Having a good backpack is essential. If you’re planning a trip to one destination and one hotel you can get away with a rolling case, but if you plan on traveling around at all you need everything off the ground with your hands free. Cobblestones weren’t meant for rolly-wheels, neither were train stairs, or running to catch the bus.
I compared backpacks before my trip last year, and my pick for the best travel backpack is the Osprey FlapJill Pack. This is the bag I used last year for two and a half weeks in Europe. It’s smaller than what I traveled with in the past, which means it forced me to stop bringing what I don’t really need.
I dropped it. A lot. One time when I put it down it was dragged inadvertently by someone’s trolley. It was fine. The fabric is thick and doesn’t tear, and I gave it every reason to. The main compartment closes with adjustable straps, so you have flexibility with what you can fit without the worry of zippers that get off track.
Budget airlines are cheap but charge hefty fees for checked baggage – This bag is small enough to qualify as a carry-on and this will be a huge deal. Most major airlines don’t count your purse as a bag, Easyjet does. You’ll need to fit your purse and anything you have in your bag before you board which is where the flexibility of the straps really helps you out.
I liked the color options, and went with purple and teal. My friend bought the teal with purple – because being matching “adults” is pretty neat.
This isn’t a large bag. And I’ll admit when I first got it I was hoping it was equipped with an undetectable extension charm. It’s not. The pictures are accurate. But this is the right size for what you need without feeling burdened or cramped on small buses.