As a regular traveller, I've been on the lookout for the perfect bag that can handle a day or two of clothing, my laptop, a few accessories and still look decent. I've been road testing the STM Trust for the last month.
The Trust is a messenger style bag. It has more compartments than I needed but that made it easy to separate the load I was carrying. I carried the Trust on two overseas trips and several overnight and one-day trips interstate.
For every trip, regardless of duration, I carried
- 13-inch notebook computer with charger
- 7-inch tablet with charging cable
- Old-school A5 sized notebook and three pens
- A stash of business cards
- Small toiletry bag
- Noise cancelling headphones (these are quite large)
For an overnight trip I add a change of socks and jocks as well as a shirt.
All of this was easily and comfortably handled in the Trust.
Regular travellers will be well versed with the ritual of taking you laptop out at security checkpoints. With the Trust, the laptop compartment is a separate section that is not covered by the flap that covers most of the bag. This makes it easy to extract your laptop without having to pull everything out of your bag.
The two pockets on the sides of the bag are handy for stashing the contents of your pockets as well so that you can get through the checkpoints easily.
The shoulder strap is wide with a padded section. The length adjustment works well but the plastic latch came undone accidentally a few times resulting in the strap extending to its maximum length.
The Trust is well made with robust materials. However, it's also quite heavy. Even empty, it weighs 1kg. Given many airlines impose 7kg limits on cabin baggage that's quite a bit.
Would we buy the Trust? If all we were relying on was a quick play in a store and a look at the spec sheet we'd be tempted although the $150 price tag is quite steep. But after a month of planes, conferences and hotels we're left with a few issues.
The bag is quite heavy, even when empty. The shoulder strap is comfortable but the latch came undone a few times which was annoying. When full, the shape of the Trust makes it uncomfortable to carry as it's quite bulky.
If you're looking for a bag to carry your gear from point A to B then the Trust is probably a good candidate. But if your journey between A and B involves lots of side-roads then we'd be looking for something lighter and less bulky.
If you use a larger notebook, there's a version of the Trust for 15-inch notebooks. It also comes in a choice of three colours; olive, red and black.
Disclosure: STM provided a bag to the reviewer at no charge.
trust small laptop messenger bag [STM Bags]