When is a rucksack not just a rucksack? When it’s Pacsafe, and you’re on the road, we’ve discovered. Check out our PacSafe Venturesafe X30 Backpack Review to find out the details…
This lightweight and compact rucksack is ideal for day hikes, short weekend climbing trips or even slightly longer travelling scenarios if you can force everything in. However, it has a secret hidden in it’s alpine-style design – it’s armour plated. The external front pocket as has what Pacsafe call ‘Exomesh’, a woven steel mesh that protects against bag slashers, and and the straps have Dyneema webbing to protect against the same thing. Ingeniously this armour hasn’t added too much to the weight of the bag, which weighs in at just over a kilo.
The security measures don’t stop there, the outer pocket and top pocket zips can be threaded through a loop and the main section and larger front pocket can also be clipped together with a built-in mini carabineer clip. These are somewhat fiddly to clip together, however as the intention is to deter pickpockets, this is probably a good thing. In practice, this probably would be better to sort when at your hotel/accommodation as takes a few minutes, but you would then be able to walk out feeling more secure about your possessions. There is also a lockable clip on the right arm strap which can be clipped and locked to a piece of furniture/object. This is a particularly useful when travelling as you can secure your bag quickly and easily, which allows a much more relaxing journey.
Internally, there is a RFID blocking pocket in the larger front section. This pocket can block frequencies from 10MHz to 3GHz and as such, is ideal for storing items such as credit cards and passports and to prevent these details being scanned by identity thieves. This section also contains clips for items such as wallets and keys to help you locate these items more easily, but also to add another layer of complication for thieves targeting your possessions. The main section also has a padded pouch suitable for laptop or Macbook up to 15 inches and you can also purchase the Travel safe 5L Portable safe, which slots into this bag for additional security. These could be very useful for a city break if you had a lot of high value items such as cameras/laptop and you were visiting tourist areas that had a high prevalence of pickpocketing, or if heading out on an expedition to more rugged climes such as Kathmandu or South America.
The Pacsafe Venturesafe X30 Backpack is top loading and does not have a zip at the bottom to access items, so you need to ensure anything you might need is near the top or in one of the side pockets, as otherwise you will need to unpack the entire pack. Due to the aluminium support in the back panel, the bag’s structure remains quite rigid when packing, allowing you fill it efficiently. The back support also helps distribute the load on your back and there are also adjustable shoulder/chest and hip straps with EVA foam. The bag sat well on the back and was very comfortable, even when filled to capacity. The load was well balanced and even though our test journey involved jumping on and off pickup trucks and boats, we were able to complete it with ease. The profile of the bag itself is very slim so you can move in crowded areas or through tight spaces easily and the hip straps can be folded away, which was useful for checking this in the hold on an airplane, so the straps don’t get caught in the conveyer belt.
What sets this bag apart from others is its safety features, and the Pacsafe Venturesafe X30 Backpack overall is a well-made, lightweight and compact backpack that is perfect for short breaks or day trips, particular in areas/or situations where you might be a target for thieves. The added security gives peace of mind when travelling and needing to rest/wait or sleep for periods of time and also when in crowded /tourist areas where you might be pickpocketed. It is also very well balanced and comfortable, making it ideal for scenarios when you are required to change transport, jumping on and off boats/trucks/buses etc. For trips to colder climates or full-fat expeditions when you might require more equipment such as hiking/camping you might need something slightly larger, but for short trips or when travelling light, this backpack is ideal.
The Pacsafe Venturesafe X30 Backpack is available now from AlpineTrek for £131.95.
Words and images by Isabella Fletcher.