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Your cash is safely stashed – until airport security screening. (Carlos Ignacio Roche)
Your cash is safely stashed – until airport security screening. (Carlos Ignacio Roche)

Stop the pickpockets with this belt Add to ...

Stashbelt helps hide your emergency supply of cash and copies of essential travel documents. It’s a pickpocket-proof leather belt that’s also socially responsible.

How it works

Concealed in the belt is a 45-centimetre-long zippered pocket and a compartment that conceals a 4 GB USB drive. Before buckling up, I fold in a dozen bills and load up the stick with scans of my driver’s licence, passport, travel insurance policy, e-tickets and credit cards. The belt is the brainchild of a group of Canadian social entrepreneurs and handmade in small batches in Kenya. Don’t expect the factory-produced perfection of a designer label. The first time I put it on, I struggled with the USB pocket and a sticky zipper; after a few wears, both loosen up, and moving things in and out is smoother.

Pros and cons

There’s an added sense of security knowing that your belt doubles as a portable vault. Unlike a purse or wallet, however, getting to your money on a regular basis isn’t easy. I attract a lot of attention trying to retrieve $10 in a busy café, proof that pickpockets would have a hard time snatching my stash. But going through airport security is nerve-wracking as I keep a watchful eye on my belt as it moves through the X-ray scanners.

Final verdict

More fashionable than a traditional money belt or bulky fanny pack, wear it in markets in Mumbai and museums in Manhattan. Plus, you’re supporting a homegrown endeavour that creates jobs in East Africa. $49.99; stashbelt.ca


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