Case Study Traveler’s Choice Solar Bag
The Challenge: Bring new excitement and solar capabilities
to traditional backpacks and travel bags.
The Solution: Design stylish solar bags that power handheld
devices from the sun—and on the go.
Traveler’s Choice, one of Travelware leader Traveler’s Choice prides the mass market. With its new bags, Traveler’s
itself on being ahead of the curve with Choice is introducing an innovative, next-
the world leaders in fine innovations and enhancements for its generation of travel bags—all fueled by
extensive line of practical, attractive, and Power Plastic.
travelware, selected Konarka advanced travel goods—from suitcases
to briefcases to duffels and more. Simple handling and fabrication
Technologies Power Plastic® Encompassing Traveler’s Choice, Coleman, Fabrication was simple, thanks to the
Pacific Gear, and other leading brands, inherent simplicity of Power Plastic. “We
as the key technology behind Traveler’s Choice calls itself “the trusted found that Power Plastic was extremely
choice in travelware.” In 2009, company easy to work with during fabrication,” says
its first-ever selection of solar Lin. “No other solar material is as lightweight
leaders began exploring the possibility of
and flexible. Plus, it looks great, merging
bags. Lightweight, efficient, incorporating solar power in a bag. They
easily with fabric designs.” It’s a telling fact
were intrigued by the potential of Konarka
that Traveler’s Choice required no special
durable, and flexible, Power Power Plastic® and felt that its unique
assistance or consultation from Konarka
qualities made it a good match for use in
Plastic is the right material innovative travelware. when designing and constructing its first bags.
Traveler’s Choice solar bags integrate panels
for briefcases and backpacks The right material for a pioneering bag
of Power Plastic, a built-in capacitor that
“The Konarka material is light, more like
that can charge cell phones, fabric,” says James Lin, chief operating stores electricity on board, and an energy
officer of Traveler’s Choice. “It’s checkpoint- meter. Under full sun, a Traveler’s Choice
iPods, digital cameras, and friendly, so it goes through airports solar bag can charge a cell phone completely
smoothly. It’s lightweight. And it’s durable.” in two hours. Or it can be used to trickle
other mobile devices. All of these qualities and more led Traveler’s charge devices, extending their battery
Choice to create prototype bags integrating life. And the bag can convert ambient and
Power Plastic and the associated electronic angled light into power, thanks to the unique
components necessary to charge cell qualities of Konarka Power Plastic.
phones and other handheld devices from
solar power. There are other bags that
use traditional solar panels, but they are
specialized, heavy, and not appropriate for
The Results? Why Konarka?
The response was overwhelmingly positive, Konarka and Power Plastic provide the right
right from the start. “The reaction from buy- combination of capabilities necessary for
ers has been phenomenal,” says Lin. “It’s a Traveler’s Choice solar bags:
new, pioneering bag—and a very exciting
product.” And by combining technology with
• The right solar material. Power Plastic’s
style, the solar bag attracts a broad range organic photovoltaic technology provides
of consumers, from eco-conscious travelers the light weight, flexibility, durability, and
to technology-savvy businesspeople. Initial efficiency required by Traveler’s Choice
concept designs include briefcase/backpack solar bags. “Other types of solar material
and duffel bag, with a cooler and other are too heavy,” says Lin. “But Power Plastic
Traveler’s Choice solar bags incorporate all the elements is light, flexible, and much easier to work
necessary to charge handheld devices with solar energy. designs in the works.
with.” Plus, Power Plastic is available in
For now, the Traveler’s Choice Solar-Powered quantity, simple to integrate into wide-
Computer Case has already won a Silver ranging bag designs, and effective even
Award at the industry-leading 2010 Travel in indirect lighting.
Goods Show. The bags will be featured in
the SkyMall in-flight magazine. And they’ll
• A compelling look. Konarka Power Plastic
be broadly available at retail outlets in also meshes well with the fabric used in
summer, 2010. the initial bags and integrates seamlessly
into the overall design. Its unique appear-
Traveler’s Choice sees these bags as an ance makes it attractive in a high-tech
initial offering in a new category of travelware. kind of way, one that consumers find
As travelers become even more dependent intriguing and distinctive.
The Traveler’s Choice Solar-Powered Computer Case on their handheld devices, they’ll be looking
won a Silver Award at the 2010 Travel Goods Show. for new, sustainable ways to charge them—
• A solid partnership. “Konarka was very
wherever they may go. In the future, ever- helpful to work with,” says Lin. Konarka
increasing levels of efficiency will let Power answered all questions and provided the
Plastic charge more power-hungry devices, material and expertise that Traveler’s
such as laptops. And Traveler’s Choice also Choice needed to create its innovative
anticipates integrating Power Plastic into solar bags.
other types of bags, such as emergency kits. Find Out More Today
Traveler’s Choice solar bags are just one ex-
ample of the many wide-ranging, innovative
product designs to integrate Konarka Power
Plastic. To find out more, call Konarka at
Traveler’s Choice continues to explore other concepts +1-978-569-1400 or visit www.konarka.com.
for solar-powered bags, including a cooler.
Konarka Power Plastic brings new solar capabilities
to a wide range of travelware.
Headquarters: Lowell, MA, USA | Manufacturing: New Bedford, MA, USA | R&D Facilities: Lowell, MA, USA; Linz, Austria;
Nurnberg, Germany. Learn more at www.konarka.com or call +1-978-569-1400.