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The Secure Traveler’s Essentials

Secure gear that covers all the bases.


Secure travel accessories are insurance against both malice and carelessness. You never want to risk having your cash, passport, or camera stolen in a crowd. But, you also want to protect personal possessions from you, not just “them.” These options will tighten up your travel mojo, keeping you both mobile and secure.

PacSafe Vibe 25

PacSafe makes ultra-secure embedded gear with wire-mesh slashguards, puncture-resistant zippers, and steel locking cables that you can use to secure the bag to fixed items. My favorite feature is the lockable zipper pulls, which allow you to anchor the zippers to clips at the top of each zip. So it’s harder to quickly access the pocket if you’re a thief, and you’re less likely to see a zipper come open on its own; plus you’re less likely to inadvertently leave it open once locking the zipper becomes your M.O. every time you use the bag. And it’s a roomy, nicely organized backpack.

Buy Now: $100

Scottevest QUEST Vest

In the 1980s, “safari” vests were a thing. Then the same exact thing happened with “photo” vests in the 1990s. Both times, they were hideous fashion atrocities. But then Scottevest came along to offer up multi-pocket marvels that were actually trim and smooth, with discrete and secure pockets systems that didn’t scream tourist or fauxtographer. The QUEST Vest offers a pretty intimidating 42 pockets — don’t worry, it comes with a map — that let you stash your gear in places where it won’t fall out or get picked easily, and it packs other smart features, including water-resistant treatment, a headphone routing channel and a tablet compartment.

Buy Now: $175

Bellroy All Conditions Essentials Pocket

I’ll never use a billfold-style wallet again. Why wouldn’t you want one that’s water-resistant and that zips completely closed to guarantee your ID or credit cards won’t slip out? Bellroy has this segment nailed with compact, high-quality leather wallets that can fit your basics along with a passport and smartphone. This one can also accommodate earbuds and charging cables — which makes it a perfect travel companion.

Buy Now: $140

Thule Subterra Luggage

Travel often throws you packing curveballs. Maybe you run out of room in your main bag, but don’t want to check that rare vase you picked up in Istanbul, or you’re suddenly overweight for a single checked bag. Maybe you’ve shifted gears entirely and don’t want to check any bags because you’re worried about valuable equipment being lost, broken or stolen. Thule’s brilliant answer is to make luggage that splits cleanly in two, meaning that instead of running complex calculi on the airport floor about what to ditch or relocate to meet bag regs, you can simply check two separate bags for the flight, or — in the smaller Subterra size — carry one half on board with you while checking the other half. Then when you reach your destination, zip them back together, and you’ve got one roomy piece of luggage again.

Buy Now: from $320

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