FLASHPACKING CONVERTIBLE BACKPACK | EAGLE CREEK DOUBLEBACK22 REVIEW
When my convertible carry on got damaged by airlines baggage handlers, I was in snit. When I discover a certain aspect of my travel gear works for me and I like it, I become loyal to it… I marry it until one of us croaks. Now I was being forced to find a new marriage partner!
The Eagle Creek Double Back 22 might just be my perfect mate, fitting my flashpacker style and needs.
The Eagle Creek Double Back 22 is convertible travel backpack rolling carryon with an attachable day pack (Try saying that ten times quickly). It’s the best backpack for travel, whether you’re a flashpacker, business jet setter or budget backpackers.
How to Choose a Your Perfect Backpack
A fan of convertible carry-ons & backpacks, I researched potential bags like a skeptic.
Firstly, convertible travel backpacks/carry-ons are a fairly new breed of luggage. You might have to google convertible travel backpack or juggle keywords like carry-on, rolling hand luggage, etc.., only to find there’s not many hand luggage and backpacks, which offer 3-in-1 options (backpack, hand luggage and rolling suitcase).
Secondly, choosing your perfect backpack takes thoughtfulness. Your choice can either be a help or hinderance:
Ever been wedged into a crowded Indian bus? Has your flight ever gotten in late into Chicago’s O’Hare Airport and you’re running to a terminal, which feels an entire airstrip away?… Ever gone from backpacking and then straight into a luxury hotel ? …Ever gone from winter in one country into summer in another?… Do you want to pay $25-75 in baggage fees for every flight you take on a multi-destination trip? …You get the drift.
I need a convertible carry-on to be malleable to my needs and past experiences!
Reasons to love this convertible backpack:
When my Doubleback 22 convertible travel backpack arrived in the mail, I had a good feeling about it. The quality of the fabric and manufacturing felt solid and strong. But I wasn’t sure how it would test on my 3 month+ traipse through Southeast Asia & Asia. There’d be high points of luxury and there’d inevitably be low points of squeezing into crowded spaces and cramped quarters.
Well, now into my third month of GRRR use, I realize it’s seeing the world, alright and its surviving the abuse of travel. It has many stories to tell.
Multiple Carry Options
There are times I roll this bag; and times, I take the burden to hauling my luggage on my back and running with it. This bag has got options and I’m a big fan of options.
- Rolling Hand Luggage/ Carry On
- Hand luggage with two handles for easy and quick grip
- Backpack & Attachable Daypack
Perhaps the only thing I would want to add to this is a carry on strap in the case you want to sling it over your shoulder in the case you ever need to make a dash for your plane.
The Eagle Creek Double Back 22 has a sturdy design and a durable fabric. It’s built to survive a variety of weather conditions and spaces, from a cramped storage under a train seat to the top of a jeep van on a rainy day.
There’s solid grab handles on the top and side and wheel housing that can withstand knocks and bumps. Wheels are lightweight but firmly protected by a hard plastic bumper, should the bag get knocked around by baggage handlers.
The pull-out rolling handle slides in and out easily and is built inside the body of the pack, so it’s never exposed. There’s back padding to cushion it from the outside world, so that it can take knocks without getting a dent.
It also touts Bi-Tech reinforcement on areas exposed to high abrasion.
Navigation: Sleek and easy
I’m a fan of simple and no fuss packing solutions. I want things accessible when I want it and quick. I don’t want to fidget with zippers or unnecessary straps. So I like that the detachable straps on this bag are easy to put on and remove.
Navigating the bag is easy. Just watch my video ! Zipper straps are large and visible. I love them.
My only complaint about this is that there’s not enough outside pockets to store things in.
Universally Cool Style
I like to look slick when I travel. Yeah, cool.
Backpacker backpacks pretty much shout either, “Hey, I’m fresh travel meat!” or “I’m a hobo on a budget!“. The Double Back 22 is stylish, without drawing a lot of attention itself, which makes it perfect for both, rugged backpacking, business travel and solo travelers. Hence, it’s the perfect choice if you’re flash packing!
The bag is built expensive but you wouldn’t suspect it until you felt and used it.
Big backpacker backpacks can limit your navigation ease, which is why while I love my Northface 65 backpack (it’s both, top and bottom loading with several outside pockets), I will never consider going back.
The Doubleback 22’s main bag holds a 39L capacity and is the regulated size of a normal hand luggage (carry-on) according to standard western aircrafts. I don’t need to check it into luggage and it helps me avoid overpacking. It fits snugly into most environments from crowded Indian buses, overhead plane compartments, the front of a Thai motorbike (that’s where motorbike taxis pack them!) and under train berths.
While I would prefer more outside pockets for quick access, there are some areas that can be made to hold items secretly.
Watch the video at 06:25, where I take you inside the pack!
Attachable day pack
Most travelers like to carry a daypack for sightseeing, so Eagle Creek built a day pack into their design. It’s a simple day pack, with an inside pocket that is capable of storing a camel back or 11″ Mac Airbook laptop. There are two mesh side pockets to hold bottled water and an outside pocket for quick grab items.
The daypack is good for light use, but for my purposes of carrying my camera gear, I’m taking a different day pack!
Initially, I didn’t know how to attach the day pack to me, when the straps were in use on the main pack . But it’s been brought to my attention that you can attach it through the additional lash clips on the straps (which I have my left hand resting upon in the photo below)
One potential drawback: While Eagle Creek chose to make a more efficient design by cutting back on redundancies of offering two separate removable straps for each bag (day pack and main bag), some travelers see this as an either /or situation.
eagle creek doubleback22 side view
Overall, Eagle Creek Doubleack 22 convertible travel backpack does a fantastic job on a convertible pack, taking care to ensure the bag functions efficiently versus wasting space and resources. You can tell they’ve thought about various travel uses and travel types in great length and didn’t skimp on quality to make this a solid, multipurpose bag you can feel confident traveling with!
As a mid-life female solo traveler, I never enjoyed carrying heavy loads on long distances nor do I like looking like a budget backpacker stuck in my twenties. I appreciate that the Doubleback 22 is rugged enough to take a beating and yet still emerge looking semi-classy and jet setting. I like that it’s lightweight, fluid and offers multiple transporting options. Above all, it ensures I can confidently fit into small spaces, crowded buses and having the rolling option is a godsend!
So far it’s been perfect for my longer term travels. I’d recommend it for anyone as the best backpack for travel! What do you think?
Doubleback 22 Stats
Main bag: 14 x 22 x 9 in , 39 L capacity
Daypack: 11 x 18.5 x 6 in, 17 L capacity
Light weight: 6 lbs 4oz (2.83 kg)
Get it on Amazon here.