How To Choose The Best Travel Backpack | Part 1: Intro | The Right One Bag Carry-On Pack For You

1:00 – How to use this guide
1:52 – Why use backpacks for travel?
2:11 – #1 Travel backpacks feel freeing
2:50 – #2 Travel backpacks are versatile
3:17 – #3 Travel backpacks provide flexibility

Part 1 (Intro – why backpacks?): (you are here)
Part 2 (Form):
Part 3 (Function):
Part 4 (Aesthetic):

We’re constantly updating the written portion of this guide as new backpacks are released and the travel landscape changes:

Our team at Pack Hacker developed the “How To Choose The Best Travel Backpack” guide in partnership with our friends (and bag experts) at Carryology

Choosing the best travel backpack for one bag carry-on travel can be a tough endeavor. There are so many brands and models to choose from with varying degrees of durability, price, and try-on-ability (we made this word up for trying something out before buying it online). Add varying views and opinions into the mix from folks with different values, needs, and body types—and you’ve got a veritable clusterf*ck of options to wade through. Whether you’re a new traveler gearing up for your first trip, a digital nomad going through a “sell-all-my-stuff-and-put-it-in-a-backpack” phase, or somewhere in between, it’s essential to have the best travel backpack that works for you.

Here’s the bottom line: There is no “best” backpack that is perfect for every traveler in every scenario. However, we believe it is possible for everyone to find a pack that’s perfect for their unique needs. In this guide, we’ll break down the factors we think are most important when choosing the perfect one bag travel backpack for you.

🎶 Tonez&Re-C – Kyoto


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Peak Design Everyday Backpack
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Wandrd PRVKE
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Aer Travel Pack
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Aer Flight Pack
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Mission Workshop Fitzroy
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Minaal Carry-on 2.0
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Patagonia Arbor Pack
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Tortuga Homebase
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View our Full Review:

Magpul Daka Pouches
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GORUCK Padded Field Pocket
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View our Full Review:

Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Cubes
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Timbuk2 Rapid Pack
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Fjallraven Kanken
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oOcitizenOo says:

in my humble opinion Tortuga Outbreaker 35L is the best option to choose for one-bag travel. But it costs as hell, as well as other awesome carry-ons 🙁

Auto Pilot says:

Your video is the most comprehensive detailed review I have ever seen when it comes to travel backpack gear. I am extremely excited to make a wise choice to fit my personal needs. Buying soon! Will visit your web to transact! Thank you for the help!

Gerald Evans says:

I carry the AER Travel Bag in the smoky grey color. I am still working on making it lighter/packing minimum items is a challenge.

MrBelongings says:

I hope you guys don’t leave out tom bihn bags! The s19 is the perfect bag for me. Also I noticed that you seem to talk out the side of you mouth in the first video. It’s a common bad habit that comes up. It is often paired with a slight head tilt. It’s small thing but can be distracting. Not a total deal breaker but eliminating it will help things seem much smoother. Just a small critique, very happy with the thoroughness of the videos so far. Thanks for producing them!

Luke_T_Martin says:

could you review the slicks travel backpack

Tom Wahlin says:

Do you have a favorite one bag travel backpack or have any questions about one in particular before buying it? Let us know in a comment and we’ll do our best to help out! We’re glad you’re here.

Adil Siddiqui says:

Can you review Frenchie Co. Speed Backpack?

Andrew Yip says:

Hi Tom– hoping this might be a good place for me to start…any recommendation for an EDC backpack that would also work for one-bag travel? I currently have an Incase TRACTO Duffel, but it doesn’t carry that great as a backpack per se (and I need a bit more organization for things like laptop/notebook/headphones/chargers/jumprope). Was thinking of a MIssion Workshop Rambler or Mystery Ranch 3-day CL, but pricey without trying first. Thanks!

kizuna101 says:

Who built/designed that peg bag wall for you?! I need one to help organize and display all my bags too!

Steve Muller says:

I bought the Aer Travel Pack because of your reviews and Chase Reeves. The AER Travel and Fit pack are amazing. Thanks again for your great reviews.

Mark Calapine says:

I’m very interested in the Guide’s Edition Synapse 25 from Tom Bihn. I hope you make a video for that.

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