Aer City Sling Review | Urban Travel Sling Bag With A Clever Design & Versatile Organization


– The Aer City Sling is
a small, 2.4 liter sling that can also be worn as a waist pack. I’m Tom, the founder of Pack Hacker, where we use our expertise
and real world experience to provide practical
resources and honest opinions, guiding you towards smarter travel. So if you’re new to the
channel, consider subscribing. I’ve personally been
testing the Aer City Sling for the last three weeks in Detroit, San Francisco and Los Angeles. Let’s dive into every detail of this bag. And one more thing before we dive in, if you want to learn a little
bit more about this sling as well as see the best buying options, head over to PackHacker.com. Link in the description below. Let’s jump in. (upbeat music) We’ve reviewed a ton of other Aer products at Pack Hacker and the
aesthetic of the City Sling fits right in. The City Sling originates from
a very popular collaboration Aer did with Oshman’s in Japan. So for a while it was an
exclusive just to Japan but it’s been brought into the U.S. market due to the popularity of the design. I had this sling over
at our first official Pack Hacker meetup in San Francisco. We had over fifteen people show up on such a short three-day notice. So thanks to everybody who came but I wanted to bring this up because we were talking a lot about Aer and the overall aesthetic at that meetup. Even though most of Aer’s bags are black, it’s usually easy to tell that it’s Aer. I think it’s a combination
of the 1680D Ballistic Nylon that they have, as well
as these really big, fat, weather-resistant YKK AquaGuard zippers, that they kind of use as
an aesthetic design element as well as a functional one. We liked the look of
this sling but we decided to poll our Instagram audience and get their thoughts on it as well. Here are the results. At the time of this review, there are two different colorways. There is the black that we have here and the gray as well. Black seems to be the most popular since it’s currently
sold out at the moment. From a branding perspective, there is a very small Aer logo tag, going on right below the
compression strap here. So very low profile. We like that Aer does that. They keep everything very subdued and their logo doesn’t interfere too much with the greater look of the sling. To wrap up the rest of the
materials on this sling, we have that 1680D Ballistic Cordura Nylon on the exterior. We have Japanese YKK zippers. Some of them are AquaGuard”and
some are reverse coil. To wrap this up, we have
Duraflex plastic hardware as the buckle on the sling as well as the compression
adjusters on the sides. Let’s check out the
exterior of this sling, starting with the sling strap. First of all there is a
massive Duraflex buckle on the front here, and then
we have strap adjusters on each side, held down by elastic. We’ve seen a very similar
design on the CODEOFBELL X-POD. And with that, one thing to note is that if you are flipping this sling from your back to your front often, these elastic keepers can
start to slide around a bit and creep, and then you
get a little bit more of that excess strap. If you’re constantly kind of pulling this sling from your front to your back. One other note on the big
buckle is that if you’re gonna go Pack Hacker style and wear a larger bag on the
back and a sling on the front, this big buckle can kind
of get in the way between your back and the bag. This was hardly noticeable but I could see it being a
little bit more noticeable if you’re going with a bigger
bag, around forty liters. If you have a smaller frame
you can also tighten the buckle completely to one side,
leave the other one loose to kind of position this a little bit more to the side to give
yourself some more room. Now, this isn’t really a con of the sling it’s more of just a usage note if you wanna use the sling in this way. One other benefit to a
sling strap like this, that’s anchored a little
bit more towards the middle, is that you can wear it
like a hip belt, bum bag, fanny pack, whatever you
want to call it, as well. Now, the big difference
between the Aer City Sling and the Aer Day Sling 2,
is that the Aer Day Sling is really designed to be a sling. So there’s one strap
that’s kind of anchored at the top here and one on the side. And you can’t really wear that
as a fanny pack or a hip bag or a hip belt, whatever
you want to call it. However, with the Aer City
Sling, you totally can. So if you want to see a
more detailed comparison on those two slings, head over
and watch our Quick Hit video over on our other YouTube
channel, Pack Hacker Quick Hits. On each side of these straps we have a compression cinch going on. This design allows you
to control the profile of the sling a little bit
more, as well as the capacity that’s inside of the main
compartment of the sling. If you want more room
in the main compartment, you can leave these loose. If you want to keep a lower
profile, tighten them up. Now, generally we think
this works very well however we wish Aer
maybe would have included a little bit of strap management
for this little guy here. If you don’t have the sling
exactly centered on your back while you’re wearing this
thing, these can start to rub against the back of your arms as you’re walking around. This is such a minor gripe but hey, that’s why we make these videos. And lastly, the zippers
are a little bit jangly. I’ve seen some other people
cut these zippers off and add their own zipper
pulls that are silent, so you can definitely do
that if that bothers you. You’ll definitely hear this
as you’re walking around, especially if you’re in a more quiet area. Alright, so that was a lot
