15 Best Travel Backpacks (Review) in 2021

Brad Robinson
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After careful consideration, we’ve assembled this comprehensive review of the 15 best backpacks for travel that we’ve come across in our research.

YETI Panga: bear proof, packable boat

This durable packable boat from YETI can fit in your hand, backpack, or luggage. The YETI Panga measures 51 inches across and 20.5 inches at its widest point, making it ideal for one person or two children.

Other features of the YETI Panga include a self-draining skeg box, adjustable seat, removable center fin, and quick release un-molding seat pad. Surprisingly, in a market dominated by high-tech options like inflatable boats, the Panga is truly the real deal.

At 18.4 pounds it’s slightly on the heavy side for some travelers, but most who have used it find it quite manageable to carry for short distances. YETI even sells accessory straps to help carry it.

Once deflated and folded, the Panga can fit in a backpack or luggage. This makes it an ideal vessel for those who prefer their own boat over rental options, or are embarking on a more strenuous journey where they can’t carry heavy gear.

NameCategoryProduct
SWISSGEAR 1900 ScanSmart Laptop BackpackBest OverallSWISSGEAR 1900 ScanSmart Laptop Backpack
Outlander Ultra Lightweight Packable Water Resistant Travel Hiking Backpack Daypack Handy Foldable Camping Outdoor BackpackBudget PickOutlander Ultra Lightweight Packable Water Resistant Travel Hiking Backpack Daypack Handy Foldable Camping Outdoor Backpack
Osprey Porter 30 Travel BackpackUpgrade PickOsprey Porter 30 Travel Backpack

1. SWISSGEAR 1900 ScanSmart Laptop Backpack

Our rating: 9 / 10

SWISSGEAR 1900 ScanSmart Laptop Backpack

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Pros:

  • Reasonably priced
  • Lightweight
  • Padding at the back
  • Lots of pockets
  • Adjustable shoulder straps

2. Hynes Eagle Travel Backpack 40L Flight Approved Carry on Backpack

Our rating: 9 / 10

Hynes Eagle Travel Backpack 40L Flight Approved Carry on Backpack

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The backpack is made from a military grade heavy duty polyester, and doesn’t feature any straps in the main compartment. The multiple exterior pockets and various straps on this backpack allow you to carry your gear securely.

Features:

This backpacks includes a fleece lined main compartment, a large internal zipped pocket, an internal double pocket which is not fleece lined, a front pocket with organizer and two side pass through pockets. The packet opening is facing forward, large enough to fit in a binder or some other device for work. The backpacks also has two side exterior pockets which are lockable and waterproof that can carry a large water bottle.

3. Osprey Farpoint 40 Men's Travel Backpack

Our rating: 9 / 10

Osprey Farpoint 40 Men's Travel Backpack

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Pros:

  • Free-back design increases comfort
  • Side compression straps make the suitcase compact
  • Waterproof luggage for most international flights
  • Very good carry-on size

Cons:

  • Heavy for some users
  • Fewer pockets

This backpack is great for long-term travelers as it comes with two expandable wheels for easy movement. It also has a retractable handle that makes holding the suitcase easy although it’s a little heavy.

You should also know that this one has numerous pockets for your phones, passport, and other valuables, along with Laundry Compression Straps.

A highly durable suitcase, the Farpoint 40 travel backpack is made of polyester and is quite impenetrable. Moreover, the backpack is designed with a special free-back feature that creates natural ventilation to prevent perspiration.

4. Extra Large Backpack,TSA Friendly Travel Laptop Computer Backpack Gifts

Our rating: 9 / 10

Extra Large Backpack,TSA Friendly Travel Laptop Computer Backpack Gifts

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Pros:

  • Large enough to fit all the necessities without being bulky
  • A lot of space to adjust the size with zippers

After a lot of research, our team came up with the Extra Large Backpack as the best laptop backpack for travel due to its universal compatibility with just about any model laptop. This backpack is large enough to fit a 17-inch laptop and has enough room to carry necessities. However, it is small enough to allow you to carry a jacket, water bottles, or snacks without the bulk that you would normally find with a travel backpack.

This backpack is a large backpack that isn’t too bulky. This is a great feature if you’re carrying a lot of gear and are traveling to a more urban area.

It has some great storage options and has a capacity of 18.5 liters. Its primary compartment is set up to fit a 17-inch laptop. It has a lot of room in this compartment as well as on the inside for books or other gear. There is also additional storage on the outside of the bag area as well.

5. Osprey Farpoint 55 Men's Travel Backpack

Our rating: 9 / 10

Osprey Farpoint 55 Men's Travel Backpack

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Pros:

  • Well made
  • Comfortable to wear with plenty of padding.

Cons:

  • Top loading design not as easy to arrange things.

