Travel Product Reviews

The 5 Best Sling Bags for Travel: One of them Will be Perfect for You

best sling bags for travel

If your adventurous spirit has you traveling to the four corners of the earth, then you’d better be prepared. Not having the right gear can weigh you down and interfere with precious moments. One of a serious traveler’s most prized possessions, the sling bag, proves to be an essential sidekick to take with you on your journey. We made it our duty to find the very best sling bags for travel.

 

However, you may be feeling stumped trying to find the sling bag that’s most suitable for your needs. It’s understandable because there are a lot of bags on the market. That’s why we’re here to educate you on a few of the best sling bags for travel. With the help of Travel Freedom, you can get back to doing what you love.

 

Top Five Best Travel Sling Bags

Before you run out and buy just any old bag, first consider what you need. If you’re the stylish type, you may be willing to sacrifice weather resistance for a design that stands out.

 

Like most of us, your cargo will probably include some high-tech electronics. For this reason, you may want to set your priority on buying a sling bag with compartments that hold laptops, cameras, tripods and so on. Whatever your needs, it’s important to peruse some of the best sling bags for travel to find that one that’s right for you.

 

KAVU Rope Sling Bag – Best for Style and Comfort

KAVU Rope Sling Bag Price: $44.00 With plenty of great design options to choose from, you can't go wrong with this bag made in Seattle. KAVU Rope Sling Bag Last Updated: 02/13/2019

 

KAVU is a company built on the philosophy of adventure seeking and provides travelers with the goods they’ll need for the next escapade. The KAVU rope sling bag is both stylish, ergonomic and able to hold many of your travel items.

 

The material options include comfortable cotton canvas, polyester, and water-resistant polyester as well. No matter which material you choose, you’ll quickly appreciate the ergonomics. The teardrop design rests cozily on your back and an adjustable wrap contours the shoulders. Furthermore, it’s surprisingly spacious and has three exterior pockets.

 

What makes this bag stand out at first sight among the best travel sling bags would be the colorful designs, all 42 of them. There should be little worry about finding the best color and pattern to fit your personality. From dark colors like black oak and dark forest to the bright saffron, KAVU fits right in with adventure.

 

The Pros

  • Multiple fun designs
  • Spacious
  • External compartments
  • Comfortable design

 

The Cons

  • Left side use may feel a little awkward
  • Not the best fit for laptop transport

 

OutdoorMaster Packable Sling Bag – Best Lightweight Bag for Travel

OutdoorMaster Sling Bag Price: $19.99 This compact, yet spacious sling bag for men or women is perfect for travel. OutdoorMaster Sling Bag Last Updated: 02/13/2019

 

This bag lets you carry along all your travel necessities with a lightweight design. With 12 liters of volume, it’s like your sling bag is barely there. Avoid feeling weighed down on your hike, trip to the mall and beyond. To top it off, the nylon bag is foldable, making your packing incredibly easy. It will fit nicely into a suitcase or purse until you’re ready to use it. You also get to choose from a variety of colors, adding some glamour to your escapades.

 

A final perk is that among the best sling bags for travel, this one is the most affordable. Lastly, there’s an anti-theft section where you can safely secure your valuables, such as your wallet and phone.

 

The Pros

  • Lightweight design
  • Foldable
  • Anti-theft design

 

The Cons

  • Not enough compartments for some users
  • Less durable material

 

5.11 Tactical RUSH MOAB 10 Military Sling Bag – Best for Strenuous or Off-Grid Trekking

5.11 RUSH MOAB 10 Tactical Sling Bag Price: $79.99 With pockets for everything, this tactical sling bag is perfect for strenuous or off-grid trekking. 5.11 RUSH MOAB 10 Tactical Sling Bag Last Updated: 02/13/2019

 

The Rush MOAB (Mobile Operation Attachment Bag) series bags take packing seriously and aren’t for the faint of heart. Rush MOAB 10 is suitable for military officials and ideal for travelers and outdoorsy types. The many outstanding features below earn it a top spot on the list of the best sling bags for travel.

 

This bag has a plethora of pockets, so many that we can’t imagine you’ll ever run out of space for your tools and trinkets. The material consists of 1050D nylon. Additionally, there’s tacky rubber to keep the bag in place while you’re wearing it. There are also Velcro strips attached to the back for nameplates, making sure your possessions aren’t lost in a mix-up.

 

Added perks you might not want to pass up are the scratch-free sunglasses pouch, easy grip handle and built-in hydration valve. It’s also easy to reposition, so you can wear it on your side or in front of you for easy access. These features are ideal for hikers and climbers. Furthermore, the weapon pocket may be handy for scaring off those mountain lions.

 

Even more, it’s one of the few bags available that’s made for both left and right-handed users. There are hidden straps on both sides, and you can choose to use the left or right one while the other stays tucked away. You may also find the extra strap, padding, and ventilation quite useful for the rugged outdoors.

 

The bag is only available in sandstone and black, but the comfort and safety features available clearly outweigh the need for style.

 

The Pros

  • Military grade
  • Water resistant
  • Suitable for lefties and righties
  • Durable
  • Multiple compartments

 

The Cons

  • Not many style choices
  • Shoulder comfort diminishes after long-term wear

 

MyGreen Canvas Cross Body Shoulder Sling Backpack – Best for Carrying a Laptop and Phone

Mygreen Canvas Sling Bag Price: $26.99 This fashionable canvas sling bag is perfect for carrying a small laptop. Mygreen Canvas Sling Bag Last Updated: 02/13/2019

 

This vintage messenger bag is both stylish and convenient, making it just as fitting for a camping trip as it is for a trip to the mall. It has durable canvas and leather on the outside and soft, luxurious material on the inside. Style-conscious users will also appreciate the color varieties, along with the leather and metal accents.

 

Though it’s not huge in size, it’s nonetheless quite spacious. The bag’s main compartment can hold items such as a 13-inch laptop, a mobile phone, snacks, wallets and much more. Customers found this bag to be much more spacious than it looks.

 

The magnetic pocket makes securing your items super easy and the mesh pocket with an elastic band secure your water bottles with ease. Furthermore, one feature that sets it apart among the best travel sling bags is it’s suited for both lefties and righties.

