Backpack Review – Osprey Farpoint 40

osprey farpoint 40 review
[December 2019]

  • Written by Digital Nomads
  • Who this bag is perfect for
  • If it’s not the pack for you – we’ll show you which pack IS for you

 

Let’s get this out there: the Osprey Farpoint 40 is an AWESOME backpack. It’s got some neat features, it’s carry-on compatible, it’s got a laptop sleeve. It’s a solid choice for a world traveller.

This backpack may be awesome, but is it right for YOU?

Good question. So that’s why we’ve totally gone in on this review. This is pretty much the only guide you’ll need to show you every single feature of this backpack, its pros and cons, why it might be good for you – and why it might be the wrong choice.

You’re about to get stuck into the best Osprey Farpoint 40 review out there. If you think you’re ready, then start scrolling!

Jump To...

  • Who it’s for
  • Who it’s NOT for (and what we recommend instead)
  • Design of the pack
  • Feel of the pack
  • Front of the pack
  • Middle of the pack
  • Back of the pack
  • Other Osprey packs
  • Conclusion

Ultimate Osprey Farpoint 40 Review

carry on

The Osprey Farpoint 40 is PERFECT for you if...

  • You want a weekend getaway

Being only 40 litres, this Osprey pack is the perfect luggage companion for people who love to head off for the weekend (maybe week-long) breaks all the time.

  • You want a bag you can check on an airplane

Even better, the Osprey Farpoint 40 is carry-on compatible for a lot of airlines. That means, well, you know what that means: no hassle at the airport, no waiting around, no extra money spent on check-in luggage.

  • You're looking for something super comfortable

It’s Osprey, so it’s going to be comfortable. Padded shoulder straps, padded hip belt, padded back panel, distributed weight – it’s all here.

  • You want a bag that's good quality

Again, what can we say? It’s Osprey. The fabric and materials that go into making this bag are super durable. They stand by it so much that they even offer a crazy lifetime guarantee for any fault that might (probably won’t) occur.

  • You're a Digital Nomad

If you want to travel with your laptop, and not much else, and you hop around different cities to work, then this could very much be the backpack for you. There’s space for a laptop or tablet – and enough room for a camera, even.

The Osprey Farpoint 40 is NOT for you if…

  • You want to go on a big hike in the wilderness

This isn’t a hiking bag. It may be comfortable, but Osprey has a zillion other backpacks that are so much better suited to outdoor activities than this one. It’s a great backpack, but it’s not designed for long trips, either.

→ If you want a travel backpack that is also great for hiking, check out our favorites below…

  • You are female

Yes, the Farpoint is designed to fit male torsos. It’s part of a male-female range, the female equivalent being the Fairview. 

→ If you are a female, check out the Osprey Fairview 40

  • You want loads of organization

It’s definitely lacking in the pocket and compartment side of things. It has a laptop sleeve, yes, and it has a few other places to stash your stuff, but if you love organizing your stuff then you may want something with more, well, more pockets!

→ If you want more organization, check our favorites below…

  • You want something sleeker

Although it’s not too big or bulky, the Farpoint still probably isn’t the sleekest bag out there for urban travel. So if you want to just hang around in cities, consider something more neutral or that’s more “cool”

→ If are looking for a sleek urban pack, these are the best options…

  • You want a backpack for your photography gear

Whether you’re a hiker or a keen photographer, there are other bags out there that cater for your needs so much more than the Farpoint would. It’s a good all-rounder, but it’s not specialised in any way – except for being carry-on sized.

>> Are you looking for something more specialized? The Wandrd Prvke 31 is great for tech/photographers and tech

