Po Campo Ara Backpack 4

Review of the Ara Backpack by Po Campo

by freshlycharged

Who will love the Ara Backpack by Po Campo:

Personal electric vehicle riders looking for a minimalistic yet stylish bag for commuting or for their next joy ride will find the spacious, convenient, and pocket laden Ara Backpack to fit their lifestyle.

Po Campo says they made the Ara line of bags with micromobility riders in mind.

As the first bike bag brand to cater exclusively to the growing and underserved micromobility population Po Campo is proud to launch its sustainable, highly reflective City Lights Collection.

Po Campo Press Release

What I think about the Ara Backpack by Po Campo:

I’ve used the same burnt orange REI backpack I purchased at a clearance sale over 12 years now and I was overdue for a change. I wanted a bag that would be both utilitarian and stylish yet unobtrusive and the Ara Backpack fit the bill.

Po Campo Ara Backpack Storage

I need to fit all my camera gear and other necessities for when I ride so having a lot of storage is important to me. The Ara Backpack weights 2 pounds and is the largest bag in the Ara collection.

You can fit 20 liters into the Po Campo Ara Backpack which equates to a decent amount of gear without the backpack becoming too bulky.

Po Campo Ara Pack

With a spacious main compartment and multiple pockets (13 to be exact), the backpack is perfect for my needs.

I can easily access the main compartment with the two fancy magnetic Fidlock snaps which makes it super easy to open and close once you’ve figured it out.

I did find that closing the main compartment was a little cumbersome at times, especially while riding my electric unicycle as I occasionally struggled to line up the magnetic snaps. I believe that a visual or tactile cue to help the user line up the snaps would be nice but that would take away from the overall minimalistic look of the bag.

I love the helmet harness for easily carrying my helmet without it swinging around behind me as I walk, although you won’t be able to use that harness with a full face helmet.

The Po Campo Ara Backpack Combines Minimalism with Safety, Sustainability and Style

Some micromobility riders can be divas as they ride through city streets on their Onewheels, electric unicycles, ebikes, and high performance escooters. Those riders want attention and for them there are backpacks that look more like jetpacks or flash lights like a futuristic billboard.

However, I am not one of those riders.

While riding something like a Onewheel, electric unicycle, or high powered escooter exudes a “look at me” signal, not unlike that of a Kardashian around a camera, I am the opposite of that and I would rather enjoy my ride without any pomp and circumstance.

I want an unassuming, minimalistic stylish backpack that’s not ostentatious or pretentious while still looking sleek.

The Ara Backpack is made with the world’s first reflective hemp fabric which is sustainable and offers additional safety when riding at night. You see, the little while lines that look like digital rain drops on a black canvas background actually are reflective fibers that are woven into the hemp.

During the day, the mostly black bag is minimalistic without the numerous unsightly loops, buckles, zippers, and straps that you may find on other bags.

Ara Backpack Po Campo

Even the main compartment of the bag is closed by two magnetic snaps that are hidden when the bag is closed which also obscures the zipper to the smaller outer compartment.

I was provided this bag to test and review and while I didn’t know what to expect, I was impressed with the overall quality and feel of the bag.

What I love about the Po Campo Ara Backpack:

  • Stylish and minimalistic without being ostentatious
  • Big 20L worth of storage
  • The right amount of compartments with 13 pockets
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Main compartment is so easy to access from the top flap which is secured with magnetic snaps or via the side access zipper
  • Helmet harness works great with most bike helmets
  • Did someone say reflective hemp material!? It feels soft and offers a unique reflective design at night
  • Stay hydrated with two water bottle holders
  • Weighs 2lbs
  • Sternum strap with a built in whistle
  • Polyurethane coated fabric to offer waterproofing but I have yet to test this

What I hate about the Po Campo Ara Backpack:

  • Expensive ($160); you get quality and a unique reflective hemp fabric but there are other backpacks that perform just as well for the price
  • The main compartment is super easy to close once you’ve lined up the magnetic snaps, but lining them up can be a challenge on the go
  • To access the smaller compartment from the top, you’ll need to open the flap to the main compartment

I am please with this bag and it will be my go to bag for when I ride my personal electric vehicles.

Get up to date pricing on the Ara Backpack by Po Campo.

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We are Andrew and Jimmy, two guys who love personal electric vehicles, and we hope to share our experiences and reviews to help you find the best next PEV for your needs.

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