Choosing Your Travel Backpack

Backpacking holidays are seen as a rite of passage for young adults, allowing them to explore the world on a shoestring budget. Trekking through Thailand, discovering Vietnam or hiking in New Zealand… whether it’s just for a couple of months or a full gap year, it’s important to make sure that you have a bag that can fit all of your stuff and be carried comfortably.

If you’re about to embark on an exciting backpacking holiday, keep reading for our guide on how to choose the perfect bag for your adventure!

Front Loader vs. Top Loader
No, we’re not talking about washing machines here – travel backpacks can be split into two design categories: top loaders and front loaders. Top loaders have their opening at the top of the bag, which is typically pulled together with a drawstring and covered with a flap. While it sure does look the part, the issue with this bag is accessibility. You will not be able to easily pull out any item, especially if it’s near the bottom, so expect to waste a lot of time unpacking and repacking.

On the other hand, front loader backpacks are better because they open up across the main section like a suitcase, allowing you to easily access everything inside. Many people agree this is the best choice for travelling as it’s also much more secure than a top loader and will generally feature lots of compartments that make organisation easy.

To avoid over packing, we recommend going into a store and actually trying a backpack on to see how it works with your body size and shape. While it is tempting to get the largest backpack on offer so that you can take everything you could ever need, it’s likely that you won’t need half of it all and will spend your holiday complaining about your heavy pack. Avoid getting a bag that’s over 80L as these are designed for hikers who need extra space for camping gear. Remember that you can always buy any necessities along the way!

When carrying around so much weight, it’s critical that your back is supported. Look for models that have padded straps across the shoulders, chest and hips that will distribute the weight across your largest muscle groups. It’s important that these are amply padded and sit comfortably. Most backpacks will also have an internal support frame to keep the bag in shape and help your posture, but keep an eye out for a pack with lumbar support as well – the curved back will keep your spine in a neutral position. Or, think about getting a hybrid model that also has wheels so you can give your back and shoulders a break from time to time.

There are many other aspects to consider when purchasing your backpack, but finding the perfect backpack for you can be easy with the help of luggage experts such as the team from Bags To Go. Find your nearest store here to get prepared for your backpacking adventure!

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