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Aer Journey Pack 3 Evaluation

When you observe The Savvy Backpacker, you recognize I’m a journey backpack dork so I used to be excited when Aer lately launched the newest iteration of their fashionable AER Journey Pack. So how does the brand new Aer Journey Pack 3 evaluate to the older Aer Journey Packs I’ve reviewed previously (learn my Aer Journey Pack 2 Evaluation and Aer Journey Pack Evaluation) and is the brand new Aer Journey Pack 3 nonetheless among the best journey backpacks in the marketplace? Let’s discover out!

On this Aer Journey Pack 3 evaluate, I’ll cowl every thing you have to know that will help you resolve if that is the fitting journey backpack in your journey.

How I Examined The Aer Journey Pack 3

One-bag journey with my Aer Journey Pack 3 in Naples, Italy

I imagine one of the best ways to check a journey backpack is to truly use it whereas touring since you may see the way it performs in a real-world setting.

So to evaluate the Aer Journey Pack 3 I hit the street for a two-week journey by way of Italy—primarily Rome and Naples the place I took trains, used public transportation, and stayed in lodges and Airbnbs. For this journey, I additionally used my Aer backpack as my solely piece of baggage so I’ve a good suggestion of how this backpack performs when absolutely packed out.

For reference, I’ve additionally continued utilizing my Aer Journey Pack 3 on a couple of shorter home journeys since that is such a flexible backpack.

Overview Of The Aer Journey Pack 3

Taking the practice from Naples to Rome with my Aer Journey Pack 3

Aer is well-known within the baggage neighborhood for making well-designed, high-quality backpacks which have a contemporary design aesthetic—in reality, the Aer Journey Pack 3 is offered on the NYC’s Museum of Trendy Artwork (MoMA) Design Retailer so it has some designer avenue cred.

The Aer Journey Pack caters to vacationers who need a premium high quality carry-on dimension backpack that’s useful and has a glossy, city vibe.

And the Aer Journey Pack 3 delivers. It’s comfy, has a ton of sensible group, and the construct high quality is a number of the finest I’ve seen. Actually, Aer affords a lifetime guarantee on their luggage so that they clearly imagine of their merchandise.

Aer Journey Pack 3 vs. Aer Journey Pack 2

Journey Pack 3 (left) vs. Journey Pack 2 (proper)

On the floor, the Aer Journey Pack 3 and Journey Pack 2 look very related however they’re fairly completely different when you dive into the small print.

The Aer Journey Pack 3 options a number of design and performance enhancements that make this bag a lot better than the older Aer Journey Pack 2 (which was already a well-regarded backpack). Probably the most notable enhancements are the up to date harness system with load lifters (which was my important grievance on the v2), a slight general dimension improve, and some upgraded supplies.

The TP3 ditches the outdated built-in shoe compartment (which I’m glad to see go), and it options new beefed-up {hardware}, added zipper pulls, a couple of pocket changes, and higher cinch-down straps.

Aer Journey Pack 3 Specs

Supply: AerSF

Listed here are the specs of the Journey Pack 3 (by way of the Aer web site)

Measurement and Weight

  • Quantity: 35 L
  • Weight: 4.12 lbs
  • Size: 21.5″ (54.5 cm)
  • Width: 13″ (33 cm)
  • Depth: 9″ (21.5 cm)



  • $249
  • $279 (X-Pac sailcloth exterior model)

Featured Specs

  • 1680D Cordura® ballistic nylon exterior
  • YKK® zippers
  • Duraflex® plastic {hardware}
  • Padded, suspended laptop computer pocket (as much as 16″ laptop computer) 
  • Lay-flat important compartment
  • Compression straps with magnetic fasteners
  • Fast-access high and aspect pockets
  • Load lifters for help and luxury
  • Handles on all sides for versatile carrying
  • Expandable water bottle pocket
  • Hidden sensible tracker pocket
  • Inner framesheet for construction & help
  • Baggage deal with pass-through
  • Lockable zippers for added safety

My Palms-On Aer Journey Pack 3 Evaluation

I’ve come to actually respect the Aer Journey Pack 3 after placing it by way of its paces whereas touring by way of Italy.

Is it good? No. But it surely’s definitely among the best journey backpacks I’ve personally tried.

So let’s take an in-depth look into all the small print and options of the Journey Pack 3 to see what makes this bag wonderful and the place it comes up brief.

Appears and Aesthetics

The very first thing you discover when wanting on the Aer Journey Pack 3 is its minimalist, streamlined, and utilitarian aesthetics. It has a glossy, city techy vibe. The material is heavy-duty and all of the {hardware} feels sturdy.