of notes on the exterior. Generally, this thing
is solid on the exterior and carries very
comfortably but of course, we’re just going to bring
up those minor notes. Let’s check out all the
pockets and organization going on in this bag, starting with the secure
pocket on the back. Generally this is the most secure pocket on the exterior of the
sling, especially since it’s against your body
while you’re wearing it. Aer has also opted for a
smaller reverse coil YKK zipper that is is somewhat hide-able
by the excess fabric and the welts allowing you
to tuck away the zipper fully behind it when you want to keep a little bit
more of a low profile. The pocket will fit a plus
sized iPhone comfortably and it’s easy to take
in and out at an angle. The giant YKK AquaGuard zipper on the front opens right up, kind of like a cute little duffel bag. We dig the way this
front pocket is combined. The pocket space goes
all the way to the edges, even to where this fabric starts to come into the compression strap. So there is a lot of space
going on in this pocket. Within this zipper pocket
there is a plastic key clip to attach your keys to. Depending on how you have
this sling configured, you can unlock a door while keeping the keys
attached to your sling. I’m 6’2 and when I wore the
sling a little bit more loosely, I just crouched down a little bit to get access to the door. I do like that I can always keep my keys attached to the sling. That way I know when I leave
the house, just grab the sling, everything I need is inside. Generally, this pocket has
been great to dump things into. So we have a battery bank, excess cords, and other small items inside. We have even found that we can fit a Patagonia Storm
Racer rainshell jacket, size medium, on the inside as well. And it’s great to just have that rainshell if you are expecting any rain. Again, you’re kind of
maxing out this pocket if you put that jacket
in there but it does fit. Moving on to the main
pocket of this sling, this is the expandable part and yes, it does fit a Nintendo Switch. On the back side of the sling, the part you wear against your body, we have a small minor pocket that’s good for some
field notes and a pen. Or a passport. And then there’s ample space in the middle for additional items. This is the main area that
compresses and uncompresses. On the other side of that we
have two liner divider pockets with some elasticity at the top. Now it doesn’t really
hold items super secure, if you want to see a sling with a lot of stretch on the interior, check out the Heimplanet Transit Line Sling Pocket. That thing will basically
grab whatever you need due to the high elasticity in the pockets, as well as the mesh design. Behind those two divider pockets, there is a sneaky zippered pocket as well. This is great for your
passport or extra cash. Anything that you really
want to keep secure on the interior of the sling. Also as a little pro tip with this sling, if you have taller items in
those two divider pockets, it can kind of block access
to that zippered compartment, making things even more
secure inside the sling. With a trip to San Francisco
and Los Angeles from Detroit this thing has seen a lot of
mileage, including four flights over the three weeks of testing and using it nearly everyday. There is a wide variety of options for organization in this
sling and I really enjoyed fiddling around with it
and finding the system that works best for me. The compressed and uncompressed states are even a little bit more handy
than we originally thought. One note on this, if you want
to see a sling that does this in kind of an automatic way, check out the Bellroy Sling that has a self-compressing feature. And lastly, one usage note
with the Aer City Sling is that if you have this
thing fully packed out and uncompressed it can get a
little cube-y and rectangular. Now, when it’s in this state and you have it behind your back, it can be a little bit hard
to tell which way is up. This strap can kind of start
to twist around a little bit and sometimes you can get it on your back on the wrong way. Again, this is a minor
note, and you’re only gonna run into it if you have this thing fully packed out with a ton of heavy and more rectangular gear. So to wrap this thing up
with some pros and cons, starting with the pros. There is some versatile organization in such a small package. The City Sling has a streamlined
look and intuitive feel. We think this is really excellent size and form for a sling as well. It’s not too small,
but also not too bulky. On to some of the cons. The sling can be unwieldy
in a fully expanded state, fully loaded with heavy,
more rectangular gear. You’ll definitely hear
the jingly-jangly zippers when you’re walking around, especially in a quieter area. The elastic strap keepers can move around a bit when flipping the sling from
the front to your back often. Aer is not new to creating excellent gear and we’ve seen far more
hits from them than misses. The City Sling is no exception and we gladly welcome it
into the list of greats. Between the clever design of this sling and the versatile organization, all while keeping a low profile, there are many ways to carry
and organize the City Sling. If you like big functionality
in a small package, while maintaining a
streamlined look and feel, the City Sling could be
a solid choice for you. So there you have it, our
review of the Aer City Sling. We would love to hear what you think in the comments below about this sling. Thanks for keeping it here at Pack Hacker, your guide to smarter travel. We’ll see you in the next video.

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