→ If you are looking for a photography backpack, check out our favorites below…

  • WANDRD PRVKE 31
  • Peak Design Everyday Backpack
  • That clamshell opening really means you can pack this out like a suitcase
  • The fact that it's (mostly) carry-on is going to save you money, hassle and time checking luggage
  • Tucking away the harness really helps give the bag more versatility; it's not just a backpack
  • Even when it's packed full it still feels light - that suspension system though
  • Compact; never feels too much like you're getting in the way
  • Perfect bag for short trips or minimalist travellers (we know some people who've done 6 months with it)
  • Slimline design, not looking too much like a "typical backpacker"
  • Great guarantee from a trust company
  • The laptop sleeve being at the front of the bag is a little bit concerning, in terms of weight and security
  • Lack of internal organisation might mean you have to spend more money on packing cubes
  • You really do have to check if the Farpoint is carry-on for some airlines - it's not a given
  • Front mesh pockets can be tricky to use if the bag is packed full
  • You have to work to make sure it fits properly, especially if you're tall
  • No hip belt pocket: this works on so many other Osprey bags, but we wonder why it's not utilised here
  • There's no dedicated compartment for your water bottle
  • It doesn't stand up without leaning against something; you have to lay it down (like a suitcase) to get into it

Osprey are well known for having all the goods to keep customers coming back for more every time. Quality materials and quality construction aside, there’s one thing that this company is known for: features.

Nifty features and neat flashes of genius design make Osprey bags what they are. It’s this extra thought that goes into making these backpacks that make them so comfy and durable.

Thankfully the Osprey Farpoint 40 is no exception. Let’s see what makes this awesome bag tick…

Vital Statistics

Small / Medium

  • Capacity: 38 litres
  • Dimensions: 20″H x 14″W x 8″D
  • Weight: 3.11 lbs

Medium / Large

  • Capacity: 40 litres
  • Dimensions: 21″H x 14″W x 9″D
  • Weight: 3.17 lbs

Comes in different colours

various colors

The Osprey Farpoint 40 comes in not one, not two, but three colours! For people who like the blend in, the “Volcanic Grey” (almost black) works well, whilst the “Jasper Red” is a classic Osprey orange-red thing and the “Caribbean Blue” stand-out. Nice to have the options to customise since this one is definitely a popular pack.

Carry-on compatible

carry on

This backpack is designed to be carry-on sized. That means you won’t have to worry about your luggage getting lost on transfers, waiting at the baggage reclaim, or generally just having too much stuff to carry. It’s compatible as a carry-on for most airlines, but you’ll have to check in advance.

Spacious main compartment

When we say spacious, we mean spacious. This large main compartment can be used to shove in pretty much all of your stuff. 

You can even make the most of this space, and what the bag has to offer litreage-wise, by getting yourself some packing cubes and going to town with your organisational skills.

Clamshell opening

open like suit case

Not sure what that means? Don’t worry: it’s just backpack speak for “opens like a suitcase”. This means all you get to pack your bag with some degree of organisation – and you get to take stuff out of it without having to dig through everything you own. This feature makes the Osprey Farpoint 40 like a mini suitcase with comfortable straps.

ID pocket

Tucked away at the back of the Farpoint is an ID pocket so you can keep your bag labelled as yours. 

We all know what airports are like, and if you’ve got your bag in “luggage mode” and checked it, then there’s at least some peace of mind knowing that there’s something on your backpack that can trace it back to you. 

After all, you spent money on the bag and the things in it, so you want to make sure you get it back, right?

Two internal compression straps

Dual front compression straps

To make the most of that suitcase-like clamshell opening, this nifty backpack comes with compression straps so you can really make sure that everything’s held in place. There are two of these so you can easily strap everything in and keep it all organised.

Hideaway zip panels

These badboy panels aren’t just flimsy bits of fabric, they’ve actually got a very useful, uh, use. The straps, hip belt and sternum strap can be stowed away within these sturdy panels. Neat. 

What’s great about this is that it stops there being any dangly bits to whack people in the head or get caught on armrests as you make your way on or off of transport. Also makes it a smooth piece of check-in luggage, if your airline won’t take it as a carry-on.

Sternum strap

Sternum strap​

Clicking together across your chest, this adjustable strap makes the bag not only feel more secure but also it actually takes the weight off your back a little bit. 

Distributing weight across your body, not just having it on your shoulders and back, is one of the things that Osprey packs do best. Bonus: the buckle of one of the strap is actually a rescue whistle!

Padded hip belt

Osprey farpoint 40

The padded hip belt is another thing that helps distribute whatever weight it is you happen to be carrying. It makes the Farpoint feel really secure. Whilst also being adjustable, this hip belt is padded, so it’s comfy and doesn’t dig in too much (if at all) either.

