Best Luxury Baby Carrier Backpack 2018

Osprey Poco AG Premium Review

The Osprey Poco AG Premium is a class act. This well-made and innovatively designed carrier boasts seemingly endless extra features and each one is better and more useful than the last. The ride (for parent and child) is flawless and it looks the bee's knees, too.

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Pros

  • Packed full of features
  • Removable sunshade/rain cover
  • Easy to assemble
  • On-the-fly adjustable
  • Lots of storage
  • Fold-away design for easy storage

Cons

  • Heavy at 4.1kg
  • Extra cost for water reservoir

Key features of the Osprey Poco AG Premium

  • Airflow mesh system
  • In-built sunshade with SPF 50 rating
  • Removable and washable drool pad
  • Removable 11-litre daypack
  • Integrated and removable mirror
  • Adjustable child’s safety harness, seat and foot stirrups
  • Sternum strap with emergency whistle
  • Available in Ivy, Black and Seaside Blue

How big is the child carrier backpack?

  • Suitable from 6 months maximum weight is 22kg
  • 4.1 kg
  • 73cm (L) x 38cm (W) x 43cm (D)
  • RRP: £320

The Osprey Poco AG Premium stands out for all the right reasons. It looks great and works even better. The price tag might be intimidating but you want for absolutely nothing with this carrier – sunshade, rain cover, mirror, day pack, removable and washable drool pad are all included.

The Osprey has more storage than any other carrier we tested and could not be more comfortable for child or parent. It’s the best carrier for longer treks and provides the smoothest ride in all terrains.

Is is easy to assemble?

The Osprey Poco AG Premium is very much out-of-the-box ready. Instructions are clear and easy to follow and there’s plenty of information online should you need it.

The clever fit-on-the-fly system is excellent for making easy adjustments while out and about. The intuitive design means you can find the right fit for the wearer’s height and/or weight. Similarly, shoulder straps are easily adjusted with minimum fuss. Win. It’ll take you no time at all to get the carrier to meet your specification.

Is the carrier safe?

The Osprey Poco AG is designed to provide optimum comfort and safety for parents and children. The backpack itself is put together with high-quality mesh that breathes – this is great for longer walks when you get hot and sweaty. There’s nothing worse than wearing a bag that doesn’t allow the heat to escape.

The hard shell that surrounds your child folds down to make the carrier more portable and feels reassuringly secure. The one-piece padded shoulder straps for the child – with elasticated material – also feel like a nicely-finished element. Similarly, the stirrups don’t appear to have been put on as an afterthought and are actually well designed and sturdy – the same cannot be said for all the models we tested.

The carrier padding is top-notch. Our tester’s son had no problem dozing off on longer walks, thanks to the rear head-support keeping him cocooned at all times, without being stifling.

All the harnesses and belts held up against our robust testing. Adult attempts to break them were unsuccessful and there was nowhere for big (or little) fingers to get trapped.

How good was it day to day?

The sunshade is excellent. Our tester didn’t have any use for the rain cover in the elements – due to a spell of unseasonably dry weather – but he did take a hosepipe to it and was mightily impressed.

All of the straps and harnesses for the adult are great and easy to move about for the perfect fit. The seat is equally easy to adjust, depending on the size of your child.

The carrier is innovatively designed to breathe and stretch with your journey. The carrier fabric is made from an airflow mesh system, which means the fabric breathes and doesn’t hold in the heat. The side pockets, as well as the pockets on the harness, are also made from a stretchy fabric, meaning you can jam all sort of provisions in the carrier. Clever touches like the scratch-free side pocket to hold your sunglasses or electronics and the removable washable drool pad are really welcome.

There’s even an emergency whistle on the sternum strap should you come into difficulty. Hopefully that won’t be the case but you’re covered for all scenarios here.

Initially, our tester was sceptical about the size of the cockpit and didn’t think his son would enjoy the fit. He was mistaken and immediately saw how comfortable his child was in the carrier – they tell you if they’re not.

The carrier hip belt features Osprey’s fit-on-the-fly adjustment technology – essentially, it can be altered when you’re moving – and there are lots of options for a comfortable and secure fit. To alter, adjust the stiff fabric panels with the graduated markings that slide in and out of sleeves on the belt. The shoulder straps are similarly easy to adjust and offer great range for different wearers.

Our tester walked up a mountain for 45 minutes and said the carrier was still relatively comfortable, despite some sharp gradients and strenuous efforts. This is when the air flow in the carrier is magic – it would have been sweat city otherwise!

Are there any extras?

The Poco has a detachable 11-litre backpack, which, even on its own, is a nice piece of kit rather than a flimsy add-on.

How does it look?

It is undoubtedly the most premium-looking carrier we tested. It’s stylish and, most importantly when considering the cost, incredibly well made.

Is there any storage?

The Poco has masses of space for storage and includes Osprey’s hydration system, too, if needed. If you’re not familiar with this, Osprey carriers have an opening at the top of the back panel for a 1.5l reservoir. It’s not a must by any means, but it’s a nice extra if you want hands-free libation.

Did the child like it?

The Osprey Poco AG Premium was nice and padded in all the right places. Our tester’s little boy was suitably cushioned when he wanted to catch a few Zs on a walk. The child straps were the most comfortable of all those tested and our little tester looked as snug as a bug.

Is it easy to clean?

Wipe-clean fabrics make this carrier a cinch to de-muck after a long hike. It still looked good after a couple of runs in the muddy Lakes in March. The grey colourway is possibly not the best for long wear, though, we’d say.

Is it good value for money?

It’s the most expensive backpack by some way and this has to weigh against it when considering the best carrier for most parents. It is, however the best finish and by far the most comfortable, without any hidden extra costs.

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Awards

  • Best Luxury Baby Carrier Backpack 2018

How we test

We've put hundreds of baby products through our exhaustive testing process, to produce reviews that are accurate, honest and trustworthy. Here's what we did to test baby backpack carriers and find the best of the best.

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