Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Review - Brookstone Compact Rolling Traveler Suitcase

Brookstone Compact Rolling Traveler with Removable Laptop Sleeve

Having to travel a fair amount for work, I have settled on a routine using a rolling carry-on suitcase for my clothes and shoes and a large backpack for everything else.  The backpack contained my laptop, separated liquids and gels, books and magazines, iPod, noise cancelling headphones, sweater, food, water, and anything else I needed for the flight. The rolling suitcase went in the overhead bin and the backpack went under the seat in front of me. I was an expert at looking the part of the hip professional traveler. Little did I know there was a much better way.

When I first received the Brookstone Rolling Traveler, I was apprehensive about having to pull two rolling suitcases.  But it turned out to be much easier than I thought.  In fact, my back and shoulders were suddenly liberated from the often crushing weight of my backpack.  Sure, I could piggyback my backpack onto my rolling suitcase, but that often made the suitcase tippy and I was always wary of dragging it through puddles. Now with two rolling suitcases, I was able to whiz through airports and parking lots with ease.

The size of this compact rolling suitcase is designed so that it can fit under an airline seat.  It fit even on a small commuter jet with plenty of foot room.  The suitcase held everything that my backpack used to hold, but with much more flair.  There is a perfectly sized magazine pocket in the back and the side zip pockets are great for accessing smaller items.  The front top pocket is perfect for holding essential items such as your wallet, passport, cell phone and boarding pass.  It is a bit tight to pull out the whole suitcase in the middle of a flight (especially if you're in the middle seat), but it is doable and all items are fairly accessible.

The laptop sleeve worked well for pulling out and replacing the laptop quickly during the security scan.  On my outgoing flight I put the laptop sleeve in the back of the suitcase, which left some dead room around the retractable handle, and on the return flight I put the laptop sleeve in the front of the suitcase.  Leaving the laptop in the front left much more usable room in the suitcase as whole, but it did make reaching the items behind it more difficult during the flight.

The construction of the suitcase is top notch and has survived a cross country flight as well as an overnight stay without a scratch.  Now this hip traveler has finally graduated from the backpack to this Brookstone Compact Rolling Traveler.  Hooray!

Special thanks to Brookstone for providing the rolling travel suitcase for review as part of the Brookstone Review Crew.

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