lifepack backpack 2

The Best Backpack for Travel? Lifepack Backpack Review

As I’m writing this, I have 8 different backpacks in my room. Yet, I’ve been to 12 countries with just one of them since Summer. This is a Lifepack backpack review, and yes, it has been to 12 countries since Summer of 2017. To put it into perspective, I’ve been to more countries with this Lifepack than I have made posts on this new blog thus far.

Quite frankly, I really hate backpacks which make me making this Lifepack backpack review surprising. I mean I truly hate them. It’s incredibly hard to look stylish wearing them. Especially with something more formal.

Messenger bags are just so much better if you want to be stylish.

Thursday Boots

Shoutout to Thursday Boots for the shoutout!


It’s simply very hard to make a backpack that you can wear and look good in. But I traveled with a messenger bag, and while it’s great to have for business meetings, it’s not practical for travel where you change location every week, ask my left shoulder if you don’t believe me.

But this post isn’t about the best way to be stylish. It’s about the best backpack for travel.

lifepack backpack

Now to give some context on how I used this backpack in my several months with it let’s be honest, most of you don’t know what I do. Only my best friend knows and not even all. It’s funny because I go to all these events, I interview all these people, I collaborate with the biggest companies in the world, yet nobody knows anything about my pages or things I do. Perhaps that’s what adds to the hype. I’m a big mystery. 

There are two things people know about me though, and one that I will share. The one that I will share is that I mostly started this blog because I needed to get more personal since not being able to write essays off topic during my English class hasn’t been an option to me for a while now.

And the two things that most people know about me? I travel. I also am a freelance writer, and sometimes that surprises me as if you ever chatted with me, you would tell me I should fix my grammar. Hey, subscribe to my newsletter, maybe I’ll share more about me in the future.

Travel and writing mean that I used it for work and leisure at the same time. I got to experience this backpack to its full. It gave me a big insight which is why I decided to also do this Lifepack backpack review on this blog.

Life Before the Lifepack Backpack

My daily driver before this is now used by my father. It was too long. I’m too short for it. But it was the best out of what I had back then, so I wore it. With a modification. I took that messenger bag kind of strap from my Osprey Farpoint and put it onto that backpack of mine to make it into a backpack/messenger bag hybrid. It looked ridiculous. This was February of 2017.

Gary Vee

The guy with the blue suit pants, that’s me.  This a screenshot of Gary Vee’s daily vlog. “DRIVING” THROUGH DUBLIN | DailyVee 161

But that’s not what I even want to show you.

Here’s what that €329 backpack didn’t have and that most backpacks don’t have that Lifepack did very well: organization.

Organization Matters

That backpack I used before was big, Plenty of space, on paper. What it lacked was what many backpacks really lack. The organization part just didn’t exist. That backpack didn’t have proper organization pockets like Lifepack does. If you wanted to store something, you would just have to throw it in. Have tissues. Have a wallet. Earphones and a passport? Great. I had nowhere to put them even though my backpack was big enough to have space for all of them.

The result?

Don’t laugh.

No words. Look how full my pockets were. WHAT THE ABSOLUTE FFFFFFFCK!

“You can hide your worst self from your social media, but you can’t hide it from DRock” – Michael Smolski

Fun fact. Actually 3 fun facts.

That guy that is taking a selfie with Gary, I actually met him that day and became friends because he forgot his charging cable. Fact number 2. The intro song for that episode of Gary’s vlog, “Monday to Monday” was made by Saba, I actually interviewed Saba in Dublin when he came here on his tour.

Also, Gary said “nice face” to me on that day, perhaps that’s why I’m doing more of…

Away from the side stories, Lifepack provides comfort when it comes to organization. Two side pockets. Two pockets on the back which fit your passport. Two pockets on straps for cards, earphones, and such. Oh, and rain cover at the bottom which also works as a pocket. That’s only the pockets on the outside. Never mind inside. Inside you have space for sheets, a pocket for a laptop, a pocket for a hard drive, or actually several hard drives, and of course, a slot for your business cards is present there too.

Lifepack Backpack

Are those not things that work for business though? Yeah. Except you will take your laptop when traveling, and you will probably have smaller things to put in too. I always work though. And these things matter. Something as simple as having a pocket for your passport or card makes life simpler. It provides comfort when it comes to safety, but it also provides comfort when it comes to getting out the right card without having to search for it. You simply unzip. Boom. Finished. Adios.

The Lifepack backpack allows you to be organized. That’s essential when traveling as otherwise, you run out off space too quickly, and finding something becomes hell. But it doesn’t end at those pockets, on the front side of the bag, you get pockets for your glasses, pens, and so on.

So that’s great. But I also want to be able to fit as much as possible in a bag, especially since I tend to overpack, and the Lifepack backpack delivers on that even though I’ve seen reviews saying the exact opposite. I mean of course it won’t fit as much as the likes of carry-on luggage but it fits more than you would expect.

Lifepack Backpack

Me going back from Lisbon with a more than full Lifepack backpack and it held perfectly.

I’ve been in several instances that it was so full, that there was no way that things should have fit, but they did. The zip held perfectly.

