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Osprey Porter 65

rated 4.5 of 5 stars
photo: Osprey Porter 65 weekend pack (50-69l)

Four continents and counting. It's (almost) a backpack!

Pros

  • Large capacity
  • Hidden shoulder straps and hip belt
  • Fairly light weight
  • Many carry options

Cons

  • Material is a little on the thin side

This Osprey has been with me for over 10 years. It's been on 4 continents and served its designed purpose very well. Like many of Osprey's packs, the Porter is designed for travel and ease of carry through airports, on trains, and even short walks to lodging or nearby camping. But it is not a backpack. I would not want to carry it much more than a mile if it was packed full. It holds seemingly more than the 65 liter capacity would suggest. 

It comes with a hidden harness. Shoulder straps and hip belt tuck away in a panel on the bottom. It takes less than a minute to convert it to a backpack style carry. It's not uncomfortable either for short walks. It can be bulky behind you in tight places so you need to watch out for that. It can be locked with one of those tiny TSA padlocks, which I do. That gives me some peace of mind storing it when necessary. It has grips for both vertical and horizontal suitcase carry as well. It doesn't have a lot of pockets, just one on end and another built into the lid, which you can see zips wide open for easy access. 

It really is purpose built for travel. I like to pack this for checked baggage and then use my daypack as a carry on. It holds everything! And since I often take a tent and always take trekking poles, I need to check them anyway. I think most airlines give you a free checked bag for international flights. Delta does anyway. I don't worry checking it because other than the two compression straps on top, there is nothing to get snagged so it's a pretty clean look. 

Granted, it's a niche item but I think it's a better choice than checking a backpack or using a straight up duffel. I know there are wheeled choices out there but you don't always need them. I just bought a collapsable trolly to put it on if I think I want wheels. The trolley fits in the zipper pocket on top. Easy.

I clicked down a half star because I'd have liked to see Osprey use a bit heavier nylon in places. I have a few little holes in this one, but for the years and use, I'd say it's wearing OK. I guess sooner or later everything wears out...except my Whisper Lite, but that's another story. The bottom line is if you want something that's easier to get around than a suitcase, holds a lot, and will go on your back in a pinch...this is the one. 

 

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Background

Backpacking, trekking, travel...sometimes NPS ranger

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: Unknown...new version $225

Great backpack for travel, with just the right amount of space to carry everything you need for an extended trip, while taking up minimal space. I’ve used mine for almost a decade for business and personal travel, and hope to do so for years to come.

Pros

  • Great size, and carry ability whether using one of the standard handles or shoulder and waist straps. Though I saw the concern about thinner materials, it has been more than rugged enough.

Cons

  • Not the best backpack for trail use.

As mentioned, I found this to be a great backpack for travel, with just the right amount of space to carry everything you need for an extended trip, while taking up minimal space. I’ve used it for almost a decade for business and personal travel, and hope to do so for years to come.  My wife and son were so impressed that they purchased their own packs, though my son went with the Porter 46L.

In terms of ruggedness, it has survived plane, bus and taxi travel over 4 continents, occasionally overpacked, still looks good, and functionally is no worse for the wear.

Background

I travel regularly for work and pleasure, domestically and abroad.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $200.00

Built to last and easily pack a week's worth of gear.

Pros

  • Spacious
  • Tough
  • Multiple grab handles
  • Compact
  • Backpack

Cons

  • Scant on compartments
  • Backpack not the most comfortable long term

I purchased this pack for an upcoming cruise and did not want to check luggage. I was easily able to fit a weeks worth of gear in this bag including a suit and shoes. The compression straps kept the bag within checked luggage limits.

A couple carabiners allowed me to attach water bottles to the bag. The compression straps also held my coat when I wasn't wearing it allowing me to be hands free. The convertible backpack makes carrying the bag a breeze, though the straps do get a little uncomfortable after an extended period of time. There is a small pocket on top for toiletries and not much else in the way of compartments, just a large open bag.

Overall a great travel bag, definitely recommend.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $70

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Specs

Price MSRP: $129.00
Current Retail: $200.00-$225.00
Historic Range: $29.98-$225.00
Reviewers Paid: $70.00
Weight 3 lb 10 oz / 1.65 kg
Capacity 3900 cu in / 65 L
Height 26 in / 66 cm
Width 15 in / 38 cm
Depth 10 in / 25.5 cm
Product Details from Osprey »

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