The best travel wallets

  • When you travel, you need a practical wallet that can hold your passport, boarding pass, and all your credit cards and cash.
  • The Bellroy Travel Wallet fits the bill with its super smart design that holds everything easily without adding bulk.
  • See also: The best carry-on bags

I never used to be a fan of passport holders and cases. Passports are thin, light, and just the right size to slip into a jeans pocket, or maybe the small front pocket or quick-access compartment of a carry-on backpack.

Then my passport started to get battered, and I took a few international flights where I couldn't use mobile boarding passes and had to carry paper ones. I remembered what a pain it can be to keep track of your passport, boarding pass, and landing cards, plus other notes and documents you might need when you're throwing everything loose into a backpack pocket.

I decided to look into travel wallets and passport covers. My thinking was that it would be easier to streamline everything if I could keep all the travel documents for a given flight in one holder, plus I'd be able to protect my passport. I knew that money belts and travel wallets that go around the neck are popular, but I had no interest in one of those. I wanted a sleek clean wallet.

I spent some time researching different options, trying a handful of different ones, and I'm happy to say that I found my favorite and new go-to: the Bellroy Travel Wallet. I've also found a number of other great travel wallet options if Bellroy's wares aren't for you. Read on to see which of put picks is the best for your travel wallet needs.

Here are the best travel wallets:

Prices and links are current as of 10/7/20. We removed our pick for the best with RFID blocking because nearly all of our picks, including best overall, include RFID blocking.

The best overall
travel wallet

The Bellroy Travel Wallet keeps your passport, boarding passes, landing cards, and more in a compact, organized package.

If you're a regular reader of Insider Reviews, chances are you're already familiar with Bellroy — after all, the company makes our favorite wallets. The young Australian brand has a smart, minimalist and functional design philosophy. It also uses ethically-sourced materials and has a great manufacturing process to produce high-quality gear.

What I love about Bellroy's travel wallet is that it holds everything. It has room for all of the travel documents you might need over the course of a multi-stop international trip, plus cash, credit cards, a SIM card, and even a pen.

At first glance, the wallet looks like an oversized bifold, opening just like an everyday wallet. One side has room for your passport, with a dedicated pocket that takes up that whole side. The other side has credit card slots — either two or four, depending on which edition of the wallet you choose — positioned vertically so you just drop the cards in. The wallet also has an open top pocket like a traditional bill compartment, but it's divided into two sections.

There are a few more "hidden" card slots and a sim card holder within the inner cash compartment, as well as my favorite feature of this wallet: a tiny pen, which is kept tucked away right in the middle so that you can fill out landing cards and jot any quick notes you need.

The wallet is big enough to hold just about any currency, and I like to keep a little bit in one of the sections of the large cash/document pocket. The other section is great for holding boarding passes, custom cards, and any other travel documents you might need to have handy. I prefer putting these in the outermost section so that they don't crease when folded. I use the inside part for cash — You can put cash in both sections, using the divider to keep different currencies separated.

In theory, Bellroy intends the travel wallet to be your everyday wallet on the road, something you can carry with your cards, cash, passport, and everything else you need for a day of exploring. I think it's a little big for that. I can certainly fit in in a back pocket or jacket when I'm in the airport, but it's big enough that I would be worried about theft walking around a city with it. 

The wallet is available in a few different colors, plus a "designer's edition." The designer's edition is meant for the luxury market and has a softer leather with a few design tweaks. It also only has two credit card slots on the main part of the wallet, rather than four. Other than that, it's basically the same product as the original. Whether you choose the regular or the designer's edition, you can't go wrong.

Pros: Keeps everything you need handy while traveling, easy to navigate, great organization, includes a pen, small enough to carry in a pocket in the airport, has RFID-blocking capabilities

Cons: Too big to use as a daily wallet during trips

The best minimalist travel wallet
Lentz_2

The Mr. Lentz Slim Passport Wallet is rugged, old-school, handmade, and built to last.

The Mr. Lentz brand is run by one person — Evan Lentz — who makes all of his products by hand in his own workshop. Lentz built the brand with a "modern cowboy" feel, designed to evoke days of hard work on the windswept plains, and his online shops reflect that with old-west images and icons.

Mr. Lentz makes wallets, bags, and other accessories using durable, rugged, and time-proven materials like full-grain leather, brass, and wood. Lentz's passport wallet is a typical example of this style.

The wallet is much more scaled-down than the Bellroy Travel Wallet making it great for those who just want to ensure some protection for their passport without adding a ton of bulk. A solid piece of leather makes a bifold that opens like a book. The right-side has a pocket for your passport, which is a little tight and only meant to fit the back cover of the passport. That way, the passport can be read without removing it from the wallet. You can just hand the whole package to the customs agent. Once the wallet breaks in a bit, you can fit the whole closed passport in that pocket.

The other side of the wallet has two card slots that can hold four to six cards. There's a larger pocket right behind the card slots that is perfect for holding a bit of spare cash. You can also fit travel documents, like boarding passes, in this sleeve.

Aesthetically, the Mr. Lentz Passport Wallet looks rugged and hardy. The thick full-grain leather holds up well and develops a nice patina as you use it and break it in. Solid brass rivets line the outsides of the wallet, holding it together. The wallet also ships with a free tin of proprietary leather conditioner to help keep it soft as it ages and breaks in.

Thin enough to fit in a front pocket, this wallet is a perfect option for those looking for something that will last a long time and hold just the essentials. You can also choose to engrave the wallet, using any of a few different methods.

