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Luggage review

Just returned from 2 fun weeks in Italy with an extra few pounds on me. I am reviewing 3 travel pieces here. Note: I am middle aged, a bit stout, and just under 5'5".
RS Appenzell pack. My middle school daughter used this for her luggage. With 1 medium Ebags packing cube and a few smaller cubes, this pack worked well for her (planes and trains). She stuffed it with some extras beyond the necessities. We also used this as a family daypack and lugged it all around Scotland for 2 weeks. It is a good, durable, straight forward bag for the price. A good value.
Merrell Rouge: This has become my favorite day pack for size, comfort, and features. It's small for my 6' tall husband, but perfect for me. Good value for the cost.
Ebags etech 2 .0 Junior Bag. This is my favorite travel bag now. Very good organization, works well with medium and slim line (ebags)cubes and eagle creek full tube cube. Place for travel documents, first aid kit, cell phone, keys, etc.. I can pack 5-6 days worth of casual Summer clothes with no problem. I don't pack extra shoes. (I could though.) The junior size fits me very well and is comfortable. Durable fabric and zippers. Very good value.

Posted by
19118 posts

I, too, have an eTech Weekender Jr. I haven't used it yet but I've trial packed it, and I like it. It's a little smaller than my (Outdoor Product) Essential Carryon; I like that. As I learned to pack lighter, my OPEC bag was only half full and sagged. The eTech bag has cinch straps, so I can "tighten" the load. Plus it had a sternum strap, so I don't have to constantly hold the shoulder straps to keep them from sliding off. Lastly, it has a waist belt. I never thought the weight on my shoulders was too much, but the waist belt does put it entirely on my hips. The eTech bag is 14 oz heavier than the OPEC bag, but I'm willing to compromise to get the other features.

Posted by
1194 posts

If you want to go even smaller you might try the Patagonia Lightweight Travel Tote. It is 22 L which is more than enough for a summer trip. It has hide-away shoulder straps, sternum straps, and a hip belt. It comes in at 14 oz (0.4 kg). Yes, under a pound! I bought mine on sale for $59 - it regularly sells for $79.

It works great as a day pack too.

I'm starting to get fanatic about this bag. The more I use it the more I like it.

Posted by
1866 posts

The Patagonia bag looks interesting. It has nearly the same volume as the RS Appenzell pack - just with different organization. I would have to trial pack the Appenzell bag to see if 22L volume is enough for me. It may be. My Merrell rouge bag has only about 15 liter volume and is lightweight which makes it a good daypack for my somewhat short and stout frame. There are a couple things I wish were different about the rouge, but the positives outweigh the nit picky negatives.

Posted by
67 posts

I used my Appenzell bag with ebags slim packing cubes on my last two trips. I got two on sale years ago and they are often our goto bags when we want to travel hands-free. I tend to use mine for short trips but I have used it for a casual weeklong trip. It is indeed sturdy and an especially good deal on sale. I know it is advertised as a day bag but I find it too large for my daily essentials and prefer a baggallini crossbody bag for that. The Appenzell forces me to pack even lighter - and that's a good thing.