Alternate title: Ogio Monster Travel Bag Review
When it comes to the design and functionality of golf bags, backpacks and many other types of sporting bags, Ogio is arguably the most creative, progressive and hip company. I own several Ogio golf bags and I’ve been thrilled with the style, features and durability they all possess.
No more soft travel bags for me
As my blogging and golf web endeavors grow and I do more and more course reviews, my need for a good golf travel bag has become imperative. A couple of years ago Delta Airlines destroyed one of my golf bags. When I tried to make my claim to get them to reimburse me for the damages Delta refused to pay, sighting new airline policies that they weren’t covering damages to golf clubs anymore. I fought Delta and actually won because their new policy didn’t spell out that damage to golf bags wasn’t covered.
At that point I realized how expensive a mishap at the airline baggage center could be:
$600 worth of wedges
and a priceless putter.
If an airline were to trash my entire set of clubs I could be looking at close to a $3500.00 hit, not to mention the inconvenience of assembling a set that has taken me 2 years to put together. Given those thoughts I knew I’d used a soft golf bag for air travel for the last time. It was time to protect that $3K+ investment.
The Monsta ..er Monster
The Ogio Monster is Ogio’s mother ship of travel bags. The monster can easily house a tour bag. The English translation for “tour bag” is “really really big bag.” If you had a couple of small carry bags the monster could easily carry them both, great for times when two golfers travel together. In my case, my Monster serves as my golf travel bag and my suitcase. I pack all my travel clothes, toiletries and whatever else I bring right in the bag. The Monster is the only checked bag I bring on golf trips. On my latest trip I packed 7 days worth of clothes along with all my golf gear.
The exterior of the Ogio Monster is made of very tough fabric (available in 3 colors), with a hard bottom and back section which Ogio calls the “sled.” The sled is the backbone of the bag and has two great travel wheels for carting it around the airport or train station. If you’re like me, the wheels are also great for bringing it along as you walk the streets of Manhattan. Heck I even took my Monster on the subway in New York City. I must have looked quite odd to the NYC locals on their way to work. They were all bundled up in long pants, jackets and scarves. I was wearing an all black golf outfit with shorts and a short sleeve shirt, standing side by side with my huge Monster bag next to me riding along like it was just another passenger.
The sled also has two rails (thus the “sled part”) on the back which allow you to easily slide the Monster up or down stairs, curbs and bumps.
There are two sets of two large pockets on each side of the Monster. Each one of these four pockets is easily capable of holding clothing items, golf shoes or even a full box of golf balls.
Once your bag is packed there are three exterior straps which allow you to tighten down the load, providing even more protection for the contents.
The interior of the Monster is very spacious and has straps which allow you to secure the inside load. If your bag is not fully packed, your golf bag could really shift around inside without the straps. Having the clubs or contents secured inside the bag provides even more protection against damage.
On my last trip to the East Coast I was easily able to pack my golf bag, golf shoes, a week’s worth of clothes, toiletries, leather jacket, sweatshirt and camera bag inside the monster. I still had plenty of room for more items on the outside pockets if I needed it!
When not in use the Monster folds in half for easy storage.
In this section of my reviews I try to find some areas of improvement or point out some problems I have. I really have nothing bad to say about the Monster other than be careful with it. I packed 72 pounds of “stuff” into my Monster. When you’re loading it into the car or lifting the bag you could not only damage the car but perhaps your back. You wouldn’t want to throw your back out while loading your clubs for a golf trip!
The Ogio Monster is the Hummer of golf travel bags, only it gets much better mileage. It’s big, beefy, indestructible and thoughtfully designed. The Monster eats other wimpy golf travel bags for breakfast.
With the kind of money golfers spend these days on equipment, protecting their investment is imperative. Protecting thousands of dollars worth of equipment is easily worth the $230 price of an Ogio Monster.
I love the pics of the bag standing around in various places. Looks like it traveled by itsef. Does it have a conscience?
I’m surprised you were never stopped and searched when geting on the subway!
Come to think of it Cal, that’s a really good point. Hmm. Not cool.
Thanks Tony for the tip on Ogio, I have been looking to replace my beat up Samsonite travel bag for a while now.
PS. Excellent shot of the bag waiting for the train at Penn Station.
You say “no more soft travel bags for me” at the beginning, but isn’t the Monster a soft travel bag? I’d agree, though, that the Monster is very nice with a lot of thought put into it.
To me, the best solution is a hybrid bag, with hard plastic protecting the club heads and soft, foldable fabric for the rest. They’re easy to wheel around the airport and easily go into a closet unlike a true hard case, but they’ll still take a pounding.
Golfman, by “soft” I meant those frail bags which have no plastic or metal frame or support at all.