Pros: Slim, rugged, hand-made and built to last, holds the essentials

Cons: Needs to be broken in, brass rivets may not be everyone's favorite look

The best with a zipper
fjallraven

The Fjällräven Passport Wallet closes securely with a zipper and will hang on to your documents no matter where you go.

If you're backpacking and carrying a lot, or want to just throw your travel documents in a bag's main compartment, a bifold travel wallet might not be your best option.

A more secure passport wallet with a zipper, like the Fjällräven Passport Wallet, lets you toss it in a bag with everything else, and you don't have to worry about anything falling out or getting lost.

The Fjällräven Passport Wallet is made of a water-resistant waxed canvas. Like most of the other passport wallets you'll find out there, the Fjallraven option is structured like a bifold, but this one has a zipper running along the entire outside.

When opened, the wallet has space to tuck your passport and folded boarding pass on the right side. There's also an interior zippered pocket, perfect for coins, ticket stubs, or other odd bits and ends. The left side of the wallet has six card slots, and there's an open pocket at the top for cash.

Fjallraven also makes a larger version of this wallet called the Travel Wallet, rather than the "Passport Wallet." They're basically the same thing; the main difference is that the Travel Wallet has a few more card slots and a loop to hold a pen, and is designed to fit unfolded boarding passes. It's almost more like a small purse or clutch. The smaller Passport Wallet can also hold a small pen and boarding passes, but there's no loop to keep it the pen in place and boarding passes must be folded.

Personally, I prefer the smaller Passport Wallet — even though you have to fold your boarding passes to fit them, it's just a nicer hand-held size. However, both are great options, especially if you're storing the wallet in a bag.

Pros: Water-resistant, protects your travel documents from the elements and from falling out and getting lost.

Cons: Both sizes are bigger and bulkier than other travel wallets because of the zipper and material

The best for family trips
lewis N clark

The Lewis N. Clark Travel Wallet keeps the whole family organized as you head on your next adventure.

Even though I love traveling, there's no doubt that it can be stressful. The stress is even worse when you're managing logistics for a group, even your own family.

While there's not much to do about it, you can at least make your group's time at the airports a little bit easier with the Lewis N. Clark Travel Wallet. With room for about four passports, plus cash, cards, boarding passes, customs forms, a pen, and even a phone, this is more than a travel wallet. It's more like a family travel organizer.

While the Lewis N. Clark is naturally bigger than a one-person travel wallet, it's smaller than you might expect considering how much it holds. That said, this isn't going in anyone's front pocket — think of it more as a folio.

The wallet folds closed like a clamshell and zips shut all the way around. When it's closed, there's still access to a small zip pocket on the front. 

When open, there are three pockets on the right side that are for passports. You can fit a few passports in each pocket, according to Amazon reviewers. It has six credit card slots, a zipper compartment for change and cash, and a larger zippered compartment for boarding passes or cash on the left side. In the middle, there's a loop for a pen so you can fill out forms on the plane.

The Travel Wallet is made from nylon that's durable and protective. It also has RFID-blocking material built in to add an extra layer of protection to your cards and passports. As for downsides, some buyers mention problems with the zipper.

Pros: Keeps the whole family's travel documents organized, has well-positioned pockets and compartments, includes a pen

Cons: Large, won't fit in a pocket, zipper issues

The best for holding boarding passes
cuyana

Cuyana's Classic Passport Case holds a full-size boarding pass and several cards in a chic leather wallet.

Cuyana is known for making quality leather goods for very affordable prices. The Insider Reviews team recently tested a number of the company's wallets, including the Classic Passport Holder. We loved the wallet so much that we wrote a full review about it.

The simple leather wallet was designed in San Francisco and handmade in Argentina. Measuring 9-inches long, it's longer than most other passport holders, so it can hold a full boarding pass without wrinkling or folding. Cuyana also added a dedicated pocket for your passport, six card slots, and two large slide pockets for travel documents and anything else you need.

The pebbled leather is soft and smooth, and the card slots keep your cards in place securely without being too tight. You can get the passport holder in navy blue, stone gray, red, black, or a crocodile-embossed black. If you so choose, Cuyana will even monogram your wallet.

Based on our experience, it's the perfect stylish travel wallet, but it won't fit in your pocket, unless you happen to be wearing some intense cargo pants. It's a great pick if you have space in your bag and need to manage documents that you simply don't want to fold. — Malarie Gokey

Pros: Holds a full boarding pass, six card slots, multiple slide pockets for passports and more, stylish, fun colors, real leather

Cons: Won't fit in your pocket

Check out our other great travel gear guides
samsonite centric hardside carry on

The best carry-on luggage

A sturdy and reliable carry-on suitcase is a must-have piece of luggage for any traveler. Whether you favor hard-side or soft-side luggage is a matter of personal preference, so we've included our top picks for both. There are the best carry-on suitcases according to our testing.


The best travel backpacks

If you're traveling light, don't want to deal with unwieldy carry-ons, and would never think of checking a suitcase, a travel backpack is an excellent one-bag solution. Think of them like a suitcase-backpack hybrid. These are the best travel backpacks according to our testing.


The best checked luggage

We've done all the research to find the best pieces of checked luggage you can buy for long-haul trips where even the best carry-on bag just doesn't cut it. These are our top picks for the best checked suitcases.


The best travel pillows

Trying to fall asleep on a plane is incredibly difficult, but having the right travel pillow can help you get some shut-eye during your epic flight across oceans and continents. Here are our top picks for travel pillows

Read the original article on Business Insider

Comments are closed.