Ever since I started traveling nearly a decade ago, the Osprey Farpoint 55L has been my go-to travel backpack. These backpacks are designed for backpackers, are comfortable, extremely durable, and can fit a surprising amount of stuff, considering how compact they are.

In this post, I will break down everything you need to know about the Osprey Farpoint backpack, reviewing my trusty companion that has been with me to more than 30 countries!

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The Nomad Almanac Score: 4.7 / 5

  • Compartments: 5
  • Comfort: 4
  • Durability: 5
  • Price: 5

Price: $220

Specs

This review will be for the Osprey Farpoint 55L, as this is the pack I use, but there is also a smaller 40L size and a larger 70L. Here are some specs for this super popular travel backpack:

  • 40 liter capacity main backpack + 15 liter attachable daypack
  • 4.2 pounds (1.92 kg)
  • Dimensions: 22”x14”x9”
  • Airscape back panel designed to increase airflow
  • Adjustable shoulder straps, hip belt, and chest strap
  • 2 internal pockets in the main backpack
  • Laptop compartment (fits a 16” laptop) and 2 water bottle holders on the daypack
  • Costs $220

What I Love About the Farpoint 55L

  • Fits perfectly in the overhead bin
  • You can really squeeze a lot in the pack
  • The straps are super adjustable, allowing the pack to fit any body shape
  • The price is reasonable, considering that this is one of the best travel backpacks on the market
  • Compression straps in the main backpack allow you to pack more things

What Needs Improvement

  • The day pack no longer zips onto the main compartment
  • The day pack is top-loading instead of a standard backpack design
  • Could be more pockets for organization

The New Osprey Farpoint Design

Osprey Farpoint 55L Review

The new Osprey Farpoint design dropped in 2022 and has some interesting new features, some of which I love and some of which I could take or leave… That said, after using the old design from 2016 to 2022, I can safely say that the new and updated Farpoint design is very welcome.

Here are some of the most glaring changes that Osprey made to the new pack:

Shorter, Fatter, Build

While the 2022 Farpoint 55L has the same capacity as the old design, there are some obvious changes to the shape of the pack.

The old design was a bit taller and slimmer, which, as anyone who has tried to carry it on to a plane will tell you, was SUPER annoying. I found that the old Farpoint was always a few inches too tall to fit perfectly in the overhead cabin. In fact, this was probably my main complaint about the previous design.

The new Farpoint 55L addresses this issue perfectly. The pack is around 5 inches shorter, which means it fits snuggly in the overhead compartment on most flights. But it still fits the same amount of stuff, as it compensates for the shortened height with a wider build.

No Zipper for the Daypack

The main change from the old design that I am not a huge fan of is the removal of the daypack zipper. In the old design, you could zip the day pack to the main compartment, so it fit super securely. For some reason, Osprey trashed the zipper in the new Farpoint 55L, and while you can still secure it on the main pack, you must do so with straps.

I found that when the daypack is fully packed and heavy, it sags pretty low on the main backpack. I am not a huge fan of carrying one backpack on my back and another on my front, so this design is less than ideal for me.

New Internal Mesh Pocket

Another minor but notable addition to the new Farpoint is that the main pack now has an additional mesh pocket. The old design had just one mesh internal pocket on the top flap, but the new one includes another pocket on the side of the pack. This is pretty handy for packing away socks and underwear.

Straps Are More Adjustable

Osprey also jazzed up the straps of the new Farpoint, making the backpack not only more comfortable but also easier to adjust to your liking. This new feature is subtle but still a great addition to the pack that makes it more accessible to travelers of all sizes.

New Top-Loading Daypack Design

Laptop pocket - Osprey farpoint 55L

I don’t hate this updated feature, but it isn’t my favorite change Osprey made. The new Farpoint daypack has a shallower zipper and functions as a top-loading backpack. The old Farpoint daypack had a standard half-zip design that made it easier to pack and unpack items. I find that with the top-loading daypack, I often have to take out all of my items at the top of the backpack to reach those at the bottom. Annoying, to say the least… 

Frustration aside, this change isn’t a big enough deal for me to choose another backpack. In fact, I still use the daypack almost every single day!

