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December 2018

In the suitcase
of Jen Rubio & Steph Korey,
co-founders of Away

Capucine Plume

Jen Rubio and Steph Korey are co-founders of Away, the American suitcase brand that flies away! Created in 2016, after raising $ 81 million, Away now gives work to 200 people, supplies 40 countries, owns 5 stores in the United States (last one in Chicago)and enters the European market with a new 280 square meter space in London. Their suitcases with simple design and soft colors are made in an unbreakable shell. Guaranteed for life, they offer innovative solutions such as the integrated ejectable battery, a compression system within the cabin to save space, an integrated laundry bag. 500,000 suitcases including Carry On, the first oneof their collection, or the Bigger Carry On, their main product have been sold worldwide. Eager to facilitate travel and provide simple solutions to travelers, the two entrepreneurs give a new nomadic lifestyle, open to the world and engaged. Their first action has been to create a partnership with the association “Peace Direct” which wishes to perpetuate with the means of local actions, peace in the world. Each purchased suitcase participates in this effort. An American dream! It was therefore natural that Plume Voyage asks them an interview “My Suitcase”! (made by email) 

What kind of suitcase do you use? Are you rather balluchon, trunk, suitcase, travel bag, backpack, or without luggage?
JEN RUBIO: I rarely check a bag, especially I travel to multiple destinations or I have tight connections, so my go-to is Away’s Bigger Carry-On in Aluminum, and The Everywhere Bag

STEPH KOREY: My travel uniform is Away’s Carry-on with Pocket in Green and The Backpack in Asphalt, and when I do check a bag (for a ski trip or when I travel for the holidays and bring lots of gifts for family), it’s The Large in Navy—it can fit ANYTHING

Is your suitcase tidy or pell-mell?
JEN RUBIO: The inside of my suitcase is always tidy, but the outside of my luggage (our suitcase in the Aluminum Edition), shows marks, bumps, and stickers from everywhere I’ve traveled with it, which I love because it’s a reminder of all my travel stories

STEPH KOREY: Using packing cubes to organize your suitcase is the best tip I have to keep everything organized—I actually learned that tip from Jen! She swears by them so much that we launched our own line at Away. They’re great because they essentially act as your drawers on-the-go, so you don’t have to waste time digging through your suitcase looking for something

What are the packing essentials for you?
JEN RUBIO: Since I’m often traveling right from the office, to the airport and straight to dinner and drinks when I land, I tend to pack things that are comfortable yet stylish and versatile and that easily transitions from day to night. For me that usually means a tailored blazer—like the one I just got from Blazé Milano that pairs well with everything from a black slip dress to denim—lots of silk blouses, my Balenciaga boots, a vintage leather jacket, and only my most cherished jewelry

STEPH KOREY: I prefer to pack for comfort and necessity, so for me that means a lot of denim, comfortable and casual shoes, and I’m a fan of Theory’s 2.0 crepe knits—they’re perfect for traveling because they’ll never wrinkle. Oh, and a bathing suit, because you never know when you might need one

What are the essentials of your toiletry bag?
JEN RUBIO: I pack travel-sized versions of my favorite toiletries, so I never have to travel without my tried-and-true products. My favorites are CAP Beauty face mist, Vitruvi Balance roll-on essential oils, and IGK dry shampoo

STEPH KOREY: I pack all of my toiletries in my Away Dopp Kit, and I always like to travel with Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser (which now comes in travel size!), Tata Harper face oil,, and I love the Summer Fridays Jet Lag mask for keeping my skin looking hydrated and bright no matter how exhausted I am

Your suitcase transits by plane, boat, car, train, on your back or not at all?
JEN RUBIO: It depends on where I’m traveling, but I travel by plane for work trips since I’m often going from New York to the west coast or Europe. If I’m on vacation in Europe, I love to take the train between cities—you can see so much that way

STEPH KOREY: All of the above! I fly a lot to travel to far away places, but also love hopping in the car to explore areas around NYC. When I’m in Asia, I love taking the train

Your favorite destinations?
JEN RUBIO: My favorite place in the world is Tofino, which is a tiny island off the coast of Vancouver in Canada. I have a deep love for the Pacific Northwest, and Tofino feels like a remote slice of heaven. I also love Marrakech

STEPH KOREY: My husband and I have a home in Nantucket, and we love hosting our friends and family there whenever we can. Most people think Nantucket is a summer destination, but my favorite time of year to visit is in the winter when the whole town is decorated for Christmas and it feels really festive and cheerful

Any tips for travel? A particular habit?
JEN RUBIO: I love doing mini, inflight facials while I’m traveling. A lot of people might feel strange about wearing a face mask on the plane, but the air inside the cabin is really dehydrating, so I think it’s the best time to load up on ultra-hydrating products. I love the sheet masks from Dr. Jart, and I finish with a jade roller along my face, which helps reduce any puffiness

STEPH KOREY: My travel tip for avoiding jet lag is that once I arrive to the airport, I’ll mentally prepare myself for the time zone I’m headed to; I’ll only sleep on the flight if it’s night time where I’m headed, otherwise I’ll plan lots of activities to keep me awake—like reading a book or catching up on Adam Grant’s WorkLife podcast


A travel souvenir?
JEN RUBIO: Hemelhuijs is one of my favorite restaurants in Cape Town, and they serve everything on their own tableware that you can take home with you. I recently purchased a set of mugs that were hand painted by Jacques Erasmus for a friend’s housewarming

STEPH KOREY: A Christmas ornament for our tree! Christmas is my favorite holiday, so I love to bring home a new ornament from every I vacation to so I have a keepsake to remember the trip by

What would be your dream destination?
JEN RUBIO: I’ve been to many countries in Africa, but never Namibia. The salt flats and sand dunes of Sossusvlei look like they’re straight out of a dream or from a surrealist painting. My dream trip is a week off the grid, driving through the Namib Desert and ending in the seaside city of Swakopmund

STEPH KOREY: Harbour Island, Bahamas. Even though I’ve been there a few times, it’s where my husband and I got married so it’s a really special place for both of us, and I’m always excited to go back!

Clever Tips

A short list of items that you use when traveling on the plane:
Noise canceling headphones—a must for the airport
A silk eye mask so I can sleep anywhere
Almonds, in case I get hungry on the flight

An Everlane sweater since it’s usually chilly on the plane
The Slack app on my phone,so I can stay connected to my team and catch up on messages no matter where I am
A hydrating lip balm, like Glossier’s Balm Dotcom



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