Packable Daypacks

Having a separate daypack tucked away in your backpack is essential to your travels.

When you arrive at your different destinations, your daypack allows you to easily carry your camera, tripod, umbrella, travel book, notes and anything else you want to have with you while you are out exploring.  Your daypack may also provide a place to store items you purchase and avoid having to carry around a bag in your hand.

Your daypack will provide alternate storage if you have acquired items on your trip and no longer have room in your backpack for them.  As these packs are small, they should always be allowed as a flight carry on bag, or even as an additional bag to your backpack.  If for some reason you are required to check your main backpack, you can transfer items to this smaller daypack to carry on with you.

These bags are smaller and may or may not have a chest and waist strap.  Shop around as there are many different packable daypacks in various styles, shapes and sizes.

There may be occasions when you want or need to wear these smaller packs on your front while carrying your larger backpack on your back.

If you are traveling by train and will be arriving at your next location early before you can check in to your hotel, you may plan to place your main backpack in a storage locker at the train station or drop it off at your hotel prior to your check in and only carry your smaller day pack with you.  Before you depart to the destination, pack your daypack with whatever you plan to carry around with you.  Now you have two backpacks to carry until you drop the main one off.  Simply wear the smaller one on your chest (first), then place the larger one on your back.  You will find that it's very easy to walk around with both, keeping your arms and hands free.  Depending on your backpack, an alternative is to use two Carabineers to attach the the daypack to the straps of your backpack.

Prior to your departure, experiment with attaching and wearing two packs at the same time.

L.L. Bean Stowaway Packable 22L Daypack

Our Daypack of Choice for the size, weight and features, especially the chest straps that seem to be missing on other stowaway type daypacks.
  • Capacity: 22 L
  • Weight: 14 oz.
  • Dimensions: 19 in. H x 10 in. W x 7 in D
  • Packed size: 8 in. x 7 in.

Features

  • Light weight and made from ripstop nylon
  • Padded foam shoulder straps and back panel
  • Features an internal stow pocket that doubles as stuff compartment for travel
  • Two side mesh water bottle pockets with loop locks to keep bottles secure
  • Adjustable waist belt and chest straps
  • Waist straps can be tucked into a storage area on the backside
  • Small zippered compartment at the top in front
  • Vertical zippered compartment on the front
  • Large open storage area on the front
  • Exterior loop strap for attaching a light to help keep you visible or other light weight items
  • Available in multiple color combinations
  • You can easily attach an extra jacket to the exterior by looping it under the side compression straps

Pros

  • Plenty of storage pockets
  • The pack can easily be rolled and compressed to fit into a larger pack for transportation even without stuffing it into it's internal stuff sack
  • Easy to attach an extra jacket under the compression straps
  • For a packable daypack, it's nice to find one with both waist and chest straps
  • Waist strap storage area

Cons

It looks like L.L. Bean hit the mark with this pack.  At this time, we cannot think of anything we would change.

The pack is reasonably priced but if you can, wait for a sale as you may pick it up for an additional 25% off or more.

L.L. Bean Stowaway Packable 22L Daypack


Eddie Bauer Stowaway Packable 20L Daypack

We used this pack on a two week trip through Europe and it worked fine but Eddie Bauer has missed the mark buy not including waist and chest straps.  It's too bad as we liked the pack, but based on the missing straps, we would not use this pack again on future trips.  Having at least the chest strap makes the pack more comfortable and secure.

Easy to carry and easy to store, this lightweight daypack folds into the smaller front zip pocket for easy stowing.  Approximate Compression Stowing Size: 7 in. x 8 in. x 2.0 in

  • 100% polyester
  • Two external zip pockets
  • Two elasticized mesh side pockets
  • One interior Velcro┬« back panel pocket
  • Four front lashing loops
  • Lightly padded adjustable shoulder straps
  • Capacity: 20L
  • Weight: 11 oz
  • 18 in. H x 10 in. W x 9 in. D
  • StormRepel DWR finish sheds moisture
  • Durable 200-denier ripstop polyster

Pros

  • The pack is very inexpensive especially if you catch a sale at Eddie Bauer

Cons

  • No waist or chest straps
  • The zipper of the packing compartment catches on the internal loop handles when using the compartment as a storage area

Eddie Bauer Stowaway 20L Daypack