Best Carry on Backpack — The Duffel Bag Guide

The versatility and variety of duffel bags make them an excellent luggage for different situations. You can rely on these bags if you want lightweight packs that allow easy access to your belongings. They are handy to come around especially those that are sized as carry-on luggage. In searching for the best carry on backpack, look for duffel bags with foldaway backpack straps that offer ease of transport. We can help narrow down your choices as we worked to find the best ones in the market.

Our Top Picks At A Glance:

  1. Tortuga Travel Backpack Model 6537975 — Best Value
  2. Patagonia Headway MLC Model 48765 — Best Bang for your Buck
  3. Osprey Farpoint 40-Travel Backpack — Best for Budget Minded

1. Tortuga Travel Backpack Model 6537975 — Best Value

GordVE KG0011 22 MP Digital Camera with Digitar Zoom and 3.0-Inch LCD Digital Video Camcorder with Night Vision

This pack doubles as duffel bag, making it great for dedicated single-bag travellers. The 44-liter bag offers good value for money for its price and features. With this bag, you don’t have to pay baggage fees or wait at the carousel for your luggage to show up. It can be your trusted travel companion for it was built to last. It is designed for 21st century travel for it has padded compartment for your electronics.

Measuring 22X14X19, this duffel pack offers maximum carry on size so you can make the most of the space and adhere to strict airline rules. The 100% nylon material won’t tear or scuff. Premium quality buckles and YKK zippers ensure that it lasts long for your countless escapades. Like a suitcase, it loads in front so you can keep your stuff neat and within reach.

It has padded hip belt that moves 80% of the weight from your shoulders to your hips. It has laptop sleeve that fits up to 17-inch computers. Zippers are lockable for optimum security. It has plenty of pockets so your things won’t be a jumbled mess. It combines the carrying comfort of a backpack and the organization of a suitcase. You can also carry it like a duffel bag using the side handle.


2. Patagonia Headway MLC Model 48765 — Best Bang for your Buck

Patagonia Headway MLC 45L Black

This soft-sided, rugged suitcase converts to a backpack and duffel bag. It can hold 3 to 5 days worth of gear in a carry on size that meets most airline requirements. It is in the high-price range but you can absolutely get your money’s worth considering its superior quality materials and features. The body is made of highly durable CORDURA Ballistic nylon and polyurethane coating that resists abrasion and puncture. It is lined with 100% polyester and treated with water repellent finish.

Designed for easy access and organization, the pack has a main zippered compartment divided into two separate compartments, making packing a breeze. It has a second zippered compartment for shoes and another two small pockets for your other essentials. A third pocket has a key clip for passport and ticket and a fourth one stands flat for documents. The bag has three carrying options. Hold it backpack style using the ergonomic straps, or shoulder bag style with the comfortable shoulder strap and like a briefcase with carry handles.


3. Osprey Farpoint 40-Travel Backpack — Best for Budget Minded

Osprey Packs FARPOINT 40, Volcanic Grey, Medium/Large

This one is more of a backpack than a duffel bag it allows carrying using the side handle. Price starts at a little above $100, so if you’re on the lookout for a more affordable but quality option, this one is recommendable. Knowing the Osprey quality, you can surely get a good value for your money. It is perfect for a weekend getaway in the wild or the city and meets most carry on requirements.

The pack boasts light frame suspension for ease of carry for the load is transferred from the harness to the hipbelt. It is built with mesh panel for better ventilation. The hipbelt, backpanel and harness system are fixed and can be zipped away if you want a slimmer bag profile. Despite its compact design, it has large internal storage secured by compression straps that can carry up to 40 pounds of load.

Handles on the side and top are padded for comfort. Farpoint 40 is excellent if you are looking for a smaller pack for day trip but it can pass as carry on bag as well. You will be surprised to see it holding a large amount on stuff especially is you use compression packing cubes.

Note: The links above & below will take you to more information, current prices and customer reviews on Amazon.

Backpacks or Duffel Bags?

There are both advantages and disadvantages when comparison backpacks and duffle bags. One of the most obvious advantages of duffel bags is that the larger interior compartment is naturally suited to carrying larger pieces of gear. While you might not be able to fit a full-size surfboard in a duffel bag, you certainly could get a small boogie board into one to enjoy the waves during a trip to the ocean. On the other hand, duffel bags, even the best designed ones, simply do not offer the comfort that comes with travel backpacks. If you are planning a trip where any sort of long distance hauling is likely, you would most likely be better off opting for a quality travel backpack that is lightweight, offers padded shoulder straps, and important back supports. Our site Live Once Live Wild compares the best travel backpacks on the market today if you do choose to go for this option.



When choosing a carry on backpack, consider ease of packing, ease of carrying and transport, durability, weight and weather resistance. Different travels need different sizes, so it’s best to stick to what you need but don’t forget the key factors to think of when buying. After all, a solid value is what everyone is after.

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