Overview of the Osprey Farpoint 55L

Attach front pack- Osprey Farpoint
Daypack attached - Farpoint 55L review

When shopping for a good travel backpack, I look for a few key factors: Size, comfort, price, and organization. Let’s dive into some of the intricacies of the Osprey Farpoint 55L.

Head over to our list of the best travel backpacks for some more top-tier recommendations!

Size: Is It Big Enough?

At 55 liters in capacity, the Osprey Farpoint is the perfect size for a carry-on bag. I always travel carry-on only, as it makes flights more affordable and my travel days less stressful. So, for me, the Osprey pack is ideal. Most airlines allow around 22 pounds (10 kg) for carry-on bags, which I find is pretty much exactly what the bag weighs when fully packed with clothes, shoes, and toiletries. If you are only packing light and summery outfits for Southeast Asia, South America, or other hot destinations, you’ll definitely be able to fit everything you need in the Farpoint.

Don’t expect to be able to fit your entire wardrobe in the backpack, but if you pack light for trips, the Farpoint will be your best friend!

Comfort

You obviously want your travel backpack to be comfortable. Trust me, a pack that digs into your shoulders and bruises your body can quickly ruin a trip! While it may take some time to adjust the straps properly, the Osprey Farpoint is a very comfortable backpack. The back panel of the main compartment is fitted with an Airscape system that allows air to flow through. This was a game changer for me, especially when traveling in hot and humid places like Guatemala or Bali.

One downside in terms of comfort is that unless you don’t pack much stuff inside your day pack, you’ll likely be carrying it on your front.

Price

There are certainly cheaper backpacks out there for travel, so if you are on a tight budget, I recommend checking out some more budget-friendly options. That said, the Osprey is reasonably priced, especially considering how well-made and durable it is. I used my first Osprey Farpoint for more than five years and traveled to over thirty countries with it. I actually ended up selling the backpack when I upgraded to the new model, as it was still in pretty good condition!

Organization/Pockets

Compressions straps - Osprey Farpoint Review
Inside Pocket - Osprey Farpoint Review

Organization is important when backpacking through several countries for a few months, and having a backpack with different pockets and compartments can make a difference. While the Osprey Farpoint does have a good number of pockets, I do find it to be lacking a bit in the organization department.

The main backpack has 2 pockets as well as some handy straps to secure your clothes or packing cups. As a digital nomad, you know I always have my laptop with me. So, it is super handy that the day pack has a large pocket with a laptop sleeve. It also has a small internal pocket as well as a smaller external pocket.

My absolute favorite organization feature of this backpack is the compression straps in the main compartment. These straps go around your clothes and allow you to compress them down. This is super handy, especially if you are a chronic over-packer like me and need to shove more things in your luggage.

Strap Cover Feature

Zipped back - Farpoint 55L

Another pretty useful feature that I often use on flights is the strap cover. This is a flap that you can pull out and zip up to completely cover the harness and shoulder strap, which essentially turns the pack into a duffle bag. This is handy if you want to carry the daypack on your back and carry the main backpack around in your hand.

Materials Used in the Farpoint

The Farpoint 55L is made sustainably with recycled materials. The entire bag is constructed of recycled polyester that is Bluesign-approved. Additionally, the bag’s DWR waterproofing coat is PFAS-free. PFAS is a chemical treatment that has some proven harmful effects, including infertility.

How to Attach the Day Pack

There are 2 main ways to attach the day pack to the main Farpoint pack. I will walk you through both methods below.

Method One: Strap the Day Pack to the Back of the Backpack

This is the best way to attach the day pack if you only have a few (lightweight) things inside.

  1. Place the day pack on the back of the main pack.
  2. Thread the buckle straps through the loops on the top of the daypack.
  3. Secure the straps in the buckles on the other side.
  4. You’ll likely want to make the straps pretty tight as the day pack tends to sag down.

Method Two: Strap the Day Pack to the Front of the Backpack

I use this method more frequently as I generally have my laptop and a few other heavy items (such as toiletries and my water bottle) in my day pack.

