There are few things more satisfying than a good bit of heavy-duty luggage. I am rather partial to a nice bag, funky travel case or trolley in which to store & transport my graphics kit when travelling through airports or train stations. After all, if you’re proud of your kit then why not give it something nice to keep it sturdy and safe when using flights, trains and cars to travel overseas for visual facilitation client work.

travels with my kit ...thoughts from a graphic facilitator blog by Tom Russell, Inky Thinking, Creative Agency
Neuland No.One Wedge Nib marker pens safely arrived in Google Office meeting room, Atlanta, USA

Strangely, and this may be connected to being an Official Neuland UK Reseller, I have been asked several times recently how I transport my Neuland marker pens, refills, large rolls of paper and kit to meetings, especially overseas. So, for those people who are keen to know how a visual bod travels with kit, here’s the answer. By the way, this could be equally relevant for meeting leaders, facilitators, trainers, scrum masters on the move as well as graphic recorders.

travels with my kit ...thoughts from a graphic facilitator blog by Tom Russell, Inky Thinking, Creative Agency
Visual facilitation kit used for graphic recording of Google meeting in Atlanta by Tom Russell, Inky Thinking, January 23

Peli Box:

This is probably the single best bit of kit I have purchased and love this heavy-duty trolley. I am on my second Peli box in thirteen years and cannot recommend them highly enough. The box safely keeps all my Neuland pens, refills and Stick-It Cards without fear of being damaged, especially at airports. Whilst not the sexiest of cases it, like the SportTube, it is a very hard worker and I am always pleased to see it arrive, in all its orange glory, on the baggage belt. Popping an Airtag in the box is a good idea, so you know if it has left and arrived safely with you, and always padlock it too (TSA version of course). I rather like the look of both the box and the tube together. Why orange? Why not!

A couple of tips – 1) invest in some foam and the Peli lid organiser to stop everything shaking around inside, and 2) small recycled boxes with lids are great for keeping Neuland pens snuggled together in one place.

The SportTube:

The SportTube is the best way of carrying big rolls of paper and valuable visual client graphics when travelling and using baggage conveyor belts. I have tried many of the tubes and trolleys sold in art shops and none compare to this sporting giant on wheels. Admittedly it does look odd trundling around with a ski tube at times, especially in the summer months and in locations not known for winter sports. As well as keeping paper and rulers safe, the tube gives me constant amusement as people attempt to guess what’s in it (especially taxi drivers and check-in agents). Guesses so far include fishing gear, shooting gear, golf clubs and a bazooka (not helpful when exclaimed at check-in – it did happen).

Top tips if you are going to invest in this heavy duty tube – 1) buy a handle to tow the tube behind you (much easier than carrying although you will have the turning circle of a bus), 2) carry a second clip or way of keeping the two halves together, this is especially useful if security open it and forget to clip it back and it arrives in pieces, and 3) be prepared to spend time waiting at the oversized baggage belt (often at the other end of the airport) for your tube to arrive. Bring a book.

This is how I transport my kit when moving from train station platform to train luggage holder and from airport taxi to airport luggage belt. It never fails, or at least hasn’t since I started. If you travel more in the UK and from car to meeting room, I would also wholeheartedly recommend the range of Neuland WorkShop Cases and Trolleys, perfect for transporting kit that does not require heavy-duty protection. I would love to hear your recommendations for keeping your valuable kit safe when on the move.

travels with my kit ...thoughts from a graphic facilitator blog by Tom Russell, Inky Thinking, Creative Agency
Google Office, Atlanta, Georgia

About Tom …

Tom is a visual meeting facilitator and founder of Inky Thinking, a creative agency specialising in bespoke visual communication, enabling leaders and organisations to communicate effectively. Tom works with leaders and teams in global organisations to design and facilitate conferences, meetings and workshops.

Email or calling +44 (0)333 567 2121.