Primarily designed for touring, travel packs can also, at a pinch, be used on the trail.
Sturdy and strong, zips should be usable even when the pack is bursting at the seams. Dual-zip pulls allow them to be locked together.
More often than not, a simplified version of a tramping-pack harness, and stowable for ease of transport.
Handles and straps
Top and side handles allow for easy pick-up from airport carousels and loading into cars and buses. There should also be a removable shoulder strap to provide an alternative carrying option to using the harness.
Large capacity packs can go as high as 90-litres, with detachable daypacks thrown in. Smaller capacity packs can be carried in the cabin. Some packs zip open like a suitcase while others provide access through the top just like a tramping pack. Zip pockets with organiser pouches for essential items should be easily accessed without opening the pack’s main compartment. Magazine and tablet/laptop pockets keep your travel entertainment close to hand.
Travel packs are designed to take a beating. Durable high-denier nylon, canvas, polyester and ripstop fabrics offer years of service.
These sturdy bags do a great job of hauling lots of gear – whether for an expedition or just loaded with your clothes. They perform less well as a tramping pack.
Wheeled luggage is ideal for those who won’t be backpacking. Look for large wheels for easy rolling across uneven ground.
Now you know what to look for, it’s time to choose a travel pack.