In Brief; Lowepro’s Pro Runner x350 AW; What To Carry On-Board
The question always becomes: how much gear can I get away with when I carry my camera and laptop on-board an aircraft? The answer depends upon the carryon rules, the size of the overhead compartment or under-seat space, and, I’m afraid, sometimes on the whims of the gate agent. The best way to make sure there are no hassles and no suspense on your part—flying is stressful enough—is to make sure the bag you are carrying both handles the gear right and stays within the “rules” set by the airlines.
If you look on most airline websites, for domestic US travel at least, that’s 45 linear inches for any carryon bag, and linear inches means height by width by depth. You also want a bag that will protect the gear and help you get through the airport, especially when the golden rule is that the connecting flight will always be in the next terminal when the flight you came in on is late. That’s why I always prefer a roller bag when flying, and why I was happy to try out the new Lowepro Pro Runner x350 AW.
The first thing I did was check out the bag’s dimensions—18.3x13x11.2” (HxWxD): total, 42.5”, perfect for even finicky gate agents. Then I checked out the features—a padded laptop pocket, lightweight in and of itself, what look like strong and sturdy wheels and frame, rain-flap lids on zippers, and side “compression” straps to help tighten it up if you have to squeeze into a smaller overhead.
The retractable handle does just that and, if you wish, there are even straps to convert the whole unit to a backpack, such as when you are on rough terrain and wheeling the bag is not the way to go. Interior compartments can be customized and are well padded, plus there are pockets galore for all the associated gear and paperwork you might be bringing along for the ride, plus there’s even a place to put a tripod.
I gave the x350 AW a whirl on a recent trip from New York to Las Vegas when I was heading out to the WPPI convention. The flight was late (what else is new?) but the wheeled bag meant I could wander around looking for a decent meal without breaking my back. My late incoming meant I could sprint with wheels flying to my connection, and even boarding late I was able to safely stow the bag and contents with no problems. That’s the joy of flying, and why having a no-hassle bag like the Lowepro Pro Runner x350 AW along eliminated one sometimes big hassle from the whole experience.
For specs, pricing, and more info, visit Lowepro’s website at: www.lowepro.com.