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Nomatic Messenger Bag Review [Is it for you?]

Nomatic Messenger Bag Review
[April 2020]

  • Written by Digital Nomads
  • Is the Nomatic Messenger Bag for you?
  • If it isn’t we’ll show you what bag IS for you

The Nomatic Messenger Bag is one of Nomatic’s newest products; and it’s a great piece of gear…provided you use it for the right task.

It has a range of seriously cool and unique Digital Nomad friendly specs – some of which we have yet to see in any other bag before. 

Of course, like any product that’s been so heavily customised for a specific purpose, the Nomatic Messenger Bag has the potential for being misused which can lead to disappointment. 

And so thus Nomads Nation have forged this mighty guide where we review the Nomatic Messenger bags’ uses, features, what we like; and where there’s room to improve. Let’s do this:

Watch our EPIC video review below!

The Nomatic Messenger Bag is PERFECT for you if...

  • You’re a business professional who needs a water resistant bag to carry you laptop, chargers and documents - with designated space for additional day packing like a bulky camera or a hearty lunch.
  • You need a bag that isn’t overly large or complicated and has just the right amount of space for your day packing list, without being swamped down by needless extra components.
  • You prefer to carry your bag either like a brief case or a single messenger style shoulder strap - the entire design of the Nomatic Messenger Bag is orientated around this!

The Nomatic Messenger Bag is NOT for you if...

  • You're a double shoulder straps by name, double shoulder straps by nature kind of digital nomad. Shoulder straps: the Nomatic Messenger Bag only got one and you wear it more like a sash - i.e. messenger bag style. Simple as.
  • You want a bag that you can take camping. Firstly, at 15L carrying capacity, the nomatic messenger bag only takes a day's worth of supplies, secondly it's tough but not invincible and thirdly it's designed for office equipment.
  • You need a travel bag, that you can fit everything you need to live out of for several days. This baby ain't designed for cramming clothes and toiletries in. For this, you'd want to check out one of the Nomatic Travel Bags (see other below) .

Check out the other Nomatic Bags if you’re seeking an urban dwellers bag that can be lived out of for several days. 

The Tale of Nomatic

Twas a dark and stormy nigh’ and the owls did screech most forebodingly across the wet and sleety plains of… wait, wait – wrong story. We meant to say: 

Nomatic began when two cousins; Jon Richards and Jacob Durham, designed an ergonomic travel wallet and launched it on kickstarter.

They initially expected just 50 orders…but got well over 6,000 people backing their campaign. Why? Because the wallets were sleek; they were stylish and they were damned efficient for travellers.  It was just the beginning.

Next they moved on to travel notebooks and again had massive success. Between 2015 and now, they’ve launched four successful kickstarters and raised over $10M in the process!

They’ve branched out into a whole range of products, all of them exhibiting the same exquisite attention to detail, vigorous trial and error testing and the by travellers for travellers mentality of Nomatic.

Now they have a range of incredible travel bags for a whole assortment of purposes and types of travellers. The newest of these is the Nomatic Messenger Bag. 

• Bottom Line •
Why You Should Buy the Nomatic Messenger Bg

Comfort & Style

The padded shoulder strap is adjustable, has 360 rotation and is easily removed via magnetic sockets making it easy to use and enjoyable to wear. Combine this with a sleek, briefcase like design made of water resistant material and you wind up with something that both looks and feels fantastic.

Customizability

There are two insertable main compartment options for the Nomatic Messenger Bag - an admin option and a gear option. Talk about ergonomic! This lets you choose the exact kind of bag you want to use, by the day; allowing you to get the most out of it.

Digital Nomad Frienldy

This baby has cord pass throughs allowing you to charge equipment on the go, a dedicated TSA friendly laptop sleeve, an RIFD passport pocket and the option to choose it's main interior for one designed to carry bulky tech like a camera and different lenses or smaller tech such as external hard drives and portable batteries. Noice!

Other Nomatic Bags

In case you were wandering, yep; there’s a helluva load more Nomatic Bags out there. The Nomatic Messenger Bag is actually one of the most minimal and specific designs. 

