Connected Objects Travel

AirBolt will help prevent your luggage from disappearing into thin air

Luggage security is an ongoing concern for travelers. But traditional luggage locks are problematic for several reasons, whether they require keys or combinations. The keys are easy to lose, while combinations are easy to forget.

AirBolt is a smartphone-controlled travel lock that doesn’t require a key or users to remember combinations. The device is relatively small and features a die-cast zinc body, along with a rugged stainless steel rope that allows users to attach AirBolt to places that include a bag’s zipper. It operates on Bluetooth 4.2 and features a rechargeable Lithium-ion battery that lasts for one year, according to AirBolt’s Kickstarter campaign.

Tech Accessories Travel

Trix lets you keep outlets hidden up your sleeve. Or anywhere else.

Power strips have become a must-have tech accessory for people who travel a lot — or even for those who spend loads of time at Wi-Fi hot spots and desperately need to charge their smartphones, tablets and computers. All too often, one has to compete with others for only a couple of outlets, but toting a couple of outlets allows the power-starved to plug in and still let others juice up.

The Trix power strip is a very small (90mm x 90mm x 38mm) and colorful portable power strip with three AC outlets that makes it easy to plug in wall warts without worrying about them overlapping.  It also avoids having to drag along extra USB chargers since it has two USB ports in the fourth face of its X-like design. Trix costs $40 and will ship in September. Also planned is a Traveler’s Pack that adds a universal converter at $60, also coming in September. Its maker is hoping to raise $58,042 by April 30.

One edge that Trix has over theMonster’s Outlets To Go power strip is its design, which is smaller and easier to fit in a pocket.Trix’s curved design also makes it easier to grip. Its minimalism can also come in handy at home for preventing cable sprawl.

Health and Wellness

Garppy offers the scoop on rinsing after you brush your teeth

Getting kids to brush their teeth is one of life’s bigger challenges. They find the activity tedious, boring, and then there’s the extra precious few seconds it takes to actually rinse.

For those who have gotten bored with using a traditional cup, Garppy offers an alternative. The scoop-like gadget attaches to a tooth brush so that a cup doesn’t have to be used, creating something new and different for a week or so. The scoop and strap are made of food-grade silicone and are touted as packing and traveling well, especially for those long flights when one wants to be able to brush one’s teeth on the plane.

While this new thing might keep the kids engaged in brushing their teeth at home for a short time, adults looking for some quick convenience would be just as well off to use paper cups. This campaign seeks to raise $1,600 by February 28, 2015. Early bird backers get one product for $2 with an expected delivery of March 2015.

Tech Accessories

Flight Entertainer tablet, smartphone holder keeps you distracted from charley horses

Ahhh, yes. Flying in economy class and being cramped up like a sardine in a can is always a good time (not!). But when one has the benefit of a good movie or two on their tablet or smartphone, it helps take one’s mind off of the charley horses that develop in one’s legs. And Flight Entertainer can even possibly prevent any from developing in arms because of having to hold a smartphone or tablet.

Flight Entertainer attaches to the back of the seat or table on the chair in front of the user, and then the smartphone or tablet hangs from the holder. It’s also compatible with some road vehicles. The product allows for either portrait or landscape positioning, and can offer a place to stash earbuds when not in use.

While it seems to be a quality product, it doesn’t seem any better than anything else already pushing its way out there. Backers might also be interested to check out Clamp Hero, Dutchman, and Must. This campaign seeks to raise $1,500. For $39, backers get their choice of a tablet or smartphone holder with an expected delivery of May 2015.


Puggle provides portability when those wee one changes are needed

The new generation of dads  willing to help out with kids are awesome fellows. Where they often find difficulty, though, is when on-the-go and baby needs to be changed. Many men’s bathrooms still don’t offer a changing table, and the few that do are questionably sanitary.

Puggle offers busy parents the convenience of always having a changing table on hand. The table includes a safety strap so babies that like to rock and roll don’t end up head banging, and the pad underneath is made of 100% cotton, washable, and is easily removable with a few buttons. Puggle easily folds up for travel, and an additional set of straps allows for easy carrying over the shoulder or on stroller handles.

