I have to admit that I still use a rolling suitcase for most of my travels, especially when traveling for business and within the US. However, when I’ve traveled to developing countries, I’ve found that rolling suitcases are often problematic. Dirt roads, cobblestone pavement, and non-existent elevators can make lugging a suitcase extremely cumbersome. Which is why I wanted to share my Osprey Farpoint 55 review, as it’s a major component of my travel gear.
There are tons of different backpacks on the market today. Depending on your travel type or needs, there are endless options and features available. Some are going to be geared for hikers who want more support and will be carrying their pack for hours on a trail. Others are geared for urban travelers. There is no one perfect bag, but for me, the Osprey Farpoint 55 is the closest thing to the ultimate travel backpack.
Available in two sizes — S/M and M/L
The Osprey Farpoint 55 comes in two sizes: small/medium and medium/large. The pack I use is the small/medium model, which has a capacity of 52 liters instead of the 55 liters found on the medium/large size. This is the maximum capacity with the detachable daypack, which is included as part of the backpack.
The reason I opted for the small/medium model is that it fits the overhead bin for most airlines. This means that I don’t have to check in the bag. It doesn’t technically meet the dimensions of a carry-on bag, but I’ve never had the airline force me to check it in due to its size. It easily slides into the overhead bin without any problems. Though keep in mind that you will need to detach the daypack in order for it to fit.
Why I love this backpack
Here are my top ten reasons why I love this bag.
1. Great suspension and compression:
The pack has a light wire frame, great hip belt, and compression straps in the front. The weight is centered well and distributed through the hip.
2. Detachable daypack:
As mentioned earlier, the pack includes a detachable daypack. I have to admit that I barely ever keep the daypack attached to the larger bag, but it’s nice having the option. When I’ve traveled with the bag, I usually end up putting the smaller pack on the front of my body (also known as “kangaroo style”).
The daypack has become my go-to backpack for day trips and hikes. Along with a sternum strap, it also has small touches like a built-in whistle. Like other Osprey packs that I own, it looks great and is very functional.
3. Lightweight & durable:
The fabric is lightweight but extremely durable. My bag survived many scrapes and bumps along the way. None of the seams or fabric ever tore. Also, the bag got soaked several times during trips, but it dried quickly.
4. Mesh back:
One of the worst parts of wearing a backpack is having a sweaty back. That’s still an issue with this bag, but I love that it has a mesh back. It helps with the airflow and contact on my back.
5. Stowaway back panel:
The backpack straps can be tucked and zipped away in case you need to check-in your bag. This makes it look and feel like a duffel bag. It also keeps your straps from getting accidentally tangled onto objects or compartments during transport.
6. Padded handles:
This is another small touch, but highly useful and comfortable. You appreciate the handles when having to lift or pull your bag in and out of the overhead compartment.
The bottom of the bag has straps in case you need to carry a sleeping bag. While I haven’t used this feature, it’s nice that it’s included.
8. Large zipper opening:
Most backpacks have a more traditional top opening, which forces you to pack from the bottom of the bag to the top. The Osprey Farpoint 55 has more of a suitcase-style opening. This gives you plenty of room to pack and fit items. I find this to be helpful when getting items in and out of the bag.
I highly recommend using packing cubes with this backpack. It can greatly help with organizing and maximizing the space in the backpack.
9. Lockable zippers:
The main compartment zipper is designed to be locked, which is perfect if you plan to check in your bag or store any valuables when left in your hotel or hostel room.
10. Great warranty and customer service:
During my last trip with my backpack, I ended up breaking one of the ties attached to the zipper. I emailed Osprey and asked if I could get a replacement for the tie. They promptly sent me two replacement ties. It was nice knowing that the company stands by their products and customers.
What I don’t like about the backpack
In terms of negatives, I do wish that the bag would meet the exact carry-on specs. This means that I wouldn’t have to worry about it being measured or questioned at the airport. Also, I would prefer a bit more depth on the elastic pockets on the side of the detachable daypack. It’s not horrible, but some extra depth would better secure water bottles and other items.
Overall, this is a great bag for a traveler looking for an adventure trip backpack. I actually contemplated getting this backpack or one with wheels built-in, such as the Osprey Ozone series. While there are benefits to having a convertible pack, I was really happy with my choice of the Farpoint backpack. For me, having a traditional rolling suitcase and a backpack seems to meet my travel needs and requirements.
Do you use an Osprey Farpoint or have a backpack that you recommend? If so, please let us know in the comment section below.