 

The Pros

  • Made for lefties and righties
  • Stylish vintage design
  • Contains multiple compartments
  • Suitable for laptop transport

 

The Cons

  • Small size
  • Straps may break over time

 

Altura Photo Sling Bag – Best for Photo Gear

Altura Photo Camera Sling Bag Price: $32.99 Made to carry DSLR and Mirrorless cameras, this bag is perfect for the photographer in you. Altura Photo Camera Sling Bag Last Updated: 02/13/2019

 

What’s traveling without captured memories? If it’s important for you to document your travel experiences with a camera, then you need a safe way to carry and protect your tools. The main compartment is equipped with padded dividers to hold your standard zoom lens camera. The top compartment fits flash tools, extra lenses, and other accessories. There’s even an external tripod holder.

 

The padded sling adds comfort and rotates for easy front access to your bag. Mesh and zipper pockets also add comfort and protect your camera’s parts. Among the best sling bags for travel, this one is guaranteed to catch the photographer’s eye.

 

The Pros

  • Designed for photo gear
  • Multiple padded compartments
  • Comfortable sling

 

The Cons

  • There’s not much room for more than camera equipment.

 

Sling Bag FAQ

When considering the best sling bags for travel, there are a few attributes to think about. Some of those considerations include whether to use a sling or a backpack, tips for getting the best out of your sling bag and features to look out for in a sling bag.

 

The Difference Between Backpacks And Sling Bags

Backpacks are two-strap bags that are generally bulkier than sling bags, which have only one strap. The single strap makes sling bags easy to carry and shift position, making them popular among travelers.

 

Avoiding Back Pain Associated With Sling Bags

Sling bags are easy to carry have fewer straps and generally weigh less. However, the bulkiness and larger number of straps you’ll find on a backpack help to evenly distribute weight. This leads to less stress on the back. So, while sling bags are light, stylish and easy to transport, they could be the culprit for lower back pain.

 

Studies have found the correlation between sling bags, backpacks and back pain. Because of stress on muscles like the trapezius, lats, and spine, experts recommend two-strap bags for long-term use.

 

Therefore, to avoid the damage associated with sling bags, we recommend the following tips:

  • Adjust the weight from one side to the other periodically or remove the bag periodically to avoid asymmetrical stress on the back and shoulders.
  • Aim for thicker straps to prevent straps from cutting into your shoulder muscles.
  • Try not to carry more than 10 percent of your body weight.
  • Choose a smaller bag because the smaller the bag, the less likely you are to pack it with heavy items.
  • Remove your bag from time to time or substitute with a backpack.

 

Specific Features To Consider

Features such as design, size, comfort, and materials can make the difference between a bag you pack for every trip and one you give away. Considering each feature will ensure you’re getting what you need in a bag as an individual, not the status quo.

best travel sling bags

 

Comfort

Because sling bags have a tendency to shift weight unevenly, it’s important to find one that’s as comfortable as possible. Also, because we tend to wear them for hours at a time, the best travel sling bags are equipped with thick straps, padding, and an ergonomic design. Don’t let style or necessity distract you from choosing a bag that’s comfortable.

 

Functionality

Among the best sling bags for travel are those that are designed to carry your favorite items with comfort. They are a combination of lightweight, comfort and durability and a built with enough space for your favorite cargo.

 

Size

The best travel sling bags are compact and are easy to transport. For instance, they’re usually considered acceptable to take on board an airplane. Even so, sizes vary. Some can fit laptops, for instance, while others are just suitable for small items like phones, water bottles, and wallets.

 

Be sure that you choose a size that’s bigger than you actually think you’ll need, just in case.

 

Price

Among the best sling bags for travel are those that are both affordable and expensive. The good news is that there’s no need to go beyond your means. There are plenty of affordable and high-quality sling bags out there. Don’t assume a high price equates to quality.

 

Material Durability

Sling bags are usually available in canvas, polyester, nylon, and leather. If you’re looking for a bag to take to school or on a shopping spree, then material materials may not be much of an issue. However, if you’re made for the outdoors, then a material like water-resistant nylon may be more suitable. Be sure to choose a material to fit the environment you anticipate to avoid damaging your bag and your goods.

 

Which Sling Bag Would we Choose?

If we had to choose one from the list of best sling bags for travel, we’d recommend the Tactical Rush MOAB. It’s almost impossible to find yourself lacking space for your travel items. Furthermore, it’s got a comfortable design and durability for harsh weather conditions and getting down and dirty.

 

However, if the price doesn’t sit well with you, we’d recommend the MyGreen Canvas sling bag. Like the MOAB, it’s made for both lefties and rights and has multiple compartments. It also has space for laptop transport, a feature not popular among the best sling bags for travel.

 

 

KAVU Rope Sling Bag Price: $44.00 With plenty of great design options to choose from, you can't go wrong with this bag made in Seattle. KAVU Rope Sling Bag Last Updated: 02/13/2019

OutdoorMaster Sling Bag Price: $19.99 This compact, yet spacious sling bag for men or women is perfect for travel. OutdoorMaster Sling Bag Last Updated: 02/13/2019

Our Favorite

5.11 RUSH MOAB 10 Tactical Sling Bag Price: $79.99 With pockets for everything, this tactical sling bag is perfect for strenuous or off-grid trekking. 5.11 RUSH MOAB 10 Tactical Sling Bag Last Updated: 02/13/2019

Mygreen Canvas Sling Bag Price: $26.99 This fashionable canvas sling bag is perfect for carrying a small laptop. Mygreen Canvas Sling Bag Last Updated: 02/13/2019

Altura Photo Camera Sling Bag Price: $32.99 Made to carry DSLR and Mirrorless cameras, this bag is perfect for the photographer in you. Altura Photo Camera Sling Bag Last Updated: 02/13/2019

The Best Travel Backpacks of 2019

best travel backpacks

Traveling is one of the most soul-fulfilling activities in the world. It makes us reflect on life and think deeply about why we’re on this earth. We also get a taste of different perspectives from around the globe from people who have different attitudes, religions, cultural values, morals and ways of living. A travel backpack is an essential companion while exploring our beautiful planet. Are you ready to find out which travel backpacks are the best?

 

6 of This Years Best Travel Backpacks Reviewed

Travel backpacks come in all shapes and sizes and are constructed for many uses. However, they all have one thing in common; they assist with travel. That means the best travel backpacks are small enough to fit under an airplane seat, cargo hold of a bus, trunk of a taxicab, or inside a train compartment. But, these small travel backpacks will also provide enough space on the inside to pack all your personal items.

