If your next trip is going to look something like this, you really need to make the right choice when it comes to a backpack…
No, not all of those activities are backpack-friendly, and they really aren’t so much the star of the show here, but you better believe that any trip of this sort is going to require a good backpack!
When God Created Backpacks…
When you select a backpack you should keep in mind that not all backpacks are created equal.
Some are designed to fit more inside (like your entire life), while others are prized for their high durability and will hold up against anything weather-wise, and for super long time.
Still others are jam-packed with pockets and compartments to the Nth degree, while others have features you might not expect, if you aren’t a backpacker – like wheels.
So when you choose, be sure to choose according to the kind of usage you want from it, and the kind of trip you are planning.
Consider the activity you will use it for, as well as the weight and volume of the stuff you want to carry.
Think about when you might need to carry them, and for how long.
This aspect of planning a trip is certainly as important as planning out the budget of the trip itself.
While some don’t mind getting “lost”, others prefer to plan it out. We are more the planner types here at Beach Baby!
Although backpacks are often the choice for cross country or back country travellers vs a piece of luggage, nowadays, if you want to skip the lines at the airport while waiting for your luggage, a backpack can be your best friend.
Types of Travel Backpack
These are traditional backpacks, and in my opinion the best travel backpacks if you travel a lot.
A soft backpack can be put on shoulders, and you are good to go.
Make sure you buy one with the waist belt, as that helps to lessen the burden on your shoulders, and may avoid back pain if you are carrying it for a long time.
They come in both front loading and top loading models. So take your pick according to your convenience.
When to buy Soft backpack:
- You are going backpacking in the countryside, and you are physically fit to carry your bag on your shoulders.
- The terrain you are travelling across may not be feasible to carry wheeled luggage.
- You do not want to check in luggage at the airport.
- You travel light, and do not want to bring breakables home.
- You do not mind carrying a separate day bag for your handy items.
When not to buy Soft backpack:
- If your travel includes long hours of carrying your luggage. So buy a wheeled backpack, unless you want to go soul searching like ‘Into The Wild’. Better opt for rolling backpacks if you are not going across the countryside, and you have to keep your luggage by your side for a long time.
- If you want to check in your luggage, they are not a good option for you. You might need quite a few locks to manage the safety of the zips. Plus the way the baggage is handled, you may just pray for the safety of your belongings.
Internal Frame Backpacks
For those long journeys when you are travelling alone or with fellow travellers, and you want to be able to carry your own baggage for long distances.
Internal frame backpacks come with an internal support structure that helps balance the weight on your hips, and takes support from shoulder straps, thus making it easy to carry them for a long journey.
When to buy Internal frame backpack:
- For long journeys when you have to carry your own baggage.
- You weigh comfort more than money, as these bags can be expensive as compared to normal backpacks.
When not to buy Internal frame backpack:
- Uncomfortable to carry on airplane, as they might not fit every overhead bin because the internal structure makes it hard to squish them.
- You have a small frame (physically), as most of these bags are on the longer side.
Rolling backpacks have great features of both worlds.
They give you both the flexibility of travelling with wheeled baggage, and carrying your baggage on shoulder straps when required.
When to buy Rolling backpack:
- if you are ready for the tradeoffs of comfort, with having to carry the added weight of wheels and retractable handle.
- if you carry your baggage for a small amount of time, and roll it most of the time.
When not to buy Rolling backpack:
- if you pack to eat up every inch of space available in your bag, as the wheels and handle may take up a lot of internal space in rolling backpacks.
- if you will be carrying your baggage most of the time.
Congratulations! The difficult part is over. Now you know what kind of bag you want for your travelling needs.
Consider the features you want in your backpack. Do not overwhelm yourself with features, just look for basic ones that you will need.
Weigh comfort more than usability in backpacks.