Luggage Testing Facility Ensures Highest Quality for Travelpro and Atlantic Brands

August 19, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

As the original inventor of Rollaboard luggage and a market leader in innovative luggage design, Travelpro has continued to develop their state-of-the-art testing facility at their Boca Raton, Florida, headquarters to ensure the highest quality luggage for flight crews and frequent travelers.

Travelpro’s in-house testing team conducts a full range of rigorous qualification protocols across all their luggage brands. It is designed to support all the performance testing needs of their Product Design and Development process by replicating real-world usage conditions.

Platiinum Magna 2 bags“Quality and innovation are the cornerstones of the Travelpro brand and our testing facility ensures our continued commitment to providing the finest, most durable luggage worldwide,” said Scott Applebee, Vice President of Marketing for the Travelpro family of brands. “When we offer a comprehensive warranty on our bags, it means we’ve thoroughly tested each product to our demanding testing standards. If a bag fails even a single test, it is sent back to the factory for improvements and then tested again, until all tests are passed.”

Travelpro has continued to grow its reputation of innovation, style and durability by ensuring that its products meet or exceed testing standards throughout the product life cycle. This commitment to quality through product testing has spanned close to three decades, since the days when Northwest Airlines pilot, Robert Plath, invented the original Rollaboard luggage in 1987 and founded Travelpro.

Numerous professionally designed industry leading tests are applied to Travelpro and Atlantic branded products to guarantee state-of-the-art workmanship and quality of materials. Extension Handle Testing subjects the retractable handles to 10,000 up and down movements to verify its reliability during repeated use. The Zipper Test activates outer and interior zippers thousands of times to replicate ‘real-world’ usage over the life of the bag. The Wheel Tester thoroughly tests luggage wheels to provide a smooth and effortless roll with long-term reliability. Fabrics are tested for seam strength, resistance to wear and tear, color consistency under different lighting conditions and color stability under wet and dry conditions.

Every test given is monitored and recorded by quality verification testers. Moreover, the process doesn’t stop there. Throughout the life of a product line, Travelpro will randomly select bags for testing to ensure they continue to maintain the same level of quality over time and usage. Thanks to this focus on quality through constant testing, Travelpro luggage lasts longer, maintaining customer loyalty.

About Travelpro

For over 25 years, Travelpro International has prided itself on design innovation and durability in crafting the highest quality luggage for travelers worldwide. Since transforming the ease of modern day travel with The Original Rollaboard wheeled luggage, Travelpro has been the brand of choice for flight crews and frequent travelers on every continent. The company is dedicated to building a lifelong relationship with its customers by consistently meeting and exceeding their expectations. Travelpro was honored to once again be voted as the “World’s Best Luggage” by Premier Traveler Magazine in 2014.

Please visit the Travelpro website for a full list of the latest products and retail locations. You can also like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter at @Travelprointl.

Bring This, Not That: Poncho Versus Umbrella

August 13, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Should you bring a poncho or an umbrella when traveling? Are there situations where you would take one and not the other?

One of our co-workers always takes an umbrella when he travels, particularly on a business trip. He just feels that an umbrella is a better choice. The umbrella is easier to deal with. It just seems like a better choice because it’s there when you need it and you don’t have to put it on or deal with folding it back up after using it.

English: The SENZ umbrella, develloped at the ...

The SENZ umbrella, developed at the Delft University of Technology, withstanding stormy winds. Picture taken at the Kunsthal exhibition on Dutch Design (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you’re planning on attending any sporting events on your trip, you should take a poncho as stadiums tend to discourage umbrellas. Or if you’re going on an outdoor expedition, a poncho might be more realistic because it provides more coverage and you’re more mobile; an umbrella can tend to limit mobility a bit, and doesn’t cover you adequately if there are high winds.

Ultimately, it just depends on your situation and what you’re doing. In terms of everyday life, I would prefer an umbrella.

