This summer I had the chance to test out a new travel backpack by Numinous Packs. When they approached me about reviewing their GlobePacs 55L anti-theft rucksack, I was a little unsure because it’s not the normal style of backpack that I’d look for. Never wanting to lock myself into a specific type of backpack, I decided to give them a shot on a number of trips this year including my trip to Montebello with Land Rover.
Finding the right backpack for that backpacking trip around Europe, Asia, South America or wherever is probably the most critical decision you’ll have to make in terms of gear. Picking a backpack is important because it’s going to be carrying your livelihood on the road and it’ll be hanging on your back a majority of the time. There’s a lot to think about because you really don’t want to be stuck with a backpack that doesn’t suit your travel style.
Here’s my honest review of the Numinous GlobePacs 55L Anti-Theft Travek Backpack with reasons why you should or shouldn’t get this.
Numinous Packs is a company hailing from the UK and was founded by a guy just as obsessed with travel as a lot of us are. The genesis of it all started while sitting on a beach in Maya Bay, Thailand and now they make some of the most security focused backpacks I’ve ever seen.
The bottom line is that you never know what might happen on the road while travelling. You need to prepare and equip yourself for a lot of those scary scenarios because you don’t want to be left stranded somewhere without your stuff.
With the GlobePacs 55L Rucksack, it’s all about a backpack that’ll keep all of your things safe while giving you maximum amounts of comfort, space, and packing flexibility. It may not be the prettiest of backpacks but for those that are looking for a fully opening lay flat backpack with tons of utility and is practically un-stealable, this is a backpack you want to consider for your trip.
Full Length Opening vs. Top Loading Backpack
One of the best things that travellers will definitely appreciate is the fact that this backpack fully folds open like a suitcase. This is a game changer because traditionally most backpacks are top-loading.
Top-loading backpacks are tricky to work with because you really need to be organized and efficient in your packing. You really have to be strategic about it all because things that you pack at the bottom of the bag are very difficult to access once you have a full pack. Anytime you need to grab something near the bottom, you either need to stick your arm fully in, feel around for the thing you’re looking for and then fish it out or you’ll need to pull everything else out in order to get at what you need. Stuff sacks can make this a lot more manageable but it does get annoying at times.
With the Numinous backpack, being able to fully unzip and lay the bag flat is a godsend because you instantly get access to everything inside the backpack. Unlike my photo, you can still be very efficient about how you organize and pack your bag but it all feels a lot more logical when you cram everything in because you always have that birds eye view of everything.
The other benefit here is that by nature of the backpack unfolding in this way, you can also leverage the interior for a lot more storage and compartments. From the above, you can see several mesh pockets, pen slots and zippered pockets to organize and store even more things .
The Fort Knox of Backpacks
I have to say, I’ve never seen a backpack this focused on security. Numinous Packs has really taken it to the next level with the amount of features they’ve packed into this one pack. Let’s break down everything that it has.
TSA-Approved Zip Locks
There are two main zippered compartments for the 55L Backpack and they’ve got both of them covered with these built in combination locks. This means you no longer need to buy separate locks for your backpack. These built in ones I’d say are even more heavy duty than regular locks because there’s no real way to cut them open either unless you really have time to work at it. I appreciate that these are TSA approved as well because if airport security ever needs to go in to take a peek, they can do it without destroying the lock.
For anyone that’s been to Europe, one of those horror stories you keep hearing about time and time again is the one where an thief approaches an unsuspecting traveller and will slash the bottom of their bag to steal their belongings from underneath them. With this Numinous backpack, there’s a fat chance of that because the exterior is fully armored with the same kevlar that’s used in bulletproof vests. 5 times stronger than steel on an equal weight basis, there’s simply no way of anyone pulling a quick slash-and-run on you.
To round it out, they even went ahead and threw in a retractable combination wire lock. That means that anytime the bag isn’t on your back, you can secure it to any fixed object including hostel beds.
They’ve definitely fully thought through security and you’d be hard-pressed to find any other bag that has as many features as the Numinous GlobePacs Rucksack.
Overall the backpack is quite well padded. Between the shoulder straps and waist straps, it’s very comfortable and designed to provide a high degree of adjustability. When you put the backpack on, everything feels very snug and secure despite the size. The back is also ventilated so your back won’t get too sweaty.
The waist straps are nice and thick but you will notice that they do not have any pockets for additional quick-access storage.
They’ve also designed for multiple heights in mind. The shoulder straps can be raised up and down with the help of velcro and if you need to raise it even more, you can leverage the upper strap buckle depicted above to better load balance the height. This means that you can truly adjust the backpack to your stature to maximize on comfort.
Suitable For All Types of Travel
On top of being being a backpack, you can also close up the back panel to conceal the straps which makes this bag easy to use when travelling by air.
The bag is also equipped with nice juicy handles whether you want to carry the backpack from the side or from the top.
After you land at your destination, all you have to do is unzip the cover, roll it up and stuff it into a special compartment at the bottom of the backpack.
The front compartment is perfect for additional small items, documents and since it is well padded, it is also perfect for a laptop.
The backpack is also equipped with mesh side pockets that are perfect for things like water bottles and other quick access items.
Overall, this is is an extremely well constructed backpack with careful attention to detail especially when it comes to security and backpacker friendly features.
What I Loved
- Nobody’s going to be breaking into this bag.
- Full length opening makes it a lot easier to pack.
- Extremely roomy with a lot of usable space.
What Could Be Improved
- Aesthetically, I’ll be honest in that it’s not the prettiest bag. It’s very boxy and will appear very large on your back.
- While I love the security features, but what’s most annoying is the kevlar flap that covers over the zippers. I’ve definitely found it a bit cumbersome when trying to open and close the backpack.
- The branding is a bit overwhelming. Not sure if it’s necessary to have the logo on there twice and and the 55 label.
So I’ll let you be the judge of whether this bag makes sense for your trip or not. There’s really nothing else like this on the market so if it checks off everything on your list, make sure you buy one or enter in the giveaway below.
Win Your Very Own Numinous Backpack
Now that you know all there is to know about the Numinous GlobePacs 55L Rucksack, here’s your chance to win one. The widget below is where you can get your entries in and there are lots of ways to do it. Remember that for a lot of them, you can come back every day so make sure you check back.
Prize: Any bag in the Numinous Packs line-up, up to the 55L size (value of $300)
Dates: Thursday August 20th to Tuesday September 15th
Conditions: None. My last few giveaways for Canadians only but this one is open to EVERYONE!