No matter if you are going on a backpacking trip or a long stay, if you have many things you need to carry, you need a good, sturdy backpack. The Osprey Farpoint 55 travel bag is a top choice for many travelers. This bag has the capacity to haul heavy loads and still be comfortable.

The Farpoint 55 pack is large but not massive. It will swallow a week’s worth of clothes and shoes with much room to spare. This pack weighs just under four pounds when empty. It has a capacity of 55 liters, which is pretty big for a backpack. This large capacity and light weight makes it a particularly good choice for one-bag travel.

Can you fly with this backpack? It is under the allowable size for most airlines, but you can still check with them. If you have a small foldable daypack, you can keep it with you while you fly.

6. Osprey Daylite Daypack

Our rating: 9 / 10

Osprey Daylite Daypack

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Pros:

  • Made from durable fabric
  • Water-repellent coating on the back
  • Internal frame for stability and comfort
  • Highly versatile
  • Easy to stow the bag in the overhead bin
  • Can accommodate 15” laptop
  • Padded hip belt
  • Great customer service
  • Great value for money

Cons:

  • A bit heavy for daily use
  • Not a good fit for some users

This Osprey Daylite daypack receives nothing but positive reviews and a full 5-stars for its versatility, lightness, durability, comfort, and affordability.

This lightweight daypack can accommodate your most prized electronics, as it can fit well an iPad, a full 15” laptop and a little more, thanks to the envelope zip compartment.

This shoulder pack provides padded shoulder straps and a hip belt. It features a water-repellent coating on the back with an internal frame for stability and comfort.

7. Osprey Porter 30 Travel Backpack

Our rating: 9 / 10

Osprey Porter 30 Travel Backpack

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Pros:

  • Great for any type of travel
  • Durable and sturdy
  • Comes with a lifetime guarantee
  • Padded back panel
  • Lightweight
  • Durable zippers
  • Multiple compartments
  • Spacious

Cons:

  • Can be expensive for some
  • Could be heavy for some

It has a lifetime guarantee, which is pretty generous for a backpack. If anything goes wrong with it, even if you can’t find the receipt, you can still claim a replacement.

The Osprey Porter 30 is an upmarket backpack that’s great for taking on an urban adventure. For the most part, it’s made really well and most of its features are comfortable for its users.

The Porter is a rugged but classy backpack made for a variety of uses, from a day trip at an outdoor getaway to an adventure trek in the jungle. It’s made from quality nylon material that’s very rugged, and with water-resistant zippers to help keep your stuff dry.

8. Osprey Porter 46 Travel Backpack

Our rating: 9 / 10

Osprey Porter 46 Travel Backpack

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Pros:

  • Material is resistant to dirt
  • A lot of storage space
  • Adjustable straps

The Osprey Porter 46 Travel Backpack is one of the best travel backpacks because of its excellent build quality. This backpack will hold almost everything you need for a long vacation. You can fit a lot of stuff in the two large compartments on the front and back of this pack.

This backpack also has plenty of space in the side pockets for you to store small items. You can put your tablet or laptop in the front pocket. The Porter 46 is a versatile backpack and you can use it as a regular backpack or a travel backpack.

The Osprey Porter 46 is also a sturdy backpack and it’s a great choice for people who travel frequently. You can fit a lot of stuff in the main compartment. It’s also perfect for commuting when you’re living in a big city.

9. Outlander Ultra Lightweight Packable Water Resistant Travel Hiking Backpack Daypack Handy Foldable Camping Outdoor Backpack

Our rating: 9 / 10

Outlander Ultra Lightweight Packable Water Resistant Travel Hiking Backpack Daypack Handy Foldable Camping Outdoor Backpack

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Pros:

  • Lightweight
  • Looks simple
  • Simple design
  • Lots of colors to choose from
  • Unfolding it is easy enough that it can be used as an origami
  • Comes with a nice shoulder strap.

Cons:

  • Zippers are a bit weak (though it doesn’t break)
  • Price is a bit too pricey for its functions.

The Outlander ultralight packable backpack really lives up to its “ultralight” title, weighing only 1 pound but still able to carry a decent amount of stuff.

This is another simple design that is usable yet looks almost like a simplicity rather than design: just fold it up and put it in your bag.

The Outlander water-resistant backpack is also very compact that it can fit into your palm, making it let you bring a lot of stuff without any problem.

10. WITZMAN Men Travel Backpack Canvas Rucksack Vintage Duffel Bag

Our rating: 8 / 10

WITZMAN Men Travel Backpack Canvas Rucksack Vintage Duffel Bag

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Pros:

  • Multiple pockets to store items
  • Zippers and buckles are sturdy and long-lasting
  • Great use for students

This vintage backpack is made of high-quality canvas in classic black color that will add a vintage ambiance to you. The plaid pattern is also featured in the belt. The canvas is matched with nylon, polyester, and PVC. There is a 1-inch adjustable webbing shoulder straps that are adjustable for 60 inches to 80 inches. The shoulder straps have an additional padding for comfort.

