Being a frequent traveller, having a durable and practical suitcase is my top priority. Having one that you use all the times is like an identity, a habit of comfort when you travel around, it is really hard to make any new purchases of suitcases without a strong reason. When you found one, you tend to stick to that one for as long as it last. I stumbled upon this new lifestyle brand Away a little while ago,  it wasn’t until my current hand baggage slightly broke, then I decided to check out the products of this new brand. All along, I am a fan of Rimowa because of its lightweight and minimal simple design. When I saw the products of Away, they appeal to me for the same reason, but with a much better price point.

I’ve been gifted this hand carry and the travellers’ bag, when I received them, my first reaction was : they are absolutely gorgeous. Got them just before my trip and I took a proper trial of my new travel kits. Everybody knows how important it is to have smooth wheels when you stroll the suitcase. In Copenhagen, most of the roads are bumpy and some are still cobble-stone covered. I have one big suitcase and a small hand baggage plus a traveller’s bag with me, strolling on the road as such for about 10mins could be stressful. On this rainy day, I managed to drag my belongings to the train station with only a few bumps on the way. I guess that’s inevitable, but a smooth set of wheels definitely helps.

 

Living in Europe means I travel short-haul more than long haul, so what I need most is a practical hand baggage that fits up to a week’s belongings, especially in Winter time. I’ve read many reviews from users about how surprised they are with the brand’s carry-on (external measurement : 55.1 cm x 34.8 cm x 22.9 cm), claiming how much it can hold. I pride myself to be a master of packing so I wasn’t 100% convinced when I size up the suitcase on the website. When I got the suitcase, it actually does surprise me, how it’s been designed and it’s capacity is true to what they say.

You can tell it’s been designed thoroughly for travellers to pack as much as possible in a practical way. I’m even more surprised that it comes with a pouch of traveller’s adaptors and cables, and a cleaning sponge. How very thoughtful! I think we all agree, most of us travellers had forgotten to pack an adaptor at least once in our lives, only realized when we arrived the destination late at night with a low battery running phone, at a hotel where they have nothing spare to lend, and all shops closed…

The brand launched in 2016 February started with this particular product. You can safely say, this is one of the brand’s signature classic product. Mine is a smaller size, the brand comes with a bigger carry-on (external measurement: 57.7 cm x 37.3 cm x 24.3 cm) , which is meant to be fitting to most airlines’ size guidelines, including budget airlines.

Featuring a compression pad that buckles down to help pack more, and a water-resistant laundry bag that separates dirty clothes from clean. I love this idea because there are times I go travel, I forgot to pack an extra bag for dirty laundry.

 

So I took my almost empty hand baggage and decided to pick up some gifts at the airport. Without thinking how they would fit into my hand baggage…turned out everything fits into my suitcase, including bottles of wine, tins, and boxes on top of my chargers, laptop and a coat!

 

Co-founders Jen Rubio and Steph Korey are both frequent travellers, in 2015, Jen’s old suitcase broke going through customs in Zurich. When she got home, she asked her friend and former colleague Steph to help find a good replacement, but none of the options out there were right—everything was either way too expensive, or cheap and broke easily. It was a travel problem they decided to solve. After listening to many travellers’ stories, thoroughly researched, designed and thought out, they launched Away in 2016 with a direct-to-consumer model, keeping costs down for everyone, and strive to build a community in the process. If you go onto their social platform, it is not hard to see they do have a very engaging and active community. You will find tips on how to pack, travel guides, FAQs on products and insiders’ tips. To cater to as much travellers as possible, and to make it genuinelly user-friendly,they designed 5 different sizes in 2 materials (aluminium and polycarbonate) and 9 core colours, named by sizes :

The Carry-On, perfect for a few days’ worth of clothes

The Bigger Carry-On, ideal for those who want to pack a little more

The Medium, a mid-size bag that can do a few weeks on the road

The Large, as big as it gets—take it for as long as the trip is

The Kids’ Carry-On, Away’s classic Carry-On sized down for smaller travelers (this is super cute!)

Look how cute is this Kid’s carry-on!

I really love the fact that the brand named their products the simpliest and strightforward way- by sizes, by function, by colour. No fuss, no fluffy grandiose names that cannot be pronounced by customers- just straight to the point. It took me a while to decide which colour to go for, they are all very beautiful. Mine comes with an ejectable battery that can charge any phone or other USB device on-the-go. It’s compliant with international airlines and airport security policies. It has proven very very useful when my flight had been delayed for over 4 hours, I needed to constantly check for updates and make contacts with my family to keep them update, battery runs out quicker than usual. I could easily just plug my cable and leave my phone in the bag sitting on top while I rush around the airport for updates, or take it out of my suitcase and use as an external battery pack when I finally got on the plane. One thing though- remember to eject the battery pack if you decide to check in your hand baggage.

There are 2 USB ports for charging, the one with double lightning sign charges quicker with more power. There will be blue lights coming up once it’s in use.

I put a lot in my everywhere bag: passport, wallet, a small purse, scarf, cables, glasses and anything I grab on the go…

As for my travellers’ bag, I always look for a bag that is subtle, durable, minimal but very practical. I got this leather everywhere bag, I’m instantly in love with the bag. Not only it is elegant and cool, it really holds a lot. There are so many compartments inside the bag to keep my things organized. It fits perfectly on my siutcase so the bag doesn’t fall when I stroll my suitcase around. You know how annoying it is when your bag is heavier than it should be and it doesn’t really sit properly on the suitcase…The bag even has a waterprove zipped base pocket for umbrellas! That’s a first. Now it really is following me everywhere.

If you want something bigger, they have the weekender, which literally is perfect for a weekend. Or the daypack and backpack for more handy options. The brand actually has even more options. Basically anything from small packing bags to duffle bags, it’s a one-stop shop that caters to a traveller’s need on every level.

One thing I really like about the brand is they designed all the suitcases for easy storage too. I’ve known this trick since I was a kid, storing a smaller suitcase into a bigger one to save space. Yet not every suitcase fits. For Away, you can work with it like the Russian dolls, storing one into the next bigger size easily. Not sure if you’re sold? see what they say on the return policy : “everything we make comes with a 100-day trial. It works like this: Starting from the day you buy any piece from Away, you have the next 100 days to live with it, vibe with it, travel with it, Instagram it, put a sticker on it, whatever. If at any point in those first 100 days you decide it’s just not for you, return it for a full refund—no questions asked.” Chances are, after 100 days, you will not want to return yours, but getting another one to add to your collection.