Smart tech has been invading every aspect of our lives. First, there was the smartphone: the humble mobile phone that has slowly incorporated computer functions, a camera, touchscreen, apps, and more. Then came the invasion of smart tech into our homes. Most houses in the U.S. now have an Amazon Echo or Google Home and have at least one device that is operable via an app on the smartphone. It was only a matter of time when it would spill over to our travels. Lo and behold, smart luggage bags has now been invented.
Now, while we know that it’s not as sexy as rolling around designer luggage bags, hear us out: they are the future. What makes a luggage bag smart are these few high-tech features available in the bag: it charges your electronic devices, has GPS tracking, can be remotely accessed by apps, Bluetooth and WiFi connectivity, electronic locks, and more. Each smart luggage brands have their own unique smart tech feature, and it is up to you to decide which one fits your travelling style.
But wait, we hear you say. Didn’t most airlines ban the use of smart luggage bags? The answer is yes and no — you can check in your smart luggage bags if they have removable battery packs. The problem surrounding the ban lies in the lithium-ion batteries and chances of them catching fire in the cargo holds. After all, we don’t want another Samsung Galaxy Note 7 incident. If your smart luggage bag has the option for its battery pack removed, you can safely check in your luggage.
The best part about these smart luggage bags? They look as good as your top-tier sleek luggage bags. In fact, travel bag giant Rimowa has dipped its toes into the waters of smart luggage with the introduction of its Electronic Tag series. But to properly expand your options, scroll down for our list of smart luggage bags to consider as your next investment.
For a smart luggage that can be brought on the plane with you, get the Arlo Skye Carry-On. This sleek, anodised aluminium case is airline-approved and has a USB-C for MacBook charging. Their Silent Run wheels are allegedly 15% quieter than the regular polyurethane ones, making for a stealthy getaway. At the push of a button, the removable portable charger slips out of the case. It’s also safe from surge and short-circuits. There are no exterior zippers on the luggage, so you open it with one-touch code-protected locks.
Perhaps one of the most recognisable smart luggage brands out there, Away is a startup that’s becoming a fast favourite of frequent flyers. It’s lightweight, durable, and can fit in a lot more items thanks to its compression mechanism. Plus, the removable battery pack that you can use to charge your tech on the go makes life a lot easier when your flight gets delayed.
Rimowa has joined the legion of smart luggage bags with the introduction of the Rimowa Electronic Tag. As its name suggests, the suitcase comes with an electronic tag, allowing its users to check in their luggage from home, via the Rimowa smartphone app. For now, only a select few airlines are partnered with Rimowa for this feature (Lufthansa and Eva Air). Upon your online check-in, the electronic ink tag appears on the screen display and you can simply drop your luggage off with security at the airport.
Sleek and grooved luggage bags are the norm, but you don’t know sleek until you’ve seen Samsara. The smooth aluminium alloy is lightweight, and it has been designed in such a way that the top is flat, allowing it to double as a laptop stand. It also allows you to recharge your electronic products and has a LED light inside the bag for you to find your stuff easily in the dark. Also, if you download the Samsara app, it’ll notify you when your bag has been opened out of your sight.