The other Nomatic Bags feature dual shoulder straps and are more orientated towards multi day excursions.

Whilst other nomatic bags have allocated carry space for laptops, tech and electronic accessories, they are also bulkier due to featuring additional packing room for the likes of clothes and toiletries. This let’s you live out of them for days on end.

How many days? It varies by the bag! The Nomatic Backack, is the smallest and has enough space for a savvy Digital Nomad to live out of completely for 2-3 days, whilst the 40L Nomatic Travel Bag could hold everything you need for over a week!

We actually wrote an entire article about the Nomatic Travel Bags – how they differ, whom their for, their specs, pros, cons, etc. If you’re after a Digital Nomad friendly bag for tech and travelling – check it out!

Or, if you like the sound of the other longer day applicability of the other Nomatic Bags but want to check out a different make; our favourite alternative is the Osprey Farpoint 40.  Or for a whole list of other great travel day bags check out our best laptop travel bags reviews. 

But if if it’s the Nomatic Messenger Bag you’re interested in (which is totally unlike any of the other Nomatic Travel Bags, keep reading as we delve into the specs below!)

Nomatic Messenger Bag - Organizational Features

Rear & Front Compartments

The rear compartment has a space for a 15 inch Macbook, plus a document sleeve. It can open clamshell style for easy TSA scanning. 

Meanwhile, the front compartment drops down to give you easy access to pens & stationary, an RFID pocket for your passport plus additional stretchy and zippered pockets. Lovleh’. 

2 Insertable Main compartments

This is where the real magic happens. You can choose between 2 main compartments to have in your Nomatic Messenger Bag. Both are insertable. Both are removable. Abrah-ka-fucking-dabrah. 

The first insert is an admin panel. It’s mainly a document holder and features a securing strap to stop your files and blueprints spilling out, a large elastic pocket plus an additional two smaller pockets.

It’s ideal for documents and books, with space for a kindle, earbuds and a USB pack as well. Honestly this is the perfect layout for a student, professor or office worker.

The other main compartment is the compartments panel and it’s akin to an organizational cube system with adjustable panels. 

If you want to carry something like a camera with several different lenses this is absolutely ideal – or perhaps several external hard drives, binoculars or even a first aid kit. Hell, it even works great for a mighty lunch.

Removable Magnetic Shoulder Strap

This is a defining feature of the Nomatic Messenger Bag. Both ends attach via Fidlock (magnetic) ends. The spring loaded compression buckle is intuitive and extremely easy to adjust. 

Having a single shoulder strap gives a 360 range of motion allowing for a better range of comfort and fit. Walk around with it long enough and you’ll start to feel like Kevin Costners’ Postman, a literal greek  messenger or some sort of digital medicine man.

It’s hard to accurately describe the sheer satisfaction and feeling of suaveness from carrying the bare working necessities around one’s body this way…but when you’re doing it, you’ll see what we were talking about.

You can also remove the single shoulder strap completely and carry the messenger bag by it’s handle like a briefcase. You’ll look dope. 

Twin Water Bottles

Water equals hydration which leads to success! (m,kay?). Seriously, having an easily reachable water bottle is a game changer.

Well, the messenger bag has two! One on either side. That causes… twice the hydration! Or, you can carry one for a friend.

Or you can drink one, then  pour the entire contents of the second onto the floor in front of your thirty friend as you laugh in their face

The rims of the water bottle holders are magnetic, so when not in use, they’ll snap shut to save space and keep your messenger bag looking sleek and streamlined.

Retractable Key Leash

Pretty self explanatory. It’s a key leash. And it’s retractable. You’ll find it in one of the two elastic pouches either side of mesh zippered pocket in the main compartment. It’s certainly handy for not loosing your keys, nor dropping them as you take them out!

Sunglasses Case

A cute little freebie that comes with all Nomatic Messenger Bags is a removable hard shell protective case for yo’ sunnies.

Being a separate item it doesn’t add to the performance of the Nomatic Messenger Bag, but who doesn’t like free stuff? Cheers Nomatic.  

