Lots of pockets
Two security zippers
Adjustable shoulder strap
RFID-blocking card slots and passport pockets
Slow access to security pockets
Travel purses have to meet some unique demands. They have to offer plenty of organization options, enhanced security features, and be crafted from lightweight material that doesn’t weigh you down on the road. While the ultimate goal is deterring potential thieves, you should still be able to quickly access your ID, phone, and cash. Travelon’s Anti-Theft Classic Mini Shoulder Bag checks many of the requisite safety boxes. From secured pockets to RFID-blocking card slots, it can keep your identity and possessions safe when you’re away from home.
Design: Built for traveling light
Design is everything when it comes to a bag’s performance and the Travelon Mini was styled with the demands of travel in mind. The shoulder bag’s main compartment and front pouch are fitted with security zippers; these zippers have a clip on the pull tab that attaches to a small D-ring so they can’t be unzipped easily. The purse has two more exterior pockets—one on the front and one on the back. The front pocket doesn’t have a security zipper, but it’s not really large enough for anything you’d want to keep secure anyway—it’s more suited to chapstick or hand sanitizer than a phone or wallet. The back pocket also doesn’t have a security zipper, but it rests against the body when worn so you don’t have to worry too much about it.
A thick, slash-resistant material makes up the exterior and the adjustable shoulder strap. And when Travelon says slash-resistant, they really mean it. Stainless steel is woven into the fibers of the mesh, which gives it extra strength and durability without any extra weight. You can’t see the stainless steel, but it certainly feels thicker and more durable than fabrics of similar weight.
We chose to wear it as a crossbody—as opposed to a shoulder bag—because it felt more secure in a crowd.
The buckles on the shoulder strap are easy to open so you can secure the bag to a pole on public transportation, to the handle of your luggage, or onto a stroller or beach wagon. And as mentioned, the 56-inch strap (when fully extended) is adjustable, so the bag can be worn on the shoulder or crossbody for added security.
The interior features four slip pockets, one of which is RFID-blocking for passports, IDs, and credit cards. RFID-blocking technology (that’s radio frequency identification blocking technology) ensures hackers aren’t able to access your credit card or ID info through your bag. You can feel the rigid RFID-blocking plate around the four card slots and passport pocket, but we didn’t find that to be a problem. Along with this pocket, the main compartment has two additional slip pockets which are large enough for a portable charger, pack of gum, or protein bar.
The bag’s interior also has a key strap with a removable flashlight. You can attach your keys so they won’t fall out or get lost in your bag and the flashlight can illuminate a door handle or light your way as you search through your bag.
Performance: Organization with added security
The key to easy travel is organization and if you’re traveling light, the Mini will do. The RFID-blocking card slots and passport pocket are ideal if you want to leave your wallet at home and since the pocket is right at the opening of the bag, it’s easy to access your cards once you unlatch the compartment’s security zipper.
That said, we generally like to travel with our regular wallet, so we wanted to see if the Travelon Mini had room to accommodate it. Ours fit in the main compartment, but it filled the entirety of the bag, leaving little room for anything else. If you’re a light traveler, though, this is one of the bag’s selling points. At 8.5 x 8.5 x 2 inches, it’s barely larger than an iPad Mini.
The security zipper is fine when it comes to retrieving ID and credit cards (as you don’t usually need to pull those out in a hurry), but we found the back pocket worked better for our cell phone. While the back pocket doesn’t have a locking zipper, it’s against the body where it’s significantly more difficult for a pick-pocket to access. Retrieving your phone is also easier as you don’t have to fumble with a security zipper as your call goes to voicemail.
While it performed well, it’s really only for those who travel really light.
Aside from the various pockets, we also appreciate the bag’s adjustable shoulder strap. We chose to wear it as a crossbody—as opposed to a shoulder bag—because it felt more secure in a crowd, didn’t slip off our shoulder, and we didn’t have to pay any attention to it during activities.
We tested our Travelon Mini on a beach trip where tourists tend to be easy targets. With everything packed, we made our way through a crowded beachfront with the strap secured to our beach wagon. It gave us peace of mind knowing our money and info were harder for thieves to access.
We also put it to daily use, and while it performed well, it’s really only for those who travel really light. If you like to carry a planner, water bottle, snacks, Band-Aids, pouch of random stuff, and your kids’ belongings on top of that, it certainly isn’t the purse for you. If you’re more of a credit card, phone, and ID type, though, it’ll work nicely.
Price: Light on the wallet, big on benefits
As far as travel bags go, the $50 Travelon Mini falls at the lower end of the price range. It’s not a budget bag, but for a lightweight, security-laden model, it’s priced right. The RFID-blocking technology, double security pockets, and slash-resistant fabric and strap come at a very reasonable price.
Competition: Similar quality, larger capacity
Baggallini Everywhere Shoulder Bag: If you’re looking for a larger bag that can hold more than just your wallet and cell phone, Baggallini’s $100 Everywhere Shoulder Bag is worth considering. The 13.5 x 9 x 5-inch bag features 10 RFID-blocking credit card slots, a lipstick/pen holder, key fob, detachable coin purse, and multiple exterior pockets. The back pocket can also be unzipped and turned into a sleeve so you can slip it over the handle of your luggage. Like the Travelon Mini, the Baggallini Shoulder Bag is also available in multiple colors including red, beige, black, gray, green, and blue.
Pacsafe Stylesafe Anti-Theft Tote: If you like the design and features of the Travelon Mini but you just need more space, the $110 Pacsafe Anti-Theft Tote is another option. The bag has everything—including secured pockets, RFID-blocking technology, impressive capacity, and 150D polyester construction which features eXomesh slash guard wiring to prevent against theft. Inside, there’s enough room to store a 15-inch tablet and multiple pockets mean you can organize everything to your liking.
- Product Name Anti-Theft Classic Mini Shoulder Bag
- Product Brand Travelon
- UPC 025732013418
- Price $49.99
- Weight 10.9 oz.
- Product Dimensions 8.5 x 8.5 x 2 in.
- Color Black, black and white flower print, geo tile, stripes, black with leaf lining, blue, blue snake, dark grey, grey with leaf print lining, jet black, midnight, midnight with coral lining, midnight with teal lining, nutmeg, purple, wine