Getting from point A to B with tech-boosted luggage

Travelers the world over are now looking for products with greater functionality and an attractive design. Source: Shutterstock

THE luggage market is huge and by 2020, it is expected to be worth a phenomenal US$67 billion. Yet, these days, travel bags and suitcases need to do more than simply transport belongings from point A to B. 

Travelers the world over are now looking for products with greater functionality and an attractive design. Eager to meet their needs, savvy brands are offering in-built solutions to remedy common problems and enhance the travel experience.

With a number of cutting-edge options available, we lifted the lid on the innovations revolutionizing our luggage.

Anti-theft

Being a victim of crime is a fear many travelers share, yet clever features can protect tourists from the types of attack that blight them the most.

RFID blocking technology like that used by the stylish Travelon range, shields credit cards from radio signals to prevent skimming. This keeps digital information safe from stealthy thieves that use wireless devices.

Other anti-theft bags such as the street-smart Lifepack can thwart bag slashers with an impenetrable layer that prevents blades or razors cutting open the main compartment. Equally useful, the retractable lock is a deterrent for opportunists that would otherwise try swiping the backpack from under a table or chair.

App-enabled

Nothing puts a dampener on a trip like problems at the airport, but luggage-integrated app software can help travelers avoid them.

Tackling the lost baggage dilemma, market leaders Samsonite and Delsey develop the GeoTrackR and Pluggage. These cases use a nifty internal tracking device called Lugloc, a Bluetooth proximity sensor, and a specially designed smartphone app to pinpoint their location should they go missing.

Apps are also being used alongside electronic tags to streamline luggage check-in. The first to trial this technology is the ultra-modern brand, Rimowa. Once personalized, the app sends passenger information to the airline and registers flight data to the suitcase’s integral tag so it can be dropped at a baggage station upon arrival.

Integrated charging

Whether it’s a smartphone, tablet or MP3 player, there is never a good time for a favourite device to run flat. But portable charging units like those found in the Arlo Skye and the Away Carry-On  cases allow anything with a USB cable to be topped-up on the move.

The charger pack lasts for several days making it ideal for a long journey. 

Plus, short-circuit and surge protection give added peace of mind the case and its contents won’t come to harm.

With these developments and others emerging such as the robotic case and smart travel locks, the luggage industry may well become more tech-centered in the future.

This is especially true amidst the rumors premium car manufacturer Audi may release an “eSuitcase.” With a sleek design and fold-out, motorized scooter feature, it would allow travelers to zip through airport terminals in no time at all.

But as to whether people actually want innovations like this, is open to debate.