Seven Questions: Drifter Bags

In many ways, the bag’s from Ohio’s Drifter are a great metaphor for the brand itself. Firstly, they last. Proudly made in the USA from an array of high quality fabrics and finishings, the packs, like the 35+ year old company, can stand the test of time. Secondly, they offer great value. With 90% of the styles priced at under $90 despite their top shelf materials and construction, the bags, like the brand, give an incredible bang for your buck. Thirdly, they cover every base. The bags, like the label, aren’t confined to a single style or genre; there are literally dozens of models to choose from (hundreds when you factor in the color / fabric options), and just about every taste is accounted for. Added up, both the bags and the brand are easy things to like.

Difter’s President, Tony Nguyen, recently took some time out to answer a few questions through email. Here’s what he had to say.

Well Spent: Give us the Drifter origin story.
Tony Nguyen: Drifter Sport & Travel Bags began as a parachute rigging business in 1977. Our customers, skydivers, demanded the highest quality materials and workmanship – their lives depended on it! We, at Drifter, believe American consumers deserve the same high quality products designed for everyday use. Each Drifter bag is made of fabric, webbing, binding tape and thread that meet our tough standards for strength and durability. Our entire product line is handcrafted in the United States by workers who take pride in knowing that their craftsmanship is backed by a lifetime warranty. Drifter’s sky high quality makes “Made in the USA” synonymous with the best!

The American garment industry has changed dramatically over the last 35 years. How has Drifter been able to survive?
In order to survive in today’s market, we felt that keeping our profit margin to a minimum was the best way to compete.

In addition to recently relaunching the Drifter website, you’ve also added a slew of new products to the collection. Did you work with anyone on the designs, or were they all done in-house?
I collaborated with our largest Asian distributor on the designs. They had ideas and input, I designed the bags and refined them until they met our high standards.

How is Drifter able to maintain such reasonable prices, despite being made in the USA and from such high quality materials?
Like I mentioned earlier, our profit margin is at a minimum.

Drifter has built-up a large international following over the last few years. Were you surprised by this? Has that had any effect on how the brand has evolved?
Now a days, more people are interested in products that are made in the US. We do foreign trade shows and advertise in foreign magazines.

You recently collaborated with Fair Ends. Are there any other brands you’re working?
We have collaborated with Honda, Egomark, and Only NY, just to name a few.

What would you say to someone who’s still on the fence about buying from Drifter.
I would be happy to give a prospective buyer contact information for some of our customers who are very satisfied with our product.

For price and purchase info, visit Drifter Bags.

  • Bryce

    This company looks awesome!

  • dxr

    I bought a duffle from them a couple of years ago and it has held up very well. Although the prices and polish were lower then, the prices are really are low for what you get.

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  • yeh

    Company produces overseas and claims “made in the USA”, they’re getting away with it as no one’s investigated.

    • Brad

      @Yeh That’s a pretty big accusation. Where are you getting your info that Drifter is made overseas?