A Bad Hip Belt
According to REI and Outdoor Gear Lab, a hip belt transfers up to 80-90% of your backpack’s weight from your shoulders to your hips. For a 22 lb travel backpack, that means 17.6 lbs is magically lifted from your shoulders.
Everyone wants to feel lighter on their travels, with less knots in your tender neck and shoulders.
That's why a good, padded hip belt absolutely should come included with every travel backpack.
However, Minaal has opted to make you pay extra for a flimsy hip belt that can barely take your backpack’s weight off your shoulders.
The Setout Divide Backpack comes with a padded, removable, weight-transferring hip belt with reachable pockets to use in-transit. It doesn't cost extra -- it's part of the bag.
Minaal charges you an extra $39 if you want to add a hip belt. Meaning you’re paying a whopping total of $338 for your bag.
Why does Minaal charge an extra $39 for a measly strap? Because they can to make an extra buck, just like the nickel and diming airlines we can't stand.
Airlines already charge travelers for every little thing. Don't let your luggage company do it, too.
Excessive baggage fees were a big motivator for us to create the carry on-sized Setout Divide. Even better: we don't have any hidden fees.
No Reachable Pockets
The Setout Divide’s hip belt features two large passport-sized pockets within easy reach. Yep, you don’t even have to take off your backpack to get into these pockets. They’re perfect for storing your cash, coins, tickets, passport, and boarding passes.
Best of all: your most important items will always be within finger’s reach. No more digging in your pants' pockets, or rooting around in your bag for them.
And when you go through airport security? They’re a lifesaver. Quickly empty the contents of your pants' pockets into your Setout Divide’s hip belt pockets before going through the metal detector. On the other side, everything you need -- like your boarding pass and lip balm -- is still within finger’s reach when you put your bag back on.
Keeping your money in zippered pockets is much safer than tossing it in a bowl and leaving it visible to everyone else in the security line.
Which is your scenario if you pick the Minaal. This bag doesn't have any pockets that you can reach while wearing it. Every time you need something, you would have to take your bag off to find it. What a hassle.
Small, Non-Zippered Water Bottle Pouch
You get thirsty on the road thanks to that recycled air, hot days, and sprints for the plane. Which is exactly why every good backpack should have a water bottle pouch.
Minaal does have a water bottle pocket. However, that pouch is only half the pouch it could be. For example, it doesn’t zip away when it’s not in use. And you can only fit a small water bottle in there.
Extra thirsty so you bought a large 28 ounce bottle? You’ll be carrying that if you travel with Minaal.
Not so with Tortuga Setout Divide. This water bottle pouch holds that 28 ounce bottle… and zips neatly away when you’re not using it. So you don’t snag and rip the pouch walking down the plane aisle to your seat.
An extra two inches makes all the difference when you’re on the road.
It spells the difference between a weekend and a week-long trip. And it means you can bring an extra pair of pants to ward off the chills or two more t-shirts to avoid sweaty-day-stink. Or you can bring presents home for your friends who don't get to travel.
Two inches means a lot. That’s how much more space you get with the Tortuga Setout Divide when it expands.
Not so with the Minaal. In fact, with the Minaal you’re stuck with what they’ve decided to give you. Meaning no room to kick back and expand with a big breath on a longer week-long trip.
Not Ideal for Air Travelers
The Setout Divide has a pass through sleeve for use with a rolling suitcase, so you hook it right on the top of your rolling suitcase. Suddenly, your backpack is a good-sized personal item. This small detail that makes it more ideal for air travelers.
Does the Minaal have this thoughtful detail? Nope, sorry, folks.
Go With Comfort For the Win
The decision on which backpack is best for you is your decision entirely. We designed the Setout Divide with air travel and comfort in mind. Can you honestly say the same about the Minaal team?