JanSport Right Pack Review After 7 Years of Use and Abuse

JanSport Right Pack Review

The JanSport Right Pack fills a unique void.

In today's throw-away society, finding durable, reliable, and stylish products for a reasonable price is an increasingly difficult task.

But the JanSport Right Pack looks great, has been my go-to backpack for the better part of a decade, and you can find them for only $45 brand new on Amazon.

JanSport Right Pack Review


My JanSport Right Pack was my carry on and trail pack on my 2013 trip to Washington. 

I've been using the JanSport Right Pack backpack on a consistent basis for the better part of a decade, which I'd say counts as a truly long-term test period.

And considering how inexpensive this backpack was, I definitely haven't babied it.

On camping trips, I've stuffed it full of equipment and tossed it in the back of a truck then propped it against trees as a makeshift backrest.

I spent 3 years in college loading it with heavy textbooks and a laptop, then sliding it around on a gritty classroom floor.

It's handled general city life and a year of bicycle commuting through all weather conditions and I've even used it to move a couple times.

As far as multi-purpose items go, my JanSport Right Pack has been a true workhorse.

Why I chose my JanSport Right Pack

JanSport Right Pack Style


With style (and most other aspects of life), I tend to favor simplicity over excess and embellishment and the JanSport Right Pack fits that description perfectly.

It looks exactly as intended, like a casual backpack with outdoor gear heritage and all-purpose functionality.

With its subdued style, no one will confuse you for a lost mountain climber or S.W.A.T member and the branding is minimal so you won't feel like a walking billboard either.

I opted to remove the JanSport patch off the main compartment to further improve the minimalist look. This is a really easy job that only requires a seam ripper and a few minutes of your time.

The navy with tan leather is my favorite color combination. It's unobtrusive and stylish, as I feel an everyday backpack should be.

JanSport Right Pack Features


Most backpacks these days are just overkill with more pockets, attachments, headphone passthroughs, bottle holders, and handles than you know what to do with.

To me, this just makes a bag look messy, has more points of failure, and increases the weight due to all the layers of fabric, padding, and additional hardware.

That's why I like the JanSport Right Pack's minimalist style. It features:

  • Large main compartment with laptop sleeve
  • Medium compartment with key hook, pockets, and pen holders
  • Small compartment for frequently need items
  • Adjustable shoulder straps
  • Quick grab handle


That's about all there is for features. Everything a backpack should have and nothing it shouldn't.

JanSport Right Pack Functionality and Durability


I've only had one durability issue and it was within the first week of use. Right away, one of the leather pull tabs tore off the zipper.

This was an obvious isolated incident on that particular tab and not indicative of the product overall because the other two leather tabs have held up flawlessly against seven years of abuse.

With the Lifetime Warranty, I could've sent the backpack in for repair at no charge, but I opted to remedy the broken tab myself by replacing it with with another length of leather cord.

I made no attempt to match the leather, but rather embraced imperfection with an obvious repair.



Every other panel, stitch, handle, and fastener show no sign of fatigue after the same 7 years of use.

The shoulder straps are comfortable and the back panel is lightly padded so you won't have any of your gear poking you in the back.

The zippers slide smoothly and I've never had one get hung up during operation.

This backpack simply works as it should.

Buying the JanSport Right Pack

The JanSport Right Pack is a backpack that can handle all of your needs with rugged and timeless styling to match it's functionality.

Yes, there are more luxurious, durable, and/or cleverly designed backpacks out there, but I don't think there's a better combination of those attributes for only $45.

If you're looking for a basic pack that's durable, stylish, timeless, and affordable without all the frills, make the same choice I did.

Buy Jansport Right Pack on Amazon

All the best,


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  • Reply
    October 21, 2016 at 7:45 am

    Really cool photo Nate, where did you go hiking in Washington? Are those desert boots? WA is full of beautiful hikes.

    This is totally unrelated, but Allen Edmonds is running their yearly Rediscover America sale, with some big savings, until the 25th. Just wanted to let your readers know!

    • Reply
      October 22, 2016 at 9:47 am

      Thanks for the notice about the sale, Chris! I went on a day trip to the HOH Rainforest while visiting Seattle. And good eye, those are Clarks desert boots.

      • Reply
        December 15, 2016 at 7:05 pm

        Glad you liked it. How did desert boots function as a hiking shoe? I assume they’d be a no-go now in the colder weather unless you wanted to try some wool socks.

        • Reply
          December 19, 2016 at 9:47 am

          The desert boots were just fine for moderate trails, but I wouldn’t wear them on anything technical. I mainly wore them because I was traveling and didn’t want to pack an additional pair of boots for a single day of hiking.

          • ChrisH
            December 23, 2016 at 9:56 pm

            Good to know. You probably couldn’t get away with this in a Chicago winter, but on mildly cold days I throw Smartwool socks on under my desert boots. Makes them wearable in the chill.

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