There’s something so freeing about traveling with only one bag. All of your critical stuff is within arm’s reach, and it compels you to cut down on many of life’s seemingly vital consumer products that you can probably live without. We prepared a list of The 15 Best Travel Backpacks to use.
With one bag, you smoothly glide from site to location, always having just enough but never too much. Choosing the best travel backpack for one bag travel might be a tough undertaking.
There are so many brands and models to select from with varying degrees of durability, price, and try-on-ability (we made this word up for testing things before buying online) (we made this word up for trying something out before buying it online).
Add varied ideas and opinions into the mix from persons with different beliefs, desires, and body types—and you’ve got a veritable clusterf*ck of possibilities to navigate through.
Whether you’re a rookie traveler getting up for your first trip, a digital nomad going through a “sell-all-my-stuff-and-put-it-in-a-bag” period, or somewhere in between, it’s crucial to have the finest travel backpack that works for you.
Travel Backpack Buying Advice
Size and Capacity
When shopping for a travel backpack, the first question you should ask yourself is how much storage space you anticipate needing. As a point of comparison, the capacities of the various alternatives presented above range from a minimum of 28 liters (in the case of the Cotopaxi Allpa) all the way up to 80 liters (in the case of the REI Co-op Rucksack) (with the 20L daypack attached).
The sweet spot for many travelers is in the range of 40 to 45 liters, and it’s no accident that well over half of the models above fall into this grouping. This is partly owing to the fact that their carry-on dimensions are compliant with airline requirements.
Travel Backpack Dimensions
Most travelers, and particularly those going overseas, need to give careful attention to the dimensions of their belongings. Because of this, the length, breadth, and height measurements of each travel bag have been included not only in the write-ups but also in the comparison table that can be found above.
You might have noticed that the dimensions of various travel packs of the same size don’t vary all that much from one another. This is primarily due to carry-on size constraints, which will be discussed in greater detail in the following paragraphs. There are size restrictions on carry-on luggage.
To begin, it is important to point out that, legally speaking, there is no specified size minimum for carry-on bags either domestically or internationally. Having said that, the dimensions that are universally acknowledged within the United States are 22 inches by 14 inches by 9 inches, which equals 45 linear inches when the length, width, and height are added together.
In the comparison table that you can find above, we have noted whether or not each travel pack fits these requirements; likewise, REI Co-op does the same thing on each of their product sites. The only thing that deviates from the norm is the REI Ruckpack 60+, which has dimensions of 27 by 14 by 9 inches.
Carry-on compatibility is an important factor that many travelers take into account.
Organization: Pockets and Main Compartment Access
All of the bags described above are designed with extensive organizational schemes and pockets that have been strategically positioned to ensure that valuables, electronic devices, and other accessories are kept separate from one another.
Having said that, certain configurations are more functional than others and making a final choice will mostly depend on the type of use you intend to put the bag to, as well as what would work best for the things you intend to bring along with you.
For example, sleek options like the Peak Design Travel Backpack and the Nomatic Travel Pack are great for digital nomads and remote workers who need to organize a lot of electronic equipment. On the other hand, backpacking-inspired options like the Osprey Farpoint 40 and Porter 46 have fewer tech-focused features but work great for adventure travel because they are designed for carrying heavier loads.
Below you’ll find a breakdown of some of the most important organizational components, such as sleeve compartments for laptops and tablets, water bottle storage options, and pack opening techniques.
Wallets and Cases for Tablets and Laptops Laptop storage is an essential component of a travel pack, and each of the options presented above comes equipped with a specific compartment designed to hold larger electrical devices.
In terms of their dimensions, the majority of sleeves are able to hold a laptop with a screen size of up to 15 inches, and many of them also have separate, smaller compartments inside the same area that may hold a tablet.
This region is often well-padded to protect the electronics, and it is positioned in conjunction with the back panel to ensure optimal access and weight distribution (keeping heavier items closest to your back will help maximize comfort and balance).
There are a few exceptions to this rule, including the Mystery Ranch Mission Rover 45, the Osprey Farpoint 40, and the Pacsafe Venturesafe EXP45. All of these backpacks have the laptop sleeve located at the front of the pack, which can make them feel a little less well-balanced because heavier electronics are placed farther away from your body.