I’m a fan of the look Aer Journey Pack 3 as a result of it feels extra refined and fashionable than different journey backpacks. The bag has a extra elevated vibe so don’t really feel like a typical twentysomething “backpacker” once I’m carrying it. I additionally respect the backpack’s delicate branding—there’s a small “Aer” brand on the aspect of the bag and a tiny one on the shoulder strap.

I want the black coloration possibility however it additionally is available in Gray and Olive—personally, I’m not a fan of the grey coloration however the Olive is fascinating. However, I’d at all times select black.

The Aer Journey Pack additionally is available in a barely costlier black X-Pac sailcloth exterior that’s extra waterproof and lighter. The X-Pac sailcloth materials has a little bit of a sheen (I want the look of the common model) however the further water resistance of the X-Pac sailcloth is definitely good.

Supplies, {Hardware}, and Zippers

Like all Aer luggage, the Journey Pack 3 is a premium product so the supplies and finishings used to assemble this backpack are top quality—that is additionally mirrored within the $250 price ticket. The backpack’s exterior is produced from heavy-duty 1680D Cordura® ballistic nylon, the zippers are all YKK®, and the buckles, fasteners, and different plastic items are produced from sturdy Duraflex plastic. The padding on the shoulder straps and pull handles are thick for added consolation.

All the bag weights in at 4.12 lbs so it’s not the lightest bag I’ve examined (for reference, the Journey Pack 3 is 35L and the 42L Cotopaxi Allpa weights roughly the identical) however that’s one of many tradeoffs when utilizing sturdy supplies.

Briefly, you may inform they didn’t low cost out on the extra minor particulars on the Journey Pack 3 so this can be a sturdy backpack that may face up to loads of abuse (and it’s all backed up with a lifetime guarantee).

Harness System and Consolation

The harness system (i.e. shoulder straps) of the Aer Journey Pack 3 is a big enchancment from the earlier era Journey Pack 2—in reality, the outdated bag’s harness system was an enormous disappointment for such an in any other case well-designed and premium product.

Trying on the pictures above, you’ll see how the Journey Pack 3 now makes use of a hiking-style harness that curves to suit your shoulders. This helps maintain the burden of the backpack sq. in opposition to your again and up in your shoulders so the burden of the bag doesn’t draw back out of your physique (which causes added stress to your physique. The Journey Pack 3 additionally has load lifter straps that assist the steps affirm to your shoulders so it retains the bag near your again.

The shoulder straps are well-padded with a few quarter inch of high-density foam which helps disperse the burden of the load over your shoulders. There’s additionally an excellent quantity of mesh padding lining the again that provides extra consolation whereas carrying.

The Journey Pack 3 additionally options an inside plastic framesheet that runs alongside the again of the bag for added construction & help.

NOTE: Aer sells a removable hipbelt for $20 that may be added to the Journey Pack 3. I haven’t tried it however I assume it will make the bag much more comfy—particularly if utilizing the bag for prolonged intervals of time since a hipbelt distributes the bag’s weight from the shoulders to the hips.

Is The Aer Journey Pack 3 Comfy?

The Aer Journey Pack 3 is a snug backpack however any bag will grow to be much less and fewer comfy as you add weight—the Journey Pack 3 is not any exception. That stated, the bag’s hiking-style harness system makes it an important possibility for point-to-point metropolis journey.

Exterior Design Options

The Aer Journey Pack 3 options a number of sensible design options that I really appreciated after placing some miles on this bag.

The bag has three well-padded seize handles (high and either side) that are nice if you’re grabbing your bag from overhead bins, carrying your bag by way of practice aisles, and different occasions when you have to carry the bag however you don’t need to throw it over your shoulder. The actual fact this bag has three seize handles is superb since most luggage solely have one or two. The bag additionally has an unpadded strap on the underside of the bag.

The bag has a number of varieties of zippers—all of that are high-quality YKK zippers.

The zipper on the laptop computer compartment has a weather-resistant coating so that may assist maintain your laptop computer secure in case you get caught in a rainstorm.

The opposite zippers on this bag aren’t weather-proofed however they’re nonetheless strong and the motion on the zipping/unzipping is clean.

The principle zippers have lockable loops that may be secured with a small baggage lock. The zippers even have good pulls to assist make it simpler to make use of the zippers. The earlier model of the Journey Pack had zipper-pulls that made a whole lot of noise however this model has fastened that challenge.

One tiny grievance is that the zippers of the principle compartment and the entrance flap look so related that it’s simple to confuse the 2. I want Aer put completely different coloured zipper pulls to assist rapidly distinguish the 2 zippers.