One exception might be when you’re traveling to a place where space is limited, and you can’t just pop out an umbrella. One of those small pack away ponchos can come in handy, because you’re still covered, even in close quarters.

On the other hand, you can take a small umbrella and pack it into one of the pockets in your luggage or backpack so it’s there if you need it. A very small compact umbrella is the one you want to go with when you’re traveling. Just don’t count on it in a heavy storm.

Figure out the situation before you go, of course, but we ultimately recommend an umbrella if you’re going somewhere on business and a poncho if you’re expecting to be more active during your vacation. And either one can work as a small pack away as long as you go with the smaller versions suitable for that situation.

How do you keep dry when the rains come? Got any helpful hints or ideas? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page or in the comments section below.

Why Do Some Hotels Smell So Good?

August 4, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

There is a new movement afoot — anose? — in the hotel world. Some hotels now include a special scent inside the hotel as part of their branding, says a recent article in Hotel Chatter.

The article focuses mainly on the scents offered in the InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), which owns Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, and Hotel Indigo.

English: Crowne Plaza Hotel, Birmingham

Crowne Plaza Hotel, Birmingham (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We’ve found in our own travels that it’s noticeable in these hotels. It’s something they do a lot of research on, and the scents that we’ve noticed have been very pleasant indeed.

A distinctive scent gives guests a sense that the hotel has good air quality and is very clean. It can also give guests a stronger sense of faith in hotels where a pleasant scent is part of the overall ambiance. It can even give a feeling of being in a more luxurious atmosphere.

Each IHG’s hotel brands has a signature scent. Hotel Indigo changes the scents up on a regular basis but the other two keep to the same branded scent.

“When beginning the process of determining a scent for a hotel, key factors that play into consideration are the hotel’s location and the property’s overall theme, “said Andrew Gajary, general manager of the InterContinental New York Times Square. “Based on these elements, we then work with experts in the field to bring to life those characteristics through aromas, which trigger guests’ olfactory system (also known as sense of smell). Being a modern midtown hotel with a strong environmental focus, our custom scent pulls together aromas, including various floral, to create an environment that is relaxing (contrary to the busy New York streets), welcoming (ensuring guests feel at home) and modern (clean and fresh).”

What are some of your favorite scents? What would you think if your favorite hotel adopted a special scent? Leave a comment below or on our Facebook page.

Bring This, Not That: Smaller Bags versus Larger Luggage

July 30, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

When packing for a flight, travelers don’t always want to haul around one large bag, so they opt for carrying a few smaller bags instead. For example, we’ve known women who carry their cosmetics in a separate bag, as well as a small rollaboard or spinner, and a briefcase or purse.

This is fine for car travel, but what about plane travel? Is it better to consolidate all your luggage into one larger bag or carry some of the items you might ordinarily pack on the plane with you. Should you carry the cosmetics bag, which is about the size of a small tote, or figure out how to pack it with your clothes in a large suitcase?

Tpro Bold 2 Duffel - Open

The new Tpro Bold 2 Rolling Duffel — you can fit a lot more in here than a couple small bags can hold.

Let’s assume our female passenger doesn’t have room in her 20″ carry-on bag, so she’ll have to carry her cosmetics bag. Remember, airlines allow one carry-on and one personal bag, which includes a purse or briefcase. If she’s already got a personal bag, she either needs to make room in the carry-on bag, or get a larger piece of luggage and consider checking her bag.

So which is her better choice?

We should first look at the economics. If you take a larger suitcase, most airlines will charge for a checked bag fee. That’s one decision that has to be made up front. The whole reason we recommend carry-on bags is to avoid those fees.

Next, consider security, trust, and convenience. If our passenger has her medications, she absolutely won’t want to be separated from her bag. It’s also nice to have access to your toothbrush and something to wash your face and freshen up in flight, or to use the minute you get off the plane.

