How to Buy the Perfect Backpack for Your Needs? (The Second Half)
Backpack Buying Tip #5 – Your Activity Needs
The choice between daypacks, rucksacks, travel bags and minimalist backpacks can leave any shopper confused.
Apart from getting the size right, the design and build of the bag should suit your purposes.
•Are you confident the backpack will fit all the utilities you need to carry?
•Will you be walking and moving around from one place to another or will you be sitting in a classroom for most of the day?
•What type of weather are you most likely to encounter while wearing the backpack?
You need something that is suitable for your activities.
If you are planning to use the backpack mainly for short hikes or college – a canvas backpack is ideal. If your main mode of transport is a bicycle, a water-proof nylon backpack is necessary.
A versatile backpack is suitable for any kind of class load – whether you’re packing a camera with lenses, 700-page textbooks, 15 inch laptop, a change of gym clothes or all of these and some more.
Backpack Buying Tip #6 – Material
Match your needs with a backpack made from the right materials to ensure that it stays intact for years.
The commonly used backpack materials are…
•Cotton Canvas – Canvas is a heavy-weight, rough weave cotton material. Modern canvas is made from natural and synthetic materials – reducing weight and increasing waterproof capabilities and strength. Its main advantage is that it is an inexpensive material. Canvas packs are popular with college students and hikers.
•Pack-Cloth Nylon backpacks are shiny and slick to the touch. The main advantages of pack cloth nylon are it’s ready acceptance of waterproof coating, abrasion resistance, and excellent puncture resistance.
•Cordura – an “air treated” nylon fabric originally designed by DuPont. The chief advantages of Cordura fabric are its abrasion resistance and light weight. Used in higher end backpacks which are perfect for backpacking adventures.
•Rip-stop Nylon – The “rip-stopping” design of rip-stop nylon can provide extra protection to help ensure that your pack won’t disintegrate in front of your eyes the first ten miles into an adventurous hike. The main advantages of rip-stop nylon are it’s excellent waterproofing and lightness in weight.
•Polyester has a higher resistance to ultra-violet (UV) degradation than nylon but it is not the most rugged material for a backpack. However, it is strong and tough enough for little kids. Backpacks made of polyester are affordable, hold color well (meaning they can be very vibrant in color).
•Leather backpacks are a stylish, although expensive alternative to the standard backpack. Full grain, vegetable-tanned leather is generally used for backpacks. This material develops a unique patina over time and gives the bags an organic quality. Leather backpacks are perfect for use in the workplace as they are usually the most formal style of backpack.
Backpack Buying Tip #7 – Organization
Some backpacks are bare on the inside. Some are highly organized with multiple pockets and compartments.
You might prefer a minimalist approach for a lighter load backpack or one with multiple compartments to store and easily access your utilities. The more compartments and pockets in a backpack – the better the distribution and accessibility of your items.
•Multiple Compartments – allow for the contents of the bag to be organized in smaller sections for easier access.
•Elasticized side pockets: These pockets lie flat when empty but stretch to hold a water bottle and other loose items.
•Front pocket: Sometimes added to the exterior of a shovel pocket, these can hold smaller, less bulky items.
Organize yourself so you only carry what you need in the backpack.
Backpack Buying Tip #8 – Budget
What goes into the cost of a backpack?
The price of a backpack should be reflected in the quality of the materials used, the craftsmanship and the aesthetics of the design.
It would be a shame to compromise quality for price. The last thing you want is to have your backpack tear open down the side, and all your stuff spill out while on a bus, or walking down the street.
Is it a limited edition backpack? Is it hand-assembled or mass manufactured in a factory? These factors will influence the cost of the backpack.
Some basic backpacks can cost less than $30, while higher end backpacks made from leather could easily retail for $1500. A mid-rangebackpack should cost between $50-$100.
Backpack prices depend a lot on size, fabric, and brand. Store brands are cheaper than big name brands like North Face, Osprey, and Gregory.
Backpack Buying Tip #9 – Style
Do you want to be the recipient of bag envy? Your choice might be determined first by the design of the backpack.
A backpack for the discerning man should balance practicality and sophistication on equal terms.
It should be expertly crafted so that whether you’re wearing it to the gym or on the daily commute – it should harmoniously blend into your overall look.
A leather backpack is the most stylish option – nylon would be the least although ballistic nylon in black is a decent option for the man on a budget.