Travel Tips for Frequent Flyers from an Expert in Luggage Design
Rob van Ravens knows a thing or two about flying. As well as traveling all over the world in pursuit of design and development excellence for our travel gear, he also commutes between the Netherlands and our headquarters in Ibach, racking up an average 25 hours of flying per month and adding up to nearly 100 flights a year. And as our Director of Product Management for Travel Gear, Bags and Accessories, he also knows a thing or two about packing and luggage.
We asked Rob for his must-haves when traveling by plane.
Wherever possible for short trips, I always try to travel with hand luggage only. It’s quicker and easier on arrival and forces me to pack very efficiently. It’s a question of personal taste, but I usually prefer a soft-side carry on and my current favorite is our Werks Traveler 6.0 Global Carry On. It’s smooth to roll thanks to its 8 silent wheels, plus an expandable case is handy on the way home from a trip, when you always seem to have more than when you set off. The removable Pack More totally makes my day since I can separate business items from personal belongings easily.
For longer Asian or transatlantic flights, I prefer an additional hardside check-in suitcase such as the Connex Large Hardside case. Made out of extremely resistant virgin polycarbonate, it offers the protection I need for all my belongings. Connex brings also maximum packing space and is even expandable in case I need to carry prototypes or samples back and forth.
I never leave home without good quality headphones. Invaluable for plane journeys, whether I’m listening to a podcast, watching a movie or listening to music (I just can’t travel without good music!), they help me to pass the time when I’m awake or drown out background noise when I want to sleep. For this reason, I like to travel with the Altmont Professional Deluxe Travel Laptop backpack – its removable essentials organizer stores headphones, cables, etc and keeps them from getting tangled up whilst making them easy to locate at all times.
If sticking to hand luggage only, then I am very disciplined about the toiletries that I take with me and prefer brands that sell travel sizes of their products. If traveling for a longer time, I love our Zip-Around Travel Kit because it is relatively compact, but opens up to give easy access to all products, plus you can hang it up in the shower. Earplugs are the one thing that I always make sure I have in my toiletry bag – there’s nothing worse than a noisy hotel when you are on the road.
I’m a sneaker freak and love to have at least 2 pairs of trainers with me, preferably a limited edition classic Nike Air Jordan, a Nike Off White collaboration or recently something more luxury from Alexander McQueen. For me, there are very few occasions for which you cannot find the right pair of trainers.