The Aer Journey Pack 3 has redesigned magnetic buckles on the bag’s 4 cinch straps. These magnetic buckles are fairly genius as a result of you may buckle/unbuckle them immediately, however the magnets are robust sufficient to maintain the straps securely closed.

The cinch straps have additionally been moved on this newest model so that they don’t impede the zippers—in contrast to the earlier model the place you must unbuckle the straps to unzip the bag (it was very annoying).

Inner Pockets and Group

The Aer Journey Pack 3 is loaded with inside pockets and organizational compartments to assist maintain all of your stuff safe and simply accessible. Actually, it’d take you a minute to recollect the place you place your stuff since there are such a lot of locations to stash your gear.

Let’s begin with the entrance panel pocket which is stuffed with a number of compartments and dividers. There’s a deep pocket within the again for paperwork, a zippered pocket for smaller valuables like your passport, and a number of elastic compartments for electronics equipment, pens, and different small knickknacks.

There’s additionally an excellent quantity of room on this entrance panel so there’s area for a lightweight jacket, and so forth.

On the very entrance of the bag, there’s a small pocket that has a weather-resistant zipper. It’s not a really deep pocket so I take advantage of this primarily for skinny objects like paper paperwork, backup cellphone cables, snacks, and so forth. This pocket does have an inside key clip so that you received’t lose your keys.

There’s a tremendous useful quick-access pocket on the high of the bag that I ended up utilizing on a regular basis whereas touring with this backpack. The pocket can also be lined with a comfortable and fuzzy material so it received’t scratch up your cellphone or glasses.

The pocket is massive sufficient to carry a pockets, sun shades case, passport, and cellphone (or different small objects you have to simply seize whereas on the go).

The laptop computer compartment, which is protected with a waterproof zipper, is situated on the again of the backpack and it’s comprised of some completely different pockets.

The padded laptop computer sleeve can simply maintain my 16″ Macbook Professional and the sleeve has a false backside so your laptop computer is protected against hitting the bottom.

There’s one other massive sleeve that may maintain flat objects like papers/folders, and so forth.

The compartment additionally comprises a small hidden zippered pocket that gives an additional layer of safety in your valuables (passport, cellphone, pockets, and so forth.).

On one aspect of the bag, you’ll discover a small zippered pocket that may maintain one thing like a passport and the opposite aspect options an expandable water bottle pocket. I don’t usually carry a water bottle so I haven’t examined this pocket however it appears to be like to carry a typical disposable water bottle (undecided it might maintain a big Nalgene-style bottle). Alternatively, you might put a small journey umbrella into that water bottle pocket.

Fundamental Compartment

The Aer Journey Pack 3 has a lay-flat, clamshell-style opening, and incorporates a single massive cavernous compartment that zips utterly open—which makes packing fast and straightforward. As you may see, it’s tremendous minimal so I extremely advocate utilizing packing cubes to maintain all of your stuff organized.

There’s a small zipper pocket within the sidewall of the principle compartment after which one other small mesh pocket on the flap—so many of the group is discovered on the outer entrance flap that I coated earlier on this article.

Aer charges their Journey Pack 3 as a 35L backpack so this bag can match a strong quantity of stuff however you continue to should be selective in how a lot you pack. For my part, this again is geared in the direction of individuals who need to journey comparatively gentle.

When you’re a heavy packer, I like to recommend a 40L+ backpack or you might pair the Journey Pack 3 with a smaller suitcase.

Remaining Ideas On The Aer Journey Pack 3

So is the Aer Journey Pack 3 an excellent journey backpack?

Sure. I truthfully like this backpack and I discovered that it suited my journey type very properly. I wouldn’t name myself an ultralight traveler however I definitely journey lighter than most. By sensible packing, I used to be in a position to match sufficient stuff in my bag for about 7 days (together with an additional pair of sneakers that I most likely didn’t want) so needed to do a wash about midway by way of my two-week journey.

Nevertheless, in case you can’t pack moderately gentle then this Aer backpack most likely isn’t best for you since its 35L dimension is a bit smaller than related journey backpacks. Take a look at my information to the Finest Journey Backpacks for my different high picks.

I really like the minimalist styling of the Aer Journey Pack 3 since so many different journey backpacks have a “mountaineering” type that I don’t love.

I discovered the again to be comfy so I had no issues hauling it round for prolonged quantities of time. I additionally thought the bag’s group was neatly designed so I used to be in a position to entry no matter I wanted with out a lot problem.

The Aer Journey Pack 3 can also be extraordinarily sturdy and well-made so I’ve little question in its means to face up to being thrown round.

However the high quality of the Aer Journey Pack 3 comes at a value—it’s $249 for the usual model and $279 for the waterproof X-Pac model.

James Feess
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