It’s not entirely clear what the base is made of, but it appears to be a lightweight metal. Other portable baby products that may be of interest to backers include Bizee Baby and Portable Potty. Those seeking an alternative to diaper bags might want to consider the Riutbag. This rather ambitious, and ridiculous, campaign seeks to raise $1,000,000 by December 12, 2014. Backers get one product by December 2015.


Kangeaux calls it a wrap, lets small objects hang out with you

Sometimes it’s the little things in life that help to make life flow and roll along. For example, without car keys, things get pretty stationary. Having other important little things organized and gathered into one convenient spot, like your wallet, phone and other small essentials also plays into this. For those who seem to have too many loose ends to easily tie up, here is a product that can lengthen the rope. Kangeaux is a universal carrying apparatus for small items. How this is much of an improvement on something like a fanny pack or backpack (rucksack) isn’t entirely clear. However, if backers are looking for a way to simplify, it might be worthwhile to check out the Ruitbag, Funnell, and Jayster campaigns. This campaign seeks to raise $10,000 by December 1, 2014. Early bird backers get one product in their color choice of blue or pastel for $18, with an expected delivery of January 2015.


Sitpack offers portable respite in a one-legged stool

Sitting on the ground waiting in an insanely long line for the concert of your favorite rock star can be plenty uncomfortable. But it was this situation that inspired the creator of Sitpack.  From a more practical standpoint, waiting in a crowded airport, subway station or train station can be just as daunting, and who knows what awaits unsuspecting travelers should they actually brave the floor. Sitpack is a portable chair made of stainless steel. It folds up small enough to be carried in the back pocket of one’s jeans, a backpack, or purse. While it doesn’t look particularly comfortable and it’s not entirely clear if there is a weight limit in connection to its effectiveness, it does seem like it would be very convenient for commuters and travelers, much like the Purrch.  Backers who prefer more back support in a portable chair might want to check out Chair-Pak and NeXstep. This campaign seeks to raise kr450,000 (~$75,000 USD) by November 29, 2014. Early bird backers get one product for kr175 (~$29 USD) with an expected delivery of April 2015.

Luggage and Bags

NeXstep luggage holds your stuff, supports you as a stool

For those who are still willing to fly and endure the ever increasing list of airport insanities, there is now a piece of luggage that can at least always provide a predictable place to sit in the midst of the unpleasantries. NeXstep has a handle that acts as a built-in seat during those long waits in overcrowded airport holding areas. The seat holds up to 250 pounds, so those who are of a more hardy origin may not be able to enjoy this feature. The luggage is made of aircraft grade aluminum and polycarbonate, and also has waterproof zippers, four spinner wheels, and a TSA lock. Not only is it made in carry on size, but there is also a check on size available. Once travelers reach their destination, the stool can be converted to a luggage stand for easy and convenient unpacking. This campaign is seeking to raise $120,400 by November 24, 2014. Early bird backers can get the carry-on size in their choice of charcoal gray or red for $175, with an expected delivery of April 2015.



EZ-Roll Holder offers wiping wherever you roll

EZ Roll HolderWhether it’s in the car, on a camping trip or taking the kids to the park, paper towels are one of those items that makes life-on-the-go just a little easier. The EZ-Roll Holder is supposed to add to that by providing a place to mount them that doesn’t require any tools for instillation, so that paper towels can be mounted and available whenever and wherever life happens to roll. Unfortunately, the detail on just how one goes about mounting the product is not particularly clear, but for $12, backers get one product with an expected delivery of November 2014.

Organization Travel

Passport Protector keeps your papers protected in plastic

Passport-ProtectorWhile traveling abroad is exciting, it’s an unfortunate fact that things don’t always go as planned. Going from place to place can take its toll on important items such as passports – especially if it happens to be raining or snowing. The Passport Protector is roomy enough for not only a passport, but also other travel essentials such as credit and debit cards, cash, a flight itinerary, and even a smart phone. It also appears to be at least somewhat water resistant. For the $35 early bird special, backers get one product with an expected delivery of November 2014.