There is a nice small pocket located on the front left side for small items. Inside there are two large compartments; each side will fit a laptop up to 15.4-inches in size.

The small compartment also has a small zipper pocket on one side and mesh pocket on the other side. The laptop compartment also has a pocket located on the right side for a phone and a charger. The bag will also keep your items secure with the lockable zipper. The zipper features an adorable keychain that has the initials of your choice. The high-quality buckles will keep the bag safely closed or conveniently open for quick access.

11. AmazonBasics Carry-On Travel Backpack

Our rating: 8 / 10

AmazonBasics Carry-On Travel Backpack

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This highly rated carry on backpack is as good looking as it is functional. It is built with a rugged, abrasion-resistant bottom panel and a scratch proof zippers for added protection.

This is a bag that was created with travelers in mind. The AmzaonBasics' bag was designed to fit most airline regulations and is the perfect way to take all you need for your next journey wherever that may be.

This backpack is both spacious and lightweight. And the best part it can be converted to a duffel bag. So when you are ready to check into your hotel for the evening this bag won't be a hassle to transport.

12. SWISSGEAR 1186 Bungee Laptop Backpack

Our rating: 8 / 10

SWISSGEAR 1186 Bungee Laptop Backpack

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Pros:

  • Fits up to 18 inch laptops
  • Built in USB port
  • Flexible storage
  • Integrated padded laptop sleeve
  • Elastic cords to keep cords organized
  • Made of Nylon
  • Images printed with dye sublimation technology
  • Holds up to 17 L
  • Two main compartments
  • Two front slash pockets

Cons:

  • The shoulder straps aren’t breathable, which can make them quite difficult in the warmer months.
  • They are not very soft, which can be uncomfortable for the wearer.
  • The zippers have sort of a cheap build, and can sometimes jam.

13. American Stoic Sophrosune Carry On Luggage Backpack

Our rating: 7 / 10

American Stoic Sophrosune Carry On Luggage Backpack

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Pros:

  • Lightweight
  • Waterproof
  • Convertible
  • Multiple pockets

Carrying a backpack is the best way to pack light and travel hands free. It can also be cost effective, but for the best results, invest in a high-quality backpack with just the features you need.

The American Stoic Bags are made from quality, durable material, so you won’t need to take it to the repair shop for a long time. The zippers are rustproof, waterproof and highly durable.

This is an uncomplicated backpack that comes with a lot of features for a great price. 50 liters is a little smaller than some other backpack options, so go for the 65 liter size if you can.

14. Pacsafe Venturesafe X30 Anti-Theft Adventure Backpack

Our rating: 7 / 10

Pacsafe Venturesafe X30 Anti-Theft Adventure Backpack

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Pros:

  • The easiest way is to lock up your bags. Pacsafe travel backpacks comes with tags that you run through the loops of the zippers. When the bag is locked, it means it’s not going anywhere. The lock also makes a slight sound when you open the bag to ensure that you’re not going through your things.
  • The Venture 23 is constructed in a way that allows the compression straps to be attached with the compression lock so your bags become a single element.
  • The bag is very comfortable. It has a ventilated load lifter that made of mesh, which allows for air circulation.
  • It has on top of the bag, a place where you can carry a water bottle. This is convenient if are moving quickly since the bottle is on top.
  • The bag is very spacious. It comes with a place where there’s an option to put your laptop.
  • The bag has an adjustable chest strap but it’s not padded. If you’re using the bag for long distances, this can end up being a little uncomfortable.
  • The bag doesn’t have an internal back support.
  • The zippers sometimes catch the fabric of the bag.
  • The bottom of the bag may not hold up extremely well over time.

15. The North Face Borealis Backpack

Our rating: 7 / 10

The North Face Borealis Backpack

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Pros:

  • Made with durable fabric
  • Made with high-quality zippers
  • Comes with a laptop case pocket
  • Zippered exterior pocket to hold a cellphone, passport, and other valuables
  • Under-lid compartment with internal organizer
  • Dual Shove-it stretch pockets
  • Internal organizer with key fob
  • Hip belt that is included

Cons:

  • Will only fit 15-inch laptops
  • Heavy, but a small price to pay for the durability and quality of the material

Outdoor adventurers are constantly looking for a backpack that can stand up to punishing conditions. They all want their gear to remain dry no matter what the terrain or weather conditions are.

The North Face Borealis provides durability and comfort in an attractive design at a reasonable price.

The North Face, known for making quality outdoor gear, is often described as the gold standard when it comes to this type of equipment.

