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The LuminAid PackLite 16 emergency and utility solar lantern from LuminAid is an inflatable solar-powered light that was originally designed to provide disaster relief for dangerous nighttime conditions following the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. LuminAid lights have since been used across the globe as part of the Give Light, Get Light programme, and the company has worked with non-governmental organizations such as UNAIDS and Médecins Sans Frontiers to distribute a clean, safe and renewable source of light to those most in need.

The LuminAid PackLite is a great idea for campers, hikers and backpackers too. When deflated, it folds down into a small, lightweight package that can be charged up during the day to provide a light source that will last all night.

We tested a LuminAid PackLite lantern during a weekend of camping. The lantern is quick to inflate and works straight out of the pack. It has four settings: three different light strengths and a flashing light. On its brightest setting there’s easily enough light to read by, while the low light setting is great for keeping on during the night. This can help prevent you from tripping over guy ropes and also makes it easier to locate your tent in the dark! It’s waterproof too – so will give you a safe source of light even in wet weather.

What we love about the LuminAid PackLite is its versatility, and we immediately thought of several situations besides camping in which it would be extremely useful. The low setting would work well as a nightlight for young children when staying in a hotel room. It could be hooked onto a backpack to be used in flash mode if in an emergency when out hiking. And having one on standby on your home is a sensible idea – no more scrabbling for torches or candles in the event of a power cut!

There are three different LuminAid designs to choose from – including the fun, multi-coloured Spectra lantern that shines in eight different colour modes. If you want to give the gift of light to those in need you can opt for the Give Light, Get Light package, which includes a donation to sponsor a light that will be distributed to an individual in need.

Luminaid PackLite 16