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Osprey Farpoint vs Tortuga Outbreaker

Travelers emailed us asking for a comparison between Tortuga travel backpacks, specifically the Outbreaker 45, and Osprey’s Farpoint series.

The Farpoint series is less popular than the Osprey Porter but claims to be designed for city travel. At first glance, the Farpoint looks to have many of the Outbreaker travel backpack’s best features. But, upon closer inspection, Osprey missed some crucial details. Since Osprey is an outdoors company, not a travel company like us, this is to be expected.

Not Carry On Sized

The Farpoint 55 claims to be for "efficient packers" but is actually too large to be a carry on. The bag is 3" too tall and 3" too deep to qualify as a carry on. Most airlines only allow bags up to 22 x 14 x 9". The Farpoint 55 measures 25 x 13 x 12".

No travel backpack should be larger than carry on size, so we can dismiss the Farpoint 55 immediately.

The Farpoint 40 is slightly under carry on regulation, but is it a good travel backpack?

Poor Ergonomics

Osprey has a lot of experience with hiking packs, which are often very large and very heavy. The company's diagram on how to pack your pack shows that heavy items should be packed as close to your body as possible to keep your load balanced and to prevent it from pulling on your shoulders. Unfortunately, Osprey doesn’t follow their own advice. The Farpoint 40's laptop pocket is on the outside of the pack and away from your body.

The Outbreaker’s laptop sleeve is flush against your back for optimal balance and ergonomics. Your shoulders will appreciate this detail.

Checkpoint Un-Friendly

The TSA allows travelers to leave their laptops inside their bags through security, if the bag is designed with a separate, lie-flat laptop compartment. If you’re carrying an Outbreaker from Tortuga, you’ll be able to breeze through security like the pro traveler you are by leaving your laptop inside your bag.

Osprey missed this detail. Farpoint owners still have to take their laptops out of their backpacks in a security line.

The Downfall of Curves

Osprey’s Farpoint backpack has a rounded profile, while Tortuga’s Outbreaker 45 is more rectangular. The rectangular profile of the Outbreaker means that we (literally) didn’t cut corners. The corners are valuable packing space, so why on earth would we cut them out? You can pack significantly more (5 liters more, specifically) in an Outbreaker 45 than in a Farpoint 40. If you’re traveling carry on, that extra space can be crucial.


No Reachable Pockets

Osprey claims that the Farpoint 40 was designed for the "fast-moving globetrotter."

Unfortunately the bag's design means that you will have to slow down and stop to get anything in, or out, of your bag.

None of the Farpoint 40's pockets are reachable while you are wearing the bag. No side pockets. No hip belt pockets.

At Tortuga, we are fast moving globetrotters and know which details make a huge difference. We have gone through enough airport security lines to understand the necessity of quickly accessing a passport, or boarding pass.

The Outbreaker has two convenient hip belt pockets and two lie-flat water bottle pockets that you can reach while wearing the bag. The zippered hip belt pockets can be used to safely store small items like cash, coins, and boarding passes. If you’re buying a snack at an airport kiosk or standing in line at immigration, you won’t have to wrangle with your backpack to reach your money or passport.

Buy Directly From the Source

If you want an Osprey backpack, you have to buy it from one of their outdoor (not travel) shop partners. A middleman. With markups.

If you want a Tortuga travel backpack like the Outbreaker 45, you can buy it directly from us.

When you email us with a question or problem, you will get a prompt reply from the same people who make the product. Tortuga is your one-stop travel shop.

The Outbreaker travel backpack was designed for travelers, by travelers. If you like our approach, you can learn more about the Outbreaker here.

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