Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Review

Osprey’s Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag has nice organization and plenty of space for gear on the plane, though the stiff zippers sometimes make it hard to access.

Our Verdict

7.5 /10
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  • Lots of space and easy-to-use organization makes this a nice personal item bag
  • Water-resistant materials protect your gear
  • Sunglasses and a phone stay safe in raised quick-access pocket


  • While water-resistant, the zippers are quite stiff on the track
  • Flexible materials can sag when not fully packed
  • Thick shoulder pad too wide for some users

Technical Details

72 %

Carry-on Compliance

View 104/145 Airlines

36 %

Like the Look

Polled on Instagram

  • Capacity


  • Weight (lb)

    1.3 lb (0.6 kg)

  • Dimensions

    16.9 in x 11.8 in x 8.7 in (42.9 x 30 x 22.1 cm)

  • Notable Materials

    Recycled Nylon, PFC-free DWR Coating, YKK Zippers

  • Manufacturing Country


  • Laptop Compartment Size


  • Warranty Information

    All Mighty Guarantee

Buying Options

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Full Review

A personal item bag may be the last thing you think about when packing for vacation. After all, isn’t it more important to remember your swimsuit, sunscreen, and shorts? That may be true, but, especially if you plan to work poolside, you’ll need a good way to get your tech gear to your destination. That and some entertainment, snacks, and a change of clothing, of course, on the off chance that the stars align against you, and not only do you have to gate-check your carry on, but the airline loses it, too! We all hope against hope that never happens to you, but preparing for everything is important.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Walking
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | Get ready to board.

That’s where the Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag comes into play. It’s a personal item-size laptop bag designed to be lightweight yet durable to protect your gear wherever you travel. So, will you want to pack it for your next trip? Let’s find out.

External Components

When brands want to create a lightweight bag, they need to begin with lighter materials. In the case of the Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag, that’s a recycled, bluesign® approved, high-tenacity 100D (think we can squeeze in any more modifiers here?) nylon, treated with PFAS-free DWR for eco-friendly water resistance. That’s only a little thicker than some packing cubes, which may be why it tends to sag when the zippers are open, both from their weight and the carry handle. The material is a higher denier on the bottom, 210D to be exact, but the thin materials contribute to the fact that this bag can fall on its front if you don’t lean it up against something, depending on how you pack it. However, it’s not a deal-breaker, as many messenger-style bags do this due to their narrow bases.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Zipper
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | Water-resistant zippers keep your gear safe.

The water-resistant YKK zippers bolster that of the material. They’re racquet coil models with an AquaGuard coating, which is great for gear protection. However, they are stiff to open; we especially struggle with the front and quick-access pocket zippers because they’re almost too strong for the 100D material surrounding them. Luckily, there are small webbing loops on either side of all but the main compartment zippers to hold as you open and close them, but they are nearly too short and satiny to grab, especially if you’re wearing winter gloves.

It is easy to grab the zippers themselves thanks to the corded pulls that end in heat-shrink, although those cords can get caught in neighboring zipper tracks if you’re not careful. Plus, the cords weave through sideways instead of at the end, and we wonder if pulling straight along the track may have made the zippers easier to use. They have become easier to use throughout our testing period, so we hope they continue to break in with more use.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Brand
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | Everyone will know you’ve got an Osprey.

On the front of the bag, you’ll find the Osprey band name and logo in a style similar to what we see on nearly all of this company’s products. Ozone is stamped at the bottom, and there’s a little loop right below where you can clip a bike light for your commute if you need to. A tab on the back panel also tells you what bag you’re holding. That can be handy, especially if you’re like us here at Pack Hacker and like to collect a lot of bags from the same brand!

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Handle Close
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | Carrying it by hand is comfortable, thanks to the cushy handle.

Let’s return to that densely padded and thick carry handle. It’s comfortable for longer periods, even when this 20L bag is full. On the right side, you’ll find a metal tag with a website, an identification number, and a QR code. This Travel Sentry Luggage ID will allow you to reconnect with your baggage if you leave it behind. While many travelers use smart trackers, we think this is a nice inclusion if you don’t have one, provided you remember to register the bag first. While not aesthetically intrusive, it’s pretty hard to miss by anyone who finds your bag.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Pass Thru
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | The pass-through is a little narrow to slide smoothly over all handles.

There’s a pass-through on the back panel where you can slide the Boarding Bag over the handle of rolling carry on luggage, although it’s narrower than we’ve seen on other bags, so you have to position it just right to fit it on. It fits fine; it just takes a little more effort than we’ve had to use with other pass-throughs.

You can also carry it with a removable shoulder strap. It attaches via swivel clips with a unique connection. Press a gray wedge-like tab at the end of the strap, and it will pop up slightly, allowing you to slide it out from the prong end attached to the bag. Press it again, and you can replace it. We had no issue with it popping off accidentally, yet it’s easy enough to use when you want to.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Strap 2
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | The shoulder strap features a sliding pad.

Although the strap can swivel, we didn’t find it twisting on itself very much, likely because of the rather large shoulder pad in the middle. There’s more Osprey branding on this pad and nearly twice as much padding as on the carry handle, but it is also very wide. We find that, between the length, the width, and the stiff padding, the strap doesn’t always stay put on your shoulder without wearing it crossbody, so that’s something you’ll want to keep in mind. It is adjustable with a slide on the right side of the padding, so you can make it longer to get it over your head, and we had no issue with it slipping out of place.

While it may take a little effort to get over your head to wear crossbody, it’s comfortable once it’s there because there is a decent amount of back panel padding. Along with creature comfort, it protects your laptop, which slides into the rear compartment.

