Peak Design Travel DuffelPack 65 | Review - Outdoors Magic

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Peak Design Travel DuffelPack 65 | Review

A versatile, go-anywhere hybrid duffel-pack designed for travelling, camping and more, made from recycled materials by a US brand that takes its social and environmental responsibilities seriously

Why We Chose It: Practical, versatile, recycled fabrics

Most travel bags and cases aren’t designed to be carried around, or at least not for long distances. That’s why they tend to be fitted with little luggage wheels – which work great for smooth, shiny airport concourses, but less well over uneven terrain. For the rough stuff, you need a robust trekking pack – one with a chunky, padded harness and hipbelt, for optimum load-hauling comfort. But there’s a problem with that too. Their straps and buckles have a nasty tendency to get caught in overhead luggage lockers or on baggage carousels.

Our testers with the duffel in the Lake District. Photos: Joe Whitmore

The solution is Peak Design’s Travel Dufflepack 65. It’s big enough to work as a travel bag, with a sleek and functional style. However, it’s also fitted with ergonomic padded backpack-style shoulder and waist straps that are stowed beneath magnetically-sealed back panels, yet deploy instantly when you need to haul it around. Genius.

What Is The Peak Design DuffelPack 65 Best Suited To?

It’s ideal for intrepid travellers whose adventures are likely to take them further off the beaten track than most tourists and holidaymakers. It has a maximum capacity of 65 litres, so it’s big enough for extended trips. However, if you don’t need all that space, the design also compresses down to 45 litres, making it a good option for shorter breaks and weekends away too. And since you can carry it as either a backpack or a standard holdall, it’ll even do double duty as a sports or gym bag.

Eco Credentials

Back in the day, most tough duffel bags were made from PVC (polyvinyl chloride), which is super hard-wearing, versatile and inexpensive to manufacture. Unfortunately, it is also the most environmentally damaging plastic – Greenpeace has gone so far as to call it ‘the poison plastic’. That’s because the lifecycle of PVC, i.e. its production, use, and disposal, results in the release of toxic, chlorine-based chemicals that are environmentally persistent. That is to say, they accumulate in the water, air and food chain.

For that reason, Peak Design have turned to another tough, weatherproof fabric, but one that is far more eco-friendly. In this case, they’ve chosen 100% recycled 600-denier nylon canvas, reinforced with an even burlier 900-denier woven polyester bottom fabric. The woven straps are made from nylon with Hypalon synthetic rubber. Inside, the internal storage pockets are made from silicone-coated mesh.

The hardware is also all metal – no plastic buckles or cinches, just metal hook and loop closures. That’s a plus for lifetime durability and therefore sustainability. In fact, Peak Designs guarantee their products for life, and refurbish broken items to keep them in use and out of landfills.

They’re also a certified B Corp, as well as being a fully signed-up member of 1% For The Planet, which means that 1% of revenue is donated to environmental non-profits. The company is also climate neutral, employing a carbon offsetting scheme to balance its operations. And they’re part of the Conservation Alliance, a group of US businesses that offer financial support in the form of grants awarded to selected organisations working to protect outdoor spaces and wild places throughout North America.

But the brand is pretty up front about the challenges they face too, acknowledging that they’re still far from perfect. For example, they accept that the majority of people who make Peak Design products are factory workers in Vietnam and China. That’s why they have striven to negotiate fair pay and safe working conditions in those factories. According to a statement on their corporate website, “We visit them regularly and invest in audits so we can confidently hold ourselves accountable to this objective”.

Construction and Performance

This duffel/backpack hybrid feels extremely well made. The materials, stitching, zippers, handles and hardware are all high quality. The bag itself will swallow a lot of stuff and is perfect for camping, travelling or even climbing if you wanted to use it as a rope bag.

“An innovative and well-designed bag for adventurous travellers.”

Features we particularly like include the ‘cargo bay door’ zipper design, which keeps the bag open so that it is easy to load and unload (as well as rummage around inside for your stuff). There are also padded grab handles on all sides, and integrated expansion zips that give you an additional 20 litres of extra capacity, taking it from 45 to 65 litres. There are plenty of pockets, with two internal and two external pockets to provide secure and quick access storage respectively.

And although it’s not a hiking pack, the shoulder and waist straps are among the most comfortable and supportive we’ve tested on a travel bag, even with a full load. The fact that these straps instantly stow away beneath magnetically sealed flaps is also a great concept, reducing the risk of snagging your bag when in transit.


This is an innovative and well-designed bag for adventurous travellers, with the versatility to cope with anything from a weekend break to an extended trip. It has loads of unusual and practical features to ensure it stands out from the competition.

The fact it has an eco-friendly construction with recycled fabrics and comes from a company with such a strong position on CSR and sustainability only makes it an even more attractive buy.

Peak Design Travel DuffelPack 65

Selected for our Green Gear Guide 2023
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