TUMI: Perfecting the journey

30 Apr 2019 by Business Traveller Asia Pacific

Founded in 1975 by American entrepreneur Charlie Clifford, TUMI sprang to life to revolutionise travel with stylish, functional and durable travel essentials. Taking its name from a Peruvian icon known to Clifford during his days in the Peace Corps, the first TUMI bags quickly became popular for their ruggedness and superior quality. Even now, some of the original TUMI brown leather duffel bags hold their own over 40 years later – aside from minimal signs of wear, there’s little to indicate that they haven’t just come off the shelves of a store.

From its early days producing expertly handcrafted leather bags, TUMI has evolved by innovating purposeful designs and premium materials while incorporating more advanced functionality and technology. None exemplify this continuous improvement more than the Alpha series, an iconic collection comprising everything from luggages and carry-on bags to backpacks and slings that many consider synonymous with TUMI. From its inception pioneering the reliable and durable ballistic nylon travel bag in 1983 to the refined iteration it is today, the Alpha 3 collection has constantly evolved over the years to meet the demands of the modern traveller. Made with proprietary FXT Ballistic Nylon® and with a cleaner, more refined aesthetic, every feature and detail of Alpha 3 down to its zips has been adapted to the changing world after incorporating learnings from the past decade. This dedication to elevating the travel experience remains at the heart of Alpha 3 and other TUMI series, with upgrades often taking the form of surprisingly straightforward features, the kind that make one think “how did I manage before this?”

For instance, TUMI dual-access luggages and carry-on feature zips that allow you to open them up from the middle in a traditional clamshell-style, or more directly through the top when the bag is laid down. In Asia’s notoriously cramped hotel rooms, being able to access a bag’s contents through the top without having to fully open it can be a huge convenience.

Meanwhile, some of the brand’s latest designs also include integrated purpose-built zips and pockets for easy storage of portable power banks – increasingly important travel essentials in today’s smartphone-powered world. How much more straightforward is it to immediately whip out a cable that allows you to give your device those precious extra bits of charge rather than rummaging around the dark recesses of your bag for an inconspicuous power bank and a tangled electrical cord?

It’s in these ways that TUMI continues to evolve with its customers, adapting to their needs as they change and develop. As more and more young travellers embrace a more fun and less formal style, so too has TUMI been reinvigorated by this shift to a more casual focus.

This inspiration can be seen in the vibrant colour schemes and purposeful designs of its latest products. Its new Congo Print designs in particular have given a new lease of life to many customers’ favourite lines, adding a fresh take on classic designs with strikingly graphic red, white and black streaks akin to brushstrokes set against deep blue backdrops. Other nature-inspired designs, such as Fall Foliage and African Floral, add a playful, seasonal look to classic pieces. It may not always be immediately obvious to everyone just where you got your case from, but to the initiated eye it is clear it’s a TUMI.

Indeed, choosing a TUMI enables you to find a bag or travel case that suits your personal style. From its very first design to its most recent, the TUMI lineup is incredibly versatile. Whether you prefer a more understated look or a fashion-forward head turner, there is a style that suits you – from subtle classics with discreet logos to new silhouettes in shades and prints that make bold style statements. To own a TUMI is to understand what makes the brand so unique – excellence in design, technical innovation, unparalleled quality and functional superiority, the same qualities the brand has espoused over its own 40-year pursuit to perfect the journeys of travellers the world over.

Hollywood A-lister Chris Pratt, famous for his roles in hit movies like Guardians of the Galaxy, Avengers Engame and Jurassic World, along with critically acclaimed sitcom Parks and Recreation, has been a long time user of TUMI’s high-quality and innovative bags and luggage. Now, the actor has become more than a fan by starring in the brand’s new campaign for Asia Pacific and Middle East along with his favourite bags from the Alpha 3 and Alpha Bravo collections. 

“I’m blessed to have a job that allows me to travel so much. I’ve always trusted TUMI as my go-to luggage on my various trips around the world. I only ever promote products I actually use in real life. This makes TUMI a great fit. TUMI products are sleek, stylish, built to last and have long been my choice for luggage,” Pratt says.

To kick off this exciting TUMI x Chris Pratt partnership, Pratt made his first appearance with TUMI at an immersive TUMI Loft experience in Hong Kong where he unveiled a short film documenting preparations for his first-ever trip to the city. Pratt also made a virtual debut for TUMI with his avatar on the new TUMI Club App. Using the app’s Augmented Reality (AR) feature, TUMI fans can take virtual selfies with a lifelike Chris Pratt. A dynamic start to the collaboration, this is just the beginning of Pratt’s many journeys to come with TUMI.

Visitors will be able to experience the TUMI Loft in Garden Court, Pacific Place in Hong Kong until May 6.


The cover of the Business Traveller April 2024 edition
The cover of the Business Traveller April 2024 edition
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