Why You Should Carry a Panel-Loading Backpack

Most backpacks are top-loading. You dump everything into a single opening at the top like you're using a funnel. Then your stuff, all stacked on top of itself, becomes a disorganized mess.

What if you want to get a pair of sandals for a quick trip to the beach? Oh no, they're stuck at the bottom of your backpack. Now you have to waste time unpacking then repacking your entire bag.

A panel-loading travel backpack allows for the accessibility and organization of a suitcase but maintains all the comfort and agility of traveling with a backpack.

The best choice of luggage for a week or months-long trip is a panel-loading, carry on sized backpack.

Tortuga travel backpacks are designed specifically for travelers, not hikers. You pack and organize them like a suitcase, but carry them like a backpack. 

For Organization Enthusiasts

The Outbreaker Backpack combines the ergonomics and portability of a backpack with the obsessive organization and easy packing of a suitcase. With the Outbreaker, you have a place and a compartment for everything. Feel free to overpack, because it will feel comfortable no matter how much you’re carrying. It's our most ergonomic and most adjustable backpack.

For Light Packers

The Homebase Backpack was designed with the minimalist traveler in mind. For light packers, a maximum-sized carry on is too much bag. Work bags are the right size, but aren’t built for travel.

The Homebase is an ultralight backpack that packs like a suitcase and blends in at the office or around the city. Ideal for minimalist packers and short trips.

The Best of Both Worlds

If you like internal organization and a hip belt but still prefer a lightweight bag, the Setout Backpack is your holy grail. It has most of the organization and maximum packing space of Outbreaker in a lighter weight package. It's also our most affordable panel-loading backpack. 

Grab What You Need… Fast!

Camping, hiking, and mountaineering backpacks load from the top. You just dump all your stuff in. Getting one item at a time from a top-loading bag is impossible.

Oftentimes small things fall to the very bottom of the pack. To get your phone charger you might have to unpack everything. And then repack it.

This process is an inconvenient waste of time.

Panel-loading backpacks make getting whatever you're after easy. You don't need to dump out all of your gear to get a particular item. When you open the front panel, you can quickly and easily put your stuff where you want it or grab a small item. Because it's easy to unpack and repack individual items, you will save time with a front-loading bag.

Prevent Back Pain with Ergonomic Packing

Top-loading bags make positioning your load ergonomically difficult because everything is packed from the top. Front-loading backpacks make distributing your pack's weight easy.

You can lay a Tortuga backpack down and open the entire front of the bag, just like a suitcase. Then you can strategically pack your heaviest and most used items.

Position your boots where they won't cause you back pain and pack your books and electronics for quick access.

Stay Organized

Traditional backpacks work like a garbage bag. You put your stuff in from the top, and it all stacks on top of itself. Staying organized is nearly impossible.

When you choose a panel loading backpack, you're able to organize all your stuff as if you were using a suitcase. You can see where you're putting your stuff, and it will be in the same place when you open your bag again.

Compare travel backpacks here and find the right option for your packing style.