I was moving from Chicago to Arizona and just needed a bit more space for my stuff. I could ship what wouldn't fit into my Ford Focus, but last time I did that for a Chicago to LA move, it was about $250. So I researched my other options and chose the Roof Bag. Since I plan on moving multiple times in the future and could use it over and over again and I did not have a roof rack, it was a good fit. Newbie note here, since the strap will be over my head during drive time, I took a string and approximated where the strap would be and made sure my head did not hit it. It didn't, but for a taller person, you may want to measure first.
It came super quick and the final bill was $133.83. I was surprised at how small the box was:
I opened it up and did an inventory and all bits and pieces were there. After reading all the reviews, on the web site and Amazon, I purchased the 11 cu ft 100% waterproof roofbag in black, the 3 duffle bags, the protective mat and the padlock.
Movimg day came, I put the mat and bag on my car and started loading the duffles. Newbie note here, I thought only the back of the bag unzipped, so shoving the duffles in was hard. After fiddling with it for 15 minutes, I discovered it unzipped all the way around 3 sides, opens up like a clamshell. DOH. Much easier to load that way. Newbie note here, do not pack heavy stuff in the duffles, makes it easier for one person to lift. Stick with clothes, blankets, pillows, etc. Ready to hit the road!
My first day was a doozy, I drove through a Nebraska tornado and ended up in a Hilton in Kearney, NE. It poured all night long and to my dismay, the straps wicked in the rain and some items got wet in the car. But nothing got wet in the bag. Newbie note here, the directions and reviews say if you are parking and it's raining, unbuckle the straps and tuck them under the bag, don't leave them strapped through the car. Lesson learned and problem solved, next time it rains, undo the straps and tuck them under the bag.
I was a little concerned about theft, so I made sure to park by my hotel window. There is a little padlock for the zipper. But, there was nothing really, really valuable in the bags, so I didn't stress too much. You can unzip the roof bag and carry the duffles into your hotel room if you are really worried about it.
The next day was bright and sunny and I hit the road. I did notice my roofbag was all scrunched down:
I unstrapped the front, lifted the front of the bag (where I had some heavy stuff, lesson learned), repositioned the mat and bag on top of it. After eyeballing it from every angle, it looked like it could have been filled more and in the front, making it more aerodynamic, especially where the front strap cinches. Newbie note here, next time fill the front of the bag with more stuff.
Stayed at the historic Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, CO that night, no rain, all good. Hit the road the next day for Sedona. Got my new keys and unloaded my car. Unzipped the bag and removed the 3 duffles. Unbuckled the straps, folded up the bag (ewww, bugs on the front of the bag, will deal with that later) and stored everything in my trunk. Easy.
The roof bag is a great travel storage solution for a very reasonable price. I looked at adding roof racks and carriers to my car and it got up to over $1000. I love that I can use it for future moves, road trips, camping trips and more. The quality of the bag and straps are top notch, from the material to the sewing, stitching and zippers. I look forward to using it again and again.
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