Although I am dreaming of taking my Vuitton Excelsior cases everywhere with me with my initials printed on it, I have to live with my time and my high-altitude adventures are not suited to this somewhat … colonial and aristocratic lifestyle.
When I went to Asia for the very first time, I opted for the must-have of the cabin bags. We find everywhere, the famous Osprey Farpoint 40. All the nomadic bloggers worship this bag which has become a must in the backpacking community.
O S P R E Y – F A R P O I N T 40
* The fact that it opens like a suitcase is really practical. If you organize your bag with packing cubes, it’s the perfect fit.
* Padded pockets dedicated to computer and tablet
* Small size and good capacity
* That it converts suitcase quite easily by zipping the shoulder straps
* Convenient side handles for quick transport
* The boning of the back and the straps are rather uncomfortable
* The shape doesn’t really suit the spine, you quickly end up with a big bag that gives the effect of a turtle shell.
* No rain cover
→ Verdict: It’s the perfect bag for people who travel by changing transportation and flying a lot (saves valuable time). It is however not adapted to my style of travel but I would take it again without hesitation for a tour of Europe. I highly recommend it for all adventurers who carry a light package, who do not go too much off the beaten track and who remain in homogeneous climates like Southeast Asia.
I picked a bag more suited to my needs, which has a better back boning and with more space to add things collecting along the way. I now have the Lafuma Land Cruiser 60 + 10. I’ve had it for years, I used it to move when I was an expat in Europe.
L A F U M A – L A N D C R U I S E R 60+10
* Many pockets
* Access from above and from the front with a double opening. You don’t have to fully dive into your bag to grab the things at the bottom
* Good weight management on shoulders, back and hips
* Integrated rain cover
* Straps to hang a coat, tent, walking sticks..etc
* A little big so difficult to carry in local buses
* The rain cover was quickly torn
M A R M O T
My foldable bag bought for nothing on Amazon betrayed me in no time so once in Kathmandu, I went in search of a reliable foldable backpack. I was planning to go trekking to the Everest region (picture above). I found this little gem, I do not know its name but I recommend it. A year of continuous hiking later, it is still alive.
*Magically holds a lot of things and compression straps on the sides can still centre the weight.
* Clips at the waist and chest rare thing for a collapsible backpack
* The removable solid sheet who gives a bit of structure and which can be used as a small seat (trust me, I had to wait two hours at night in the middle of the jungle for a bus to come. My butt would have frozen if I didn’t have that small sheet to sit on)
* Solid zippers
→ Verdict: We went everywhere in the Himalayas together and I’m really happy with this bag. It is far superior to all types of foldable bags that I have tested before. Just keep in mind that this type of bag is not made to be used as often. So I switched to a more classic day bag.
P A C S A F E – M E T R O S A F E
I was looking for a good handbag to pair with my big travel bags. To take it out when I’m in town and just need the bare minimum.
This bag is the absolute perfection, I can put so much into it in spite of its small size. I was able to test all its security systems in various situations and I have never been disappointed. In clubs, I attached it to the foot of a table. For parties on the beach, I tied it around a coconut trunk and hide it behind. In the markets in Delhi, everything is locked so no worries about pickpockets. It is a strong dude and matches with any outfit, it is a killer! It is certainly an investment but after two years of use, it is like new.
I am not at all sponsored by the company but I do not really see any flaws to bag.
T H U L E
This year, I chose to bring my brand new computer with me. It is, therefore, an additional risk because it is a costly and fragile object. It is my source of income so I was ready to invest in a quality case. Knowing that I live in altitude, that I go through extreme temperatures and that the transports can sometimes be rather doubtful, I needed the best protection.
It’s the best I’ve found after weeks of comparison. It holds the shock of local buses and prevents damages from the bottle that has dripped into the backpack. I would not pass it under an Amazon waterfall but I know I can count on its impermeability and protection. In addition, it opens with the computer so no need to take it out of the case when I am working in public spaces.
Since Mac has a monopoly, Thule only makes protections for 13 and 15 inches. So I took the 15 inches and I left the presentation foam inside. So my computer is locked in and it gives more protection.