She’ll also need to think about how much she’s packing, and how long her trip is going to be. This is where packing fewer pieces that are more versatile, in order to create more outfits, pays off. Or rolling clothes instead of folding them.

Some people also like smaller bags they can put underneath the seat so they can access certain items during the flight. If you split your luggage between two carry-on items, you don’t have to worry about waiting to pick up your bag after the flight, and you can get important items during the flight.

However, juggling multiple items can definitely be inconvenient. It can be nice to have the airline take care of everything, which can be great especially when you have a layover during which you would have to keep all your luggage together.

Ultimately, this is a personal choice. Are you happy with a bigger bag that may require baggage fees? Or do you want to avoid fees, so you travel light, roll your clothes, and make sure everything is as efficient as possible to keep it all in your two carry-on items? Pick the method that suits you and your travel preferences.

What do you do? Leave us a comment here or on our Facebook page.

20 Things You Should Never Pack in Your Checked Luggage

July 23, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Did you know that there is a list of items that airlines ask you not to pack? Not the TSA. We all know about their list of forbidden and allowed items and the 3-1-1 Liquids Rule. The airlines themselves have their own list.

The airlines’ list comprises items specifically barred from reimbursement if they’re lost either due to theft or your entire bag being lost. The airline will not reimburse you for these items, regardless of how and why they were lost, even if it’s completely their fault.

The Stuffed Head of Moose

That’ll never fit in one of our bags! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A recent article in The Huffington Post shared the 20 items that should never be packed in your checked bag, including items such as jewelry, expensive electronics, cash, and even antlers and pelts.

Some of these things, such as medications and eyeglasses, are items that many people would not hesitate to pack so it’s good to know airlines have their own list. It boils down to common sense when you think about it: don’t put anything irreplaceable or valuable into a checked back.

That’s because it’s just a bad idea to pack something extremely valuable into a piece of luggage that is going to be tossed around and handled by multiple people, many of whom have access to the interior of the bag even if you put a lock on it.

Instead of packing items such as iPads or cash, take them on the plane with you in a carry on bag. Some things, such as jewelry or smart phones can easily be kept on your person instead of packed. If you are traveling for vacation, bringing expensive jewelry is just not a good idea period. It makes you a magnet for petty thieves and pickpockets.

Other items on the list include things that are completely irreplaceable such as heirlooms, collectible items, antlers, or rare books. These items should instead be shipped to wherever you’re going. Especially the antlers.

Basically anything that you are unwilling to part with should not be packed into your checked baggage because there is just too much opportunity for it to be lost or stolen while you’re traveling. And while loss and theft is not commonplace, you don’t want it to happen to you.

Do you have any helpful suggestions about moving valuable items from one destination to the other? Visit our Facebook page and leave a comment, or leave one below.

The Atlantic Ultra LITE Hardside Collection Makes Travel a Breeze

July 22, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

The Perfect Combination of Lightweight Durability and Exceptional Value

Ideal for family travel at a price that won’t break the budget, the Atlantic Ultra LITE Hardside Collection of Spinners meets all your needs with lightweight luggage that is not only high quality but stylish as well. Made with a scratch resistant hard shell case and high-mileage wheels like the company’s more expensive luggage, this attractive trio of Spinners is feather light and amazingly durable.

Atlantic UltraLite Hardside 2 pc“The Atlantic Ultra LITE Hardside Collection will please even the most discerning traveler,” said Scott Applebee, Vice President of Marketing for the Travelpro family of brands which includes Atlantic luggage. “The unique combination of light weight, coupled with a durable textured hard shell, makes Ultra Lite the ideal family luggage.”

Available in three distinctive colors — black, turquoise and purple – and in three sizes – 20″, 25″ and 29″ – these pieces include 360 degree spinner wheels which roll effortlessly in any direction, retractable aluminum-grade extension handles with multiple stops for users of different heights, and protective wheel housings for crash protection.