 

The best travel backpacks are versatile to the max; suitable to take anywhere. You can use them during a backpacking trek or even a formal event.

 

Let’s just cut right to the chase and tell you all about the 2019 Travel Freedom best travel backpacks that people are scooping up like Pacman dots.

1. XDesign Travel Laptop Backpack

XDesign Travel Backpack Price: $16.99 XDesign Travel Backpack Last Updated: 01/14/2019

 

The XDesign Travel Backpack is a unique sack with a subtle design, constructed with strong materials crafted to enhance its traveling capabilities. It seems that this backpack is best for a person planning to attend a business meeting or going to a college class. The base color is a nice, sleek, neutral gray.

 

The backpack is large enough to fit a 16-inch laptop, which is perfect for taking to class or doing digital nomad work internationally. There is a tightly stitched inner pocket to store your phone and writing utensils. We all love our phones and you will not be without one because the backpack comes with a USB charging port. That’s right, more power in the pouch. Furthermore, if you need to listen to your tunes while in the wild, there is a headphone jack to play the sweet sounds of nature while IN NATURE.

 

Unfortunately, with every great society, there will be thieves. Because of this, the backpack comes with an anti-theft security clasp to deter pickpockets.

 

Here are some catchy features that you will find useful:

  1. Top handle
  2. Hanging clasps
  3. Reinforced stitching
  4. Adjustable straps

 

Speaking of materials, the backpack is scratch proof due to the tough construction. If you plan to trek through the wilderness, the water-resistant mechanism will activate to repel the moisture. Do you know about the health risks that carrying a heavy backpack could have on your shoulders? Slouching is not our friend. However, this backpack avoids doing that thanks to the ergonomic design that help keeps your body aligned. Also, the foam padding provides extra cushioning for more comfort.

 

You can easily lock on another bag with the luggage strap – a great feature to have when rushing to and running around the airport. One major benefit is that this backpack is small enough to go under your plane seat to avoid extra baggage fees that budget airlines charge. Can you say Spirit?

 

Pros

  • Good for business meetings, formal events, and classroom settings
  • Large and versatile; could take outdoors
  • Comfortable
  • Lightweight
  • Uncomplicated

 

Cons

  • Not suitable for trekking long distances
  • Durability problems
  • Comes only in one color

 

2. Reebow Gear Military Tactical Backpack

Reebow Gear Military Tactical Backpack Price: $39.99 Reebow Gear Military Tactical Backpack Last Updated: 01/14/2019

 

Do you want to feel like a real soldier on the battlefield while traveling the world? Sometimes riding on these chicken buses and 3rd-class trains feel just like that. However, on a serious note, some of us have served in the military. Therefore, we know that you are only as good as your equipment and the knowledge and protection coming from your fellow comrades.

 

This strong, hardcore tactical backpack has the desert sandy brown color, perfect for camouflaging yourself when in the wild. Since this backpack is great for the military men and women of the world, people who travel for leisure should cop one too because of the durable construction. Imagine the respect you would get from random people thinking you are in the military while wearing one of these. Of course, we are not in the business of representing stolen valor, but people sometimes jump to conclusions and in this case, it could be positive. You will also enjoy the benefit of using heavy-duty compartments for organized packing and protection from the elements.

 

Sometimes when you are wearing a backpack the straps will gradually fall off, especially when you are physically active. However, this carrying unit comes with a waistband that keeps the backpack hugged tightly to your body and properly sit on the shoulders. The mesh-padded cushion provides suitable comfort for long periods of trekking. This is one of the best travel backpacks for adventurers who love some serious backpacking, trekking, hiking, camping, and hunting. You can load items from the side or front, depending on your preference.

 

You will also get the luxury of lugging around a high-density fabric that is water-resistant. Great for protecting basic weather-sensitive items such as flashlights, first-aid kits, and laptops.

 

It comes in two colors:

  • Black
  • Tan

 

Pros

  • Military grade
  • Comes with a US flag patch for patriotic buyers
  • You can wear it for a long period without pain
  • Comfortable on the shoulders

 

Cons

  • Not stylish
  • Zipper breaks easily

 

3. The 5.11 Rush72 Military Tactical Backpack

5.11 Rush72 Tactical Backpack Price: $169.98 5.11 Rush72 Tactical Backpack Last Updated: 01/14/2019

 

Another military backpack – but this one is a bit more versatile than the others. First, it comes in seven colors that include:

  • Black
  • Dark Earth
  • Double Tap
  • Multicam
  • OD
  • Sandstone
  • Storm

Wow, those are some hardcore color names!

 

This backpack will keep you ready for anything ahead; spiders, snakes, bears, cougars. Just kidding. Seriously, this Molle (Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment) pack is best for people who love to trek, hike, climb, backpack, or hunt. The material is a high-strength 1000D nylon for heavy-duty performance. Moreover, the main compartment is very large and calculated to be about 55 liters. A dual zipper adds extra protection for easy access to main compartments that organize all the items. OCDers would love this Molle!

 

A comfortable soft shoulder strap will clinch the waist and provide an easier way to carry the bag in route. There is a rear hydration compartment to store that H2O when it gets hot outside. Speaking of compartments, this travel bag fits well in overhead bins and under the seats of variously sized airplanes. No more $45 baggage fees from Frontier Airlines! Whew!

 

Pros

  • Heavy-duty
  • Multiple compartments for proper organization
  • Water hydration compartment
  • Comes in various colors

 

Cons

  • Not stylish
  • Zipper breaks easily
  • Not made in the USA – product of Vietnam
  • Costly

 

4. Yorepek Extra Large Travel Backpack

Yorepek Extra Large Backpack Price: $55.99 Yorepek Extra Large Backpack Last Updated: 01/14/2019

 

If you need a high-capacity bag that can carry a large load, then Yorepek does the trick. You will never be without your favorite tunes due to the headphone port that provides hands-free listening. Oh, do you hear that raw beat? The material is an elastic durable polyester with water-resistant capabilities. That means no sweat puddles will develop on your back when you are trekking through a tropical jungle. Thailand, here we come! The honeycomb breathable material will provide proper airflow between your back and the bag.

