Since beginning travelling three and a half years ago, I’ve gone through a lot of gear. Like, pretty sure almost nothing I have now was with me when I began. Fortunately, I seem to keep upgrading to better and better stuff in lighter forms.
Recently I partnered with Standard Luggage Co. who sent me their bad ass carry-on sized backpack to review. It’s always nice when a product is totally awesome to begin with, because you all know me – no bullshit here I’m afraid.
So about the pack. At first glance it’s just a carry-on bag, with handles on the top and side to carry it. It also comes with an optional shoulder strap that can easily be attached. On the back of the pack is a zippered pocket which – surprise! – contains the backpack straps. It’s super easy to set it up as a backpack, or to return it to carrying bag form.
I also love that, unlike most backpacks, this one is front opening. No more digging through the top of a bag to find something that is conveniently located at the very bottom! I find front opening bags so much more convenient, and it makes it easier to keep everything tidy when you’re living in a tiny tent. There are two pockets on the outside, three pockets in the main area, and yet another compartment on the back side with a ton more pockets, and even somewhere to keep your laptop safe and sound. Basically this backpack has everything.
Plus, it comes with a rain fly, which comes in handy when you’re dripping wet at the side of the road hoping someone picks your hitchhiking ass up right quick. The pack is expandable, so it ranges from 35L to 45L – not huge, but enough for most backpackers. Personally, I prefer a larger pack to fit my tent and sleeping bag in, but this size is definitely ideal for a few months’ backpacking trip.
The pack isn’t as light as I’d like it to be, but it’s not bad weight wise – I’m just ultra conscious of weight seeing as I carry my pack so much. I also wish it had hip straps when using it as a backpack, because with only shoulder straps and a chest strap, the weight can really drag down on your shoulders. Again, though, if you’re doing a shorter trip, this pack would be perfect.
Overall I think this is an awesome backpack, and saves you so much time not having to check your bag at the airport. If you’re anything like me, you’re going nuts ready to get outside after a 10 hour long flight, and waiting for your baggage is nothing but a giant pain in the ass. So if you want to avoid this frustration next time, you can buy the pack here!