Traveling around the world all year long is about the most abuse luggage can go through, and that’s pretty much how our team tests it. We caught up with Sharon Herbert and learned a little more about how the Burton luggage line is developed and who is the hardest on their gear. One thing we learned is that no matter if you are flying around the world or hitchhiking across the country-our luggage is built to last.
How does the process work for developing and testing new features or ideas?
Ideas come from the team, our designers, employees…we’re always looking for feedback to keep improving and we have fun doing it. Last year we decided to do a durability test for our luggage that included shooting it with a 12-gauge shotgun, a compound bow and arrow, dragging it behind a motorcycle on pavement and riding inside it while being pulled behind a dirt bike. We’ve also frozen it and dropped it off the roof of the Burton offices (to simulate the temperature in the bottom of a plane).
What bag in the line gets the most use?
The Wheelie Flight Deck and Wheelie Double Deck are our most popular styles, although personally I think the Wheelie Cargo is the unsung hero of the line. It’s what everyone that works on Burton Bags uses for travel.
What is the most memorable thing a random airport flyer, team rider, or employee has said about Burton luggage?
I get hit up almost every single time I fly by either a random traveler, flight attendant or other airport employee asking where I got my bag. While it might not be memorable the first time, when it starts happening every single trip it really makes an impact.
What aspect of Burton luggage over other luggage companies are you most proud of?
Our durability. Everything we put into the construction of our luggage, from the back panel construction, skate wheels, CRAM Zones and fabric are meant to withstand the test of time—which our team riders test every season. I’ve had people come and show me their passport with every page filled and said that it’s all been done in one Burton bag and how amazed they were that it still was in good shape. We hear stories like that all the time.
Do you have any packing tips you can share with us?
Over the years I’ve learned to pack lighter and to be more adaptable to a change in plans—a quick flight, train ride or car trip somewhere unexpected can lead to the best adventures and not stressing about your bag size makes it all the more enjoyable.
What’s some of the strangest feedback or requests you’ve ever gotten from team riders?
I believe it was in my first few months working on bags; a rider asked about having a clear compartment in the luggage with a goldfish swimming around that you could see from the outside.
Who on the team puts their bags through the most abuse?
Kelly Clark travels a TON and is a great tester for us—she recently sent in some photos of all her luggage at home since she started riding for Burton. It was pretty much an archive of every colorway we had ever made!
If you were stuck on a deserted island with only one piece of Burton Luggage, which would it be and why?
The Wheelie Sub. You could open it up and sleep in it! Or, use the Double-Down feature to split the bag in half and make yourself a rowboat…