 

The TSA-friendly features will come alive when you need to go through the security checkout counter in a hurry. Just pop open your bag with one zip, so you can remove your 17-inch laptop without any hassle. Go through the scanner, pack up your things quickly, and be on your way. Yes, the bag can carry a 17-inch laptop! That means your gaming computer will be coming with you!

 

This bag is made for both men and women, and there are external back and side pockets for easy storage. That means you can reach back to grab your notepads, writing utensils, water bottles, and flashlights easily. The ergonomics will keep your body aligned naturally. Has sturdy handles and high-quality dual-zippers. Great for vacationers, backpackers, and digital nomads.

 

There are seven basic colors to pick for this backpack:

  • Black
  • Blue
  • Grey
  • Purple
  • Burgundy
  • Dark Grey
  • Black

 

Pros

  • TSA friendly
  • Many available compartments
  • USB port and headphone jack
  • Plenty of space
  • Versatile
  • Low price

 

Cons

  • Zipper might fail
  • Heavy

 

5. HIKPRO 20 L Lightweight Packable Backpack

HIKPRO 20L Lightweight Packable Backpack Price: $15.99 HIKPRO 20L Lightweight Packable Backpack Last Updated: 01/14/2019

 

If you need something a bit lighter than the others, then you have reached the right section. Not only can you move faster through the airport while packing down a nice amount of items, but this bag is small enough to fold. There is will be no shoulder stress because of the small size with breathable mesh shoulder straps for firm locks and better ergonomics.

 

Although this bag is lightweight and seems flimsy, it is made of durable nylon and double fabric reinforced on the bottom, the bag has bartack stitching in four different places for extra strength. Therefore, you can take it on any adventure and the material would not tear so easily. Moreover, there is water resistance for a day-jungle hike. Men and women would love the designs because of the unique style that looks good on each. Although the bag is lightweight, it is roomy enough to fit a laptop along with water bottles and flashlights in the side pockets.

 

There are 9 colors to choose from:

  • Army Green
  • Black
  • Deep Blue
  • Navy
  • Orange
  • Purple
  • Red
  • Light Blue
  • Pink

 

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Many bright colors
  • Portable
  • Five-year warranty
  • The manufacturer has 20+ years of experience

 

Cons

  • Might rip easily
  • Noisy
  • Weak waterproofing

 

6. AmazonBasics DSLR and Laptop Backpack

AmazonBasics DSLR and Laptop Backpack - Orange interior Price: $32.61 AmazonBasics DSLR and Laptop Backpack - Orange interior Last Updated: 01/14/2019

 

We know what you are thinking; “A DSLR and laptop bag?” Yes. Hear us out. You can roll up your clothes tightly to fit inside those organized cushioned slots. You can also still store camera equipment if you choose. The interior padding comes in two colors; orange and gray. That means you can easily see your items when they are inside the bag. We cannot forget this bag’s ability to store a laptop up to 17 inches. There are adjustable waist straps and chest straps for better ergonomics. This seems to be one of the best travel backpacks for photographers.

 

Pros

  • Made by Amazon
  • Ships off in a frustration-free package
  • You order directly from the manufacturer
  • Colorful padded interior
  • Solid construction

 

Cons

  • Designed for cameras
  • Not much information available about this backpack
  • Comes in limited colors

 

7. Outlander Ultra Lightweight Travel Backpack

Outlander Packable Lightweight Travel Hiking Backpack Daypack Black Price: $19.99 Outlander Packable Lightweight Travel Hiking Backpack Daypack Black Last Updated: 01/14/2019

 

Oh yes, this is the last one on the list and the highest rated on Amazon. This very capable backpack is ultra lightweight and could be carried around everywhere. It is also durable enough to hold those heavy items. Anti-Abrasion soft nylon, anti-rip material makes it scratch-proof. Water resistance is another feature that protects against those torrential downpours. The unit is foldable and very portable. You can also store your sensitive mobile devices in the zippered inner security side pocket. Use the metal zippers to close the heavy-duty bag.

 

Each travel bag order comes with a free multifunctional Carabiner for attaching keychains, camera equipment, and camping gear. When it gets closer to departure time, you can pick the bag up with the reinforced top-grade handle and continue to the airport. There are enhanced bar-tacks for extra strength and breathable mesh shoulder straps with a lot of padding in between for comfort.

 

This backpack comes in 11 colors:

  • Black
  • Dark Blue
  • Dark Teal
  • Green
  • Grey
  • Light Blue
  • Orange
  • Pink
  • Purple
  • Red
  • Dark Red

 

It has five waterproof options:

  • Black Waterproof
  • Dark Blue Waterproof
  • Green Waterproof
  • Grey Waterproof
  • Orange Waterproof

 

There are three sizes for you to choose from:

  • 20 L
  • 25 L
  • 33 L

 

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Stylish
  • Roomy

Cons

  • Flimsy feel

 

Decision Time: Which Travel Backpack Sounds Right for You?

So, there you go. The list of the best travel backpacks and they all cost under $200. You shouldn’t stress yourself out over what to bring on your trip because you don’t have the right travel backpack to fit all your possessions. All the bags listed above have the right features needed for a long trek. If it’s a drawstring day bag you’re looking for check out our review of the Nike Vapor Drawstring bag.

 

You just have to make the choice. As you can see, there are many travel backpacks to choose from. So, have fun while traveling and always have what you need. You’ve got what you need to make an informed purchase on your new travel bag. Happy Travels!

Little Passports Reviewed by a Subscriber

Little Passports

One of my family’s favorite things to do is travel together. We love learning about the world, eating new food and experiencing new cultures. We have a goal of visiting every continent as a family. If budget and work weren’t holding us back, we would probably be in a new country every month! As a parent, it is so important to me that my children experience the world beyond their own home and community. I want them to engage with people who are different than them. We also want them to try new food, new music and new ways of life. I firmly believe that a true appreciation for other cultures and people can only happen through experiences. Little Passports is a great way to launch this type of learning for your kids.

 

Despite wishing we could always be jet-setting around the world, school, work, and our bank accounts mean that we can’t always be on vacation (travel credit card points can help with some of that!). Even at home, it’s important to me that my children continue to learn about all of the people and cultures that make this world beautiful. I was so excited to learn about the Little Passports subscription because it does just that! Little Passports is a subscription box for children that focuses on geography and culture. It’s quickly become a favorite activity in our house. Our kids can hardly wait to tear open the box when it arrives each month!

little passports for kids

 

What is Little Passports?

