EXO Hardside Spinner Carry-On – Travel Tested

The First step to becoming a ‘Finished Man’ is to live an exciting life, which means having exciting experiences. This might mean   racing a Ducati motorcycle at top speed. Though it’s up to you to define what these experiences are, I’ve found that the secret sauce in the recipe is travel.

When I first started traveling, I would move around like a backpacking schmuck, often staying in dumpy hostel dorm rooms as a student. I would pack my hobo-looking clothes in an oversized backpack that I found for sale on REI, and off I went. This actually served me well for many years. Everyone has to start somewhere, and the experience made me what I am today, even if I was “that guy” walking around cosmopolitan South American cities like Buenos Aires and Bogota looking like I were about to hike the awe-inspiring Andes mountains. Yeah, right.

Tim wearing a backpack

These days I travel in style. Gone is my trekking backpack and my EXO Hardside Spinner Carry-On suitcase from eBags. I’ve been putting it through the paces, and I’ve decided to bring it on an upcoming Mexico trip. Here’s why…

The EXO Hardside Spinner Carry-On suitcase

I always used to check my luggage, but recently decided to start packing light and take a carry-on bag instead.

Flashpacker Packing List View

Flashpacker Packing List

The EXO works perfectly for this, with the bonus of looking just a little classier than a backpack. It’s got the lightweight and ruggedness of a pack – featuring a durable 100% Pure Polycarbonate hard outer suitcase shell – but with an abundance of wheels for those days when I would instead drag something along than heft it on my back.

eBags hardcase suitcase

Packing is also easier. I used to roll up my clothes and pack my backpack from the top-down. That’s fine, but using the EXO Hardside, I can load everything in like a suitcase. There’s even a moveable shelf system to separate my clothes and gear into different sections. This is a lifesaver when you need something at the bottom of your bag. Never again will you need to rummage your arms into the depths of your bag, blindly trying to find whatever gizmo or gadget you packed there.

As far as the eBags aesthetics go, the shell’s polished and debossed diamond pattern prevents the most visible abrasion. After a month of lugging the suitcase around, it still looked nice and fresh. Even better is that the zippers are sturdy #10 self-healing coil zippers. There’s nothing shittier looking (and more annoying) than broken-off zippers. My previous backpack had me running around Bangkok to find replacement zippers, and I was not amused.


  • Combined packing space: 18.5″ x 13″ x 8.75″
  • Overall exterior dimensions (maximum measure): 22″ x 14″ x 9”
  • Telescoping handle measures 43.5″ fully extended
inside the EXO Hardside Spinner
open suitcase
EXO Hardside Spinner Carry-On

So far, I’m pretty happy with the EXO. If you’re looking for a backpack replacement but want to avoid going for a full-blown suitcase, I recommend giving this a try.

You’ll find the eBags EXO Hardside Spinner Carry-On suitcase for $104.99 on the official eBags website.




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Jason Batansky

Jason Batansky, a 34-year-old entrepreneur/blogger, has built three successful online businesses, granting him the freedom to travel and work remotely across South America, Southeast Asia, and Europe. Currently residing in Miami Beach, Jason thrives on the challenges and rewards of his dynamic lifestyle.

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