  1. Put the main backpack on and secure/tighten the straps.
  2. Locate the male buckle straps from the top of the day pack shoulder straps.
  3. Attach the male buckles to the female buckles located at the shoulder of the main pack straps.
  4. Tighten and adjust the straps as necessary.

Does the Osprey Farpoint 55L Work as a Carry On?

As mentioned above, the Farpoint 55L is the perfect size for a carry on. This is what I love most about the bag. Osprey did a great job of maximizing the amount of storage space while still keeping the pack within carry-on limits. 

Having a solid carry-on bag is so important for frequent travelers, especially in today’s travel climate, with the high cost of flights going up rapidly and airlines charging more and more for checked luggage.

Is the Farpoint a Hiking Backpack?

The Farpoint is not advertised as a hiking backpack; it is specifically made for travel. However, I have personally used the Farpoint 55L for several hiking and camping trips, and it works pretty well as a hiking pack. That said, this was not Osprey’s intention when they designed the backpack. If you are a seasoned outdoorsman and want a backpack specifically designed for camping and hiking, I’d recommend going for another option. But, if the primary reason you want a backpack is for travel and being able to take it on a hike is just a plus, the Farpoint is a great option.

If you are looking for a good hiking backpack, I recommend the Farpoint Trek 55L, which has a water bladder holder, an integrated rain cover, sturdier straps, and more capacity. It doesn’t come with a day pack and is a bit too big to use as a carry-on. But it is an excellent option for trekking or more adventurous travel.

What About the Other Sizes for the Farpoint?

In this review, I have specifically discussed the Farpoint 55L, but there is also a 40-liter and a 70-liter option. The 55L is the Goldilocks size for me as it is large enough to fit everything I need for a 2 to 3-month trip, but it still works as a carry-on item. All three sizes of the Osprey Farpoint are pretty similar, but they have a few key differences that are worth noting.

Farpoint 40L 

The 40-liter Farpoint is the smallest size and is pretty similar to the 55-liter pack, except it doesn’t come with a daypack. The 40L pack also comes with a few extra pockets, including a zip-up laptop pocket, a large toiletry pocket, and two front shove pockets. These are handy features, especially if you don’t want to travel with two backpacks.

Farpoint 70L

The 70-liter pack is essentially just a super-sized version of the Farpoint 55L. Honestly, unless you are traveling with camping equipment like a tent or sleeping bag and large winter jackets, you probably don’t need 70 liters of capacity. 40 to 55 liters is a great capacity for most travelers and digital nomads, especially for trips between 2 weeks and 2 months. The 70-liter Osprey Farpoint is definitely not a carry-on size, so you’ll have to check it. At that point, why not just use a normal suitcase?

Difference Between Osprey Farpoint and Fairview

Farpoint vs Fairview

If you browse Osprey’s online shop, you’ll notice there are two bags that look identical to each other: the Farpoint and the Fairview. These are pretty much identical backpacks, but the Farpoint is designed for a male body, and the Fairview is designed for a female body. 

The two bags have the same features, but the overall shape and size of certain components, like the straps, buckle, and frame, are slightly different. That said, even after sitting them both next to each other and staring at them for 10 minutes, I honestly still can’t tell the difference.

A note from Mia: I have used my Osprey Fairview for the last year and a half of travel, and I can attest that this is a super comfortable backpack that I can easily adjust to my body. I really appreciate how padded the hip straps are. Most other backpacks bruise my hips, but the Fairview has treated me quite well. But the key is to adjust it properly!

Final Verdict: Is the Osprey Farpoint the Best Travel Backpack?

I know I am slightly biased, but it is hard to beat the Osprey Farpoint when it comes to travel packs. This backpack is extremely versatile and can be used as a carry-on bag for a short trip or packed to the brim for a three-month backpacking trip. If you are willing to be more minimalistic and save some money on checking a bag, I highly recommend the Farpoint 55L as it is compact, comfortable, and a (semi) affordable backpack that will still fit just about everything you need for a trip.

If you prefer to roll your luggage rather than lug it around on your back, go for a suitcase instead. This is a backpack, after all. So, it is made to be carried… on your back!

Overall, the Osprey Farpoint 55L is objectively one of the best travel backpacks around and would definitely be a great choice for most travelers and digital nomads!

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