Large (28″) Osprey Wheeled Backpacks Compared: Meridian vs. Ozone Convertible vs. Sojourn

by  Mose Hayward
LAST UPDATED ON  2023-09-26
PUBLISHED ON  2017-07-11

Update 2023: These packs are mostly discontinued (though you may get lucky on a few of the links below, and even find some at a discount. Our recommendations for current model Osprey Wheeled Travel Backpacks are here.

We analyzed Osprey’s three full-size convertible (backpack/wheeled combo) luggage options to uncover the key functional differences and find out which pack is best for whom. Osprey’s own descriptions tend to be enthusiastic and vague, so it can be tricky to tease out which will serve you best, depending on how you travel. We’re here to clarify that.

We highly recommend travelling (and I personally live, for that matter) out of an Osprey carry-on, but of course that’s not possible for everyone, particularly if you have kids or are running off into the wilderness or other lands where you need a bit more gear. (Nevertheless you can  compare these three Osprey lines in carry-on sizes here.)

We think Osprey makes excellent luggage — including, as we’ve reported, the best full-size (checked luggage) wheeled travel packs.  In this article, we’re doing a side-by-side comparison of the top three large Osprey wheeled travel packs.

They all have very comfortable backpack straps that distribute a load well like other high-end backpacker packs. But these packs also all have durable high-clearance wheels — a lifesaver once you’re back on pavement.

Quick Comparison: Osprey Meridian, Ozone, and Sojourn 28″ Packs

Osprey Meridian 28″/75L

• Flexible, all-around useful: Full-featured pack that’s ready to go anywhere

• Larger capacity: 75L

• Detachable daypack: Zips into place, has laptop sleeve, water bottle pockets, a quick-access top pocket, and internal organizer pockets

  • Light: 9.26 lbs/ 4.20 kg, but designed more for durability and features

• Highroad Chassis: oversized, durable wheels and good clearance for bumpy roads

• Good comfort as backpack: The detachable backpack straps quickly slide out and snap into place (but there is no hip belt); fully adjustable for your torso size

Osprey Ozone Convertible 28″/70L

• Flexible, all-around useful: Full-featured pack that’s ready to go anywhere

• Large capacity: 70L

• Detachable daypack: Zips into place, has laptop sleeve, water bottle pockets, a quick-access top pocket, and internal organizer pockets

  • Lightest: 6.93 lbs/ 3.14 kg; designed to be sturdy while absolutely minimizing weight

• Highroad Chassis: oversized, durable wheels and good clearance for bumpy roads

• Better comfort as backpack: Has slide out straps and hip belt (not detachable); fully adjustable for your torso size

Osprey Sojourn 28″/80L

• Big, simple and durable: Designed with one large, open main compartment and built to handle heavy loads

• Largest capacity: 80L

• No daypack included, but the pack is built to attach to the Osprey Daylite Daypacks

• Light: 8.97 lbs/ 4.07 kg; but emphasis is on a sturdy build

• Highroad Chassis: oversized, durable wheels and good clearance for bumpy roads

• Best comfort as backpack: Ventilated, detachable ventilated suspension with hip and shoulder straps

• Backpacker-oriented features: Straitjacket compression straps, external daisy chains for attaching additional gear

The Great Commonalities of these Osprey Convertible Backpacks

The Osprey Meridian, Ozone, and Sojourn bags all tend to get top marks from critics and experienced backpackers; they are known for durability, and for being relatively light. Stylistically their differences are minor; and on the road they tend to draw a bit of envy both from backpackers humping a load without wheels, and from those with wheeled suitcases who’d like to be able to hop up a staircase or veer off the pavement with their gear.

Osprey is mainly known for its high quality comfortable backpacker bags that carefully distribute their weight and can be worn for long periods, and these packs follow in that design tradition. They are truly convertible pieces of luggage that work great whether in town, on the beach, or in the wilderness.

The prices for these three are comparable to other high-end backpacks, but these aren’t the cheapest models out there. If you take only very short, occasional trips, these packs are probably feature overkill.

Osprey keeps its healthy track record among backpackers through its All Mighty Guarantee (“any reason, any product, any era”). If anything at all goes wrong, you do have to pay to send the bag to the nearest international customer service center, but they’ll take it from there, either repairing or completely replacing your luggage and returning it to you for free.