Little Passports is a monthly subscription that helps children learn about the world around them. Little Passports has four different age-level subscriptions available:

  • Early Explorers
  • World Edition
  • USA Edition
  • Science Expeditions

Little Passports Price: Starting at $12.95 per mo. Award-winning subscription packages for curious kids.

Inspire Your Child to Learn About the World.
Little Passports
Last Updated: 01/16/2019

 

Little Passports Early Explorers (Ages 3-5)

Little PassportsThe Early Explorers program is designed for children ages 3 through 5. This subscription has monthly themes like music, dinosaurs, food, art, and oceans. The first month’s package includes an orange cardboard suitcase with a wall-sized world map, a luggage tag, some fun stickers, photos, activity booklets, and a welcome letter. The welcome letter is written in pen pal style from the Little Passports characters Max, Mia, and Toby.

 

For the next 11 months of the subscription, Little Passports sends toys, souvenirs, activity booklets, trading cards, letters, and photos. There are also fun stickers to put on your map, passport, and suitcase.

 

One of the best parts is that each kit is developed with input from a panel of parents and educators that work with preschoolers. Young children also test kits to make sure everything included is durable and fun. As a parent, I love knowing that so much thought goes into each kit! It helps me to feel comfortable that my money is well spent and that my children will be excited about their Little Passports package.

 

Little Passports World Edition (Ages 6-10)

Little PassportsThe World Edition was the company’s original subscription box. It is still the most popular kit from Little Passports as well. The World Edition is designed for children ages 6 to 10. This is my favorite kit that Little Passports offers. Each month, my children receive a fun, and interactive kit from a different country each month. Every World Edition box includes toys, souvenirs, collectible country coins, activity sheets, photos and letters from Sam and Sofia, the Little Passports pen pals. My kids really love all of the online extras too. They include photo galleries with real images from that month’s countries, interesting facts, and fun games.

 

The first month’s kit from Little Passports includes a blue cardboard suitcase, a replica of a passport, a wall-sized world map, a coin board to hold each month’s collectible coins, three animal squishies, stickers, photos, activity sheets, and a welcome letter. Even my teens are excited for each month’s kit because they love the squishies! They now have quite the extensive squishy collection, which is certainly a hit with their friends as well.

 

When my family started our Little Passports subscription, there were about a dozen or so countries. Now Little Passports has expanded to 33 countries, including the following newcomers:

  • Brazil
  • Japan
  • South Africa
  • Mexico
  • Antarctica
  • Iceland
  • Poland
  • Turkey
  • Israel
  • Costa Rica
  • Vietnam
  • Madagascar
  • South Korea

Little Passports continually adds to their list of countries too, ensuring that my family can continue to enjoy our subscription for years to come.

 

Little Passports USA Edition (Ages 7-12)

Little PassportsThe USA Edition is designed for tweens age 7 through 12. Each month, the Little Passports package focuses on two states. The packages include a 32-page state journal with new activities on nearly every page, postcards, and stickers. Like the Little Passports Early Explorer and Little Passports World Edition, the USA Edition also has online activities and information.

 

The introductory kit for the first month of the USA Edition subscription has a USA field guide, a scratch book, a wall-sized USA map, a photo scavenger hunt project and a welcome letter from pen pals Sam and Sofia.

 

This subscription is a bit more finite than are the other two. The total possible subscription length is 26 months: the first month’s introductory kit and then 25 months of two states each.

 

Little Passports Science Expeditions (Ages 9+)

Little PassportsBranching off from the three geography kits, the Science Expeditions is one of the company’s newest kits, designed for children ages 9 and up. In this STEM-based kit, children solve real mysteries using science.

 

The first month’s Science Expeditions package comes with a tote bag, a science lab notebook, an forensic science experiment kit, an activity booklet, and a fingerprint analysis card with an ink pad. Starting in month two, the packages come with a 16-page comic book with bonus activities. The comic book also has a glossary to help explain all of the new science vocabulary words for that month. The package also has hands-on science experiments, a new mystery to solve and achievement badges. In addition, like the previous three Little Passports subscriptions, Science Expeditions includes online videos and new content.

 

 

How Much Does Little Passports Cost?

The Little Passports prices vary depending on the subscription ordered. Early Explorers costs $18.95 per month, excluding shipping. For a six-month subscription, it costs $107.70 plus shipping. The six-month plan averages $17.95 per month. The full-year plan is the best value at $203.40 per year plus shipping. This makes each kit only $16.95 per month.

 

The World Edition subscription is $16.95 per month plus shipping. A six-month subscription is $95.70, which averages $15.95 per month. The full-year plan is a one-time payment of $179.40, which makes this subscription only $14.95 a month.

 

The USA Edition is $14.95 per month plus shipping for a month-by-month subscription. A six-month subscription is $83.70 plus shipping. This averages about $13.95 per month. A full-year subscription is $155.40 plus shipping. The 12-month subscription averages $12.95 per month.

 

The Science Expeditions is a bit more expensive than the geography-based kits. The monthly subscription price for this plan is $21.95 per month plus shipping. A six-month subscription is $125.70 plus shipping. This averages about $20.95 per month. The annual subscription is $227.40 plus shipping, making the monthly cost $18.95 plus shipping.

 

Little Passports - all subscriptions

 

What We Love about Little Passports

We are avid travelers in my family so our Little Passports subscription is the perfect way to keep my children engaged throughout the year, especially when we can’t hop a plane to someplace new. All of the information, activities, and games in each month’s kit makes my children want to visit each new location though!

 

Little Passports Characters

Because the Sam and Sofia characters are tweens, the stories of each country are written from the perspective of a tween. This makes the characters relatable to my children and helps engage them. They spend all day listening to and learning from the perspectives of adults, so they enjoy learning from the perspective of a peer their own age.

 

One of our favorite places we have visited is Vietnam. The country holds a special place in our hearts and is a place we dream about visiting again. Recently, our Little Passports package was the Vietnam kit, and we couldn’t wait to dig in! We loved Sam and Sofia’s letter from Vietnam and enjoyed learning more about beautiful Ha Long Bay and about Bat Trang, a traditional pottery village in northern Vietnam. Sam and Sofia even described a water puppet show, which was one of our favorite things about visiting Hanoi!

