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The Lifeventure Money Belt is a belt with a difference. Stitched onto the inside is a small zipped pocket, for storing valuables in.
** Availability **
The Lifeventure Money Belt is available from £8 - £10 online, at places like Gear Zone, Ready To Leave and Complete Outdoors (in-store here as well as online). It is available in two stripy colour options - Sand or Olive.
** My experience **
I have the belt in the Sand colour and it looks really attractive. It is quite wide, at nearly 4 cm, so I'd say it is more suited to men than women. However, it's not the sort of thing that gets teamed with a girly outfit, so I don't think it looks out of place on women.
The belt is really, really long, at 1200 mm. For me, and probably many other women, this means there is a lot of extra belt that gets wrapped twice all the way round to my back. I find that a bit annoying and it adds a fair bit of bulk around my waist as a result. Unfortunately Lifeventure only do this belt in one waist size, which I think is a real oversight as I certainly wouldn't recommend it for anyone with a smallish waist.
The pocket in this belt, is a great idea, and obviously its main selling point, but it's a little disappointing. The actual inside of the pocket is only 2.8cm by 12cm and so it's really not that useful for much. I can fit a handful of coins in there but then it looks really obvious and bulky. It's not quite wide enough for credit cards, or any documents. The only thing that really fits in here is note-form money. In that respect it's handy to store some emergency funds should anything happen to your bag or wallet. I always take a belt with me when I go travelling, and choose this one purely because it has that added bonus. However, I often forget I have money in here, and then put it in the washing machine or get it wet, and so I think if I was in an emergency situation I probably wouldn't remember I had money in there anyway! I think the pocket was a nice idea but has just ended up being a gimmick.
This belt is really well made, as with most Lifeventure products I've tried. The webbing is really tough, it has not got any snags on it (I've had this belt for 3 years and worn it a fair bit), the colour is quite sensible as it does not show marks easily. I've put this in the washing machine and it's come out looking fine. The stitching around the pocket is strong and showing no sign of coming undone. The zip on the pocket works well and does not get stuck. The buckle has not rusted at all even though I've worn this and washed it in seawater. The buckle also slides open and closes really easily, and stays put once it's done up. Over the years the slide buckle has not slackened or mis-shapened, which is more than I can say for most of the slide buckle belts I own.
** Overall **
I'd recommend this belt for men, who I think would have more situations to wear it in than women. I think it's an attractive, well-made belt, but I'm only giving this product 3 stars. I've knocked one star off for the lack of size options. The second star was lost due to tiny nature of the pocket and the limitations this product has in spite of its novel idea.
This review is also posted on Ciao under my userame sbeach000