The new Velow Kruizer range from Eastpak – a range of bags to make getting around the city as easy as it can be….
What they say:
“Own the city any which way you can with this brand-new concept in urban mobility. Designed for speed and easy access, the Kruizer bag from EASTPAK’s new Velow Collection lets you grab, stash and carry your stuff however you choose to get around. On the road, a stack of high-visibility features make this the bag to be seen with: underground, the integrated metro card holder lets you tag on and off without even lifting a finger, and if it’s colour you’re after, the Kruizer has everything you need to make you go “Wow” .
Available in 3 colour options – all black, pink/white and blue/orange – and in 3 sizes (small, medium and large), the Kruizer style from the EASTPAK Velow Collection hits stores in June with recommended retail prices of £60, £70 and £80 accordingly.”
What we say:
“So we’re not sure this is going to revolutionise urban mobility, but Eastpak have certainly taken what they are good at and come up with a great product that stands up well compared to the competition.
We’ve only used the largest size so far, but it does exactly what it should and it does it well. The product seems really well made, but we wouldn’t expect anything less from a company with 35+ years experience (www.eastpak.com) – and they have backed this up by throwing in a 30 year warranty (yes, 30 years). That’s a pretty strong statement by them that they have absolute faith in the product, and from what I’ve seen, I can understand why!
So looking at this in a bit more detail, here’s our views on some of the elements:
Style – look at the pictures here – yes, its only a bag, but we think its quietly pretty stylish. Its certainly not going to offend anyone or look out of place when not strapped to your back, but the 3 colour choices give you the scope to make it fit your own style.
Size – the 3 size choices are a great idea – the largest one is BIG – easily get a couple of changes of clothes, a pair of shoes, a lap top etc in it, but our view is that it is probably a bit big for everyday use. The middle size probably ticks the boxes in terms of everyday use, without restricting your ability to stuff what you need into it
Weather poof – its designed to protect what is inside it from the elements and the detailing and design have certainly been used to help this. It should be pretty waterproof (or at least weatherproof), but like anything it’s a bag with zips and seams, so over time and with wear, it may not prove totally waterproof.
Durability – its been made with a heavy-duty nylon and should therefore hold up to most things you throw at it. Easpak have also built in a reinforced Tarpaulin base to further protect it/what’s in it (don’t worry thought, that doesn’t make it rigid or uncomfortable in the slightest)
Comfort – we’ve done some pretty long rides with the bag fully laden. Its as comfortable as anything else we have used to carry stuff on a bike, and this has to be down to the padded shoulder strap – definitely a sign that this is a bag designed by specialists.
Straps etc – alongside the comments above, the main carrying strap is easily adjusted, quick release and feels a good size. We would like the padding to be a couple of extra inches longer (ie completely under the buckle), but we were not put off because of this. The security straps to keep the bag closed work really well, and are long enough to mean you can really cram the bag full. Coupled with the strong Velcro underneath to hold it tight all the way along, and Eastpak have got this spot on.
Safety – the problem with cross the shoulder bags is that they slip round when you don’t want them to – Easpak have this covered with a simple, quick release additional strap. No worries at all on this front. The bag sits well, and feels balanced and secure. Add in the loops for a light to be clipped on and some reflective detailing, and the safety seems to be well covered.
Pockets/pouches and access – the main pocket is great with a full length zip to make it all easy access. The additional full length zip on the back makes the padded laptop element work well too. There are two other smaller zipped pockets which do the job too, as well as the usual open stuff pouches. However, the two smaller pockets are the one thing that we think Eastpak have got wrong – firstly, the pocket lining itself sits within the main bag and hence does get squashed and bent if you are not careful. Likewise, the zips face downwards when its across your back – no big deal, but just make sure you have done them up properly (at least it helps prevent rain falling directly on to the zip etc and hence keeping the valuables dry).
The travel pass holder in the bottom of the bag works well – and you can swipe through on it, so no need to rummage for wallets etc.
Thankfully, what we don’t like is a pretty short list, but here you go:
§ The main strap is long enough for sure (and hence getting it on/off, and into it is really easy), but we would have a like a loop to tuck the excess strap into.
§ The padding on the main strap would be better if it went an extra inch below the buckle. Not a big point, so don’t think this is reason not to buy it
§ The two small zip pockets: 1. the zips point down – just make sure you close them properly. And 2. the lining needs to be made more secure so the pockets can still be easily used when the bag is full.
§ Price – prices are £60, £70 and £80 depending on size. To us, they seem a little on the high side, but you are paying for quality and don’t forget the warranty if it all goes wrong!
Overall, we rate this product highly – great quality from a company who have thought about the detail (weather protection, comfort, style, sizing options etc). Its not just a courier bag!
We’ve sent the feedback to the Easpak team, and will update with their comments when we can.