Rupert Parker finally finds a travel bag that fits even a RyanAir flight!
When I fly, I pride myself on travelling only with hand baggage and put nothing in the hold. Not only does it take away the stress of worrying whether your luggage is going to arrive, it also disciplines your packing, leaving room for only essentials.
I was sorely tested recently, however, when I took a Ryanair flight to Greece. If you don’t pay for Priority Boarding you’re limited to just one piece of baggage measuring 40cm x 20cm x 25cm. This was a tough challenge and I had to think carefully about how I could reduce everything to a minimum.
Now Osprey is usually my pack of choice, so I searched through their catalogue to find something suitable. The Daylite was the only one that fitted the bill but was slightly too large at 46cm x 22cm x 24cm. Still, I reckoned that if I didn’t stuff it too full I would probably get away with it.
For a bag of this size, there are a remarkable number of storage options, even a space at the back to hold their Hydraulics water reservoir. Capacity is 13L and the zippered main compartment has an elasticated inside pocket which will take a tablet or small laptop.
In front is a smaller zippered compartment with two internal mesh pockets and a key clip. There are also two large mesh external pockets on either side and compression straps keep everything compact. The pack is very light and not rigid so fits easily into small spaces.
At the rear, a space mesh panel keeps your back ventilated. Padded shoulder straps make it comfortable to wear and there are additional support straps across the waist and chest. The Daylite is also designed to attach to other Osprey packs including their Aether AG, Ariel AG, Farpoint 80 and Sojourn.
So how did I get on? I packed a minimum of clothing as it was going to be warm, and reckoned I could do some hand washing, as everything would dry quickly. The largest items were sandals which slipped into the side mesh pockets. I liked the different compartments and by tightening the compression straps I managed to get it almost into the Ryanair specifications.
When I arrived at the airport, I furtively checked it with the sizer bin and, as it’s flexible, it did manage to fit. On my shoulders, it looks small and compact so at the gate nobody challenged me. Of course, I wore all the bulkier clothing but, when I arrived, found I could stuff them inside quite easily by loosening the compression straps. This is a well-made piece of kit and it made my Greek island hopping a breeze.
Tell Me More About Osprey Daylite
The Daylite series comes in a range of sizes and colours. The range includes packs and duffels.