Have you ever wondered how much a bag should cost? Well, take the total cost of the gear you plan to put inside and get 10% of that. The formula works for most (read: not all!) cases: my Crumpler Whickey and Cox costs close to P10,000.00 and holds about P100,000 worth of gadgets including my MacBook and camera. A hefty bag price should only mean that your gear fits comfortably inside, likewise both your hands are still free.
In the case of laptop sleeves, a good sleeve should not cost you more than P2,000.00 or $40.00. In fact, one of the best laptop sleeves ever invented retails for only P1,500.00: this is the Zero Shock Laptop Sleeve. You can literally drop a bowling ball on top of the memory foam and your notebook will still function afterwards. *
Get a messenger bag that doesn’t destroy your pants
Not all messenger bags are created equal. Have you ever wondered why the side of your pants near the pocket area is faded? That’s due to the constant swaying of your laptop messenger bag. Good messenger bags should not sway side to side when you’re walking. Rather, they should be fastened tightly on your side. Timbuk2 is known to make the best messenger bags.
There are two types of bags: “transit” bags and “holster” bags. Know which one you need
Will you be taking your gear on long trips without pulling them out? Or will you be constantly pulling out your laptop or camera every hour? This applies mostly to photographers, which is why the Lowepro SlingShot design is popular.
When looking for a bag, go through the mental process of putting stuff inside. Will your laptop be easy to remove when you need it immediately? Or will you need to sift through your other junk first?
As much as possible your bag should not stand out in public
This is perhaps the rule that people tend to break because by nature, we succumb to vanity. When toting a colorful bag, the allusion is similar to holding up a steel pole in the middle of a football field during a storm. The truth is, it’s hard to trust yourself keeping watch over your gear. That’s why things get stolen in the first place. The bright colors tend to stand out from the rest of the paraphernalia, screaming “expensive things inside!!”
*Dramatic emphasis on the bowling ball test is guaranteed to work. But I’d really just take their word for it.
Do you have bag buying tips to share? The best tip wins a Timbuk2 4th Gen iPod case. Delivery applies only around Metro Manila.