The bond between traveler and backpack is sacred. As travelers, we use our backpacks to get us through everything from unexpected airport delays to rugged adventures. The keys to a good traveler-backpack relationship are reliability, organization, and most importantly, embracing every traveler’s unique needs. From the business traveler ultimate go-bag to the backpacker’s most trusted pack, here are 10 backpacks you’re sure to fall in in love with.
Backpacks You’ll Definitely Fall in Love With
Cotopaxi Nazca 24L Travel Pack
The Nazca 24L Travel Pack from Cotopaxi is a spacious and stylish backpack that makes the most of its size with strategic compartments. Resembling a suitcase, the Nazca can be worn like a backpack or carried like a duffel. There is a separate padded sleeve large enough to fit a 15-inch laptop, plus a fleece-lined front pocket designed to protect small valuable objects like sunglasses or electronics. Since it opens up like a suitcase, it’s both easy to pack and to quickly locate items.
SwissGear SA1923 ScanSmart Computer Backpack
When you travel with electronics, you want a backpack that makes sure everything you need is only a pocket away. This ScanSmart Computer from Swiss Gear does just that. With multiple organizational pockets and an easy-access laptop compartment, the bag keeps it all together and is surprisingly spacious. With sturdy and comfortable straps, this backpack is sure to last.
Poler High Dry Rolltop
The only thing worse than unexpected rain is when you open your backpack after getting caught in a storm and discover all your gear is soaked. For that reason, the 36L Poler High & Dry Rolltop is an ideal bag for wet destinations. Inspired by the classic dry bag design and made out of a heavy-duty polyurethane material, you can trust this bag to keep things dry.
Kelty Redwing 40
When it comes to hiking with a lot of weight on your back, the best backpack is the one that’s most comfortable. The Kelty Redwing 40’s mesh back paneling and strategic straps for weight distribution make it one of the most comfortable backpacks out there. Plus, with a spacious main compartment and plenty of extra pockets, it’s a good choice for long travel days so you can have everything you need at the ready.
Fjallraven Unisex Splitpack Duffel Bag
The beauty of duffel bags that double as backpacks is that your luggage is always adaptable, so you can carry it comfortably in any situation. The new Splitpack Duffel Bag from Fjallraven is the perfect example of this adaptability. The vertical zipper makes the contents of the bag easy to access and the extra padding makes it one of the more comfortable duffel-backpacks available. It is also available in 35 liter and 55 liter sizes.
REI Co-op Flash 22
If you’re just looking for a daypack, check out the light and spacious Flash 22 Pack from REI. The straps are made from a breathable mesh material, making this ultralight backpack both comfortable and cool. With its stash pockets, tool loops, zippered pockets, and detachable sternum and waist straps, this pack can hold a lot without compromising on comfort.
Wool & Oak The Duffle Backpack
Transforming backpacks are not just for the outdoorsy traveler. With the Wool & Oak Leather Duffle Backpack, traveling fashionistas can enjoy the best of both function and style. Using zippers, this chic bag can transform from laptop bag to overnight backpack and even into duffle. It’s the ultimate matching set. What makes this backpack most convenient is that it’s all the same bag, so there’s no need to unpack your commuting bag when you can just zip it to your weekend bag and go.
Osprey Bitstream Backpack
This streamlined design from Osprey is not just stylish, it’s also spacious and comfortable. Perfect for carrying laptops and clothing, the bag even has a special pocket at the bottom for organizing chargers and electronic accessories. With plenty of pockets to help you stay organized, this is a great bag for the urban traveler and the digital nomad.
You may have seen backpacks with their own battery packs before, but the MOS Pack brings a more sensible approach to the electronic backpack concept. Instead of a battery that can only last so long, think of this backpack as a giant extension cord where you can keep all your electronics plugged in, but only need to use one outlet. This backpack lets you keep all your devices charging without having to take them out, which is great for on-the-go, no-fuss travelers.
Made for photographers and gearheads, the Moshi Arcus is a sleekly designed backpack that can protect fragile camera equipment and electronics. The durable shell and shock-absorbing pockets protect your gear from bumps and falls, and the one-strap approach adds extra stability. Though this looks more like an urban backpack than one for the outdoors, there are plenty of pockets and attachments for water bottles or attachable gear. A special insert (sold separately) is also available to turn this backpack into a professional camera bag for your DSLR.
More from SmarterTravel:
- 14 Best Foldable Travel Bags and Foldable Luggage
- Rolling Suitcase vs. Backpack: Which Is Better?
- Travel Backpacks We Love
Jamie Ditaranto has been in a long-term (but open) relationship with an indestructible Kipling backpack for the past 15 years. Follow their adventures on Twitter @jamieditaranto.