 

Little Passports Traveler Kits

The luggage tag in our Little Passports kit had a darling picture of Sam and Sofia dressed in Ao Dai, Vietnam’s traditional dress. Our package also included a colorful sticker of Ha Long Bay for our suitcase, a Vietnam flag sticker for our passport and a blue pushpin sticker for our map. The picture of Thien Mu Pagoda was gorgeous! My kids learned from our kit that it was built in 1601 and is the tallest pagoda in Vietnam. There was also information about the floating markets in the Mekong Delta, instructions on how to make an origami pagoda and a beautiful bamboo flute that really worked. The flute was my youngest’s favorite part of the Little Passports package! I was impressed about how nice the flute sounded since it was a piece of hollowed out bamboo.

 

Little Passports Online Activities

My older children also enjoyed the online activities in the Little Passports Boarding Zone. The access code is provided on the Little Passports boarding pass. Once the code is entered, you can access several games, some beautiful photos and some interesting facts about Vietnam. I was surfing the Boarding Zone with my kids and even I learned several new things.

 

I also love that everyone in my family can enjoy the Little Passports subscription. My youngest children may not understand all of the details about each country that my older children can, but together, we all learn and play. We enjoy spending time as a family reading about the adventures of Sam and Sofia (and dreaming about our own future adventures!) and the authentic souvenirs bring hands-on learning opportunities to everyone in our family. It’s also fun to watch my older children help teach the younger ones how to do the various activities in our package.

Little Passports Subscription

 

What Could Be Improved about Little Passports

Honestly, there isn’t much I can think to improve about the Little Passports subscription. The items in our package seemed well thought-out and my children were very engaged in all of the materials. They look forward to their new Little Passports package every month and have continued to develop a love and appreciation for cultures around the world.

 

I think my only suggestion is that on the pictures, Sam and Sofia are pretty obviously drawn characters against a background of an actual photo. My children would love the photos more if Sam and Sofia looked a bit more realistic and a bit less like cartoon characters, but that certainly doesn’t make or break the kit for us. I think that as children get more towards the upper age range for the Little Passports World Explorer set, they would connect more with characters that were less cartoon-like.

 

Our Final Verdict

The Little Passports subscription is definitely appreciated and loved in my family. It is something that both my children and I can use together. I enjoy learning new things about each country along with my children and we enjoy playing the games together.

 

We love to expand on what we learned each month by researching a favorite meal if one isn’t mentioned in our World Explorer package for that month. Once we find a meal we’re interested in making, we buy all of the ingredients and spend an afternoon cooking a dinner of foods that represent the country we learned about.

 

This subscription box certainly hits the spot for a family that has a constant itch to travel but may not always be able to do so. It is also something that might be good for families who aren’t able to travel much but would like to give their children hands-on and authentic experiences from cultures around the globe.

 

I definitely thought our Little Passports subscription helped my children to have a better understanding of geography and cultures around the world. It also helped them to develop an appreciation for how people live around the world, which is something I feel is important for all children to learn.

The Best Down Jacket for Traveling to Cold Climates

best down jacket for travel

If you’re an avid traveler and explorer, chances are that you may come across some cold climates. Or perhaps you just like to go visit the snow with the family for a day. Whatever the reason, having a packable down jacket is crucial to have in a moments notice. This article looks at the top 3 down jackets found for men, women, and babies. But first, it’s necessary to understand exactly what a packable down jacket is.

 

What is a Packable Down Jacket?

Any jacket can keep you warm enough until the cold really sets in. These jackets are made to be both lightweight and warm. They’re designed to be thin enough and compress to your body so that you are not wearing something bulky. When enjoying winter recreation such as skiing and snowboarding, flexibility is a key aspect.

 

What Features Should You Look for in a Down Jacket?

Below are the top features that you should consider when looking for the best down jacket to take on your next trip.

  • Warmth: Down jackets provide you with the best insulation for your body.
  • Durability: Make sure that the fabric is able to last strenuous activity so that you don’t waste your money and your time.
  • Down leakage: Believe it or not, some low quality down jackets may leak the down material kept inside.
  • Accessories: Although not the most important feature to consider, good quality zippers and pockets will add to your experience.
  • Sleek fit: Down jackets are supposed to be form-fitting. If they are too loose, it defeats the purpose. Find one that fits you just right.

 

Now that you are more familiar with what you should look for, we can discuss our top “down jackets” for men, women, and babies.

 

The 3 Best Down Jackets for Men who Travel

  1. The North Face ThermoBall Insulated Jacket
  2. 32 Degrees Nano Light Packable Down Jacket
  3. Tommy Hilfiger Packable Down Jacket

 

The North Face ThermoBall Insulated Jacket

The North Face Thermoball Full Zip Jacket Price: $159.83 Ace your next trip with this durable and highly packable insulated jacket. The North Face Thermoball Full Zip Jacket Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Features and Benefits:

  • Synthetic type of insulation that is very similar to down. Allowing you to keep warm without becoming wet.
  • Resistant to wear and tear with its Ripstop shell. It is entirely made of Nylon, giving it strong durability.
  • Drawcord in the waist for a more snug fit.
  • Elastic sleeve cuffs to help you fight any unwanted chills.
  • Two pockets with zippers to hold on to your belongings.
  • A short collar that stands up to protect your chin and neck from the elements.

 

Our Verdict:

Though this is a formidable men’s jacket that will keep you or your loved ones warm, it does not offer a hood to protect the head. Other than that, it offers resistance to cold with a rugged material, making it an ideal candidate.

 

32 Degrees Nano Light Packable Down Jacket

32 Degrees Nano Light Packable Down Jacket Price: You'll love our packable lightweight down jacket with horizontal quilting and vision zipper. 32 Degrees Nano Light Packable Down Jacket Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Features and Benefits:

  • Made entirely of Polyester, with 90 percent down and 10 percent with feathers, this is a warm option for any outdoor activity.
  • Designed to run big so that sleeves are comfortable underneath any layering added to your outfit.
  • Water-resistant jacket for maximum security.
  • Collar with a medium height to protect your chin and neck.
  • Elastic sleeve cuffs to ward off gusts of chilly wind.
  • Comes with its own bag for packing up quickly.
  • Main zipper is water-resistant.

