Gura Gear Kiboko City Classic 18L+

Slight variations to the award winning bag by Gura Gear makes this an ideal bag for creators.

Not too long ago I reviewed Gura Gear’s Kiboko City Commuter 18L+ camera bag. You can read that review over here.

That award-winning bag had so many convenient features it was hard to think of even trying to improve on it. But Gura Gear recently came out with a variation to the bag—the Kiboko City Classic 18L+—that just might make this Kiboko a little more desirable for some photographers on the go.

The Gura Gear Kiboko City Classic 18L+ was provided to me for review purposes, but the opinions in this blog post and video are my own. This post and video are not sponsored by Gura Gear.

At first look the changes that were made to the Kiboko City Classic 18L+ may not be entirely evident but upon closer inspection there are a few notable differences.

Gura Gear Kiboko City Commuter 18L+ (left) and the Kiboko City Classic 18L+ (right).

Before I get into these differences though, if you’re curious about the interior, build quality, performance, and accessories of the Kiboko City Commuter 18L+ bag, you can head over to this blog post. For the most part, these elements are all the same with the Kiboko City Classic 18L+ with the exception of the changes mentioned below.

Kiboko City Commuter 18L+ vs. Kiboko City Classic 18L+

Gura Gear refers to this Kiboko City Classic 18L+ as an improvement to the Kiboko City Commuter 18L+ but I would more regard it as a variation to the original award-winning bag, allowing the user to choose based on their preferences.

In this section I’ll list the most prominent changes made to the City Classic bag, and discuss whether I like it or not.

Roll top no more

Kiboko City Commuter 18L+

The Kiboko City Commuter 18L+ had a roll top design allowing for an extended amount of storage space depending on your needs. I really liked this aspect of the bag as it allowed you to customize the size based on your needs.

Granted the Fidlock magnets were not always easy to handle at times as the magnets stuck to other things when on the loose, but I still felt the ability to choose whether to stuff the top with clothing or whatnot was a great advantage to this bag.

Kiboko City Classic 18L+

The Kiboko City Classic 18L+ eliminates the roll top design in favour of a hard top that zips up. The top is moulded in a way that it is quite spacious up there.

This hard top design might be more favourable for those who want a completely sealed compartment to guarantee no water, dust, or sand will get in. This is the advantage of having a zippered compartment that is sealed.

Since the top is now hard and doesn’t expand, I’m not sure why the name of the bag still has the + on it. I thought the + meant the capacity of the bag is 18L plus however much depending on how it’s rolled up.

Top compartment interior

One of the advantages of the hard top of the Kiboko City Classic 18L+ is that now it has additional pockets for more organization of your gear. It’s a small thing but is very helpful. They could have easily left the top as a cover with no additional functions, but I appreciate that there’s more space to store the little things.

There is also no more Fidlock straps which alleviates one of the problems I had with the Kiboko City Commuter, so that is another advantage to the hard top version.

Side opening no more

Kiboko City Commuter 18L+

The Kiboko City Commuter had a side access door that let you gain access to the inside. This side access was great as it allowed you to easily take your camera out just by the swing of the bag from the side to the front.

It was super convenient and I used it a lot. The inside of the side compartment also had a small pocket that was perfect to put your lens cap in.

Kiboko City Classic 18L+

The Kiboko City Classic eliminates the side access and adds another magnetic side pocket along with a strap on the top, mirroring what is on the other side.

I can see this being quite useful as I always liked to put my Peak Design Travel Tripod in the pocket side. I can now put a water bottle on the other side pocket.

Does the ability to carry a water bottle weigh more than having quick access to the inside of the bag? Only you can answer that question!

Interior quick access zipper

The Kiboko City Classic 18L+ adds an interior zipper access to the top compartment. This adds a more convenient method to get to your gear when you have the main compartment open. This also allows you to get access to the gear without having to reorient the bag to open the top compartment—a nice touch.

Sternum strap

The sternum strap on the Kiboko City Commuter 18L+ was always tough to move up or down. Although this isn’t something I’d change on a regular basis it was still rather hard to adjust when needed. Gura Gear noticed this and changed the design of the sternum strap so that it is much easier to move and adjust. The Fidlock design is still there for easy one-handed unlocking.

The sternum strap now glides seamlessly on a flat fabric rather than on a rounded rail like on the City Commuter 18L+.


The Kiboko City Classic 18L+ is perfect for those shorter trips or day trips into the city. It’s not a pack that I would use solely for a multi-day adventure or vacation. However, I have used the Kiboko City Commuter in conjunction with the Kiboko 2.0 30L+ to supplement the main gear I had in there.

The Kiboko City Classic 18L+ does not fit a camera with grip. The added depth of the laptop pocket will interfere with the added height of the gripped camera.

The interior of the Kiboko City bags are very similar with the exception of the new zipper giving direct access to the top compartment from the interior of the bag.

The Kiboko City Classic 18L+ surprisingly fits my Nikon Z 180-600mm f/5.6-6.3, although I did need to squeeze the top compartment a little bit to make this happen. Along with my Nikon Z 8, this might actually work as a quick way to go birding to my neighbourhood park!

Nikkor Z 70-200mm f/2.8 S
Nikkor Z 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 S
Nikkor Z 180-600mm f/5.6-6.3

It’s been a great companion for those short day trips into the city where I carry just one body and perhaps one or two lenses. Then I put in a light jacket or snacks in the top compartment with small accessories in the other pockets.

Final thoughts

The Gura Gear Kiboko City Classic 18L+ is a variation to the already highly praised Kiboko City Commuter 18L+. Whether you would classify it as an upgrade to the original bag is something I would question since the changes made to it might be favoured to some and not to others. It’s all personal preference whether you like the roll top or hard top versions. And the fact that Gura Gear offers this as a choice to its customers means we as consumers ultimately win.

Whether you choose the Kiboko City Classic or the City Commuter, you can’t go wrong with a solidly built and very functional bag that offers plenty of customization and storage options.


Watch my YouTube review! Don’t forget to like, comment, share, subscribe, and hit that notification button! (Did I forget anything?)

Do you have a Gura Gear bag? Do you have this Kiboko City Commuter 18L+ or Kiboko City Classic 18L+? Let me know what you think of it in the comments below!

If you have any questions, feel free to let me know.

Thanks for reading.

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