Please sign in to post.

Appenzell day bag--opinions?

I'm considering purchasing the Appenzell day bag as a carryon/1-2 day travel bag. Unfortunately, all the reviews I've seen are from sites that used to sell RS bags, and refer to a previous model. I'd like to be able to use it as an underseat bag, but would most likely throw it in the overhead if packed full.

The convertible backpack looks a bit larger than what I'd like for this purpose, but may consider it depending on durability. From what I'm seeing, these bags seem to be a little "light" in terms of their material, and I need bags that hold up over time. Any comments appreciated!

I have an Appenzell bag from 5 years ago. I really like the bag. It makes a fine large "family" daypack or a pack for 3 days of stuff. I wore it all over Scotland. Since then, my middle school daughter uses it for her main travel bag with packing cubes. It's about 18" long. It's comfortable to wear. It has a good rain flap over the zipper of main compartment which worked well in Scotland. It's nothing fancy, but it functions well.

Posted by
961 posts

I have both of these bags, the convertible purchased in 2015 and the Appenzell in 2016.

The convertible backpack is quite a bit larger than the Appenzell. I use it as my main carry on for trips to Europe. Although I packed carefully and used compression bags last time, it held all of the stuff I needed for a long winter trip.

The Appenzell is a nice bag and I can use it for a week long trip if I'm not having to carry a bunch of other stuff. It would be ideal as a smaller travel bag for trips lasting a couple of days. I wouldn't want to carry it around as a day bag on my back all day - just too big for that. It does not zip open fully so I like to use a packing cube and just slide it down in after I have it filled. It would be a perfect under seat bag.

The material for both of my bags is the same and it seems sturdy enough to me. Both bags have been on multiple trips of different kinds and still look brand new.

Posted by
184 posts

I feel that it's a little large for use as an actual day bag. It does work well for an overnight or weekend bag though, since that is what it sounds like you are looking for. I packed it quite full my first time using it and was not able to fit it under the seat on an Icelandair flight. Mind you, it was FULL! The quality seems good though and it sounds like it would work for your purposes. I also have the convertible backpack and that is large enough for longer travel, so it would most likely be more bag than you need for a couple of days.

Posted by
18388 posts

Year ago, as part of my quest for the perfect bag, I bought an Appenzell bag. It hold all of my stuff, just barely, but I'd like a little extra room just in case. My biggest complaint is that it doesn't open "like a book" for ease of packing. I now use it as a gym bag.

Amazon sells a bag with similar volume, but it opens flat for packing and has hideaway straps.

Posted by
155 posts

Lee, I checked out that bag on Amazon and am going to give it a try. It's half the price of the RS model. Thanks!

Posted by
1015 posts

The GoodHope bag weighs more, however - just in case you did not notice.

Posted by
18388 posts

Yes, it weighs more but at 2.2# it's still pretty light. I took that into consideration when I recommended it over the Appenzell bag. I prefer a bag that opens flat. The backpack loading of the Appenzell is really a pain for me.

Posted by
155 posts

I'll report back when I get it (arrives today). And yes, I checked the weight compared to the Appenzell. From the Amazon reviews, it appears that the main knock on the bag is the backpack straps, which look a bit thin and not as ergonomic or well-padded as the RS model. I do like the hideaway feature as well as the fact that the bag can be carried like a duffel over the shoulder, though. I'm kind of a luggage geek, so if it doesn't quite cut it, I'll try the Appenzell.

Posted by
11464 posts

Unfortunetly, the Campmor Essential Carry On, the lightest of all convertible bags, is no more. It has been discontinued. It only weighted 1.75 lbs.

If you do get an Appenzell and use it for luggage - I highly recommend packing cubes. An above poster mentioned the "pain" of packing it. The packing cubes and folders make it much easier. We use Ebags Classic cubes - a medium one and a couple slimline ones. Eagle creek "full tube" cubes (I have the older, rectangular version.) also work. You can use any type of cubes you want. I think the RS "boxy" cubes might be too thick for the Appenzell. (I could test mine out.) There are "cubes" for backpackers like eagle creek and granite gear.

Posted by
68 posts

The Appenzell is a very nice, affordable bag with pros and cons. If you are a very light packer, at about 23 L, it may be all the room you need. If packed full, it will not easily (or at all) fit underseat; I've tried. It becomes too thick front-to-back and a bit too long top to bottom to fit. It's lightweight, but I wouldn't call it durable. It has a very handy vertical pocket which is perfect for the large envelope I use on every trip for paperwork (hotel confirmations, itinerary, etc.). As others have noted, it's really too large for a day bag. You might consider a carry on bag plus a light day pack for your underseat item. For me the Appenzell is a little too small as my carry on bag and too big as a day pack.

Posted by
11464 posts

No you didn't, Lee. Go ahead and try to buy it.

GearBuyer is just an affiliate program that sends you to the retail store to buy. When you click on "Buy It Now," it takes you to Campmor which, of course, is out of stock.

Try it.

Posted by
155 posts

Well, just my luck, I get the Goodhope bag, and the next day, the Appenzell goes on sale. See geek comment above, I ordered it and will "regift" the one I don't want.

The Goodhope bag is nicely sized and pretty solid, though it's canvas, so we'll see how it holds up. Since I'm not hiking the Himalayas with the thing, it's cheap enough to replace should it fail with normal carryon use. As the previous poster said, the front opening is really a lot more convenient than the traditional backpack style opening, so since I'm a big fan of packing cubes, this should be a good feature. The straps, while not substantial, are padded enough to be comfortable with a light to medium load.

As I stated from the top, this bag will be a 1-2 night travel bag, so I don't anticipate overloading either of them, and underseat storage shouldn't be a problem.

Posted by
155 posts

Quick review of the Appenzell: Nice, standard backpack. Looks durable. But this should be advertised as a backpack, not a "daypack". Definitely too big for a daypack.

The shoulder straps are nicely padded and ergonomic. Two bottle holders with adjustable fit, which is great if like me, you carry large water bottles. Laptop compartment, not padded. Plenty of organization pockets. Padded carry handle. And I love the color (Blue Spruce)--understated and attractive.

Bottom line is that this is basically a run of the mill backpack. You could get a similar model from High Sierra at Costco for $20. I'm glad I got it on sale, though $40 is still overpriced. It will be big enough for a 1-2 night trip, and easily fit under an airline seat. A big improvement would be incorporating a trolley sleeve for slipping over a rolling bag handle, as the smaller daypack features.