’re really hardcore about optimizing, in which case you can skip the leather stuff to sell it instead) with a basic kit. For rares level 68 and higher, you can get Globs of Ectoplasm from salvaging them, so salvage any with a price lower than an ecto (the only ones that are typically higher are greatswords, staves, and maybe swords and daggers). Other rares you should sell on the TP.
For exotics, only salvage on a case-by-case basis (check the TP first not just for its sell price but also for the sell price of the sigil/rune inside it, which could potentially sell for more). Also, it’s important to use a Black Lion Kit if you want to get the rune or sigil out, because that’s the only kit that guarantees you get it back. Don’t buy the kits from the gem store, though, you’ll end up with a bunch from daily login rewards and map completion.
If you type in the search bar at the top of your inventory, it will filter to only show you matching items. You can take advantage of this to easily go through and salvage things by using certain key terms.
When using the search function on the inventory, type:
- “req” (short for required) to get your salvage kit and all salvageable items
- “sal” (short for salvage) to get the salvage items
- “rare” to search for just rares
- “unl” (short for unlock) to get fine/masterwork items
That’s my inventory guide, I hope you found it helpful!