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Like most people I have several suitcases and bags which I use for travelling but I decided a few months ago to treat myself to a new backpack as the zip on my previous one had burst. I just wanted a cheapish one that I would use for short trips away and my main criteria was that it had to be a backpack as I find them easier to carry about with me especially when there is a lot of travelling involved and it had to be roomy enough to be able to fit in enough clothes to last me several days at a time. It would also have to be within the right dimensions for all airlines to take on a cabin luggage as when I am only travelling away for the weekend I don't want to have to wait around checking in luggage and then waiting to pick it up again on the other side.
I had a voucher for Amazon so I browsed the website looking at the range of backpacks. They had a huge range but most of them were missing the extra compartments that I find essential when travelling. I finally came across this Jeep backpack which was considered to be cabin sized so perfect for flying.
To be honest I had never even heard of Jeep before but the backpack already had a few good reviews and it looked to be exactly what I was looking for and because it was really cheap I decided to just buy it and I thought that even if it ended up breaking then as it didn't cost me very much it wouldn't be a huge loss to me.
The backpack came in a range of colours but I decided on the green one simply for the fact that it was the cheapest one available. I ended up paying just £17.99 for it and a few £ for postage as it came from a third party seller.
When it arrived I was happy to see that it was much better quality than I had originally been thinking it would be for the money I paid for it. It also looked much better than it did in the pictures and overall it was a really good first impression. The backpack is primarily black and grey with just a splash of colour at the front and on the shoulder pads.
~~~~~ Storage ~~~~~~
Being that I wanted this backpack primarily for weekends away etc. it needed to have enough storage room in it for enough clothes, toiletries and my laptop and charger for a few days. My previous backpack that I used for weekends away a lot was an Animal backpack and that had a capacity of 25ltrs whilst this one has a capacity of 30ltrs but the actual bag looks about the same size so it is nice to have that little bit more room without having to go for a large cumbersome bag. The dimensions of the bag are: L40cms x H48cms W15cms.
There are several compartments with the backpack which is ideal for me as I do like to have different items in separate compartments so that I can find them easily. There is a small compartment at the front which is ideal for passports and documents, one which is slightly larger and ideal for toiletries etc. and a further two which are great for clothing. There is also a separate compartment for your laptop but unfortunately this isn't padded which is a shame so it means I have to take a separate padded case to make sure my laptop stays protected whilst in the bag.
I also miss the fact that it doesn't have side pockets as I miss just being able to grab things out of them whilst the bag is still on my back without having to take it off.
When it comes to how much you can fit in the backpack you might be surprised with just how much it can actually fit. It is a little like the tardis in that it doesn't look all that big but seems to keep expanding to fit more in it.
I have absolutely no trouble fitting in enough changes of clothes to last me a few days and my laptop, kindle, various chargers and toiletries go in with no trouble. You might not be able to take several pairs of shoes or your entire wardrobe but the capacity should be enough for most people to be able to use it for short trips away with little in the way of compromise on what you need to leave behind.
~~~~~ Comfort ~~~~~
The backpack itself is quite lightweight which is good because obviously when it is filled to the brim it is going to weight quite a lot.
It has padded shoulder straps which are only to be expected as it would be extremely uncomfortable otherwise. The shoulder straps are just the right thickness to stop them from digging in to your shoulders and they sit really well on my shoulders without slipping off. There is also a top and front handle which are nice and strong and they allow you to hold the backpack in front of you or to hand it over to be weighed etc.
The back panel is also padded and this really does help stop anything in the bag from digging into your back whilst it is on which is great when you have chargers and other sharp objects in the bag.
Obviously when it is full it is going to start to be uncomfortable after wearing it for a while but it seems to me that Jeep have done everything they can to minimize any discomfort.
~~~~~ Durability ~~~~~
I have only had the backpack for a few months but in that time I have used it loads. I originally bought it solely with the intention of using it for weekends away but because of how roomy it is and the fact that it is quite a nice looking backpack I have found myself using it for taking with me to the supermarket and the gym.
The material that the backpack is made from is really hard wearing and all the zips and seams are also well constructed and there is no sign of any of them coming loose which in itself is a minor miracle considering just how much I seem to stuff into the bag.
~~~~~ My recommendation ~~~~~
I think that this backpack is fantastic. I have a few minor niggles with it such as the lack of side pockets but overall it is really well made for the money charged for it and is extremely tough and durable. Because it is so roomy it can fit loads of clothes in it but also because it doesn't appear to be any larger than other backpacks and expands out when filling it you can also use it for everyday use.
I travel a lot and yet the backpack is still in excellent condition and trust me when I say that I am not the most careful of people and it has been flung about a lot in the few months I have had it. I had a good look over the bag whilst writing this review and I checked all the seams and not one of them looks to be loose and the zips are all still fine so I am confident that this backpack should last me quite a long time which considering how cheap it was makes it an absolute bargain in my book.