Gear review

Travel Wallets by Bellroy

A long-term traveler is space conscious. i remember getting advice in the 80s when i started traveling to saw off the handle to my toothbrush to save space! especially these days, when electronics take up so much room, it’s increasingly important to downsize everything else. For short trips, i love my large Tumi travel wallet, but I’d be the first to admit that if space was at a premium, it’d have to be one of the first things to go. Enter the Travel Wallet, by australian-based bellroy. billed as “carry-on for your pocket,” this sleek leather wallet is one of the slimmest i’ve ever seen and designed to hold just about everything you’d need to have on you as you navigate planes, trains, border crossings and whatever else travel throws your way.

Bellroy Elements Travel Wallet - 1

The wallet achieves its extreme slimness by being about an inch longer than your average wallet (6” x 4”). That extra space allows you to tuck your passport into a sleeve. While i don’t often carry my passport out and about, it was handy on a recent trip to bangkok where even non-bank money changing kiosks required one. and having your passport in your wallet instead of a carry-on in the overhead somewhere makes filling in all those annoying forms (using the nifty micro pen that comes with the wallet, of course) that much easier. The extra size also means that credit cards can fit vertically side-by-side instead of being stacked on top of each other, and tickets, boarding passes, and oddly shaped currencies (i’m looking at you, yen!) fit without creasing. Thoughtful elements also include slots for a key and a Sim card (because savvy travellers know it’s often much cheaper to use a local number than to roam). made from responsibly sourced, non-toxic vegetable tanned leathers in muted colours (mine is cocoa), bellroy’s travel wallet is so incredibly slim that i’m even experimenting with using it as an everyday wallet.

A similar, but more versatile, product is the elements Travel. it shares many of the same features (micro travel pen, slim credit card slots, space for your passport, etc.) but it’s made of water-resistant leather and has an all-around zipper to keep the elements out. it’s multi-use so once you get to your destination, you can swap out travel documents for your mobile phone and credit cards for when you’re more active. While it’s ever so slightly wider to accommodate the hidden zipper, i love that it stays super slim in your pocket.

The Travel Wallet (USD119.95) and elements Travel (USD139.95) are available from www. (they ship to Vietnam). also check out their site dedicated to all things carry-on at

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