Shoulder straps

Shoulder strap

Also padded are the Osprey Farpoint 40’s shoulder straps. These babies are designed for comfort. They make up part of that Suspension System that transfers weight. 

Even if you’re carrying a fair bit of weight, the shoulder straps won’t be uncomfortable. Carrying a backpack with these shoulder straps is pretty dreamy, we have to say.

Zippered mesh pocket in main compartment

Although the main compartment of the Osprey Farpoint 40 doesn’t have a great deal of interior organisation going in, what it does have on the inside of the main compartment flap is a mesh pocket. 

Now, this is a great little spot for anything from dirty laundry to a spare pair of shoes – flip flops, or sliders would work best, we’d say. It’s always good to have some extra compartment options.

Sewn attachment points

These handy points of attachment, i.e. sturdily attached plastic loops, allow you to tie certain things to your bag to take ’em along for the ride. 

You may want to tie a sleeping bag to the bottom of the bag, you could clip your water bottle to it, you could hang your shoes from the backpack (as people like to do) – the world is your oyster with this neat little feature.

Straight Jacket compression system

Sewn attachment points​

You’ve heard about the compression straps on the inside, but what about the outside of this backpack? Osprey have you covered. 

Their patented StraightJacket system consists of not just straps themselves, but whole layers of fabric that pull on the bag evenly as you tighten the straps, keeping everything smooth and streamlined – and stopping the bag from bulging in any one place.

Padded top and side grab handles

durable

This is a great feature for when you want to stash your bag away in an overhead compartment on a plane, or under a seat on a bus. With the straps safely confined in the hideaway zip panels, having these to grab onto makes for a quick in-transit transition without having to unzip and get the shoulder straps out again. 

The fact they’re on the top and side means approaching from more than one angle is totally viable.

Heat-embossed scratch-free zippered slash pocket

It sounds like a mouthful, but it’s simple really. This pocket on the Osprey Farpoint 40 is located where the Osprey logo is on the front of the pack. It’s a handy little pocket to have. 

Maybe you want to shove your phone charger in there, or other things you want to get hold of quickly. Obviously nothing too valuable, but then again it is quite hidden.

Zippered front panel slash pockets

Zip slash pocket

More in the way of pockets on this Osprey backpack, these ones are pretty good. They’re easy to access and located on the front of the bag. They’re zippered, meaning everything you put in here is pretty secure and won’t fall out. 

What are these pockets good for? Pens, tickets (maybe), earphones, socks, gloves, any small-ish last-minute items you want to shove in.

Laptop/tablet sleeve

Laptop and tablet sleeve

One of the best, and most obvious, things about the Osprey Farpoint 40 that makes it such a great backpack for digital nomads is the dedicated laptop sleeve. 

Located at the front of the bag in a separate pocket, this padded sleeve can fit a laptop or tablet of up to 15.4″ / 39cm. A big must for any nomad, even if you’re not “nomadic” but travel with your laptop all the time.

Zippered internal pocket

internal pockets

Inside the dedicated compartment for the laptop sleeve, you’ll find an additional zippered internal pocket. Great! It’s good for stuff that goes with your laptop or tablet, like charger wires, hard drives, USB sticks, or for pretty much any miscellaneous item you think would fit. Sunglasses, for example, or your keys.

Lockable sliders on main compartment

To ensure that your stuff is safe wherever you are, the sliders on the zipper come together for the perfect fit. You can then put a padlock on to secure it without any worry. They’re located both on the laptop compartment and also the main compartment of the Farpoint.

Durable materials

durable

As always, Osprey has gone all out on top materials to ensure that the Farpoint 40 is as durable as can be. Namely, it’s constructed out of 210 denier nylon diamond ripstock and 600 denier packcloth. 

If none of that makes sense to you, it’s ok: basically what it means is this bag is built to last. And last it will; you won’t have to worry about straps breaking or seams tearing.

LightWire frame

This frame is basically the foundation of the bag – it’s what helps the Farpoint keep its shape and to distribute the weight evenly across your back, from shoulders to hips. 