 

Our Verdict:

This product offers a great range of features such as elastic sleeve cuffs and a water-resistant zipper. But that matches our other men’s down jacket. What sets this one apart is that it is made from actual down instead of mimicking the inside. This will contribute a great deal of warmth even after being in the snow for hours. We also noticed that the collar does come up higher than the down jacket from The North Face.

 

Tommy Hilfiger Packable Down Jacket

Tommy Hilfiger Packable Down Jacket Price: Channel-quilted zip-front jacket featuring side-entry hand pockets and down feather padding. Tommy Hilfiger Packable Down Jacket Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Features and Benefits:

  • The combination of a 100 percent Nylon shell with the inner lining of 100 percent Polyester makes for a comfortable, secure jacket.
  • Insulation provided with 90 percent duck and 10 percent feathers.
  • Horizontal and vertical stitching keeps the insulation in place.
  • Water-resistant, but much more suitable for dry weather as the down can get wet, losing its purpose.
  • Collar with a medium-height for protected neck and chin.
  • Elastic cuffs for your wrists.
  • Two pockets on the side to warm your hands as well as two inner pockets to hold any belongings.
  • Comes with its own drawstring bag for easy transportation.

 

Our Verdict:

Of the three packable down jackets, this product is probably our least favorite. Although it offers great insulation with top-notch stitching to hold it in place, it is not the best jacket for wet environments. If the down inside the jacket were to get wet, then the jacket would become nearly useless. Other than that, it is a worthy purchase for those looking to spend a day or two in the snow. Just not for explorers who will need a durable jacket for longer trips.

 

The 3 Best Down Jackets for Women who Travel

  1. The North Face Aconcagua Jacket
  2. Columbia Flash Forward Down Jacket
  3. Eddie Bauer Sun Valley Down Parka

 

The North Face Aconcagua Jacket

The North Face Aconcagua Jacket Price: Versatile, warm 550-fill down jacket with satin woven fabric. Active fit. Cozy brushed collar lining. Zip hand pockets. The North Face Aconcagua Jacket Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Features and Benefits:

  • Made entirely out of Nylon for a warm packable down jacket.
  • 550-fill power goose down for the ultimate comfort.
  • Both the pockets for your hands and the collar are fleece-lined.
  • Tough exterior shell to make for a durable jacket.
  • Water-resistant shell that will keep you mostly dry in the winter.

 

Our Verdict:

This is a great pick for any woman wanting to experience the snow. We really think that the fleece lining on both the pockets and collar are essential to staying warm. One aspect to keep in mind is that this jacket is a bit on the thicker side, making it more difficult to layer.

 

Columbia Flash Forward Down Jacket

Columbia Flash Forward Down Jacket Price: When the weather turns chilly, this lightweight, packable 650 fill-power down jacket will help keep you warm and snug. Columbia Flash Forward Down Jacket Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Features and Benefits:

  • With a sporting bonded baffle construction, the stitching on this jacket provides premier durability.
  • Made entirely with a polyester taffeta shell and polyester lining for the maximum comfort, aided by 650-fill power insulation.
  • Extremely lightweight and thin for optimal layering.
  • Water-resistant exterior for a stress-free outing.

 

Our Verdict:

This packable down jacket is ideal for those who want to layer for the cold. It is not enough by itself as it is seemingly thinner than most jackets. But, it does offer heat seal technology and a water-resistant exterior lining.

 

Eddie Bauer Sun Valley Down Parka

Eddie Bauer Women's Sun Valley Down Parka Price: Besides warmth, our parka provides extra weather protection with exclusive StormRepel durable water-repellent finish. Eddie Bauer Women's Sun Valley Down Parka Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Features and Benefits:

  • 650-fill premium down for your ideal warm jacket.
  • Mixture of nylon, polyester, and cotton for the shell and inner lining.
  • StormRepel durable water repellent finish ensures that you stay dry.
  • Two-way front zipper that allows you to make adjustments no matter what you are doing.
  • Detachable faux fur hood for easy cleaning and added warmth.

 

Our Verdict:

Out of the three women’s packable down jackets, this product is our favorite. It is made with not only comfort in mind, but also your body temperature. The hood is a great feature when out all day in the snow as we lose a great deal of heat from the top of our heads.

 

The 3 Best Packable Down Jackets for Babies who Travel:

  1. The North Face Infant Reversible Perrito Jacket
  2. Patagonia Nano Puff
  3. Gotham Down Jacket

 

The North Face Infant Reversible Perrito Jacket

The North Face Infant Reversible Perrito Jacket Price: Keep your baby warm while out and about in these cute and snuggly insulated reversible jackets. The North Face Infant Reversible Perrito Jacket Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Features and Benefits:

  • Elastic binding on the hood, cuffs, and hem to keep them warm while moving around in the snow.
  • Chin zip guard for added warmth.
  • Cuffs include fold-over mittens for their hands.

 

Our Verdict:

When babies visit cold climates, their hands and necks can get cold very quickly. This down jacket helps combat the chills by snug-fitting cuffs and a hood that will keep their head warm.

 

The North Face Infant Thermoball Bunting

The North Face Infant Thermoball Bunting Price: Keep infants warm from head to toe on cold days in this ultralight bunting that features insulation and a Sherpa fleece lining The North Face Infant Thermoball Bunting Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Features and Benefits:

  • Relaxed Fit
  • Elastic binding on hood, front zip, and cuffs
  • Fold-over mitts at arm cuffs and booties at feet
  • Three-piece, fixed hood with ears and chin zip guard

 

Our Verdict:

Rating this item based on how bundled the little one will be in the snow, this product receives very high marks. Compared to The North Face Infant Perrito Jacket, it’s a full body experience, keeping your baby warm everywhere.

 

The North Face Gotham Down Jacket

The North Face Gotham Down Jacket Price: Chilly jungle gyms will be extra enticing while bundled up in this warm down jacket that features waterproof exterior and a fitted hood for complete coverage. The North Face Gotham Down Jacket Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Features and Benefits:

  • Waterproof jacket for those long days in the slushy snow.
  • Fastened hood with a faux-fur trip that snaps off, allowing you to clean it without hassle.
  • Bomber-style ribbing on the cuffs and hem to keep the 550-fill down insulation inside the jacket.
  • Hand pockets with a secured zipper for any mittens or toys.

