While researching for Europe, I kept on coming across articles about tourists getting their passports, phones, wallet… basically everything…. stolen. And just like medical student’s disease (google it!), the more you read about it, the more scared you get. So as someone motivated by fear and paranoia, I decided that I needed to invest in a bag for travelling, or a bag made specifically for travellers.
After a lot of research, I finally decided on the Travellon Anti-Theft Classic Sling Bag. The reasons?
- Sling Style: I didn’t want to carry a backpack because I wouldn’t be able to see it 100% of the time, and I didn’t want a messenger bag since carrying heavy shoulder bags make my shoulder ache. Being a sling bag, I can easily swing it to the front when walking through crowded/ touristy areas, and on public transit.
- Water Bottle/ Umbrella holder: I hate putting wet umbrellas inside my bags, and when I don’t need an umbrella, I can put my water bottle in it. I hate having to dig through the entire contents of my bag just to find a water bottle because in my opinion, it just makes you a bigger target for pickpockets.
- “Locking” Zippers: the zippers don’t actually lock, but they do clip onto a hook/ clasp to make them more difficult to open.
All other features like anti-slash and RFID protection were just extras.
Now that I have used the bag to travel, I can actually write what I thought of it. Overall, it was a very comfortable bag to use for day trips It fitted everything I needed – camera, cell phone, money pouch, water bottle, umbrella, etc.
The “locking” zippers gave a piece of mind especially during rush hour, but they were not completely necessary. Just zip up your pockets, keep your bag in front of you and keep an eye on your stuff.
The bag has plenty of zippered compartments inside the bag which made it extremely useful for storing extra cash/ credit cards.
Some concerns: The bag’s strap is anti-slash as well. I suppose this may be dangerous if someone were to grab your bag from a vehicle and you’ll get dragged along… It is also quite small especially if you carry a lot of stuff such as a guide book. I definitely had a hard time fitting everything in it when I was switching locations – tablet, passport, extra money, random bits and pieces…
Overall, I would recommend this bag if you’re going to areas where there are no motorcyclist thieves (like Southeast Asia). The zippers make it great for anywhere where it’s crowded (public transit) or where your attention is focused on one thing (museums). However, the best way to protect yourself against theft is still awareness. These types of bags just give you a piece of mind.
My handy bag and I in the Mont St. Michel Abbey
Do you have a favourite bag (anti-theft or not) for travelling? Share in the comments below