As technology advances, criminals are finding new ways to steal your stuff. Not physical things like phones or money, but identities and data. If you’re travelling, your credit card and passport can be at risk from data thieves who are able to remotely steal your personal information when you are in an airport, for example.
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology has been around for years, and it’s usually used positively – to track vehicles or for stock control. Thieves with scanners, however, can use it to scan your digital passport or credit cards over the air waves.
Outdoor clothing company Kathmandu has developed a great travel shirt which has an RFID blocking pocket, to keep these items secure.
Kathmandu RFIDtech Men’s Shirt features
- RFID shielded zipped breast pocket
- HeiQ smart temp thermoregulation
- Polygiene odour control technology
- Branded buttons
- Sunglasses/earbuds loop
Kathmandu RFIDtech Men’s Shirt on test
The shirt is a good fit on my shoulders and in sleeve length. I am a medium, and nearly always have to roll long sleeves up, as they are too long. These are just right. There are buttoned tabs for when you do want to roll your sleeves up (and keep them up), which is nice.
Although made from 100% Ecoya nylon, the shirt feels soft and cotton-like. The blue version looks a bit like chambray denim from a distance, and the overall appearance is smart.
I’ve been wearing this a lot through the summer in the UK, and also on a recent trip to Greece, where the temperature was around 30 degrees centigrade. The shirt always felt cool in those temperatures, and even though I did sweat a bit, the fabric wicked it away quickly. In air conditioned environments though, the shirt felt warm and cosy – so I was pretty impressed. It’s all down to HeiQ Smart Temp technology, which is triggered by rising body heat. As your skin gets warmer, the shirt cools you. Once the cooling is complete, it stops. It’s a more efficient wicking system, and works best when the shirt is worn next to your skin, so wouldn’t perform so well if you were wearing a vest or T-shirt under the shirt.
There are two pleated breast pockets, with buttons. I’d have preferred if these had been pop studs as the buttons were sometimes difficult to operate, but the zipped shielded pocket was easy, and so long as you don’t overfill it, then it’s fine. The zip opening is the exact height of a UK/European passport, so a tight fit unless you put the document in short end first. There is no danger of anything falling out, as the pocket is lower than the zip opening though.
The fabric has a Polygiene shield, which means that odours don’t build up as quickly, and so means you don’t need to wash the garment as often. When you do wash it though, it dries really quickly, and providing you hang it up while still wet, you don’t even need to iron it (much).
There’s a wee loop on the front of the shirt where you can hang your sunglasses, but I used it to tame my earbuds wire.
This is a decent, lightweight travel shirt that will suit casual and formal occasions – cool in the heat of the sun, but warm enough for an al fresco meal under the stars.
Kathmandu RFIDtech Men’s Shirt S-XL in blue marl or olive grey: £69.99