REVIEW – The wallet market has exploded in the past several years, with the available range of sizes, styles, features, and other features expanding at an incredible rate. Two wallet features in which I am most interested are minimalism and durability. With their TPU-coated polymer materials and minimalist aesthetic and design, Wayfinder has a handful of products that appeared to be promising candidates. Did they meet my criteria? Let’s find out! Gadget on!
What is it?
WAYFINDER is a Portland, Oregon based brand of modern and minimal performance built accessories “for those who live their lives in motion.” The products reviewed here are three styles of minimalist wallets.
What’s in the box?
The Wayfinder products arrived in a white bubble mailer with the “Wayfinder” logo printed in black on the outside. Inside, each of the wallets was enclosed in a very shiny, metallic silver, resealable, Ziploc-type bag, which actually make handy storage pouches for the wallets or other items.
The WAYFINDER items included in the shipment are listed below and shown in the image above:
- FLUX Cardholder
- DAYBREAK Billfold Wallet
- BORDERLESS Passport / Notebook Holder
- LET’S GO “Forest Bath” Notebook
Each of the Wayfinder wallets is made from TPU coated polyester, a material that is waterproof, hydrophobic, resists stretching over time and is machine washable in cold water, and their shape includes rounded corners to minimize “x-ray” wear pattern on clothing. Additionally, for each item:
- Capacity of up to 8 cards / bills via 3 slots
- Dimensions: 2.65 x 4.35 x 1.69 inches (67 x 110 x 4.3 mm)
- Weight: 0.6 ounces (16 grams)
DAYBREAKER Billfold Wallet
- Capacity of around / up to 16 cards, multiple boarding passes, and multiple bills / currency from around the world.
- Dimensions closed: 3.46 x 4.45 x 0.28 inches (88 x 113 x 7.0 mm)
- Dimensions open: 3.46 x 8.90 x 0.13 inches (88 x 226 x 3.4 mm)
- Weight: 1.3 ounces (36 grams)
BORDERLESS Passport / Notebook Holder
- Capacity of 4-6 cards and passport or passport (B7) size notebook
- Dimensions closed: 5.51 x 3.85 x 0.28 inches (140 x 98 x 7.0 mm)
- Dimensions open: 5.51 x 7.95 x 0.09 inches (140 x 202 x 2.2 mm)
- Weight: 1.4 ounces (40 grams)
LET’S GO “Forest Bath” Notebook
- Dot-graph grid inner pages are suitable for writing or drawing.
- Pages are thick enough to write on with a fountain pen on both sides without bleeding and resist yellowing over time.
- Dimensions (inches): B7 / 4.92 x 3.54 x 0.14 inches (125 x 90 x 3.6 mm)
- Weight: 1.2 ounces (34 grams)
- Cover: 300g uncoated cover stock (black) with foil emboss (black)
- Inner cover: printed (white)
- Dot-graph grid: 0.185″ x 0.185″ (4.7mm x 4.7mm) (black)
- Inner: 30 sheets / 60 pages, 90gsm wood free paper (white)
- Saddle stitch binding (white)
Design and features
The FLUX Cardholder is WAYFINDER’s most minimalist wallet.
Each of the WAYFINDER wallets comes with a cardboard sleeve around its outside.
WAYFINDER’S products are designed in Portland, Oregon, USA, and manufactured in China.
The FLUX has a very subtle WAYFINDER logo debossed into its front pocket. Both its front and rear pockets have a slight cutout at the top to allow you to more easily access cards or cash placed in them. Additionally, I should mention that all of the seams on the FLUX (as well as the other wallets in this review) are 100% RF (Radio Frequency) welded/sealed. This is a process that involves bonding materials together through the use of high-frequency electromagnetic energy (radio waves), and is often performed on polymeric or plastic materials, such as the TPU coated polyester material from which each of these three WAYFINDER wallets is made.
The back of the FLUX is bare, devoid of any logos. Minimalism at its finest. Additionally, each of the WAYFINDER wallets reviewed here features rounded corners that not only keep you from getting poked when you handle them, but also cut down on the harsh “X-ray effect” of placing them in your pocket.
Despite being very slim and minimalist, WAYFINDER managed to fit three pockets into it, a front one, as seen above…
…a rear one…
…and a center one, shown above.
As seen in the photo above, the FLUX has an extremely thin profile when empty, just a few millimeters.
The FLUX has a small footprint which contributes to its function as an effective minimalist cardholder/wallet.
One feature of the FLUX that indicates to me that the WAYFINDER design team is on its game is these very subtle cutouts at ends of each of the front and rear pockets. These cutouts profile stress relief when placing items into the pockets, which, in addition to the very stretch-resistant TPU coated polyester material, helps keep the ends of the pockets from ripping. In the photo above, you can also see the RF welded/sealed seam along the FLUX’s outer edge.
In the photo above, I am showing items I typically carry in my EDC wallet: 6 cards and 4 bills (again, I tend to carry fairly minimalist).
The above and below photos show the FLUX with the items above placed into it. I placed three of the cards in the front pocket, three in the rear pocket, and the four bills in the center pocket, folded in half.
All of the cards fit perfectly into the front and rear pockets, though I don’t think there would have been room for more without overloading it.
As seen from above, even with the items I placed into the FLUX, it still remained quite slim.
I’d also add that the TPU-coated polyester material has a bit of texture to it, which both provides some grip and also feels tactile to the touch.
