REI Stuff Travel Duffel Review
Cons: Lacks durable qualities, not weather-resistant, no stand-out features
Manufacturer: REI Co-op
Compare to Similar Products
REI Stuff Travel Duffel
$34.95 at REI
|$180 List||$180 List|
Check Price at REI
$139.95 at Amazon
$64.95 at REI
|Pros||Lightweight, affordable, stows into a small pouch, has traditional grab handles and a shoulder strap||Rugged build, comfortable removable straps, variety of carry options||Durable recycled material, easily removable shoulder straps, convenient pockets, stylish design||Durable and weather resistant, comfortable carry options, convenient storage design||Lightweight, affordable, packs into own pocket|
|Cons||Lacks durable qualities, not weather-resistant, no stand-out features||Only one small pocket, heavy, pricey||Thinner material than other high-end options, pricey||Shoulder straps are somewhat difficult to remove||Limited durability and weather resistance, no backpack straps|
|Bottom Line||A basic, affordable, and lightweight travel duffel to take to the gym or use as an extra carry-on||Our favorite model due to a heavy-duty build and versatile carrying systems||A classy-looking duffel bag that performs well across the board with its tough, weather-resistant design||A fully-featured duffel with a sleek and durable design that's ready to tackle your next adventure||A light, packable, high-volume duffel with an affordable price tag|
|Rating Categories||REI Stuff Travel Du...||Sea to Summit Duffel||Patagonia Black Hole||Gregory Alpaca||REI Co-op Roadtripper|
|Ease of Transport (25%)|
|Storage and Ease of Packing (25%)|
|Weather Resistance (15%)|
|Specs||REI Stuff Travel Du...||Sea to Summit Duffel||Patagonia Black Hole||Gregory Alpaca||REI Co-op Roadtripper|
|Measured Weight||0.4 lbs (30L one size)||4.3 lbs (90L model)||3.8 lbs (100L model)||3.8 lbs (90L model)||1.6 lbs (100L model)|
|Volume Size Options||30 Liters (one size)||45, 65, 90, 130 Liters||40, 55, 70, 100 Liters||30, 45, 60, 90, 120 Liters||40, 60, 100, 140 Liters|
|Material||Ripstop nylon||1000-Denier nylon tarpaulin laminate||900-Denier 100% postconsumer recycled polyester ripstop with TPU-film laminate||900-Denier TPU diamond ripstop with additional bottom layer of 630-Denier nylon||610-Denier coated Cordura polyester|
|# of pockets (excludes main compartment)||1||1||3||3||1|
|D or I opening||I||D||D||D||I|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Our Analysis and Test Results
Lightweight and stowable, this bag can come along as an afterthought for extra space or as the main event on a short trip. While the REI Co-Op Stuff Travel Duffel is not made of the highest quality materials, and won't earn any top marks for durability or weather resistance, it is a great lightweight option for those who need a small, no-frills bag for everyday travel.
Ease of Transport
With two grab handles and a removable shoulder strap, this small bag is easy to carry around from car to gym, or slung over your shoulder as you make your way through the airport. There is no reinforced padding on any of the straps, making them uncomfortable for long-term transit, but this bag was not made to carry heavy loads for long periods of time.
The straps available are plenty sufficient for moving the bag around short distances, and it is nice that such a simple bag has two different carry options.
Storage and Ease of Packing
While the strength of the REI Co-Op Stuff Travel Duffel mostly lies in its light weight, it sacrifices any structure or reinforcement that would make it easier to pack. The sides of the bag do not stand up at all, and the structure it retains will come from what is packed inside. You'll want to pack your shoes just right, or you'll feel them jabbing into your back as you race to make it to the subway on time.
With a simple I-zip construction, the bag opens and closes via two zippers down the middle. With a moderate capacity of 30 liters, you can fit enough clothes for a day trip, and is plenty of room for a change of clothes, shoes, and a water bottle for the gym.
This bag was not made with durability in mind, as its main purpose is to be a quick and easy bag to deploy when needed for everyday travel. While it is constructed with ripstop nylon, it has no protective coating and does not have the shiny, stretchy characteristics of higher-denier ripstop nylon found in other ultralight duffel bag models. REI does not specify the denier of the fabric, leading us to assume that is a low-quality ripstop nylon, and we would not recommend subjecting this bag to situations where there would be much wear-and-tear or chance of abrasion.
The REI Co-op Stuff Travel Duffel weighs in at a light 0.4 pounds, which is as light as some of the more expensive models of ultralight duffel bags on the market. It packs down into its own storage pouch and is smaller than a 32-ounce Nalgene bottle. Its strength lies in these features, as this bag shines as a lightweight accessory for light-duty travel and everyday activities.
While the REI Co-op Stuff Travel Duffel can take a little light rain as you hurry from your car to the gym, this bag was not made to be a weather-resistant duffel. The thin, ripstop nylon fabric has no protective coating to make it more water-repellant, the zippers are exposed, and the stitching is not tight, high-quality craftsmanship. Zippers and seams are where water is most likely to penetrate on any duffel bag, and we would not recommend submerging or subjecting this duffel to extreme elements. This bag is made for light-duty, everyday use and travel, and does not have the weather-resistant properties found in more expensive duffel bags.
The REI Co-op Stuff Travel Duffel is a good low-cost option for someone who is looking for an extra bag to take with them on their travels, or a simple bag to take around town or to the gym. It doesn't have many bells and whistles, but its two carrying systems and its ability to pack into its own storage pouch provide good value for the cost. But because there are other lightweight duffel bags out there that have better weather resistance and durability for not much higher of a price tag, we are less likely to recommend this bag for any but the most basic uses.
While in no way a stand-out duffel bag, the REI Co-op Stuff Travel Duffel does what it sets out to do - perform as a great lightweight accessory bag for your everyday needs.
— Miya Tsudome
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