When choosing luggage or bags, light is best. Just make sure they are durable, writes Kasmiah Mustapha
THE right luggage plays an important role. Choose the wrong one and you may end up with a damaged bag, perhaps because of the way it is handled at airports or when dragged around, especially in subway stations. Having your belongings bursting out of your bag in public places can be pretty embarrassing.
To ensure you travel light, find luggage that is easy to handle and do away with handbags. Instead, have a cross shoulder or sling bag, which will leave your hands free to carry your luggage.
According to Tumi brand manager, Tan Yin Yin, there are several things to consider when buying luggage.
“A four-wheel luggage is easier to manoeuvre, especially if you have to take trains, taxis and buses. And make sure it’s lightweight. That makes it easier to carry as it requires little effort to lug around.
“Make sure it has several compartments for your things. Use small see-through packing bags or what we call packing cubes for undies or other essentials. These come in handy if customs officers ask you to open your luggage for inspection. This way, the officers will be able to see your things in the see-through bags.”
Also, bring along a just-in-case tote bag which, as the name suggested, will come in handy when you buy more things than can fit into the luggage. The tote can be folded and won’t take much room in the luggage, she says.
“It is also advisable to invest in well-known luggage brands because they are more durable and have a warranty against damage. For example, Tumi has a one-year warranty for its bags. Under the warranty period, bags that are damaged will be replaced.”
CHANGE IN NEEDS
With the changes in travel needs, says Tan, Tumi has redefined the styles and colours to meet individual preferences in its latest collection. The collection has everything one needs for travel, business and daily use, such as luggage, duffels, backpacks, totes, briefcases, carry-ons, cross body and weekenders.
“We have about 50 different styles for men and women. The new collection is not limited to travel as the design and style focus on people who have multi-faceted lifestyles. There are different bags to suit different needs. We have different styles and colours for the women’s collection because women like colours for their luggage. There are not many changes in the men’s collection because men like it simple.”
There are 11 collections for the season which include the new Centro line which will be available in August. The rest are already in the market.
“We are making luggage more lightweight now. Ten years ago, Tumi bags were very heavy. Now we make sure they are lightweight but durable,” says Tan.
“We also consider the needs of women and men. Women want lots of compartments but men only need maybe two — for a laptop and a mobile phone.”
SHAPE AND SIZE
The Vapor collection has five styles, starting with a small carry-on to two wheelers, luggage for medium trips, and ones for long trips. They come in colours like chianti, peacock, brown and spruce.
Tumi has also come up with a three-in-one bag under the Dror collection. A backpack easily converts into a tote or briefcase — simply adjust the straps and you can carry by hand, on the back or sling it over the shoulder.
Another is a briefcase that is two bags in one — a workday medium capacity bag that slims down to a case for laptop. Even the travel kit has various packing and usage styles. When opened, it can be packed flat or hung from a fixture.
When closed, it takes on a more traditional shape that can fit into packing cases.
Going away for a short trip or even a weekend getaway? The Bedford collection weekender is a must. The oversized flap satchel is enough for a few items and even looks sophisticated in rich brown leather.
For those who prefer totes, the Boulevard is available in both magazine and classic styles. It can be hung on the shoulder or hand carried. It comes in colours of peacock, poppy patent, black and two-toned cordovan and chianti.
The new collection also has travel-related accessories such as wallets, phone covers, passport covers, mirror key fobs, valet key fobs, credit card cases and luggage tags.