The Ekster Parliament is good, BUT NOT GREAT

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I have been using Ekster’s products for quite a while now! The brand gifted me their Carbon Fiber Cardholder (along with their key case) a little over a year ago, and they were fantastic, leaving them near the top of my list of best wallets.

A year later, I wanted to try out a wider range of their products, so I asked if they’d be open to sending out their Parliament and the aluminum cardholder for me to check out, and they did!

What is the Ekster Parliament?

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  • One of my favorite cardholders
  • The leather feels great.
  • Reasonably priced
  • Perfect for those who want leather on their wallets
  • This minimalist wallet is THICK!
  • The cardholder is a plastic.
  • Capacity is sacrificed for leather.
  • Dimensions: 0.4" by 2.5" by 4.1"
  • RFID Blocking: Yes
  • Card Capacity: 1-9 cards
  • Cash Organization: Strap & Pocket
  • Coin Storage: No
  • Weight: 92 grams
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05/19/2024 08:03 am GMT

The Parliament is quite similar to the cardholder that I am used to, in that it has a push button trigger that quickly frees up to six cards out of the top of the wallet. 

However, outside of that portion, the Parliament is a completely different idea. The exterior of the wallet is wrapped in a leather sleeve that gives you many of the features of a bifold wallet (with a flap that opens up), that has additional card slots, along with cash storage via a cash strap on the interior of the wallet, as well as the rear of the wallet.

What do I like about it?

1. One of my favorite cardholders

There’s no way around it, but Ekster has it figured out when it comes to an easy-to-access cardholder. The trigger mechanism on the bottom of the wallet is easy to use (with great ergonomics), and up to six cards are fanned out in front of you (that are also easy to access individually).

I have yet to find another cardholder type that gives you quite as good of access to your most used cards as what Ekster offers in all of their wallets. If that is what is important to you, look no further than this or their cardholder (I’d probably recommend the cardholder), but we’ll get into that later.

2. The leather feels great.

This leather wallet feels great! Leather is, and always has been, one of the best materials for a wallet when it comes to how it feels. It’s soft and doesn’t poke you in the leg when you move around like metal wallets do. I have no complaints when it comes to quality of the leather, and it will likely hold up to years of wear and tear, and even get better with age.

3. Reasonably priced

Even with all of the leather in this wallet, it is still reasonably priced (at least in comparison to other high-end wallets like this). In fact, its on par with their other base-model wallet, the Aluminum cardholder. Which makes it a fantastic alternative, if you prefer leather.

4. Perfect for those who want leather on their wallets

Not everyone is quite so willing to let go of their bi-folds and tri-folds for a fully metal wallet. If that sounds like you, but you still want the easy access to your cards, this is an amazing alternative. It’s going to feel very much like what you are used to, but gives you a trigger activated cardholder for that functionality.

What do I NOT like about it?

1. This minimalist wallet is THICK!

Now, the #1 thing I don’t like about this wallet is just how thick it is. Ekster is touted as being a minimalist wallet, that helps you get rid of bulk out of your pockets. However, this just isn’t reflected in the Parliament. Right out of the package its bulky, even before you put anything in it.

The leather is a padded leather, which adds bulk. The leather wrapping the cardholder adds bulk, and the only way you can completely close the wallet to a flat state is if you don’t have any additional cards in the leather wallet flap. Not to mention each card slot is seperated by its own leather, adding more bulk (wich to be fair, saves your cards from wear and tear).

Regardless, for a minimalist wallet, this thing is considerably thicker than it should be. Because of this one thing, I would recommend you purchase their Aluminum Cardholder (I’ll link that here when I finish that review), which is a similar price, but has a higher capacity, with a thinner profile. If you want leather, the Senate is going to be the better option (Paid Link).

2. The cardholder is a plastic.

I enjoyed the Carbon Fiber Cardholder and the Aluminum Cardholder from Ekster because of their material quality. The Cardholders felt great in the hands, and you knew they wouldn’t break or crack with wear. However, the Parliament hides their cardholder portion with leather, but behind that leather is a plastic cardholder (rather than aluminum).

I’m sure this is to make the Parliement a similar price point to their base model aluminum holder, but it cheapens the product in my mind and pulls the brand down for me rather than build it up.

3. Capacity is sacrificed for leather.

One of my other favorite things about Ekster’s Cardholder is their capacity! Outside of the Senate, these wallets can handle up to twelve or more cards (six in the cardholder and six or more behind the expansion plate). The Parliament can hold the same six in the cardholder, but only two in the wallet flap, and maybe one behind the wallet.

While that may be upward of nine cards, those additional cards being stored result in the flap not being able to lay flat any longer and ends up being considerably thicker than it needs to be.

Who is it for?

If you are someone that is a diehard leather wallet fan, and you are willing to sacrifice on bulk, then this wallet is for you (Paid Link)! It is about as close as it gets to your traditional bifold, while still offering the features of a trigger activated cardholder.

However, if you are looking for a truly minimalist wallet experience, I would steer clear of htis one, and get their Aluminum Wallet instead (or a veriety of different materials).

Ekster is an amazing brand, with so many fantastic products, I just don’t quite understand the Parliament. I know many people own it, and enjoy it, but I think there are better products in their lineup that work better than this one here.

Where can you buy it?

The Ekster Parliament can be purchased in quite a few different places! However, the two I’d send you over to is the brand’s website itself. They tend to offer quite a few special deals, discounts, and more.

If you are someone who isn’t a fan of buying directly, then these wallets are sold on Amazon as well. However, they generally are a bit more expensive.

I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
05/19/2024 08:03 am GMT
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