When traveling light, it's best not to 'roll.'

Nothing can make travel easier and 'shlepping' one's belongings around a little less of a chore than rolling carry on luggage. Hard as it is to believe, though, there are times when rolling is not the way to go. Backpacking is!

Luggage on wheels is actually a hindrance when you're hiking, for example. Can't you just see yourself traipsing through the woods, dragging your rolling carry on luggage behind? Or how about climbing the nearest mountain with your luggage bouncing along beside you? Even in quite civilized regions like European cities, it's sometimes easier to backpack your belongings than having them dance every which way along the cobblestones. On such occasions the answer is a good backpack. You may ask, why not simply use a rolling backpack?

Good question! In some situations that may actually be the perfect solution. However, if you see yourself trekking more than half of the time, you are probably better off without the wheels altogether. Not only do the wheels and the contraptions that secure them add considerably to the weight of the luggage, they may also not feel good on your back. A backpack without wheels also weighs less and allows for more content in your backpack.

The backpack you choose should have ergonomically curved and padded straps, a breathable back panel and a full side access pocket. You should also expect several outside pockets for important documents and electronic gadgets, which may need to be removed at check points.

Rick Steves, the renowned globetrotter who believes in always traveling light, prefers his Convertible Carry On backpack/suitcase with zip-away shoulder straps. Undoubtedly, Rick Steves has more than once observed other travelers attempting to roll their luggage under less than ideal circumstances, i.e. on unpaved roadways, cobbled streets, going up and down stairs and into trains and subways. On tiled airport floors wheeled bags are wonderful, but even in airports you can encounter circumstances that make it easier to backpack your belongings.

Weight becomes even more of an issue, when you carry your luggage on your back. If you plan on backpacking your luggage for long stretches, it's actually advisable to take your fully packed bag on a test run. You don't really know how heavy it is, until you carry it around for an hour or longer, not only window shopping, but climbing stairs as well. Nothing teaches you the value of traveling light, or the non-value of certain stuff, as quickly as carrying all your belongings on your back for a while.

On our continent children learn to live with backpacks quite early in life. In the past I would watch them shoulder their backpacks or drag them through the mud behind them. Not many children had wheeled backpacks then. Lately, I see them more often, but the non-wheeled backpack still predominates.

Since very few children live close enough to their school to go home for lunchbreaks, there must be room in their backpacks for packed lunches, that is, if they don't want to carry a separate lunch box.
One such backpack is the Jansport Hex Backpack. It contains an insulated area for keeping food and drinks cold. This makes it a great multi purpose backpack for students.

The Jansport Classic Big Student Backpack may be the answer for students with too heavy a book load. It also comes with inner pockets for pens, phone, calculator, small notebook etc. The straps are thick, wide and harder than previous Jansport packs. This makes them comfortable for bigger sized students, not so much for smaller ones.
And, yes, there is also a student bag with wheels. The JanSport Classic SuperBreak Wheeled Backpack might be a good alternative for anyone who needs to roll rather than carry.

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