16. Deuter ACT Lite 65+10 Hiking Backpack

Our rating: 7 / 10

Deuter ACT Lite 65+10 Hiking Backpack

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Pros:

  • Great ventilation
  • Lightweight
  • Extremely water resistant
  • Breathable
  • Solid and sturdy build
  • Good capacity
  • Comfortable
  • Load-bearing straps on hip belt

Cons:

  • Poor air circulation
  • Poor padding
  • Limited water resistance
  • Not suitable for big people (6’4 and above)

The Deuter ACT Lite 65+10 hiking backpack is a backpacking bag that meets the needs of the outdoor enthusiast who is planning on spending one or more nights outdoors. It is designed for hikers, climbers, and other outdoor enthusiasts who want a reliable bag to haul their belongings when they are camping, going on treks, climbing, or hiking.

This is a high-quality backpack that has countless features that make it ideal for outdoor activity. It is also very comfortable to wear. It also features great and simple ventilation, which is a feature you want in a backpack if you want to avoid feeling hot and sweaty on your back.

This hiking bag comes with an adjustable suspension system, which is a system that adjusts itself to the user. This ensures comfort and support for the user no matter what they are doing. It also comes with a polypropylene frame sheet, which makes it durable.

17. Osprey Men's Atmos 65 AG Backpacks

Our rating: 6 / 10

Osprey Men's Atmos 65 AG Backpacks

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Despite its heavy appearance, the Osprey Atmos 65 AG has a lot to offer with a sturdy harness and hip belt for long skates. It is capable of carrying your gear comfortably under demanding situations. This isn’t the backpack for everyone, however. It is best for skaters who skate a lot of long routes.

The harness on the Atmos is capable of being fully adjusted to your size and then some. That feature makes this model an excellent choice for tall people. It will provide top-of-the-line support and comfort while you’re skating.

During all of your skating, the Atmos will keep you cool with the ventilation system that is built into the back panel. This system is easy to access, too, so you can change the ventilation as your needs change.

18. eBags TLS Mother Lode Weekender Convertible Carry-On Travel Backpack

Our rating: 5 / 10

eBags TLS Mother Lode Weekender Convertible Carry-On Travel Backpack

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Pros:

  • Comfortable backpack
  • Holds a lot
  • Easy to use

Cons:

  • Not enough pockets inside the backpack
  • Wears out if not taken care of properly

Many times when you pack to go kiting or backpacking, you do not know where you will end up.

The eBags TLS Mother Lode is a fantastic backpack that will hold most of your essentials and then some. It is great for short trips, long trips, or even on a day where you want to take the kite and camping gear out.

This backpack is great for all seasons, regardless of where you go. The backpack is made with reinforced and rugged YKK zippers. They are very easy to use and make sure that you do not spend extra time to access the many pockets.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Which travel backpack is the best?

Everyone has different needs, so it would be impossible for us to name the best travel backpack without knowing your particular needs. That being said, we can recommend the best travel backpack for a few different categories of people.

What size backpack do I need for a 10 day trip?

The Magic backpack is designed like a traditional backpack with a padded mesh back area for optimum ventilation. It incorporates a large main compartment and a small front compartment. In the front, there is a laptop sleeve which can accommodate most 15” laptops. The pack also comes with a removable shock-absorbent laptop compartment.

The backpack also has a pre-curved hip belt, an adjustable sternum strap, and a sternum strap stabilizer. It has twin front mesh pockets which provide an easy way to store small items. There is also a wide opening in the main compartment which makes it very easy for you to access it.

This backpack can comfortably accommodate up to 25-liters. Some of the things you can fit in the backpack are water bottles, backpacks, a small tripod, a camera, a lens, a laptop and a handheld camera. You can also comfortably store clothing and photography or photography gear.

Is Nordace a good brand?

Absolutely. Nordace is an Italian company which is also a leader in the design and construction of travel bags. Their attention to detail and quality craftsmanship has earned them many rave reviews.

Conclusion

Are you ready to get started in shopping for the best travel backpack?

If so, then you can use everything you will learn in this guide to make the process a lot simpler. We will take an in-depth look at each of the backpacks on our list, go over their specs, and then challenge you to ask, “Why should you buy this particular bag?” For each bag, and there are 15 total, we’ve identified the pros, cons, and factors to consider.

We also give you a short summary of every product along with a video to help you understand everything there is to know about every product on our list.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
SWISSGEAR 1900 ScanSmart Laptop BackpackBest OverallSWISSGEAR 1900 ScanSmart Laptop Backpack
Outlander Ultra Lightweight Packable Water Resistant Travel Hiking Backpack Daypack Handy Foldable Camping Outdoor BackpackBudget PickOutlander Ultra Lightweight Packable Water Resistant Travel Hiking Backpack Daypack Handy Foldable Camping Outdoor Backpack
Osprey Porter 30 Travel BackpackUpgrade PickOsprey Porter 30 Travel Backpack