The thickness of this peripheral frame is 3.5mm and has been dubbed “LightWire” by Osprey, since old-school backpacks that use a frame such as this usually weigh a ton. Osprey keeping things comfy again.

All Mighty Guarantee

Osprey will fix or replace any faults on any of their bags, no matter what type it is, no matter how long ago you brought it. Compared to other guarantees that only last a couple of years or that require you to have the receipt or any other annoying stuff, this really is amazing customer service. No wonder they called it the All Mighty Guarantee.

Other Osprey Backpacks to choose from

There you have it: that was our in-depth look at the features of the Osprey Farpoint 40. Maybe after all of that you’ve decided, “Hey, actually, this doesn’t sound like me at all.”

That’s fine, because Osprey have a whole lot of other amazing backpacks on offer. Most of them are pretty specialised for a load of different activities, from snowboarding to backcountry camping, so you’re bound to find something for you. Take your pick from some of Osprey’s best backpacks below…

#1 - Porter

Probably the most similar to the Farpoint, the Porter is essentially the same bag – but there are a few crucial differences. One of the main ones being that it’s bigger. 

It’s also more padded, making it a very sturdy pack for a laptop (which sits at the back rather than the front). The porter one of Osprey’s best sellers, for sure.

#2 - Talon / Tempest

Away from digital nomad capabilities of the Farpoint, the Talon / Tempest range is all about hiking. In fact, the pack is touted as a technical hiking pack – and we can see why. 

With lumbar support and hip belt, the key is comfort here, since hiking with a backpack can take its toll. There are quite a few different size versions, all the way down to 10/11L!

#3 - Xenith / Xena

These partner bags are designed to carry heavy loads – and we really do mean HEAVY. The highest capacity this goes up to is a crazy 105L. The ability to customise the fit of the bag on the go really makes the difference when you’re on a long hike. 

There are loads of easy access outer pockets, so you can grab much-needed snacks, or whatever it might be.

These cool backpacks are great for slinging on and exploring a national park for the day. Or for a short-term backpacking trip. 

The Stratos / Cirrus range is pretty versatile and will be more than fine for most kinds of outdoors travel. It’s even got an integrated raincover. The sort of bag people keep going back to.

These cool backpacks are great for slinging on and exploring a national park for the day. Or for a short-term backpacking trip. The Stratos / Cirrus range is pretty versatile and will be more than fine for most kinds of outdoors travel. It’s even got an integrated raincover. The sort of bag people keep going back to.

#6 - Levity / Lumina

When it comes to pioneering amazing materials, Osprey can’t be beaten. So what magic they’ve worked on the Levity / Lumina range to get them to be “superultralight” as they call it, we don’t know. 

But we do know that it works. They’re much lighter than so many of Osprey’s other backpacks, but with all the same comfort. Great if you feel the pinch on your shoulders when you’re carrying weight.

Final Thoughts on the Osprey Farpoint 40

That was our mammoth review of the Osprey Farpoint 40. All the best bits, all the worst bits – but it still turns out that it’s a very, very decent backpack. In fact, it’s awesome. We love the simple colours, we love the carry-on compatibility, we love the laptop sleeve…

You might be into all that. But you might want to splash for something even more specialised and with more organisational capabilities. 

You may not even be considering this right now because you’re about hiking. Or you may think that this bag is just a bit too… backpacker-centric for your nomad needs.

That’s ok! There are a ton of bags out there that you can choose from that aren’t this one. 

But for us, the Farpoint is a strong contender, an all-round, across the board GOOD bag – especially if you want to travel a) not for ages, b) with a laptop. It’s smooth, it’s sharp, and it’s Osprey: quality is written into the very soul of this amazing bag. We highly recommend it for your adventures!

Looking for more great Digital Nomad content?

***Disclaimer*** Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means that if you use our links, Nomads Nation will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks for the love and support!

Nomads Nation Subscribers get the best content. Period.

Join The Nation to access our next-level Digital Nomad newsletter

Written by Aaron Radcliffe

City dweller. Noodle crusher. Aaron is a serial entrepreneur, and the founder of Nomads Nation. Connect with Aaron Radcliffe -