Aeroe Limited, a complete newcomer to golf, made quite a splash in their debut at the recent PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando. That’s where they showed off the GolfPod—a hard shell travel cover and cart/trolley golf bag all in one.

So, what’s the big deal with this travel product?

The GolfPod’s feature/benefit proposition is refreshingly simple: Why bother with two products when one will do?

This futuristic-looking case weighs 15 pounds. You can load it up with clubs, balls, tees, umbrella, rain suit, shoes, water bottle, etc. and, Aeroe Limited claims, it will still come in under the airline’s 50-pound weight limit for checked baggage. They also say it doesn’t qualify as oversize luggage, so it can be dropped off and retrieved along with your regular suitcase. It’s “virtually indestructible,” eliminating the horror of arriving at your destination with a driver that’s been snapped in two in transit. It’s ostensibly waterproof (a big plus on a links course). And it’s easy to maneuver—whether that’s from airport baggage claim to your rental car or, more important, from the car to the course.

How does it work?

Aeroe_GolfPod_on_carObviously, I haven’t had a chance to give it a whirl yet. But I did get to lay hands on it at the show and, I must say, it’s quite slick. Old-school hoofers who insist on carrying their bags will turn up their noses at the GolfPod. But it just might suit those who walk and use a push cart/trolley (like me) or ride on a cart/buggy.

If I have a concern, it’s with the interior storage cubbies. They seem a tad small to accommodate the multiple layers of clothing you invariably need to have with you at all times to counter the auld country’s variable weather.

Also, unlike a conventional travel cover, the GolfPod won’t be much help as a fallback position when you can’t fit all of your non-golf stuff in your suitcase. But perhaps that’s a good thing. After all, this overflow issue usually only arises when: 1) I’m traveling with my wife; 2) we’ve accumulated a bundle of souvenirs during our journey; and 3) we need to transport them back home. “We can just stuff it in the golf bag,” she’ll say as she makes her way to the gift shop’s nearest cash register. If the GolfPod nips those expenditures in the bud, it’ll pay for itself—many times over.

Beyond all that, I’m inclined to root for a company that’s come up with something that’s genuinely different and actually makes sense the more you think about it (hopefully that’s how many of you view this blog). Perhaps that’s why Golf Digest named the GolfPod one of its “Editor’s Picks” at the PGA Merchandise Show.

These clever Kiwis just might be on to something.

Where can I buy it?

Unfortunately, that’s still a work in progress. Aeroe Limited has a US distribution partner in place and will begin shipping the GolfPod there in early fall. Availability in other countries will follow.

Aeroe_GolfPod_verticalIs it worth the dough?

The company has set the suggested retail price at $599. They’ll also offer a $199 device that will allow you to attach the GolfPod to a car’s roof rack, thus freeing up the vehicle’s interior for people and suitcases.

Clearly, the Golf Pod not for the faint of wallet. But if you travel by air with your sticks once or twice a year, it’s definitely worth a look. Based on the quality of its construction, you should get several seasons out of it.

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Overall Rating (Ace high to Double Bogey low): Eagle

For more guidance on golf travel, go to www.weeeggmon.com.