The ABS Vario 30 has been discontinued, but if you're looking for an avalanche airbag within the same price range, consider the Ortovox Tour 32 + 7 ABS Pack or the The North Face Patrol 24 ABS - both win our Top Pick Award. See our complete Avalanche Airbag Review to see this pack in side-by-side tests with the competition.
The Vario 30 just barely replaces its bigger volume sibling the ABS Vario 40, which was our Editors' Choice award winner last year. It was a tough decision between the two. It was only after rigorous testing and side-by-side comparisons that the 30L proved to offer greater versatility and excel in the primary applications that more people use. The Vario 40 is good at day touring and excels at multi-day and hut-to-hut tours but the Vario 30 is also excellent at day touring and performed better where a smaller pack is more ideal, like heli, cat and side-country skiing and snowboarding. We love the airbag system that ABS uses and thought it was the best on the market, with air travel problems being the only major downside. We loved the zip-on pack versatility of the Vario line of packs. If dropping $1100 is just not in your budget, we recommend checking out the best buy winner, the Backcountry Access Float 32 which is half the price.