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The Great Backpack Debate: Rucksack vs Backpack

Chances are, you’ve been using the terms “backpack” and “rucksack” interchangeably your entire life. After all, they both refer to a type of bag with two straps that you wear on your back, right? Wrong! Believe it or not, there is actually a big difference between backpacks and rucksacks. Read on to learn more about the great backpack debate.

Rucksacks vs. Backpacks: What’s the Difference?

The primary difference between rucksacks and backpacks is the intended usage.

Rucksacks are traditionally used for more strenuous activities like:

  • hiking
  • climbing
  • camping

Whereas backpacks are better suited for everyday use, like:

  • going to school
  • commuting to work

For example, rucksacks often have A-frame constructions and metal frames to provide extra support when carrying heavy loads over long distances, while backpacks usually don’t have these features and are made from lighter materials like canvas or nylon. Additionally, rucksacks typically have fewer compartments than backpacks so that hikers can pack their gear more efficiently.

So, which one should you use?

If you’re planning on going on a hike or doing any other type of outdoor activity that requires you to carry a lot of gear, then a rucksack is probably your best bet. However, if you’re just looking for a reliable bag to take with you to work or school every day, then a backpack will do just fine.

Now that you know the difference between backpacks and rucksacks, you can make sure you’re using the right term for the right occasion! Still can’t remember which is which? Just think “A frame” for rucksack and “everyday” for backpack—and you’ll never get them mixed up again.

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