The idea is intriguing: Hang a set of shelves in your closet or on a door, fold and stow everything you’ll need for a trip, and then collapse the shelf into your carry-on suitcase. When you get to your destination, simply open up your suitcase and pull the shelf open to its full height, then hang it in a closet or on a door. That’s the premise behind Rise Gear’s Riser Shelving. Three roomy shelves plus a shoe storage area and built-in laundry hamper simplify the entire packing process.
Having a hard time picturing it? Here’s a video of our test:
Price and Where to Buy It: $79 from RiseGear.com.
How it Rates
- Usefulness: 8/10. These shelves save time and increase efficiency: There’s no unpacking at a destination, and no repacking if you’re going city to city. And if you’re in a place with limited storage, you’re covered.
- Value: 7/10. At about $79, it’s not cheap enough to be an impulse purchase for most people. If you think of it as a way to upgrade existing luggage, it improves the value equation significantly.
- Portability: 9/10. The shelves collapse easily into the main suitcase compartment, and store flat when you’re not using them. The only downside is that they add a bit of weight to your bag, so if an ultra-light bag is your top priority, they may not be a good fit.
- Cool Factor: 10/10. To arrive at a destination, zip open a suitcase, and reveal an already organized and neatly folded mini-closet—that’s cool.
Final Verdict: As long as you’re not concerned about adding an extra 3 pounds (about the weight of a regular pair of shoes) to your bag, this is a great way to start organized and stay organized on the road. Rise Gear also makes suitcases (rollers, sliders, and weekenders) with built-in expandable shelves.
Editor’s Note: Reviews are based on usefulness, portability, durability, value, and “cool factor.” Some review products are sent to us free of charge and with no incentive to offer a favorable review. We offer our unbiased opinions, positive and negative, and will never accept compensation to review a product. If you have any questions or comments concerning our reviews, or would like to suggest a product for review, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org