With summer closing in on us, a lot of us are going to start pulling out our travel bags, making plans for our next holiday destination. Packing for the occasion is imperative if you want a successful trip, whether by going on a bus, the train, by cruise or by plain. While regular carry-on bags and suitcases generally get the job done, a new type of luggage has made the rounds in the travel community recently, and it’s proving to be quite popular. This new luggage, known simply as smart luggage, has the ability to weigh itself, can skip TSA checkpoints, and can even send you an alarm if it thinks it’s lost or is stolen.
But do we really need smart luggage? Are they better than the traditional carry-ons we’re so used to? We’ll be compiling the pros and cons of both types of bags, so you can see for yourself.
The two types of carry-on
Firstly, we’ll be talking about the traditional type of luggage. These ones you’re probably quite familiar with. They’re your standard suitcase, duffel bag or roller bags that you pack up when you go on a journey. They come in different materials, from heavy duty plastic, to canvass and heavy fabrics. Depending on the size, you can either carry them by hand or you can roll them along if they have wheels. Depending on how much money you invested in them, they can prove to be quite durable and can get the job done, no problem.
Next, we’ll be looking into the smart luggage. These types of luggage work the same way as the traditional ones, except these have a few features hidden up their sleeves. These types of carry-on luggage can be connected to your phone via Bluetooth, and depending on the price you’ve paid, have a variety of features like proximity sensors, built-in weighing scales, distance indicators, and some even have their own power bank, where you can charge your gadgets any time.
These are the two main contenders we will be looking at, and while we’ve compiled a brief summary on these as best we can, you can find out more with a bit of research, since each individual brand can be different from one another. The people over at land of the traveler as well as other resources have compiled further information on either type of luggage to make choosing between the two easier.
Does traditional luggage need improvement?
There’s always the problem with technology being too pervasive in our lives, that even items as simple as bags are being fitted with extra moving parts for the sake of convenience. While having more of these parts around always carries the risk of them breaking down eventually, there’s no denying their usefulness, and if anything fails, smart luggage still has the ability to carry out its primary purpose: carrying your stuff.
The advantage and drawbacks of going smart
Every smart luggage is unique in its number of features, primarily based on the brand and the price itself. One of the primary gadgets they have is the weight sensors, which allow you to check the exact weight of your bag in real time every time the bag is lifted. It may not be that useful if you’re planning on using carry-ons, but can be a great way to keep track of your luggage’s weight.
Smart luggage also features battery packs that allow you to charge your gadgets on the fly. These battery packs are TSA-approved, so there’s no need to worry about being stopped at the airport for them. You can generally access these packs via USB and some of them even have fast charging support. Some smart luggage also gives you the option to remove these battery packs, so you can carry them around without the need to lug your bags everywhere.
Lastly, arguably the best kind of feature the smart bags have is the companion apps that inform you about your current flight information, the bag’s proximity and more in real time. You’ll need to connect it via Bluetooth and is a great way of not only keeping track of your belongings, but also your current flight status.
While Smart luggage does make travelling much easier, one of the biggest drawbacks with using them is that they cause a premium to buy, certainly much more expensive than traditional luggage. Sometimes, they tend to be 3 times as expensive as a regular carry-on of the same size.
If you’re the type of person who loves being at the forefront of technology, then by all means, smart luggage is a great item to add to your collection. The number of features that each smart luggage has definitely made travelling a whole lot easier. That being said, however, the price tag might not be too thrilling for some people. Smart technology is here to stay though, and things will get better and much cheaper from here on out. Whether you’ll be getting one or not, there’s no arguing that smart luggage is the future of carry-on.