Troubadour Pioneer backpack review

I recently took a look at the Troubadour Apex backpack, and came away mightily impressed. You can find the full review here, but the company also sent me the Troubadour Pioneer backpack to check out, too.

Much of the same applies here — the Pioneer is great-looking, comfortable, and has so many compartments it’s almost scary.

Troubadour Pioneer backpack main compartment
There’s plenty of room, and pockets, in the main compartment.

It’s more rectangular than its sibling, with a larger opening flap that makes it much easier to retrieve items you may have stuffed right down. On the interior of that flap, there are two mesh compartments with zips, ideal for keeping documents handy, and there’s an exterior pocket with a clip which is perfect to attach your keys to.

Inside there are no fewer than four pockets (one of which is zipped), two pen holders, and a laptop sleeve section toward the back that can fit any standard-sized laptop (including my MacBook Pro 16-inch). The back is lined with a lovely soft material, too.

The magic of the Pioneer, though, is it’s more of an “everyday” bag that you can take to the gym, take to work, and take home, all without needing to take things out to change the layout.

Troubadour Pioneer backpack's laptop access zip
The side laptop zip is particularly handy.

This is thanks to some smart design choices that aren’t immediately evident. While the top of the bag certainly opens to allow plenty of access to your items, there’s a sneaky side zip in the seams that mean you can sneak your laptop out without having to tear through everything else.

It’s a great touch, and while you may have to remove a water bottle from one of the stretchy side pockets to facilitate it, it’s really handy where space is limited.

Troubadour Pioneer backpack lower compartment
The bottom pocket is huge, and perfect for a pair of gym shoes.

Similarly, the base of the laptop opens up, too. Once you do so there’s just a single compartment with a waterproof lining, and while Troubadour suggests it’s an ideal place to stash your gym shoes (and they’re not wrong, really), I’ve found it super handy as a spot for another product I’ll be reviewing soon (how’s that for a tease?).

As with the Apex backpack, it’s entirely waterproof (although, you know, don’t jump in the pool with it), with high-quality zips and a classy leather lining. It also shares the Apex’s ability to perch itself onto your rolling suitcase’s handle.

You can buy the Troubadour Pioneer backpack from Troubadour directly.

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