The Collection features expansion capabilities for extra packing, high-mileage dual Spinner wheels and the strength of a protective hard shell. A stylishly textured finish resists abrasion over the long haul. You can buy with confidence knowing that each piece comes with a 5-year warranty.

About Atlantic Luggage

Since 1919, the Atlantic brand has been synonymous with affordable, value-added and lightweight luggage. As a market leader in the lightweight luggage segment, from cleverly designed uprights and spinners to trendy and smart garment bags and totes, all Atlantic-branded luggage comprises superior quality and durability. Whether for business or recreation, travel is more pleasurable with Atlantic luggage, part of the Travelpro family of products. Please visit the Atlantic Luggage website for a full list of the latest products and retail locations.

About Travelpro

For over 25 years, Travelpro International has prided itself on design innovation and durability in crafting the highest quality luggage for travelers worldwide. Since transforming the ease of modern day travel with The Original Rollaboard wheeled luggage, Travelpro has been the brand of choice for flight crews and frequent travelers on every continent. The company is dedicated to building a lifelong relationship with its customers by consistently meeting and exceeding their expectations. Travelpro was honored to once again be voted as the “World’s Best Luggage” by Premier Traveler Magazine in 2014.

Please visit the Travelpro website for a full list of the latest products and retail locations. You can also like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter at @Travelprointl.

Virgin America Contemplates Charging For Carry-On Bags

July 21, 2015 by · 1 Comment 

Yes, you read that right, Virgin American is considering charging customers for carry-on bags. A May 19 article in Global Traveler reports on remarks made by Virgin American CEO David Cush on the topic. He said he thought charging for customers to put luggage in the belly of the craft and giving them prime space within the cabin for free was rather backwards. He also noted that charging the same amount of money for baggage on short and long flights is a bit nonsensical as well.

This would make Virgin one of the bigger airlines to take this step. Spirit and Allegiant already charge for carry-on baggage in excess of one personal item such as a backpack or purse. Could this start a reverse migration to checked bags? Would more people check bags instead of carrying them on?

English: Luggage compartments of an Airbus 340...

Luggage compartments of an Airbus 340-600 aircraft. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There’s a concern on the side of the airlines because there’s so much activity with carry-ons: it takes longer to board and deplane because of all the bags people bring on flights with them. That means the potential is there to not arrive at the destination on time. On time arrivals is a metric that all airlines track. From the travelers standpoint, they’re doing it to avoid checked baggage fees. In other words, the airlines have created a problem for themselves that they’re now looking to solve.

It will be interesting to see if Virgin America really goes forward with this idea. It will create another layer of add-on pricing, which could make Virgin less competitive. Allegiant and Spirit are known for having low base ticket prices and then charging add-ons to customers for almost everything. We wonder if Virgin America would need to lower the base price of its tickets if it decides to start charging for carry-on luggage. Otherwise, they could be undercut by bigger airlines.

On the other hand, if Virgin went forward with this plan, other major carriers may also jump onto the bandwagon, and we could all start paying for our checked bags.

What would you do if Virgin and other airlines started charging for carry-on bags? Let us hear from you here or on our Facebook page.

Bring This, Not That: Refillable Water Bottles versus Buying Water

July 16, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Ever since the TSA has not allowed more than 3.4 liquid ounces to pass an airport security checkpoint, travelers have dealt with the high prices that are charged for beverages, like bottled water and soda in the convenience and magazine stores at the airport.

But if you’re a water drinker, you can always pack an empty bottle with you to fill. It’s a good way to save money, but it also brings with it the possibility of picking up some germs from the drinking fountain. We tend to recommend against filling your bottle at the drinking fountain, but it’s definitely a personal decision based on how much of a germaphobe you are.

Drinking water fountain

Drinking water fountain (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

However, more airports have begun installing water bottle filling stations, which can be presumed to be cleaner as they’re set up in a way so germy mouths can’t come into contact with them. And if you’re concerned about the environment, packing a refillable bottle can be a great way to make a difference as water bottles do create a lot of waste.

