Building on from the designers of DUN Wallets, DUN DUO takes minimalist travelling to a different category, as it aims to improve the way we carry important documents and items. Whether it be flying, on trains or walking to our next destination, the DUN DUO serves as an accessible and clever travel companion; all while looking the part.
As someone who likes to keep all my travel documents in check and all in one place, I couldn’t wait to do-away with the paper envelope that would tear over the course of my travels. It would also get visibly dirty over time and look ragged in the process. The DUN DUO looks to remedy that problem and it makes for a very striking alternative too.
Taking a look around the DUN DUO, it’s a different approach that serves the same purpose – keeping important documents and small valuables together in one place when on the go. Aesthetically wise, it does this very well – the minimalist design, much-aligned to the DUN Wallets I reviewed – using matte black calf leather stitched and tapered at the top and bottom, it feels and holds well in the hands.
The matte silver YKK Excella single-type zippers feature either side that unzip to reveal spacious compartments. The compartments share the same space so it controls how bulky it gets, allowing you to space out your items how ever you like.
The zip-pulls are made from the same calf leather with the logo faintly pressed in. It would have been nice to have it pressed on either side of the zipper for symmetry, much like how the DUN DUO mirrors itself. The stitching is neatly displayed without the threading exposed, but with welcomed detail on the front and back.
As we delve inside the DUN DUO compartments, you’ll find fine stitching put together that feels relatively smooth. There’s little friction upon feeling across the interior surface. So if you’re thinking of putting delicate items inside such as small jewellery or your phone, you can be rest assured it won’t scratch when moving.
There’s a lot of flexibility in what you can carry with you – a passport, flight itinerary, currency, business cards, small wallet, coins, mobile.. you get the picture. And I’ve really enjoyed how it keeps everything together, while separating them to know which side to access from. Like with any one compartment or one-sided wallet, it becomes a small mine field when you need to trawl through the items to find what you need.
I recently took the DUN DUO on my flight to Hong Kong to see if it serves it’s purpose in real-life. I had everything in there – my passport, fight details folded up, coach paper ticket from the airport back to my city, a bulk of Hong Kong dollars and Chinese Yuan. It also held several more of my business cards. This thing was filled to the brim.
Since both pockets share the same compartment, there is some thoughtful organisation required to make sure I could close it relatively comfortably. I placed all the currency in one side to keep the bulk reserved to one and reserved the other to the thinner documents. This generally made it easier to know which side to open. The side access makes it bright and easy to know which document I needed at the time.
As a result, check-in was straight forward as I swapped it in and out with ease. While I could fold the paper-printed ticket within my passport, I had to carefully bend where they tear the ticket to make it fit. It fits in fine, but I had to be extra careful not to tear it myself.
For starters, I felt much more comfortable holding a lot of my important documents and currency within the DUN DUO. Naturally, I would keep this within my bag when stowed away to fly or keep it with me at all times. As a travel wallet, it’s subtle and simplistic design makes it sleek to proud carry, but not attract unwanted attention by flaunting itself.
It goes great with the DUN Wallet, which I still find using as my daily driver and has held up well day-to-day. One thing I would have liked (and may well happen later on) is a black edition to match with the version available for the Dun Wallet. A mate black version fo the YKK zippers and logo would look very sleek, though that’s a matter of preference.
And for those trips when I’m not flying around? For simple commutes on the trains, I still bring it with me, occupying the top, quick-access compartment of my Peak Design Everyday Backpack. From storing my jewellery when I go to the gym or polaroid shots I like to bring with me along other documents to reference, there’s a lot more to the DUN DUO than you may imagine initially.
It becomes more versatile as you find it serves many purposes depending on the type of travel or scenario you find yourself in. Well, that’s what I’ve found. And typically, it’s been one of the better travel wallets that have executed when needed.
If there was something I thought could improve the DUN DUO, it’s the YKK zip track. I’ve found on several occasions to either catch the paper inside if too close, or that the track doesn’t glide as smooth as others. The double type YKK zippers which are thicker (and possibly fewer teeth to connect) may help this. Otherwise, with more uses have found it to improve over time, just not the smoothest at the early stages.
And similar with the DUN Wallet and with minimalist wallets in general, it’s challenging to create a distinct image that captures the soul of the brand. While I like the simple and minimalistic design, I feel little touches to personify the DUO would be welcome. A small compartment inside that lines against the body of the wallet for better care of smaller items is one of my suggestions.
The DUN DUO executes solidly that serves purpose with intent and confidence. It aligns with the minimalistic design and feel that creator Sjoerd van Dam had intended and matches perfectly with the DUN Wallet. The double-sided access is beautiful in idea and approach. And while intended for regular travellers looking for something more design conscious but subtle, it serves a wider set of life context.
The $130 including shipping isn’t something to gawk at but is positioned in the premium end. The price would benefit from being accessible. Overall, you’re getting something that is works and looks remarkably. The DUN DUO is a compelling option for travellers of all kinds to make sure you can ‘Carry What Matters’ with confidence.