 

Our Verdict:

Out of the three best down jackets for babies, this is our second favorite, right behind The North Face Infant Reversible Perrito Jacket. Made with quality stitching and the proper insulation, this durable outer layer will keep your child warm. They also have a 2.0 version, which is for girls, while the product linked above is for boys. You can find it at The North Face as well.

 

Now that you have seen what goes into a high-quality down jacket, let’s decide on the best down jacket from each category and briefly describe why you probably want one.

 

Overall Best Men’s Down Jacket for Travel:

32 Degrees Nano Light Packable Down Jacket

32 Degrees Nano Light Packable Down Jacket Price: You'll love our packable lightweight down jacket with horizontal quilting and vision zipper. 32 Degrees Nano Light Packable Down Jacket Last Updated: 01/12/2019

Why is this the best?

The reason for this jacket being our favorite out of the men’s options is for its high-quality insulation with 90 percent down. Unfortunately, a lot of down jackets are not made out material that mimics down. This is also our best down jacket for men because the collar gives more protection from the wind as it is taller than the other two products.

 

Overall Best Women’s Down Jacket for Travel:

Eddie Bauer Sun Valley Down Parka

Eddie Bauer Women's Sun Valley Down Parka Price: Besides warmth, our parka provides extra weather protection with exclusive StormRepel durable water-repellent finish. Eddie Bauer Women's Sun Valley Down Parka Last Updated: 01/12/2019

Why is this the best?

Chosen as the best down jacket for women, this product was highly liked for its faux fur hood. The other women’s jackets did not offer this feature. It also has a two-way front zipper which is ideal when your fingers are numb from the cold.

 

Overall Best Baby Down Jacket for Travel:

The North Face Infant Reversible Perrito Jacket

The North Face Infant Reversible Perrito Jacket Price: Keep your baby warm while out and about in these cute and snuggly insulated reversible jackets. The North Face Infant Reversible Perrito Jacket Last Updated: 01/12/2019

Why is this the best?

Out of all the down jackets, this one took the cake. We rated it the best down jacket for babies because of its warmth benefits. The chin zip guard, elastic binding, and hood all keep your child from getting too cold while allowing them to be active.

 

Decision Time: Which Down Jackets will You and Your Family Choose?

When considering which packable down jacket to buy for your loved ones, or even yourself, it is important to think about certain features. These include the price, quality, fit, and insulation included in the jacket. You might prefer a thinner option that you can choose to layer, or maybe you just want a down jacket that holds plenty of warmth on its own. Overall, we hope that this guide helped to give you the 3 best packable down jacket contenders when buying a jacket for men, women, and babies. Ryan from Travel Freedom has the 32 Degrees Insulated Jacket and loves it!

Nike Vapor Drawstring Bag Review

nike vapor drawstring bag

I’m sure you have certain products that you must always take on vacation. I sure do… Actually, the list keeps getting longer and longer as I find cool new travel products. From the time you start packing to the time you’re out on a snorkeling boat, some little things can improve your travel greatly. I’d like to share my favorites with you, including the Nike Vapor drawstring bag.

 

Travel Freedom is not only about travel credit cards. Certain travel products can greatly enhance the way you travel. We’ll be reviewing the Nike Vapor Drawstring Bag, which I believe is a must-have travel product for anyone. It’s one of the products that I can’t travel without. You’ll see why.

Nike Vapor Drawstring Bag (Black/Volt) Price: $18.77 With its secure drawstring closure, multiple pocket design and on-trend color combos, this drawstring backpack promises to keep your stuff safe while traveling. Nike Vapor Drawstring Bag (Black/Volt) Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

The Perfect Drawstring Bag while On-the-Go

This travel product is a very simple one, but also a very valuable one. No matter where you’re headed, the Nike Vapor drawstring bag is your perfect travel mate. It’s a lightweight drawstring bag that’s big enough to carry all your necessities. The drawstring bag I personally own is made by Nike and has two compartments. It has a main compartment that securely closes at the top using the drawstrings. It also has a smaller zipper pocket in the front, which is perfect for things you might need more often like your phone, wallet, and keys.

 

They’re the perfect bag for when you’re out and about on vacation. Whether you’re going to the beach and need something to put your valuables in that can keep the sand out, or you’re exploring around a city and need a light bag to carry your belongings without making your back sweat, this drawstring bag is quite possibly perfect.

 

If you don’t already have a drawstring bag (aka a gymsack), the Nike Vapor drawstring bags are both inexpensive and high quality. I have dragged mine around with me for years and it’s still holding up. They also come in a variety of colors that look stylish.

Nike Vapor Drawstring Bag (Black/Teal) Price: With its secure drawstring closure, multiple pocket design and on-trend color combos, this drawstring backpack promises to keep your stuff safe while traveling. Nike Vapor Drawstring Bag (Black/Teal) Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Our Nike Vapor Drawstring Bag is Easy to Pack

When my wife, Allison, and I are traveling we always bring our Nike Vapor drawstring bag with us and always seem to find a use for it. Our Nike Vapor drawstring bag is easy to pack. It weighs nearly nothing and doesn’t take up much space in your luggage at all. After I pack my suitcase, I just set the drawstring bag on top of my clothes. 

 

The Nike Vapor drawstring bag is definitely a necessity now. It allows you to easily carry your belongings around with you wherever you go while on vacation. Try one out on your next vacation and let us know what you think. If you’re like us, you’ll never go on vacation without one again.  

Nike Vapor Drawstring Bag (Gray/Anthracite) Price: $34.99 With its secure drawstring closure, multiple pocket design and on-trend color combos, this drawstring backpack promises to keep your stuff safe while traveling. Nike Vapor Drawstring Bag (Gray/Anthracite) Last Updated: 01/12/2019

 

Nike Vapor Drawstring Bag Review Results

Nike got it right with this one. The Nike Vapor drawstring bag has a height of 19 inches and a width of 14 inches. It has adjustable drawstrings for a more comfortable feel. The main compartment closes on top using the drawstring straps. There is also has a smaller pocket in the front that zips closed. The bag weighs 7 ounces by itself. It is a perfect size for any kind of normal use and has high durable quality. It’s definitely worth the price tag and its value factor is high. We have two of these bags already and are looking to add another style to the mix soon.