Best anti-theft bags and why you should buy one

PHOTO: Unsplash

One of the worst nightmare possible is losing your passport, credits cards of cash whilst travelling in a foreign land. Ask anyone for travelling tips and keeping their items save is bound to be at the top of their list. Anti-theft bags come in handy, literally, as a solution to this ever prevalent threat. A simple bag is barely an obstacle for thieves.

In this article, we show you the best anti-theft bags on the market now so you can travel with peace of mind.

WHAT IS AN ANTI-THEFT BAG?

PHOTO: Pacsafe

Unlike the bag that your mom claims "has a very strong strap and is too thick to cut", anti-theft bags have actual technology to back it up. Pickpockets typically slit the bags of their targets and take the valuables from the slash. Anti-theft bags prevent this by adding a flexible stainless steel wire mesh to the body and straps of the bag. If you are willing to pay the extra amount, some models even come with RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) blocking. In layman's terms, it is to prevent thieves from stealing your card details without even touching your card!

Freaky, but absolutely possible.

BEST ANTI-THEFT BAGS TO BUY

BEST FOR WOMEN: PACSAFE STYLESAFE ANTI-THEFT CONVERTIBLE CROSSBODY BAG

PHOTO: The Wallet Shop

The Pacsafe Stylesafe Convertible Crossbody Bag (S$135) was chosen as the best in class for females as it is one of the few anti-theft bags with dual functionality. The bag is made mainly from polyester, leaving the bag light at just under 400 grams. As with most other anti-theft bags, the Pacsafe Stylesafe features a mesh inner layer to prevent bag slashing. RFID blocking material lies beneath the smooth surface, preventing credit or identity fraud. Even the zippers have been styled for theft prevention through zip clips and zip tabs.

The bag is large enough to contain an 11 inch MacBook comfortably, with internal pockets and attachment points for your important items like wallets and keys. Last but not least, it comes with an adjustable strap to convert between a shoulder or crossbody bag!

BEST FOR MEN: BOBBY XD DESIGN ANTI-THEFT BACKPACK

PHOTO: XD-Design.com

Easily one of the sleekest looking anti-theft bags on the market, the Bobby XD Design Anti-Theft Backpack (S$119) is the poster boy for anti-theft bags. Winner of the 2017 Red Dot Design Award, this bag is made from an advanced cut-resistant polyester. An additional cut protection board ensures the safety of all that is within your bag. A shock-proof foam ensures your devices stored inside stay safe even if you drop the bag.

For those who want to charge your devices while walking around, an external USB port embedded into the bag allows you to charge your devices through a power bank inside the Bobby! Bobby also features many pockets and compartments to store everything neatly and safely within the Bobby.

None of the features we have listed so far stands out more than the visual protection this bag provides. All zippers and compartments are hidden when you are carrying the bag, and thieves can't steal what they can't see!

BEST FOR LIGHT TRAVELLING: PACSAFE DAYSAFE TECH CROSSBODY BAG

PHOTO: Travel Universe

For those days that you just want a small pack to contain your essentials like phones and cards, the Pacsafe Daysafe (S$69) would be your go-to bag. Weighing in at only 140 grams, Daysafe is a lightweight pack that will keep your cards safe with the built-in RFID blocking material. Slash-resistant straps ensure thieves no longer launch a surprise attack on you! Due to the size of the bag however, it is impossible to fit a mesh. As such, do be aware that the pouch can still be slashed, so keep it close to you.

While Daysafe may look small, it can actually fit a phone, passport, cards and has additional card slots and pen loops. You can pack so many things into this small bag that you might end up mistaking it for a treasure bag!

BEST FOR WORK: PACSAFE INTASAFE X ANTI-THEFT BACKPACK

PHOTO: Planet Traveller

If you are looking for an anti-theft bag to store your daily work gear, look no further than the Pacsafe Intasafe (S$137.50). Most anti-theft laptop bags you will find on the market only offers locking or hidden zips with scratch-resistant material. Pacsafe one-ups this by introducing cut safe/proof material to house your laptop up to 15 inches. The bag also comes with an internal power bank pocket with external cable access for easy on-the-go charging and RFID blocking.

The Intasafe has pockets and linings for all of your important valuables. From your hotel keycard, credit cards, cash, keys and passport, Pacsafe has all the space you need. With the straps and internal pockets, everything can be stored within a safe theft-proof compartment. Sadly, there is no alternative for anyone with a laptop larger than 15 inches. For that, you may have to wait for when either Bobby or Pacsafe releases another larger model.

BEST FOR ACTIVE/SPORTS: XD DESIGN BOBBY URBAN

PHOTO: XD Design

If you enjoy traversing the urban jungle with your sports gear on, ready to hit the gym or play football after work, you need to have an appropriate bag. Not only will the Bobby Urban (S$217) store your work essentials like laptop and notebooks, it also comes with adjustable straps so you have more space to throw your workout clothes in! Transit from work to workout easily with the flexible carry modes (hand-carry or backpack). Cut proof material as usual lines this incredible bag, ensuring safety for everything within. A bottle holder by the side lets you stay hydrated without popping out the rest of your important stuff inside.

If you are out in the night cycling, the bag also has reflective stripes to ensure that you stay visible. The water-resistant material has been proven to be extremely effective with low rainfall, but some water will seep through in intense rain. Additional pockets with RFID blocking function line the insides so your items stay safe and compartmentalized. XD Design also threw in an external net that you can use to hold your football ball/yoga mat!

SHOULD YOU BUY AN ANTI-THEFT BAG?

PHOTO: The Straits Times

Statistics from police around the world estimates about 400,000 pickpocketing incident happen. Every Single Day. This alone should be more than enough reason to purchase an anti-theft bag! However, if you plan to travel to Europe, an anti-theft bag should be a priority as most pickpocket incidents stem from European countries. Listed are the countries statistically known for having high numbers of pickpockets:

- Barcelona, Spain
- Rome, Italy
- Prague, Czech Republic
- Madrid, Spain
- Paris, France
- Florence, Italy
- Buenos Aires, Argentina
- Amsterdam, Netherlands
- Athens, Greece
- Hanoi, Vietnam

We wish you safe travels for all your trips! And remember, hold your friends close and your bag closer!

This article was first published in Shopback

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