We have smart everything these days, from crockpots you can turn on remotely to get dinner started, to thermostats you turn down while you’re away on vacation. And now we’ve come across another incredible smart gadget called Bluesmart luggage that could change the way we travel, and hopefully make those family trips less stressful.
(Though no, it doesn’t keep your kids entertained or rush you through security, sorry.)
Bluesmart goes beyond a mere tracking device. As opposed to those that are only useful within certain ranges, this suitcase lets you track your luggage anywhere in the world via an app (iOS or Android), and send you an alert when your bag is out of a range that you preset. That could be across the Atlantic, or just across the terminal at the airport when you realize you’ve been standing at the wrong carousel for 20 minutes.
It’s like having someone keep a digital eye on your bag at all times. Sounds pretty amazing.
Now it goes without saying that before you fly anywhere these days, you have to make sure that everything is kosher with the TSA, otherwise you find yourself awkwardly answering questions in a small room without your shoes on. Fortunately, it seems that Bluesmart meets all TSA restrictions. In fact, we thought the smartlock that can controlled remotely from the app might be a challenge for random searches — no one wants the TSA breaking into your spendy new tech luggage. but a major benefit of the locking system is that agents can get to if need be. (Eek.)
I like the idea of this extra layer of security. And it could also be fun to mess with your travel partner when they’re trying to open the suitcase. Fortunately your battery dies or the app isn’t working for some reason, you can always fall back on the old school physical lock which is a huge relief. Although it makes me wonder just a bit as to why you need both.
One more huge bonus is that the Bluesmart luggage has built-in charging capabilities. Seems kind of funny to have to plug in a suitcase, but it’s a great idea when your kid’s smartphone runs out of juice right before boarding or you end up stuck on a runway during a delay, slowly losing battery power.
Of course we still recommend you travel with one of our top portable chargers, but the suitcase battery actually holds enough power to charge an iPhone six times. That’s like six fewer things to worry about.
I’m not sure how often most of us will use the weight measurement feature (am I the only overpacker around here?) but the built-in digital scale is pretty cool; pull up on the handle and lift the bag, and the app will tell you how much it weighs — all before you get to the airport and find you have to pay an extra charge for an overweight bag.
Then again, considering the bag works as a carry-on and fits into that little metal frame at the check-in kiosks, unless you’re toting titanium bricks, I don’t know how likely you are to go over the weight limits in a carry-on sized bag. But presumably it’s a feature that will be applied to other size Bluesmart bags as they roll out.
As for price, at $399 the Bluesmart is definitely pricey; more than American Tourister but less than Tumi, and while I haven’t seen it in person, the quality seems more comparable to the latter. What a perfect holiday gift for yourself or a loved one who travels a lot.
And if you’ve even found yourself waiting by the luggage carousel for a bag that didn’t appear, at least for me, anything to ease that one particular pain of travel is well worth the cost.
Bluesmart Smart Luggage is available for pre-order for $399 on the Bluesmart site, and available at our affiliate Amazon with free Prime shipping starting 12/1. You can also find it at eBags (where it’s already backordered) and the MoMA Design Store. Pre-ordered bags are shipping now and there will be an option to rush delivery to get the bag by Christmas.