Best for Most Travel Pros: Osprey Meridian 28″/75L

Among these three, we think that the Osprey Meridian 28″/75L is going to be the top choice for most people. The zip-on daypack is quite useful in that it fully integrates with the pack but can also accompany you by itself on shorter adventures. The daypack has a laptop sleeve, water bottle pocket, lined top pocket to keep sunglasses and electronics from scratching, and interior organizational pockets. It can either clip onto the main pack (fastest), or zip on to be fully integrated.

This pack stands distinguishes itself from the Ozone Convertible in that its backpack strap system is fully detachable, so if you’re on a trip where you won’t be heading off of the pavement, you can leave that at home and save a bit of weight.

The Meridian weighs a bit more than its Ozone Convertible counterpart; this is because it has stronger fabric and a slightly more durable wheel housing.

Note that some reviews and photos you’ll find online concerning this pack are for the pre-2016 version of the bag, which had also had a hip belt, and slightly more space in the daypack and less space in the main bag.

Best for Lighter Travel: Osprey Ozone Convertible 28″/70L

The Osprey Ozone Convertible 28″/70L is quite a bit like the Meridian 28″ above, but is built to absolutely minimize weight. This means that it has a lighter-weight fabric, frame, and wheel housing, so you’re sacrificing just a bit on durability. If you spend a lot of time on the road with heavy things, opt for the Meridian or even better the Sojourn options.

In keeping with its focus on lightness, the main pack also offers a bit less interior space than the other two.

Otherwise, the Ozone Convertible 28″ is just as fully featured as the Meridian 28″; notably, the daypack has the same great features. Backcountry Edge also has a useful video of this one:

Best for Bigger Loads: The Osprey Sojourn 28″/80L

The Osprey Sojourn 28″/80L has the largest capacity and is sturdiest of the three; it also has the best backpack suspension system to help insure optimum adjustability and distribution of the load. If you carry a lot of gear, this is the bag to get. Like the Ozone and Meridian’s main packs, the Sojourn’s interior is one large compartment to arrange how you see fit (though there are interior side pockets); in this case, it’s just bigger.

Like the Meridian and unlike the Ozone Convertible, the Sojourn’s backpack suspension system can be completely removed to save a bit of weight/space when you’re on a trip that will stick to smoother surfaces. The Sojourn also has a more vigorous “straitjacket” compression system to cinch in your gear.

The Sojourn lacks a zip-on daypack, and that’s too bad, because for most, this is a necessity. It is however, compatible with Osprey Daylite daypacks, which can be purchased separately and clipped on. This means that on total you’re spending a bit more if you go the Sojourn route.

The video below is entitled Osprey Sojourn 80, but describes this same Osprey Sojourn 28″/80L pack.

Similar Osprey Pieces to Consider

If you can pack lighter, check out our coverage of Osprey convertible carry-ons.

The Osprey Farpoint 55 is a bit like the Meridian but without the wheels; it has a daypack.

The Osprey Ozone Convertible 28″/80L is a lot like its convertible Ozone sister that we discuss above, but without the daypack or the backpack straps. Daylite daypacks can be attached.

The Osprey Sojourn 25″/60L is a smaller version of the Sojourn 28″/80L that we describe above.

Spec Comparison of the Full-Sized Osprey Wheeled Packs

Dimensions (in.)Weight (lbs.)DaypackShoulder Straps & HipbeltLaptop SleeveUS Pricing
Osprey Ozone Convertible 28″/70L13 x 14 x 286.9YesYesYes
Osprey Ozone 28″/80L13 x 14 x 284NoNoNo
Osprey Sojourn 25″/60L25 x 14 x 148.5NoYesNo
Osprey Sojourn 28″/80L28 x 14 x 149NoYesNo
Osprey Meridian 28″/75L28 x 14 x 139.3YesYesYes

Roundup: Which Full-Size Osprey Wheeled Pack Is Best for You?

Osprey Meridian 28 in/75L
The best large rolling pack for most travellers: roomy, sturdy, and fully featured; backpack straps but no hip belt
Osprey Ozone Convertible 28 in/70L
A bit lighter, has a hip belt; for those who carry lighter loads on their backs
Osprey Sojourn 28 in/80L
The most capable of handling a big load, whether on your back or on its own excellent wheel system

The Osprey Sojourn 28″/80L lacks a daypack, so you may want to grab an attachable Daylite daypack to go with it.

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