Middle Age Miles

Product Review – Ugobags: A Fun Travel Gift

Philly’s customized Ugobags suitcase, Tour de France style!

From time to time, Middle Age Miles will share reviews of travel-related products we’ve enjoyed or found useful.  To be clear, Middle Age Miles has no relationship with Ugobags and has received no compensation from this review.  It’s just a product that made for a fun gift and that we’ve enjoyed using.

We first came across Ugobags at their booth at the Dallas Travel Expo in Spring 2017.  The Ugobags suitcases looked cool and seemed reasonably durable, and their rep at the Expo booth was friendly.  Ugobags has a few pre-existing designs, but their captivating feature was that they will make customized luggage using your own picture on the side.  Your Ugobags suitcase will be unique in all the world – and easy to find at baggage claim!  I made a mental note that this might make a fun travel-related gift someday.

So, I decided to give it a try for Philly’s birthday and create a unique piece of luggage for her.  She is an avid fan of the Tour de France cycling race, and we had visited its epic climb, the Alpe d’Huez, on a day trip during our vacation to Geneva a few months earlier.

Philly at the Start of the climb on the D211 up Alpe d’Huez

The epic climb up Alpe d’Huez on the D211 is famous for its 21 hairpin turns. Each turn is numbered, from 21 at the bottom to 1 at the top, and each turn has a sign that commemorates winners of the Alpe d’Huez stages in the Tour de France through the years. The start of the Alpe d’Huez climb is so iconic that there is literally a location called “Start” on Google Maps!

As I mentioned, the great fun of Ugobags is that it allows you to customize your luggage using your own photo.  I found a nice photo of a cyclist at the Start of the Alpe d’Huez climb, which was well-proportioned to fit the long, slender section of the suitcase where the picture fits, and I used it to customize a suitcase on the Ugobags website.

Ugobags website – customization page – this one is a medium grey suitcase with orange accents

Ugobags allows you to choose from three case colors (white, grey or black), three sizes (small, medium or large), and ten different accent colors.  A small suitcase costs $199, a medium is $229, and a large is $259 – so it’s pricey for a suitcase, but reasonable for a very cool, unique gift.  For Philly’s gift, I chose a medium-sized black suitcase with yellow accents (of course, yellow for the Tour de France!).

I was very happy with how Philly’s suitcase turned out.  It’s very pretty with a glossy finish, and the photo looks great on the side of the bag.  We’ve traveled with the suitcase several times, and it has turned out to be durable and useful.  The only downside is that the beautiful bag and photo inevitably get scuffed up with use over time.

Philly’s customized Ugobags suitcase

Philly’s customized Ugobags suitcase

Reverse side of Ugobags suitcase, showing off the yellow accents

Neat bag containing Ugobags suitcase when delivered

I did have one issue with my customized order from Ugobags.  The first time I received the bag, the photo on the side of the bag had been printed too small and didn’t cover the entire length of the bag. It didn’t look great, frankly.  However, the customer service I received from Ugobags in response was outstanding.  Ugobags bent over backwards to re-make the suitcase and also to make sure the new bag was delivered to me in time for Philly’s birthday.  The owner of Ugobags even worked with me personally to make sure everything was fixed and I was happy.  It would have been nice for everything to be perfect the first time, but we all understand that mistakes happen – it’s how a company responds to the mistake that makes all the difference.  In my case, Ugobags took ownership of the issue and made everything right, and that’s the kind of service that engenders customer loyalty.

I’m happy to recommend Ugobags to Middle Age Miles readers, and I hope the company flourishes.

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