I don’t often do product reviews but when I received an email from Nayo Smart I thought I would check it out as we were looking for a better way to transport our photographic and electronic gear. Being a travel blogger, we travel with a fair bit of electronic gear and its always hard to house it safely when travelling on all forms of transportation.
By now you are probably thinking I’m referring to long haul air travel but I’m not, travelling on all forms of transport is difficult when you are transporting expensive gear. Our gear is the most expensive things we take and transporting them safely is a must.
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There are a number of different back packs to choose from in the Nayo Smart range, I love their point of difference and that is backpacks designed with the minimalist traveller in mind! That’s us, always trying to reduce the amount of baggage we’re travelling with that’s much easier to carry and reduces the cost when flying budget airlines like we do.
Nayo Smart has a range of 7 backpacks available to purchase online. They fall into 3 main categories, large capacity, anti-theft and business backpacks. However the categories overlap so some large capacity backpacks will also feature anti-theft elements as these are what people are looking for these days.
Nayo Smart Large Capacity backpacks
The first thing that caught my eye when I was looking at the Nayo Smart website was that while the backpacks have been labelled large capacity, they also have the ability to pack down to a more compact version of the bag.
What this means for us is that we can travel to our destination with the backpack more like a day pack and when we need the extra room on the way home, we can expand the backpack to fit a lot more in. Perfect for the traveller that likes to bring something home.
We choose to road test the Nayo EXP Travel Backpack, reason being this backpack can act as a day pack when at your location and expands to the size of a standard carry on bag when flying.
When packed down the pack is equivalent to a 25 litre backpack perfect for out and about exploring but then required can be expanded to a 50 litre carry on backpack making this a very versatile backpack for frequent travellers like us. The bag weighs a total of 1.1kgs, which is important when travelling carry on only and are restricted to no more than 7kgs with certain budget airlines.
Not only is this backpack expandable but it also has a number of compartments for separating your luggage when open. The backpack consists of 3 luggage compartments, the front compartment, main compartment and lap top interlayer.
The front compartment is where you keep the things you need handy, your phone, wallet, passport, travel diary, book for reading, travel documents and pens. The material is durable and waterproof so all your belongings will stay dry no matter what the weather is. With 600D high density polyester, polyurethane coating and a lockable zip if required.
The main compartment with its 180 degree zipper design means that it opens fully like a suitcase. The compartments are separated with a mesh zip dividers. You can either separate your luggage on either side of the backpack or have one large cavity to pack your things in.
The laptop compartment is at the rear of your backpack which is great for anti-theft of your valuable items. Its also fully padded for safety and sits comfortably with the straps of the pack. It fits both 15 inch and 17 inch laptops. An iPad would fit perfectly also.
Best of all, the backpack is tech savvy with a built in external USB charging port. You can attach your battery pack inside and the external port will charge your phone or iPad whilst you travel.
The team at Nayo Smart have pretty much thought of everything with this pack. Craig road tested it on a boys weekend to Sydney with Caelan for a finals game of the Australian League Football. Their flight was late and Craig had to carry the bag all day because they didn’t have time to drop off their luggage at their hotel.
Craig said the harness and straps were very comfortable to wear and was able to wear it all day with no issues. The fact that he could adjust the straps to make the pack as compact as possible was a definite bonus and made wearing it all day a bit more manageable.
While Nayo Smart has a range of backpacks that are full of anti theft features, I love that they have incorporated anti theft features in nearly every pack. Unfortunately its a fact of life when travelling that you need to consider securing your belongs from the criminal element of the world.
The minimalist packing style means that you can use the side clips to secure your pack, these pack down over the top of the zippers adding a level of security to your central compartment.
The laptop interlayer section is located at the rear of the pack, traditionally this section would be at the front enabling easy access for criminals. The design with it at the back of the pack will definitely make it more challenging for someone trying to steal your laptop. Thieves are more likely to go for the more accessible front section.
While the backpacks don’t have built in locks, there are eyelets to lock the zippers to using padlocks. I have plenty of these, they’re small and will create an extra level of security for all your belongings. I actually take a couple of extras padlocks in my luggage just in case I need one for something else, they are handy and versatile.
Another feature I love is the built in USB charging port. You slot your own battery pack into the USB port from the inside and you can charge your phone/tablet while you use it, how great is that? Particularly good if you are getting around using google maps like we do all the time. These are the small things that make a good backpack great and sets them aside from the rest.
do i recommend nayo smart backpacks?
Definitely! We think this is a great versatile backpack, perfect for day trips and a great carry-on options for the minimalist traveller. I think we could all travel with less and these versatile backpacks give you the best of both worlds.
In this day and age of having to pay extra for seats and baggage when flying these types of backpacks not only provide packing options but also save you money when not checking in baggage. That’s a win/win I say.
If you can manage to start with less, the expanded backpack will still give you plenty room for souvenirs and anything else you might like to purchase along the way. Just try it and you’ll see just how little you need when you travel.
Sal, Craig & Our3kids