We've examined every wheeled carry-on backpack out there, and ranked the top two brands in that category as Osprey and Eagle Creek.

If you want a carry-on piece that you can both wheel around and carry on your back, Osprey and Eagle Creek offer the best convertible pieces we've found. And, while there are a few other options from Osprey and from Eagle Creek, most people are best served by either the Osprey Ozone Convertible 22"/50L or the Eagle Creek Switchback International Carry-On.

Since both companies tend to be a bit vague in their descriptions, we put together a side-by-side comparison of those two pieces, and descriptions of which will be best for whom.

 

Update history of this article

Originally published May 24, 2017

Quick Comparison: Osprey Ozone Convertible 22"/50L vs. Eagle Creek International Switchback Carry-Ons

Osprey Ozone Convertible 22"/50L

• Youthful, techy style: Comfortable as a backpack, lightweight but solid construction, available in red or black

 Slightly lighter: 6.3 lbs/2.86 kg

• Detachable daypack with laptop sleeve, can be attached in front when main bag worn as a backpack

• Great comfort as backpack: Shoulder and hip straps quickly slide out

Large, sturdily built wheels with good clearance for rolling over rough terrain

Feature-rich: Exterior water-bottle pockets, padded accessory pockets, zippered top pocket, key fob, compression straps, built-in whistle

• Osprey's All Mighty Guarantee covers any problems, company has great reputation for handling any claims, repair centers around the world

Price: $300 as of this writing (but some sellers at Amazon offer it for significantly less at times)

Eagle Creek Switchback International

Sleek-ish upmarket backpacker esthetic: Comfortable as a backpack, tough material, available only in asphalt black

Light: 6.5 lbs. (2.95 kg)

• Detachable daypack with laptop sleeve, can be attached in front when main bag worn as a backpack

• Great comfort as backpack: Shoulder and hip straps quickly slide out

Large, sturdily built wheels with good clearance for rolling over rough terrain

Feature-rich: Exterior water-bottle pockets, padded accessory pockets, key fob, compression straps, built-in whistle, external lash points

• Eagle Creek's No Matter What Warranty covers any problems, company has great reputation for handling claims, repair centers around the world

Price: $349 as of this writing (pricing doesn't vary much but check for the current lowest pricing at Eagle Creek)

Deciding Between these Wheeled Carry-Ons

As the side-by-side comparison above shows, these bags are incredibly similar in terms of design, and both are well-loved by those who use them. We think either one is ideal, even and especially for those who travel light enough to use only a single carry-on.

The reviews across the board for both Eagle Creek and Osprey packs from backpackers, bloggers, and critics are excellent.1Quality Osprey reviews can be found at these links; good Eagle Creek reviews can be found at these Eagle Creek is one of the top-rated luggage brands for customer satisfaction in a Consumer Reports survey (Osprey was not included in this survey).

There are a couple of small design differences:

• Point for Eagle Creek: The Switchback International has external lash points that make it easy to strap on additional gear.

• Point for Osprey: While both bags can tip over if too much weight is loaded in the daypack, the Eagle Creek daypack sticks out a bit more and has caused more customer complaints of tipping. Osprey's aluminum frame also does a good job in preventing tipping.

• Point for Osprey: The Osprey Ozone Convertible's handles are "low-profile" and keep closely to the side of the bag when not in use. This means that they're less likely to catch on passing airplane seats, for example. It's nice that Eagle Creek International Switchback's handles are extra-padded, but this is not really necessary with a carry-on-sized bag.

More significantly, there is the price difference as noted above; the Eagle Creek Switchback International tends to go for $50 to $100 more than the Osprey Ozone Convertible 22". Our guess is that since the bags are so similar, most people will be happier saving a bit of cash with Osprey.

Size Specs for the Osprey Ozone Convertible 22" and the Eagle Creek International Switchback

Basically, these two carry-ons are the same size and neither should cause problems with most airline carry-on size restrictions, including in the USA and EU.

 Dimensions (in.)Weight (lbs.)Material
Osprey Ozone Convertible 22"/50L9 x 22 x 146.9210D Nylon Shadow Box
Eagle Creek Switchback International Carry-On14 x 21.5 x 86.5Bi-Tech™ Heather | 1000D Helix™ Poly Twill

Roundup: Which is best for you?

Both of these are excellent, versatile luggage pieces.


Eagle Creek DoubleBack
~$300
Check current pricing
For most people, the Osprey Ozone Convertible 22" is the best choice for city trips, travelling light, and having the convenience of either a backpack or a wheeled carry-on, depending on the terrain. And it's cheaper.

But if you're used to Eagle Creek and like their products, or if you like the flexibility of built-in external lash points, the Eagle Creek Switchback International Carry-On is also a great choice.

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