Of course, you may want to consider whether you want to carry a large, bulky refillable water bottle with you. If you’re traveling light, try to stick with disposable bottles, so you don’t have to buy a bottle only to lose it on the second day of the trip.

Finally, consider how long you have to wait for your plane. Most flights still offer beverage service, which means you can get relief in a fairly short time. So if your airport stay is going to be short, you may not need to buy a drink at all. Just wait until you’re up in the air and guzzle down some complimentary water.

What are your hydration habits at the airport? Do you buy your own water or soda, drink at a fountain, or just fill up on the plane? Leave us a comment or head over on our Facebook page and let us hear from you.

Travel Goes Boom in 2015 as Retirees Stay Active

July 7, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

It’s the dream of many retirees to travel more once they finally leave the workforce, and it looks like it’s happening.

A recent article in the Huffington Post discusses the “booming” market as an aging population with expendable income is on the move.

They’re going by themselves, they’re going to warmer climates, they’re going more frequently than they have in the past, and they’re planning on traveling a lot in 2015. According to an AARP study, a decent number of boomers plan to take four or five vacations in 2015. And nearly half the people they surveyed plan to travel more this year than in previous years.

Free Travel-Shirt @ Berlin-Tegel Airport

Berlin-Tegel Airport (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Further, many of those boomers who are still employed plan to work while traveling and not even take vacation time while they’re on the move. The upsurge in the ability to work remotely has been a great boon to those who plan to travel more during their working careers. And it’s something the younger Boomers and older Generation Xers are comfortable with.

Another number expected to rise is the number of people taking solo trips. An AARP survey from last year indicated that 37 percent of adults 45 and older took solo trips in the preceding two years and 80 percent of those surveyed planned to travel on their own in 2015.

Solo travel is more popular with people whose spouses have passed or who are divorced. And there are travel companies seeking the singles market, looking to help those who want to travel alone get out and about, something that has not always been the case in the past.

Despite the upsurge in travel, most of the folks responding to these surveys said that cost is a high priority when traveling so older travelers are looking to save money while on the move, just as are their younger counterparts.

What about you? For those of you who are retired, or nearing retirement age, are you going to travel more? Let us hear from you and leave a comment here or over on our Facebook page.

Hotel Safety Tips for Wifi

June 25, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Should you use the free wifi at your hotel? That depends on how sensitive the information is that you’re accessing online or you have on your computer. Even if you feel comfortable and safe and have good security measures in place, you still want to exercise caution when using it; avoid extremely sensitive tasks such as online banking or accessing sensitive business information.

Norton, a well-known antivirus provider, has several suggestions about Internet security within hotel rooms.

Chicago Hilton hotel room

Chicago Hilton hotel room (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One thing you should do when checking into a hotel is to make sure that you choose the proper wifi network. Hackers are known to trick users looking for free wifi by creating a network that will trick them into using it. Don’t jump on something called “Free Wifi” for instance. Before you ever log on, call the front desk and ask for the name of the network.

Another solution Norton discusses is using a VPN or virtual private network, if you’re traveling for work. If your company has a VPN, logging onto it will give you the same security you enjoy while working from your office behind the security firewall.

Next, change your passwords frequently. You’ve probably heard this a million times; we all have. But it keeps being repeated because it’s great advice. Set up a system to remind yourself to change passwords every three months. Don’t use single words or names of family members or pets. Use a password management system like 1Password to generate long passwords with random letters, numbers, and special characters.

Also, avoid network sharing. Norton says to avoid situations where other computers are communicating directly with yours while you’re in a fairly unsecure location, such as a hotel.

These are also good tips for working in the local coffee shop, your hotel room, or anytime you’re on a public network. What are some other computer security tips you follow on the road? Share them with us in the comments.

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