Fit Notes

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Side by Side
Left: Eric Hergenreder, Height: 6’0″ (183 cm), Torso: 18.5” (47 cm) | Right: Kristyne Defever, Height: 5’5” (165 cm), Torso: 17” (43 cm)

The back panel padding helps the bag maintain its shape against your body, but while it doesn’t conform to you like a travel backpack might, you don’t feel any gear bumping up against your back or side while wearing it. Despite the large shoulder pad, we find it most convenient to sling over one shoulder instead of crossbody, if only for speed in taking it off and putting it on. However, that shoulder pad, while comfortable, needs breaking in just like the zippers do to stay put.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Side 2
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | Depending on your size, carrying it on one shoulder can be tricky because of the thick shoulder pad.

We think you’ll want to make an effort if you’re looking for a professional personal item bag. Even with its slick nylon material, this isn’t out of place on the plane or at a business meeting, and you’ll blend nicely with metropolitan travelers as you make your way to your hotel or Airbnb.

Inside The Bag

The Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag is a very organized pack with plenty of compartments for all your different gear. There is a padded spot for smaller tech and accessories at the front. It’s arguably slightly more padded than the back panel, so you can slide delicate gear inside without worrying about it if another bag gets tossed on top. There is a signature red Osprey key clip in here, though it’s on a very short leash that’s attached a few inches below the left side opening, so it takes a little effort to get it out, and you’ll have to get the bag very close to the keyhole to open a door while your keys are still attached.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Front Pocket
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | Organize small gear and your keys in the front pocket.

Right below the leash is the first of two mesh pockets, which we’ve been using to hold an AirPods case, a hard glasses case, a travel mouse, or a minimalist wallet, depending on the day. To the right of those pockets are three elastic loops for pens or a stylus, which they hold quite snugly. That’s all on the front of a large zipper pocket, a wide open space where we stash tissues, a small toiletry bag, and any other gear we don’t want floating around the bottom of this compartment. There is plenty of space outside the pockets, although with all of that organization, we didn’t have much of a need for it.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Phone Sunglasses
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | A small pocket at the top is great for sunglasses and your phone.

Moving toward the back of the bag, you’ll find the short quick-access pocket zipper next. We wish this wasn’t the hardest zipper to open because this is the pocket we use the most often. It’s a nice micromesh material, and it hangs into the main compartment, giving you a spot to keep your sunglasses, phone, lip balm, and mints safe from being crushed by the gear at the bottom. It’s large enough that you can slide your phone to one side and sunglasses to the other so they don’t bump up against each other, although there is enough room for them to sit side by side.

One thing to note before we move on is that these two zippers tend to interfere with each other the most, with the quick-access zipper falling into the front compartment track.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Laptop
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | Up to a 16-inch device fits in the padded laptop sleeve.

We’ll momentarily skip over the main compartment and hop to the fourth zipper back. It opens the laptop compartment, which can hold up to a 16-inch computer. There are no extra pockets in here; it’s just a spot for your device, and it features padding on the back panel as well as between this area and the main compartment. The zipper runs across the entire top of the bag, so you have plenty of space to slide in a large computer, and we like that we don’t have to fight to get one inside. Since it runs against the padded back panel, this zipper tends to be easier to open than the front two, in case you’re keeping track.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Back Pocket
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | A back panel pocket conceals your passport and cash.

Look more closely at the back panel, and you’ll find the last spot to stash gear, or, in this case, cash or a passport. A fabric welt on the left side conceals a vertical zipper. It doesn’t lock, but we think this is the perfect place for travel documents and extra cash because it’s harder to find if you don’t know what you’re looking for. It has plenty of space to hold the flat gear you need, and it’s easy to access when the TSA officer wants to see your ID.

Now, back to the third zipper in line. Unlike the rest, this one extends down each side of the bag to give you suitcase-like access to what’s inside. You can see the quick-access pocket and the zipper pocket from the front protruding in against the front panel, and there’s a large slip pocket on the rear for folders, a travel journal, or documents, although it’s not padded, so you’ll want to use a case if you slide a tablet here.

Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag Stuffed
Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag | The main compartment opens clamshell for easy packing.

There’s a decent amount of room in between, though, whether you want to fill it with a few packing cubes for a weekend trip or that emergency outfit we mentioned at the beginning, gym clothing for stopping by on your way home from work, books, or even a well-sealed travel water bottle. While we’ve complained about the stiff zippers throughout this review, they are handy for the main compartment because you don’t have to open it completely clamshell if you don’t want to. The zippers stop anywhere along the middle that you like and don’t continue sliding open due to the weight of your gear, making it easy to grab a water bottle, a tech kit, or your 3-1-1 bag for inspection by security.

Additionally, the flexible material of the bag means that it takes up less space when you pack less, depth-wise. That’s primarily true with this main area, which compresses down thanks to gravity and the gear in the front pocket when you have fewer items inside. We like when cons can become pros, and it’s pretty easy to see the silver linings in the dings we mentioned earlier against this bag. If you’re looking for organization in your personal item bag and want to get some work done or play computer games during a long-haul flight, the Osprey Ozone Carry-On Boarding Bag gives you excellent access to what you need. However, as is the case when traveling with any friend, you’ll need to take a few trips together to know each other’s quirks.

Usage Timeline

Initial Usage

Condition: Excellent

  • Firm padding seems nice and sturdy to protect tech gear
  • Hoping that the AquaGuard YKK zippers will get easier to use over time
  • Has a nice amount of organization for working remotely
2 Weeks of Use

Condition: Excellent

  • Quick-access zipper still difficult to open and, especially, close
  • Compresses somewhat when you’re carrying less
  • Luggage pass-through a tight fit
By Kristyne Defever
Created February 9, 2024 • Updated June 25, 2024
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