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Backpack as carry-on luggage? Is a daypack necessary RTW?

Travel Forums General Talk Backpack as carry-on luggage? Is a daypack necessary RTW?

1. Posted by jonny b (Budding Member 7 posts) 10y

Hi Folks,
What is the maximum size and weight for a rucksack if you want to have it as carry-on luggage on flights? I'm planning a round the world trip for next year (in mainly warm/tropical countries staying in hostels etc with no skiing ;)) and I'm currently sorting through the minefield of information surrounding backpacks. I'd like to make it as easy as I can on myself and I'm hoping to travel quite light so I'm planning to limit my pack size to around 50L. Will this be too big for carry-on luggage?

I'm looking at Arc'Teryx, Osprey and Macpac backpacks at the minute........but the Arc'Teryx Bora 50 in particular - does anyone have any opinions on this/these?

Also - is a daypack absolutely necessary?


2. Posted by GregW (Travel Guru 2635 posts) 10y

Most airlines permit bags up to the following dimensions (in inches): 22 inches high, 14 inches wide, 9 inches deep. A 50L rucksack, assuming it doesn't have a hard back, could POTENTIALLY be squished to fit in those dimensions, but my guess is that you'd run into issues with that at some airlines. Here's a link that discusses the rules in general, but each airline has their own specific rules that you need to follow.

One of the problems with just doing carry-on is that you can't carry some items that could come in handy during a RTW trip, like small knife or a bottle opener.

Also, I think you'd need to get a short backpack, which might not be comfortable for long walks if it doesn't sit on your back right.

I'd recommend a day pack, at least so you can carry around just the estenials when out for the day (toilet paper, your camera, some water, a pull-over in case it gets cold, etc.) You don't want to be walking around with all your stuff every time you go out.

3. Posted by vegasmike6 (Travel Guru 3562 posts) 10y

I think Greg is right. Post 9/11, you simply cannot bring everything onto the plane that you would like for your RTW trip. Bite the bullet, check your main bag. A day pack is handy so many times that yes, I think it is a necessary item on your trip.

4. Posted by jonny b (Budding Member 7 posts) 10y

Thanks for the replies and info guys. I think you're right...I'm just paranoid about checking my bag in. It's bad enough if you're on a 2 week holiday and it goes missing!

5. Posted by _Loren_ (Inactive 2 posts) 10y

Probably something that can work is take a backpack that can be a carry-on, then check your items in another bag that will get pulled from airline security, this way if it is lost you still have your main pack.