I’m always on the lookout for new backpacks and suitcases for my travels, especially right now as we will be taking considerably more luggage now that with have a baby in tow, making choosing the best backpack more important than ever! So when I was given the opportunity to review the Cabin Zero bag recently I jumped at the chance! I’ve had lots of experience with bad backpacks that have hurt my back and shoulders in the past, so for me, this is of top importance when choosing a backpack. But I also care about the way it looks… fortunately Cabin Zero ticked both of these boxes for me. Read below for the full review.
Cabin Zero backpacks have a unique advantage over other luggage brands- they have designed luggage that is airline approved by budget airlines so that you know your luggage will be accepted as hand luggage on your flight. With stricter and stricter regulations and ever-increasing charges to check in your luggage (and the risk of it getting lost!), knowing that your bag is pre-approved by the airlines can give you peace of mind when travelling. The Cabin Zero website is also super useful as it gives the details of many major airlines and their bag restrictions!
What’s more, is that CabinZero is an ethically conscious, traveller-focused bag company who keeps a close eye on their environmental impact. The high-quality production ensures long life and durability, creating a bag you can depend upon, meaning that there is a far lower risk of your bag getting damaged in transit! In the long run this not only gives you peace of mind, but also saves you money-bonus!
Cabin Zero has a range of models ranging from 28 to 44 litres. I tested the limited addition 44litre classic style bag with flags. I chose this because I thought that it looked really unusual and I thought the flag look was cool! There are a wide range of other colours available too though so you have a good variety to choose from.
Another thing that I love is that the bag is lightweight. When empty it weighs only 750g, which helps lighten the load and limits any shoulder/back ache from carrying a heavy bag! Unless you pack the bag with bricks, the size of the bag restricts the weight which averages at around 9kg when fully packed. The weight allowance for carry-on luggage is 10kg so this is works out pretty well. This bag is larger than a day-pack and smaller than a hiking bag, it makes a happy medium for all that you need- especially when you have to pack nappies, bottles and toys in addition to your usual stuff like I do!
There is one main compartment with lockable zips and two inner pocket sections for easy access to smaller loose items. There is also a large, laptop sized front pouch which is handy (although this might be designed for a laptop I kept the nappy changing gear in here!). Black webbing loops run across the front and sides, perfect for clipping on climbing shoes or those items that you need easy access to-baby toys perhaps!?. The bag is spacious too which is great. I managed to fit in everything I needed for my trip, which is usually a challenge with the backpacks I’ve used before.
What’s more is that the Cabin Zero bag looks and feels like it can take a beating… and it probably can since it’s made of military-spec nylon. I put this to the test when I used it is a weight to hold the umbrella down whilst on a super windy beach in Costa Rica and a baby who likes to grab everything- good news is it’s still standing! It uses heavy-duty YKK zippers that have lock loops so you can keep your backpack secure. Good quality zippers are important because a busted zipper is a huge issue when you’re traveling around all the time-a problem I have encountered one too many times! Furthermore, the stitching and seams all look like they’re all done well so no complaints there.
The material feels hard wearing and durable, with padded back and shoulder support. There is also a waist and chest belt, taking the weight off of your back and onto your hips – this helps to reduce that back and shoulder ache that I mentioned I’ve experienced before! I do a lot of baby wearing so with baby on the front and bag on the back it is super important that my backpack has good support, and I’m pleased to report that ye Cabin Zero bag was a success in this respect.
Overall, the bag is pretty comfortable, although I did only wear it for short periods at a time. I do fear that should I use this for a full day out hiking or whatever, that it might start to hurt my back as the bag doesn’t have the best support I’ve ever seen, but it is good for the price. It could also benefit from a padded hip belt. The load-lifter straps that help the backpack sit on your shoulders evenly and distribute the backpack’s weight were a plus point as a lot of backpacks in this price range don’t have this feature so that was a welcomed surprise.\ There is also mesh padding on the back and the straps — which should hopefully help promote some air circulation.
The Cabin Zero bag retails at £65 on the Cabin Zero website, however you can get it for as low as £44 on Amazon. I think this is a pretty good price for the quality that you get.
All in all I like the Cabin Zero bag because it looks great and has loads of room whilst still meeting the airline cabin bag requirements. Whilst I would be reluctant to use this as an all day hiking bag due to the lack of padding support, it is a great bag for short hikes and travelling from place to place.