The New Class of Amenity Kits Worth Keeping

George Hobica, March 19, 2015
Fares from Washington DC:

    For years, airline amenity kits, most of which are handed out in business and first class on long-haul flights, were quite boring. They all looked the same. Basically just "cosmetic cases" there was very little creativity in their design and most people left them on the plane after they removed whatever contents were valuable. But that's changing, especially this year and the emphasis at many airlines has been to design kits that have a second useful life after the contents have been used or removed.

    Now before you tune out and think, hey, I never fly in business or first, please note: most passengers who fly in business and first leave the kits behind, so as you're deplaning past their rarefied precincts, feel free to grab one of the many kits that they leave behind on seats. Because the new kits can indeed be re-purposed in many creative ways.

    Starting from the top row at the left and working to the right and down, here are some of the kits that you'll use long after the flight is over:

    Top Row:

    British Airways

    Club (business) class passengers use this kit as a shoe bag, among other things, once empty.

    SWISS

    Various kits are provided depending on season. From left, this is perfect as an iPad case; on winter flights, you might see a neck warmer, a Christmas stocking, or a hat.

    Middle row:

    Cathay Pacific

    Some passengers repurpose this first class kit as an evening clutch.

    EVA

    Designed with Rimowa, the German suitcase manufacturer, this clever hard-sided plastic kit can be used to store and protect a pocket camera, or cables and adapters, among other uses.

    Qantas

    Business class passengers get this case, perfect for protecting an iPad mini.

    Cathay Pacific

    This business class case can store cables, adapters, and so on.

    Bottom row:

    Air New Zealand

    Perfect for full-sized iPads

    Singapore Airlines

    Very few first class passengers leave these behind since they contain a generously sized bottle of Salvatore Ferragamo's Signorina perfume, but ladies love to carry them as evening clutches.

    American Airlines

    This new first class kit (note the shout out to Piedmont Airlines) fits an iPad mini perfectly.

    So whether you're among the lucky few who fly "up front" or you're lucky enough to grab one on your way out, be sure to take one of these kits off the plane. They're not just for eyeshades and moisturizer any longer.

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