I’m talking boots along with 2 weeks worth of clothing situation along with my big massive winter jumper that just takes up so much space kind of situation when I traveled from Wroclaw to Prague to Milan to Lyon to Clermont-Ferrand to Paris.

I also heard somebody say that their laptop didn’t fit with their lunch. Well, they either eat too, much or they have a PC and not a laptop as I tried to put in an old Dell laptop and if fit perfectly, and this was made in Ireland, not China to show how old it is.

Oh, and it comes with sunglasses too. Sunglasses that I lost but used even more than my Lifepack before I lost them.

2018 Kind of Comfort

Where do you store your tickets? Bus? Plane? On your phone right? We are dependant on phones. If our phone dies, we are screwed. Even things like getting lost in a city without Google Maps. And that happened in Paris. Power banks are essential. And Lifepack comes with one. It’s called Solarbank. Yep. It has a solar panel. And even a Bluetooth speaker.

That’s comfort when it comes to knowing our technology will be safe because our phone won’t die. It’s also comfortable knowing that when you go to your friend’s house, you will have a speaker if one is needed and they don’t have one. Oh, and this bag has a beer opener is included too.Backpack

Now, it’s not perfect. You can’t expect $200 quality if the Solarbank costs $99 so it does lack a bit on bass and clarity, but it’s better than using your phone and certainly better than most $50 speakers. And this isn’t just a speaker. I would also prefer some faster charging. I’m used to my Dash Charge on my OnePlus. Everything else is pretty much slower. But it’s something that really provides comfort. Especially when I want to use my phone on the plane.

And there’s this one major issue that I have. I live in Ireland when I don’t travel. The solar panel works in Ireland. Just not as charging it with electricity. What if I want to go out on a short trip during the day to do some writing in nature and have a flight later on during the day, but my Solarbank needs to be charged? I can charge it at home and don’t have it in my Lifepack backpack, but that would result in a hole. What then?

Not including these things, Lifepack is like this life essential for travel.

The Lifepack Backpack Actually Looks Good

“I really hate backpacks. Truly. It’s incredibly hard to look stylish wearing them.” – Michael Smolski

The team at Solgaard did that “incredibly hard” thing.

Imagine wearing this outfit with any other backpack, probably not possible.

The Lifepack backpack does not look touristy. It looks classy. It looks like you mean business. All of that while providing you with comfort to fit just about anything you will need.

And it comes in grey, that to me means as much as leopard print means to the founder of Lifepack, Adrian.

Looking good is essential when I travel. I will sacrifice features to look good. That’s just who I am. Luckily, with Lifepack, I don’t have to look average. The only backpack that entirely made me feel that way so far.

Security Is Present

Looks are great. Comfort is great. BUT NOTHING IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN SECURITY when you travel. I mean being able to fit everything in a backpack is great until… it gets stolen. And people can afford a lot more luxurious things in today’s world.

My first trip with the Lifepack? I was flying to London for African Fashion Week London.


I was at the airport. Security asked me to open my backpack of course, too sexy not be suspicious after all. I forgot my pin. Well, I thought I did. It turned out it said 9 instead of 0. Before I found that out, out of being nervous, I decided to break the lock. I pulled it as hard as possible. But the lock on my Lifepack wouldn’t come off.

Lifepack BackpackAnd that’s how you know something is secure.

And security really matters. You can lock both of main storage pockets with it. Since it’s also not a lock that’s built into the backpack directly, you can also tie it to something to prevent people from taking your backpack. If somebody wants to steal something, they will take it. And backpacks are easy to take. It’s hard to be suspicious having a backpack on your back. Lifepack takes care of that.

However, it’s not perfect either as while the lock stayed in place it seems like in the last few weeks, my lock had some issues with locking.  This is a Lifepack backpack review. That’s why it’s worth mentioning. I’m sure there’s a way to fix it but just be aware of it.

I also do wish tracking was available. Sure, the lock prevents theft, but it can still happen. It would be nice to have a tracker built inside of it. But there are many secret pockets that do perfect for hiding a tracker if you decide to buy one, and I really do recommend that. Even for instances where your luggage gets lost if it’s put on wrong plane or such.


In a world where people throw stuff when you are going on an airplane or bus, durability matters. In cities that it rains a lot, durability matters. Lifepack protects you from rain and even offers double protection in terms of it with a rain cover. Not that I will ever use one because style matters more than features, right?

Unless you are carrying a $2000 laptop. Double protection is a must then.

It also has nice padding at the bottom and overall has a nice structure when it’s empty which is not to be seen in a majority of backpacks.

If it’s empty, it won’t completely go flat which happens to a lot of backpacks, and I hate using flat looking objects.

Is It the Best Backpack for Travel?

It’s certainly not perfect. It has flaws. But it has the least flaws of any other backpack I tried for travel. The things I mentioned matter when it comes to travel. I am not a fan of backpacks, but I stuck to using this one because it makes my life easier.

The Lifepack backpack is like the Tesla of cars or like the iPhone of phones. It’s special because it’s a problem solver.

It’s not perfect, but I never a perfect product yet.

Maybe if the guys at Solgaard would be happy to send me a review unit of their carry-on, I can test that from the perspective of long-term travel. You know how to reach me if you want to know my address. or Instagram DM @michaelsmolski


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