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Carry On Backpack Suggestions

Hi, I'm looking for a backpack to travel with. I fly with only a carry on and want to make the switch to a backpack. I've been looking at the Osprey Farpoint 40 but it looks huge (I'm 5'2 and maybe 100 pounds) Here's what I'm looking for:

-Carry on sized. 25-35 L
-panel loading
-sternum AND hip straps
-around 2 pounds (or less is even better!)
-one lockable zipper.
-converts to a duffle
-not more than $150 (i guess this is flexible for the PERFECT bag haha)
-bonus if it's wheeled too (I don't actually think this exists)

What i don't particularly need:
-laptop compartment
-rain cover

Any suggestions?

Posted by
19170 posts

"-around 2 pounds (or less is even better!)
"-bonus if it's wheeled too"*

I've never seen a wheeled bag at 2# or less.

thanks for the suggestions. i'll take a look at those bags.

Lee - agreed although I would consider a heavier bag if it were wheeled, with all of my other requirements. either way i dont think such a bag exists.

Posted by
976 posts

Was given that exact Osprey this Christmas and thought it was too big, till I tried on many other packs at REI and Whole Earth Provision Co. It is so different than my Kelty which I also love but the Kelty is not as sleek.
Try some on- I am 5'3" and was afraid of looking like a turtle with the Osprey, but that was groundless fear, lol.. I kept the Osprey for the protection of the items inside with the straps and the front "wings".
I also have the $29 Campmor which gets used often with cubes or giant ziplocs. I bought two packs ten years ago and a strap broke 2 summers ago just as getting in the car to airport; tossed everything in the other Campmor- still good.

Posted by
15694 posts

This bag doesn't have everything you want but is close:

Eagle Creek Lync International Carry On

The bag comes apart for storage. It also can be removed from its frame and carried as a backpack alone. It's less than two pounds without the frame.

Shop around. You might find the bag on sale.

Posted by
32266 posts


This bag would seem to tick most of the boxes on your list, except for the price......

The weight for the models made with Halcyon fabric is 2 lbs, 6 oz and for the Denier nylon 2 lbs, 14 oz. They can be carried as a Backpack, with a shoulder strap or by the handles, and are designed to fit carry-on regulations in most cases. They also have standard Backpacks which don't convert to Duffles. All of their products are made in the U.S. (Seattle) and they're as tough as nails and should last a lifetime.

Good luck with your choice!

Posted by
3210 posts

Some great suggestions given. I switched to Rick's convertible pack years ago and it's stood me well on 12 long trips. The reason I mention it, though it has no sternum strap, it is on sale until Sunday for $80 and includes a set of packing cubes. You can upgrade with an over the shoulder strap for $10. Check it out!

Posted by
11613 posts

There is a rolling backpack, but it starts out pretty heavy, and the wheels might not be so comfortable if you are wearing it as a backpack.
I bought one once, never used it as a backpack after I tried it on.

Posted by
19170 posts

Here (etech 2.0 Weekender Junior) is a panel load convertible with sternum and hip straps for less than $100. I've tried it on packed, but not traveled with it. I like it.

It weighs over 2# (2# 11oz). I'm not sure you will find one with sternum and hip straps under 2#. It also has cinch straps on the side to tighten the load. The Essential Carry-on is the lightest panel load convertible I know (it weighs 1¾#), but it doesn't have the extra straps.

Posted by
23 posts

I have an Osprey Farpoint 40. Something to keep in mind is that they come in two sizes and the S/M (which is what I have) is actually 38L rather than 40. I love it.

Posted by
19170 posts

" ... it is bigger than you requested at 41L"

Ginger, not sure how you get that. They give the capacity as 2727 cu in, but that would be fully stuffed. The outside volume based on 19" x 13.75" x 9" is 2351 cu in or 39 liters. Assuming the nylon takes up about 100 cu in, then the inside capacity without exceeding the stated dimensions is about 37 liters.

It's also a little heavier than she wants.

They don't give a weight for the Continental Travel Pack. To me that means that the weight is NOT a selling feature (not when the eTech bag is only $60). Other than that and the price, it looks almost ideal (I don't NEED a waist strap).