Recently, I went to Jaipur for two days for a symposium. I went with a carry-on, of course, but you know what happens in India. Bazaars are full of bangles, scarves, and copper pots that you want to bring back. So do you pack a suitcase or not?
A French brand has niftily solved this problem, by creating an expandable carry-on valise. The concept is simple. The middle of the bag literally pulls out into a larger suitcase as you see here in this video.
Have a look at the video below taken at Raajkutir, a lovely boutique hotel in Kolkata. Watch the man walk by and notice the zipper in the middle of the valise. You unzip the zipper and pull apart. Voila! The suitcase expands and you get one-third more space. It is an ingenious arrangement.
Other features include a lock that can be opened with a fingerprint, something that was useful to me, as I traipsed all over India on taxis.
You use your finger to set the code. And best of all, you can set multiple fingerprint codes for all your family members. Discreetly placed near the handle, all it takes is a touch for the keys to pop.
Like many other brands these days, the X-tend also has a built in battery charger, a boon when I was in rural India without access to plug points.
The way it works is that your charge the battery at home, slip it on the side of the valise and through a series of inbuilt wires, you can charge your phone or laptop by placing them in the suitcase. And off you go.
The zippered compartment offers a natural separation between the lower and upper halves, which is good to separate laundry or shoes.
I found the X-tend a versatile piece of luggage. Sturdy wheels take the strain of ups and downs. Multiple compartments help with storing cards, keys and cosmetics. The only caveat for those buying the product in Asia, or India is that you should choose a dark colour. My beige X-tend became dusty and dull after a few days in Indian villages. Look at the one below.
X-tend smart carry on is available for 495,83 € (495,83 € VAT exclu) in a wide range of colours and materials at the company website here and at stores all over France, visible here. The product is shipped for free all over Europe and the US and comes with a ten-year warranty, and a return/refund policy.
Shoba Narayan is an author, journalist and columnist. Besides writing, she is interested in nature, wine, gadgets and Sanskrit. Her lifelong mission is to get fit without exercising and lose weight without dieting.