Consumerism Toxic Custard newsletter

New umbrella (again)

Excuse the radio silence. I’ve had a really bad cold this week.

In our last exciting installment of my quest for a durable, reliable, compact umbrella, I was on my third Senz Mini.

The first had been replaced under warranty, the second lost, and the third… sadly, it has started to fail me. As did M’s one last year.

Leaving aside the lost one, that’s two in four years. That’s really no better than standard $30 umbrellas. It’s not as if I use it every day.

I love the Senz shape, and I know they keep refining the design, but I just can’t keep buying them at $70-80 a pop based on this track record. The larger Senz umbrellas might be fine, but I think the compact/folding ones are just a little too delicate.

So I’ve bought myself a Blunt XS Metro (A$89), the same brolly I bought for M to replace her Senz.

The Blunt coverage isn’t as good due to the shape (the Senz wins out on that). And it’s not compact enough to fit into a pocket when folded. But it looks lovely, and hopefully it’s more durable.

If not I guess I’m just going to give up and buy lots of the cheapies.

Do I need an umbrella at all?

Something in my DNA tells me that, as a dedicated walker and public transport user, I need a good umbrella in my work bag. Perhaps it’s my half-English blood. And growing up in the city of four seasons in one day.

But I do see a significant number of people wandering around Melbourne on grey days without umbrellas. I’ve made sure we have a couple of spares by the front door at home, but my kids almost never use them.

I think for now I’d prefer to keep one handy for rainy days.

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

5 replies on “New umbrella (again)”

Yep, my cheapie umbrellas ($10 from a store that sells Tattlotto tickets) last longer than your more pricey ones. Mine also fits in the bag I take to work (and the footy) so I’m never caught short.
One trick to make it last longer is to hold the stem higher with your hand in windy weather (not down at the handle) Stops it blowing out.

if it is raining hard enough to really need an umbrella, then I don’t walk… it rarely rains both long and hard. Walking around in drizzle, I don’t mind.

As an avid walker/commuter I use waterproofs (pants/jacket), and rarely carry an umbrella. If I do need a brolly, I have an Unbreakable Umbrella – owned it for a few years and it’s superb (but not compact).

I buy cheap compact umbrellas and I mean cheap like $5 from a variety store. They do eventually break or get lost but I’ve had the last one for over a year and it worked even with a few bent and broken spokes that needed a bit of help to fold up. I don’t use it that often but I do carry it in my backpack. Some of the umbrellas I have owned have been ones I have found at work or on rainy days on trams etc.

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