Cord Pass Throughs

Thank ye gods! The entire setup of the Nomatic Messenger Bag has ergonomic cord pass throughs, connecting every compartment of the bag. What does this mean?

It means you can pass charging cables from one compartment to the next, allowing you to charge your tech via portable batteries, whilst on the go. Superb!

Overall Pros of the Nomatic Messenger Bag

Stands Alone – Unlike, so many other backpacks, the Nomatic Messenger Bag stands on it’s own without falling over like a sad sack of spuds.

This is seriously handy, especially considering the fact that it’s primary function is as an office or lecture hall bag.

It’s easy to dive into to retrieve items…or to shove documents deep within. A simple, yet super handy feature, that frankly we love.

Organised – With the rear compartment specially allocated for holding a laptop and sporting clamshell opening for TSA access, two adjustable main compartment options and a front compartment that drops down like a glove box to give you easy access…

…the layout of the Nomatic Messenger Pack is genius in it’s simplicity. Expertly considered compartmentalization and ease of access, make using it quick, seamless and effortless.

Professional Looking –  This thing looks seriously dapper. It’s almost indistinguishable from a briefcase and even has a handle giving you the option to carry it like one  to. 

The slither of patterned design is a nice touch that makes it stand out and look trendy whilst still keeping a sophisticated overall finish. 

Honestly, we think this is the coolest looking out of all the Nomatic Bags and that’s saying something. 

Digital Nomad friendly  – As we’ve already ranted and raved about, there’s the option to switch between an admin and gear themed main compartment, letting you mould the bag to take whatever kind of tech you had in mind. 

The cord pass throughs are also insanely handy. Being able to charge your tech on the go? Game. Changer. Let’s not forget the twin water bottles for twin hydration, again – on the go. Thank you again Nomatic. 

Finally, we really feel the comfortable and adjustable single shoulder strap is the perfect way to carry the kind of packing list for which the nomatic messenger bag is designed to take. It’s light, convenient and ergonomic.

Overall Cons of the Nomatic Messenger Bag

The forces of creation in their infinite wisdom flung us down upon a turbulent world seeping with trials and tribulations, riddled with imperfections.

Nothing is easy, nothing is perfect and that’s just the nature of the reality in which we dwell. The same goes for bags.

We wanted to be as critical of the nomatic messenger bag as we possibly could. Like some kind of spiteful…bag…bully. So here’s our attempt at tear it it a new pocket hole. 

Laptop Strap feels a little too long – When I squeezed my macbook pro 15 into the laptop compartment, I felt that the strap was a little too slack.

Nothing dire happened, the laptop didn’t come flying out like a bat from hell, but it did feel like it could have been shorter to assure maximum secureness. Better luck next time Nomatic. 

Magnetic Buckles can twist – This is a side effect of them being able to spin 360 degrees. It makes them great for comfort but prone to twisting.

However, it’s easy to get used to and once you know how to disentangle them, really not a huge hindrance.

Compartments panel could use a lid – Sure, you zip up the bag to stop anything falling out, but because it’s likely the compartments panel is going to be storing expensive stuff like camera equipment, I’d personally like to see a small lid that goes over each of the cubes. 

It’d just set my jittery soul at ease a little. Gasp! What was that!? 

Final Verdict:

We love the Nomatic Messenger Bag! We seriously do. Truth be told, when we heard of the idea of a nomatic product, whittled away for single day use; after our love affair with the nomatic travel bags, we were a little skeptical.

But now we’ve had the chance to utilise and review the nomatic messenger bag we see it for the beauty it is:

The holy grail for anyone looking for the perfect day bag to carry around their admin tech in with customisable storage options for additional gear.

If you’ve stayed with us this far, you’ll know all the reasons why and whether it’s right or not for you. If the Nomatic Messenger bag is for you, go bag yourself one sooner, rather than later!

We’ve observed stocks for this product selling out at almost record speed, meaning prices are quite likely to skyrocket in the not too distant future. 

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Written by Alex Hatton

Alex is a full time Digital Nomad and the Founder of the world's greatest Scuba Diving site - DivingSquad.com! Connect with Alex Hatton -