from the SmarterTravel.com Editors

We devoted hundreds of hours to testing out the best new travel products of 2018. These are our top picks for travel pillows, shoes, carry-on suitcases, backpacks, gadgets, and packing accessories that are worth your money.

Best New Carry-on Bag

Winner: Samsonite Armage 19" Spinner

Why We Love It: The Armage 19-inch spinner from Samsonite delivers dependable functionality, attractive detailing, and useful extras, like an ergonomic handle, USB charging port, and TSA-approved lock.

Price & Where to Buy: $360 on Samsonite.com.

Best New Travel Backpack

REI Co-op Ruckpack Series

Why We Love It: It's got the technical features of a typical backpack, plus a sleek design that doesn’t make you look like a backpacker. It's available in both a men's and women's style at 40 liters and 65 liters. Our favorite features include the hideaway rain cover, dual water bottle holders, and clamshell-style main compartment.

Price & Where to Buy: The backpack is $139 (40-liter) and $189 (65-liter) and can be purchased on REI’s website.

Best New Travel Shoes for Women

Cole Haan 2.ZEROGRAND Oxford with Stichlite

Why We Love Them: The patented stitchlite stretch knit upper molds to feet and allows the shoes to be worn without socks. The fabric also allows in plenty of airflow, and makes these shoes incredibly lightweight (and easy to pack, as they compress down nearly flat). The Grand.OS energy foam soles feel like running shoes—these could easily double as a workout shoe on your trip, as they offer plenty of support and cushioning. The Oxford style elevates these from a normal sneaker look. Our tester wore them around Europe with both dresses and black pants, and felt very stylish.

Price & Where to Buy: $150 on Cole Haan's website or find certain colors on sale on Amazon for less.

Best New Travel Shoes for Men

Timberland Cross Mark Oxford Shoes

Why We Love Them: Timberland has taken a traditional, comfortable sneaker and topped it with leather uppers for a stylish look that can easily transition from day to night. Our tester raved about the comfort level of these shoes, wearing them without pain or fatigue for many miles, likely due to the shoes' OrthoLite comfort foam insoles (which wick moisture and provide long-term cushioning), and trademarked Aerocore Energy System outsoles, which return energy to the wearer.

Price & Where to Buy: $115 on Timberland's website.

Best New Travel Gadget

Steam Clip

Why We Love It: This innovative product addresses a common and frustrating issue: not being able to hang your clothes in the hotel bathroom for steaming. But it also has a variety of other uses, such as opening bottles and cutting loose threads.

Price & Where to Buy: You can get a Steam Clip for $12 right now on Steam Clip's website.

Best New Travel Pillow

Trlt Pillow Plus

Why We Love It: It's not your average travel pillow, or really a pillow at all. It's height-adjustable neck support for different-sized users and varying sleep preferences. The super-soft outer (that's also machine-washable) makes it comfy, and it collapses almost flat so you don't have to carry it or waste much bag space. It's not embarrassing, as the cover makes it look like you're wearing a scarf.

Price & Where to Buy: From $45 on Indiegogo (confirmed for production since it surpassed its fundraising goal).

Best New Packing Accessory

Scrubba Air Sleeve

Why We Love It: This multifunctional product is both a laptop sleeve and an inflatable travel pillow. What sets this product above the rest, however, is that the sleeve provides the most protection we’ve seen in a packing accessory—and it does so while keeping things light—6 to 11 ounces, dependent on size.

Price & Where to Buy: $49.95 to $69.95, dependent on size, at Scrubba and $59.95 for the 13-inch sleeve on Amazon.

Created By
SmarterTravel Editors

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