Travel Packs

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I've been doing some research on travel packs, by which I mean airline carry-on capable bags that can be carried via handles, slung on a shoulder via a shoulder strap, and converted into a backpack. Here's a sortable table of the options I've found, roughly in order of how good they sound to me from my research:

Brand Model Volume Dimensions Price Notes
Tom Bihn Aeronaut 2700 22x14x9 $192 ($160 + $25 strap + $7 shipping) 3 lateral sections, side pull handles. Attractive and well made, with a special flair for good UI design. Calculated price includes very nice padded strap. More photos, in-depth review.
Rick Steves Convertible Carry-On 2500 21x14x9 $120 ($99 + $10 strap + $11 shipping) A good value. Expandable to 3000 cubic inches. Includes free mesh bags and security pouch. Also available from
eBags Weekender Convertible 2700 22x14x9 $60 (free shipping) The best value, and favorably reviewed by many buyers. No shoulder strap option.
Patagonia MLC 2400 22x13x9.5 $161 ($148 + $13 shipping) Well reviewed, except for complaints about the unpadded shoulder strap. Also available from eBags and (both offer free standard shipping).
Tough Traveller Caravan 2200 20x13x8 $184.50 ($174 + $10.50 shipping) Aluminum stays. Not a lot of information on-line. Not the most attractive pack out there. Stated volume and dimensions are out of whack (20x13x8 is about 2000 cubic inches). More photos.
Tough Traveller Tri-Zip 2300 20x13x9 $212.50 ($202 + $10.50 shipping) 3 sections (middle is padded laptop sleeve), aluminum stays. A bit more business trip oriented than some other travel packs. Despite recommendation from One Bag, not a lot of information on-line. More photos.
Uphill Sierra 2000 18x13x8 $66.50 + shipping A very good value, but many cons. A bit small. Only available in blue and green (a customer service e-mail says other colors are available, but out of stock). Despite recommendation from Travelite, scant on-line information or photos. Company products power Mormon proselytizing.
Eagle Creek Voyage 65L 2600 23x14x9 $180 (free shipping) Includes expandable daypack (stated volume is 3800 cubic inches total, 1200 cubic inches for backpack). Exceeds 45 linear inches, so possibly too big for carry-on use. Includes padded waistbelt. A bit too technical looking. Not sold directly, available from, eBags, and (the latter two offer free standard shipping).
Victorinox Mobilizer NXT 3.0 2-Zip Expandable Overnighter 1938 20x12.75x8 $230 (free shipping) A smart looking bag, and Victorinox bag construction is high quality; but, small and expensive. Manufacturer website is lacking in information and does not sell directly; purchase link is via eBags. More photos from
Trager Jet Pack 2800 21x17x8.5 $80 (free shipping) Well over 45 linear inches, so probably too big for carry-on use. Manufacturer website is lacking in information and does not sell directly; purchase link is via eBags.

Volume is in cubic inches, as claimed by the manufacturer (not every manufacturer states a volume; volume inferred from dimensions is shown in grey). Dimensions are in inches. Click on the column headers to sort the rows. This information is current as of April 2006.

Good guides on packing and travelling include One Bag, Travelite, and Rick Steves Travel Tips. Another good writeup is Mark Verber's packing and traveling light recommendations.

Andrew Ho (