REVIEW: Matador SEG42 Travel Pack
If you’re the kind of person who likes to travel light, chances are you probably already recognize the tradeoffs that come with carrying a minimalist pack. Lightweight bags are great for navigating busy airports and crowded trains, and they tend to fit nicely into the overhead compartment. But, in order to achieve their smaller size and weight, these types of packs often do away with some handy features and amenities found in larger, heavier bags. As a result, we often find ourselves sacrificing a level of organization in favor of the simplest, most lightweight bag that we can find.
The Matador SEG42 travel pack looks to change that, offering a slew of options for keeping your gear well organized while on the road. In fact, the bag is so well thought out that it very well could be the only piece of luggage you’ll need for just about any kind of travel. With 42 liters of carrying capacity, it s large enough for use on long weekend getaways or extended international adventures. The SEG42 even comes with five individual zipped pockets that allow you to segment your gear by day, type, use, and more. Best of all , those various compartments can be mixed and matched to create an interior space and organizational approach that best fits your needs, making it unlike any other travel bag on the market.
Design (5) ★★★★★
The team at Matador has been designing outstanding products for use while traveling for years and that knowledge and understanding of the market shines through in the SEG42. The bag is filled with options that frequent travelers will love, including a 42-liter main chamber that can be used as one continuous storage compartment or segmented into multiple “drawers” for use as you see fit. This leads to an unprecedented level of customization when it comes to staying organized. The SEG42 has also been built to be worn like a backpack or the straps can be stowed away so it can be carried like a duffel. A full clamshell bottom provides quick access to the interior of the bag at all times, while a handy padded laptop pocket keeps important tech items stowed safely away. EVA padding is generously used on the back panel and shoulder straps as well, and yet somehow the pack weighs just a shade over two pounds.
Durability (5) ★★★★★
The SEG42’s more exposed external panels are made from 840D nylon, which was specifically selected to absorb the wear and tear that comes with frequent travel. Those materials are both lightweight and durable, resting abrasions and tearing, without adding much in the way of bulk. Similar nylon fabrics are used throughout other segments of the pack as well, creating an extremely durable travel bag as a result. We’ve tested this pack on several trips of varying lengths and despite being tossed on to airplanes, busses, and taxi cabs, it remains unblemished.
Features (5) ★★★★★
To describe that the Matador SEG42 travel pack as “feature rich” would be an understatement. The ability to segment the main compartment as needed already puts in the bag in a class all of its own, but the inclusion of a laptop sleeve, two organizational pockets on either end, and exterior lash points puts this bag in a class all its own. As if that wasn’t enough, all of materials used in the construction of the pack also happen to be waterproof, with the exterior also receiving a DWR (durable water repellant) coating for good measure. Not only does this keep the contents of the SEG42 well protected from moisture, it allows you to keep wet gear separated from dry clothing. Add in nice touches like removable shoulder and sternum straps, grab handles on the top and side, and plenty of carrying capacity, and you end up with a travel bag that has all of the features you need with nothing you don’t.
Overall (5) ★★★★★
The level of versatility that comes with the Matador SEG42 travel pack is outstanding. This is the kind of bag that you can use while traveling for business or pleasure without feeling like you have to compromise in any way. The pack is perfect for any kind of journey, short of a full-blown backcountry backpacking expedition. The SEG42 looks great, is lightweight and durable, and offers organizational options that simply aren’t found anywhere else. When you consider the level of functionality and performance that the pack delvers, it also feels like a relative bargain at $200. That isn’t a lot to pay for what very well could be the last travel bag you’ll ever need to purchase.
Own a piece of gear that you're dying to review? Read our submissions page and let's get it up on the interwebz!