DAYBREAKER Billfold Wallet
The DAYBREAKER is WAYFINDER’s more traditional wallet, a bifold-style, billfold wallet.
Like the FLUX, the DAYBREAKER comes with a cardboard sleeve around its outside.
Also, like the FLUX and in keeping with the minimalist styling, the DAYBREAKER includes a subtle WAYFINDER logo debossed into its front.
And also like the FLUX, the rear of the DAYBREAKER is bare, in keeping with the minimalist theme.
The DAYBREAKER has a bit more complex design than the FLUX, due to it being a bifold-style, billfold wallet. It has a bill pocket that runs the length of the wallet, and two opposing card pockets, one on each side. In addition, you can see three lines running vertically near the center of the DAY BREAKER, which are intended to help the wallet fold in the correct location.
Each of the two card pockets has a few very clever, subtle, effective features to note. First, the pockets have a slight cutout to their opening, similar to the outer pockets of the FLUX, which allows you to grab cards placed in the pockets a bit easier. Second, either end of the opening of the card pockets includes small corner notches similar to the FLUX, which provide strain relief and helps keep the pockets from tearing when placing items in it. Third, there is a very small RF welded rectangle located in the top middle of each pocket. This very slightly decreases the width of the pocket to help keep cards secured into it.
As mentioned above, the DAYBREAKER has a large main pocket that runs its entire length that is intended to hold bills, which it does well. In fact, the depth of this pocket fits currency from all across the globe, from narrower US bills to wider Euros and so on.
Unloaded, the DAYBREAKER is quite thin because, let’s face it, there just aren’t many layers to it.
In the photo above, I am again showing items I typically carry in my EDC wallet: 6 cards and 4 bills.
I placed the four bills in the main bill pocket and split the six cards evenly between the two pockets.
Everything fit quite well and I liked having quick access to the bills and not having to fold them in half.
Loading the DAYBREAKER with the items above did, of course, increase its thickness, but not appreciably so.
The DAYBREAKER has a relatively smallish footprint that is probably on par with most bifold-style, billfold wallets, or maybe slightly smaller.
BORDERLESS Passport / Notebook Holder
The BORDERLESS is WAYFINDER’s minimalist passport/notebook holder.
As with the FLUX and DAYBREAKER above, the BORDERLESS comes with a cardboard sleeve wrapped around its exterior.
The BORDERLESS has a similar WAYFINDER debossed logo on its front…
…and nothing on its rear, for a true minimalist style.
The interior of the BORDERLESS features two pockets on the left side that can be used for credit cards, business cards, folded bills, and so forth. These top and bottom pockets are separated by a long RF weld. The right side of the BORDERLESS has a single long pocket.
Like the FLUX and DAYBREAKER, the BORDERLESS is very thin when empty.
The photo above depicts the typical items I might carry on a trip outside the US. It includes 6 cards, 4 bills, and my passport.
All of those items fit easily into the BORDERLESS, as seen above. The passport was a bit of a snug fit, but not prohibitively so.
Loaded, the BORDERLESS bulges slightly on either side of the weld between the card pockets.
I really like the size of the BORDERLESS—its footprint is just large enough for my passport and not much larger, which makes it easier to slip into and out of a pocket in pants or a jacket.
Even loaded up, the BORDERLESS still presents a slim profile, which helps keep the bulk in your pockets to a minimum.
LET’S GO “Forest Bath” Notebook
WAYFINDER also included one of their LET’S GO “Forest Bath” Notebooks.
The LET’S GO Notebook has a similar minimalist style to their wallets, with a black cover and the words “LET’S GO” debossed into the front cover.
The rear of the notebook has a subtle WAYFINDER logo debossed into it.
The feature that makes the LET’S GO a “Forest Bath” Notebook is the info printed on the inside cover, a list of locations around the world in which you can take a “forest bath,” which essentially means “leisurely walking through a forest.” I appreciate and enjoy nature, whether it be hiking, camping, or other activities, so I very much appreciate this concept.
The LET’S GO has dot-grid pages, which is a feature I’ve always liked in notebooks instead of the standard lined pages or simply blank pages. I think the dot grid gives a good balance between more rigid lines and wide-open space.
The LET’S GO Notebook fits perfectly into the BORDERLESS Passport/Notebook cover.
What I like
- Slim profile
- Minimalist, but can still hold the essentials
- Durable: the material is very resistant to water and tears and grips items placed inside it
What I’d change
- Maybe add one more layer of pockets to DAYBREAKER
WAYFINDER’s initial collection of products, including the FLUX Cardholder, the DAYBREAKER Billfold Wallet, and the BORDERLESS Passport/Notebook Holder, has some good things going for it. They each have a very understated style and simple but essential functionality, and they are also quite durable owning to the TPU-coated polyester material with RF welded/sealed seams from which they are made. All of this allows you to go for minimalist EDC, whether you prefer to carry a few cards, more of a traditional wallet, or a passport for travel, and feel confident that the WAYFINDER product you choose will last a long time and look good doing it.
- FLUX Cardholder $36.00
- DAYBREAKER Billfold Wallet $59.00
- BORDERLESS Passport / Notebook Holder $49.00
- LET’S GO “Forest Bath” notebook $3.50 (3-pack $10.00)
Where to buy: wayfindercarry.com
Source: The sample of this product was provided by WAYFINDER.