As a big fan of Osprey’s backpacks, I was eager to get my hands on their new Flapjack commuter pack to see exactly what it brings to the table for a frequent traveler such as myself. As with all of the company’s products, this new bag is high in quality and expertly designed to mix both good looks and plenty of functionality. With that combination of qualities it didn’t take long for the pack to impress. After putting it to the test on a recent road trip, I now have a new favorite travel pack to carry all of my important items.
For the record, this isn’t a completely new bag from Osprey. In fact, the Flapjack line has been around for a number of years. But for the fall of 2015 it has received a much needed update that improve it in just about every way. The exterior design is cleaner and more modern looking. It features improved fabrics that feel like canvas but are far more weather resistant, and the straps, buckles, and backpad are everything you’ve come to expect out of a product that bears the Osprey logo.
Inside, the Flapjack has plenty of pockets and compartments to help you keep all of your gear well organized. Not only does it come with an amply padded laptop sleeve, there are secondary pockets for a tablet, important documents, or just about anything else you’d like to carry with you. There is even room in the main compartment for a jacket, umbrella, or your exercise cloths, just in case you want to drop by the gym after you’ve wrapped up your day at the office.
On the outside of the pack there is a zippered stash pocket on the very top that is nicely hidden by the bag’s low profile handle. An exterior organizational pocket can also be quickly and easily accessed without having to dig into the main compartment. This pocket is surprisingly spacious too and contains a key clip, penholders, and several other organizational slots that are perfect for holding small, but important items such as charging cables, USB drives, or a notebook. A water bottle holder on one side, and a long, zippered pocket that runs the length of the pack on the other, are also much-appreciated touches.
While putting this bag to the test in the field, I found that I loved that it allowed me to not only carry all of my important gear with ease, but also quickly access it at any time. There is seemingly a pocket, compartment, or sleeve for everything, and it all laid out in a clear, logical manner. That is something I appreciate when I’m hurrying through an airport, trying to get work done on a plane, or simply looking for a specific item at a moments notice.
If you prefer a messenger bag over a backpack for your travel or commuting needs, Osprey has also updated the Flapjack Courier for fall 2015 as well. It contains similar design improvements as the Pack, and both bags come with Osprey’s awesome All Mighty Guarantee, which backs them up for the life of the product no matter what happens to them.
The Flapjack Pack and Courier are available now. The backpack sells for $110, while the messenger bag runs $100.