by Mae Kiggins
Full disclosure: I am not a purse or diaper bag gal. Clunky and funky, purses or giant diaper bags never stayed on my shoulder, and organization was only fair, so when my kids were little, I relied upon a trusted backpack. Comfortable to wear, backpacks generally aren’t designed for family caregiving, but mine lasted through two babies with ease.
Now that those babies are older, searching for a bag strong enough to withstand two active kids and the rigors of travel has not been easy. Fortunately, the Venturesafe GII by Pacsafe met the challenge of combining style with our active lifestyle. Tough and full of useful features, this pack is made for families on the go, especially those toting passports, snacks, devices, spare clothes…you get the idea.
What makes the Pacsafe special, however, is its security, both as an anti-theft bag and a long-lasting piece of travel gear. Here’s why.
“Slashguard” anti-theft feature. A lightweight, flexible steel wire is incorporated into the adjustable strap, and that same mesh is woven into the bag itself, providing protection from experienced thieves.
Dual-release buckle. An ingenious buckle allows you to secure the bag around an object, and dual-release features make it more difficult to unfasten. Someone trying to steal the bag will have to concentrate for several seconds on the mechanism, hopefully providing you time to catch him or her.
Data-blocking material. As Pacsafe states on their website, “Most passports, credit cards and ID cards now contain a RFID micro-chip. This chip contains all your personal, sensitive information. Identity thieves are able to access this information from up to 10ft away with the help of an RFID reader.” Pacsafe’s award-winning RFIDsafe, blocking material prevents data from theft by blocking virtually all transmissions between 10 MHz – 3 GHz, which covers the radio frequency used in e-passports, credit cards / smart cards, and key cards.
Secure zippers. All Pacsafe zippers can be secured with hidden clasps, ensuring valuable will remain safe.
Padded straps. Busy parents know padding makes the world go round while carrying loads of stuff. But Pacsafe’s bag also features non-slip material to keep the bag in place, be it slung on a shoulder or across the back of a chair.
Wearability. Pacsafe’s shape and size make it comfortable enough for short hikes, with straps angled out from the bag as opposed to straight up from the top, helping it to stay close to the body.
Price. The Pacsafe is an expensive bag, retailing for $105, but worth every penny, considering the features.
Bottle holders on the bag’s sides are very tight, but then, that may be on purpose, since most avid travelers use water bottles frequently.
Overall size. Given the smallish capacity of the Pacsafe bag, parents with babies or kids requiring more supplies wouldn’t be able to carry an extra change of clothes, or first aid kit on longer hikes.
(H x W x D): 30 x 38 x 15.5 cm/ 11.8 x 15 x 6.1 inches
Weight: 650 g / 1 lb 6.9 oz Volume: 11 L / 671 cubic inches
Strap length max: 140 cm / 55.1 inches
Mae Kiggins is publisher of the blog Mommy Loves Trees. An urban outdoor mom, Mae occupies a niche in the outdoor blogger community, offering ideas and encouragement to city dwellers to connect with the outdoors.