For years, when I trekked across the country to visit family whenever Florida became too hot, the only bag I ever used for carryon was a tattered Jansport backpack that I’d had since high school. When you’re young and on a very fixed budget the style and quality of your carryon doesn’t matter. In fact, the frayed straps and random holes covered by Pearl Jam patches look pretty cool, regardless of what the raised eyebrows of your fellow passengers suggest.
But backpacks aren’t built to last forever, and eventually the bottom splits open, usually at the most inopportune time, like when your return flight carryon luggage is laundry you forgot to do the night before and your suitcase was too full because young and rebellious you refused to learn how to pack like a normal human. (Insert multiple facepalm emoji.) Times like these are when we need to reevaluate our personal travel styles and reconsider what we look for in a bag, especially when there are more styles and designs available than ever.
While there are bags for tech-focused travelers, business professionals, minimalists and influencers who wants every last aspect of their trips to be photo friendly, a backpack that sits at the center of that Venn diagram would certainly go a long way in making many a traveler’s trips more efficient. Good thing that bag already exists. It is Delve’s Large Roll-Top Backpack from Briggs & Riley.
What Do We Love the Most?
Let’s start with space, because that’s always the most important feature, and this backpack is all about space. The Delve roll-top was designed so well that it feels like two backpacks in one, and yet it doesn’t feel like that when it’s on your shoulders.
Of the two compartments, the roll-top section offers the most space and is the most convenient for storing weekend or overnight essentials like a change of clothes, dress shirt and pants, or sneakers and athletic wear. Full of bells and whistles this compartment is not, but its simplicity is its advantage. One small zippered pocket is great for toiletries and/or valuables, while two deeper pockets way down at the bottom can be used for shoes, flip flops, or especially important accessories, like watches, keys and jewelry.
The laptop compartment, on the other hand, is where you’ll find a place for everything. This padded compartment features sleeves for a 17-inch laptop and 11-inch tablet, as well as another pocket that can easily fit another tablet or smaller laptop. On top of that, there is a small RFID shield pocket and three other sleeves for a passport, cash and anything else (this is where I keep my super-crucial pack of gum).
And tucked away beneath the shoulder straps, above the luggage attachment sleeve, is another RFID blocking pouch with a hidden zipper. The best backpacks are full of these little surprises.
As for the Comfort
Between the cushioned back with air mesh that eliminates what I call “sweaty traveler back” and the soft, easily adjustable shoulder straps, this backpack was built for comfort as much as it was style. And that says a lot give the style this backpack exudes, because even the strong metal quick-release buckles on the roll-top look cool.
That might sound like an insignificant detail, but when you expect big things from a backpack that will joining you on cross-country and global adventures for years to come, those details add up.