MAGELLAN Travel Vest Review

The 30,000 foot overview:

The Magellan light weight travel vest is made of windproof, soft touch Supplex® fabric, meant to be fast-drying, stain-resistant and moisture wicking—keeping you cool, calm and stylish when you are out-and-about on your travels.
You’ll feel like a Whippet in a windstorm with this thing on your back– and if you don’t know what that means, I’m sure this review will clear the air.

Here’s what’s under the hood of the Magellan Travel Vest

Claim to fame: This is an “ultra-light” vest that is meant to keep your documents, passport, wallet and small carry-along items with you while you travel.  Its light weight nylon fabric makes it a quick-drying, easy-packing vest that lets you carry a few light items with you on your journey.

Fabric: Light weight 100% nylon Supplex ® material that has a “windbreaker” feel to it, and a mesh lining for ventilation, and to speed up wicking and drying.

Colors: Olive, Terra Cotta, Light Taupe, Black, Dark Brown

: You’ll find a wide range of unisex sizes for men and women, ranging from XS-2XL.

Care instructions: The Magellan is meant to be washed separately, by hand or machine-washed on gentle. Since it’s so light, this vest is designed to line dry. No bleach and no high heat drying. The manufacturer says you can touch use a cool iron if you want to smooth out any wrinkles after washing, but I wouldn’t bother, unless you’re picky like that.

Fabric weight:  Weighing in at only eight ounces, this vest is the lightest of the bunch. It feels like a cloud drifting on your shoulders when it’s not loaded with gear. This would be a good vest weight if you travel in the tropics or similarly hot conditions–provided you don’t have to carry a lot of gear with you.

If the Tilley VOMP is the heavyweight travel vest contender, then the Magellan is in the featherweight division.

Pocket types and number:  8 pockets in total

Here’s how Magellan vest lays out its 8 pockets design:

  • Five exterior pockets to keep your cell phone, and other items, close at hand
  • Three interior pockets– including one that zips shut– to hold your money, and personal items

Organization rating: I’d give this vest a 7 out of a possible 10 points, for organization. This vest shines if you want to stay organized and travel light. The number of pockets is limited, so you’ll only want to carry your essential and personal items with you with the Magellan travel vest.

None of the Magellan’s pockets will handle an iPad or similarly sized electronic items, so if you plan on bringing larger electronics with you, this vest would not be my first recommendation to you.

What this vest says about you:  This vest doesn’t scream “tourist”, so you can likely slip along on your travels without standing out like a sore thumb. I would wear this vest if I was taking a hike, or going around sight-seeing, and wanted to take a minimal amount of things with me—like my keys, wallet, camera, passport or journal. If the weather turns chilly, though, you’d better have another layer on hand since this vest is not insulated.

Blimp factor: No worries here. The vest itself is a slim fit and when empty, it is “windbreaker-light”. Even fully loaded, the vest maintains a slim profile if you are carrying small items. Just remember, you won’t be able to carry too many gadgets at any given time in this vest.

Who’s got your back:  Magellan offers a product-wide guarantee that covers anything that makes you unhappy with your purchase. As they say, “If for any reason, at any time, you are not completely happy with your purchase, let us know. We’ll make it right or cheerfully refund the full purchase price of the product.”  Enough said.

What Magellan wants you to know about their vest:  It has eight pockets. The simple V-neck style makes this vest is a good layer to wear over a shirt, blouse or light sweater. With a snap-tab closure across the front, you can opt for zipping or snapping the vest closed, as you see fit.

Thumbs up: Light, packable, sleek and stylish. The Supplex ® fabric makes it windproof, fast-drying and a good option to stuff into your backpack or travel bag.

Thumbs down:  Slightly limited storage, with only eight pockets—you won’t be able to bring your larger electronics (think iPad® or Kindle®) with you. If you are looking for a warm vest, this vest will only work for you if you wear it over a base layer of warmer clothing, since it has no added insulation. The Magellan travel vest would be a good choice if you are traveling in tropical areas.

Your takeaway points—At $55 USD, the Magellan is what I consider an “entry level” travel vest. It has enough pockets to be convenient for organizing your travel basics—but it may be inconvenient for you if you are looking to carry many gadgets or larger items. If you are a gadget-lover, then take a close look at the SCOTTeVEST, as a better option.

Windproof, lightweight, and packable—this is a good vest for sleek traveling without looking bulky, or making you stand out as a tourist.

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