Whether it’s for a full trip or a hike, having a good backpack that suits you is paramount, because it is it that keeps all your valuables or not safe. Everything has to fit in your bag, so it has to be comfortable, practical, waterproof and functional. So here are a few things you need to consider when preparing to buy your travel bag.


To make sure a bag is comfortable, there is only one way to do it: try it. When you’re in the store, put it on your back and ask for weight storing, so you can actually test it. Then walk around for a few minutes with and do various actions: bend, jog, turn, put his arms in the air, in short make sure you are free of your movements with the bag on your back.


The comfort of the bag is of course the most important element. Choose bags with quilted shoulder straps. Good padding will cushion the pressure on your shoulders and protect your back from pain.

Think that a travel backpack should be attached to the hips to move the weight from your shoulders to your hips, which are more able to withstand large loads. This belt must be adjustable to be able to tighten it as much as possible and thus put as much weight at this level of the body. It should also be moulded and padded with thick, rigid foam.

Some bags also have a chest strap that keeps shoulder straps in the right position and prevents armpit irritation.

Also consider choosing a bag with a reinforced and quilted back. It usually consists of a fabric-covered closed alveoli foam, but some large backpacks may also have aluminum rods designed to better support weight.


It’s always a tricky question: should you take a big bag for fear of running out of space or a little lest it be too heavy? It depends on many things: the type of trip, the place visited, the length of the trip, the season, the size of the person, etc.

Travel bags usually contain more than 45 litres. You should also know that you should be able to carry 1/3 of your weight on your shoulders. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, you should be able to put 50 pounds on your back. The important thing is that your bag is proportional to your body and that you are not unbalanced by its size.


Very important when you have to walk around daily with your bag. Many bags are equipped with a removable tarpaulin that you can fix in case of showers, thus preventing the contents from being completely soaked. In addition, this tarpaulin can discourage thieves from going through your bag.

Utility, efficiency

Having a wide variety of compartments is quite advantageous in a bag, as it separates dry objects from wet, precious from the mundane, dirty from clean, but above all to access faster what you need.

Having multiple straps and nets is also convenient for installing dirty shoes or for easy access to a water bottle.


If you’re anxious to have the contents of your bag stolen, you can opt for a bag with a metal safety net or zippers.

Travel backpacks can be loaded from the top or front. Each option has its qualities and flaws: the one at the top is more solid, but requires to take everything out to fetch an object lodged at the bottom. The one at the front allows easy access to its contents, but because of the zipper on the front, it is more likely to let water or dust pass through.


The MEC offers to search for the following features when shopping for a bag:

Strong fabric such as nylon coated 420 deniers or Cordura fabric (especially in fast-wearing areas).
Tight stitched seams. To check the seams, pull the straps where they are sewn onto the bag. The dots should be barely visible.
Lined inner seams, i.e. covered with fabric to slow wear.
Tension points and surfaces reinforced with a bar seam.
Weather-resistant urethane coating (although all backpacks eventually let water pass through the seams).
Robust slides.
For women
If you are a woman, inquire, as more and more companies offer bags specially designed for the woman’s anatomy: narrower straps, hip belt with a curvature, smaller back length, etc.

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