My first award of re-thinking goes to the  suitcase on wheels. Here is mine battered and beaten and I wouldn’t want to travel without it. Ever since man has moved from place to place and took his belongings with him some sort of luggage was used. The amazing part of the story is that the invention of the wheel  did not change the technology of suitcases until 1989.

The little history

“No one is going to pull a suitcase by the end of a strap” – that is what Bernard Sadow was told when he towed his prototype of a piece of luggage on wheels. This was 1972, and no one knew from luggage on wheels. Fast forward to 1989, when not only the world changes through the fall of the Berlin wall, but also through the improvements made on luggage.

While flying big jets worldwide for Northwes Airlines, Robert Plath got tired of lugging his case cases through the world’s airports and decide he needed one thing in the worst way: a compact carry-on bag with wheels! None existed at the time. Instead, many travelers were strapping their carry-on bags to metal carts and lugging them onto planes. Or tossing garment bags over their shoulders. I remember both! Plath devised a vertical carry-on bag with wheels and an extendable handle. The rest is history…

TravelPro, the company he founded when the first orders started coming in, earned a place on the Inc. 500 in just 3 years. He had changed the way suitcases are built and with that possibly the economics of travel. Sadow had started to define the problem of lugging in a new way and had gone most of the way to solving it. Plath finally presented the world with a solution no one will want to do without anymore.

I have been told that the thing to have now, is a suitcase that rolls on four wheels. Lugging a case has never been as effortless,  as dacing with Audrey Hepburn, my friend says…