Certain travel packs have a few elements that set them apart from the rest of the competition on the market, even though comfort is somewhat relative. In general, the most comfortable designs feature shoulder straps and hip belts that have ample cushioning and a high degree of adjustability, which allows the wearer to fine-tune the fit.
Sternum and load-lifter straps can also be of great assistance in appropriately spreading a big load across the body. Given their extensive experience in the market for backpacking packs, Osprey and Gregory are two brands that stand out in this particular sector, which makes perfect sense.
The Osprey Porter 46 is one of our go-to choices when it comes to transporting heavy goods over long distances since it has ample padding, a fair degree of flexibility at the shoulders and waist belt, and load lifters that move the weight closer to your back.
Grab Handles and Alternate Carry Methods
The aforementioned models are intended to be carried on your back in the form of a backpack; however, many travelers like having the option to carry their pack in the format of a suitcase or over the shoulder. When waiting in line to check in at the airport or get travel documents, these options are particularly helpful.
For example, the Peak Design Travel Backpack comes equipped with 360-degree grab handles, which make it simple to remove the bag and carry it with one hand while maneuvering through airport security checkpoints or the aisles of a cramped airline.
Designs such as the Osprey Farpoint and Topo Designs Global Travel Bag also come with detachable straps for shoulder carry. This can be beneficial when you need to access items within the pack, but you want to keep the pack off the ground and remain hands-free at the same time.
Finally, a good number of these items can be fastened to a roller bag using pass-through sleeves for your convenience.
Other Travel Pack Features
There are a few more elements that are unique to travel packs that you should be aware of. Some of these features include pockets and sleeve compartments for electrical devices. Lockable zippers are a regular feature on most designs, as are detachable and/or stowable straps, compression straps, and dividers to help keep items organized inside the main area.
Some travel packs, such as the Rucksack 60+ from REI Co-op, the Allpa 28L from Cotopaxi, and the Tour 40L from Eagle Creek, come equipped with built-in rain coverings that can be stowed away when they are not in use. This feature is typically seen on backpacking versions.
Finally, many people will value the capacity of their travel packages to be able to be attached directly to rolling luggage by means of a pass-through handle or sleeve (such is what you get with Osprey’s Porter 46 and many of the others mentioned above).
Construction and Durability
Because of the inherently tough nature of travel, each of the packs described above is solidly constructed and durable enough to resist heavy use and abuse on a consistent basis. Having said that, some are unquestionably more long-lasting than others, and taking a look at the denier, which is a measurement of the thickness of the fabric, is a good place to start when trying to differentiate between models.
For example, the Osprey Porter 46 is about average with a combination of 420- and 500-denier (D) materials, whereas the Cotopaxi Allpa 28L is one of the thickest and most abrasion-resistant options on our list with a combination of 1,000D polyester and 840D ballistic nylon (Topo Designs’ Global Travel Bag uses a similar combo but with 1,000D nylon and 1,680D ballistic nylon).
Both of these backpacks have a capacity of 28 The stainless steel wire mesh that is incorporated into the 400D nylon body of the Venturesafe EXP45 by Pacsafe serves as a deterrent against theft. This model is another highlight.
Patagonia’s Black Hole 32L, which has a thickness of only 300D, is the most lightweight option on our list. However, the polyester body of the pack is of the ripstop sort and is coated with a TPU laminate, both of which assist enhance resistance to tears and abrasion.
Even while there isn’t a huge disparity in weight between different travel bag designs, even a difference of one pound can be evident during lengthy journeys across town or through airports. As a point of comparison, the Patagonia Black Hole Pack 32L is the model that comes in at the lightest weight on our list at 1 pound 12.6 ounces,
while the Peak Design 45-liter Travel Backpack comes in at the heaviest weight at 4 pounds 8 ounces. The majority of designs with 40- to 45-liter capacity range from anywhere between 2.5 and 3.5 pounds, with the majority of these designs falling somewhere in the middle.
In the end, the weight won’t be the main concern for many tourists; however, those who are planning to backpack through Europe or who anticipate covering a significant area will probably prefer to shop toward the lighter end of the spectrum.
Fit and Sizing
Travel packs, as opposed to their counterparts in the hiking pack category, are almost always only available in a single unisex variety. Because of this, getting the perfect fit can be challenging, and this is especially true for people who have a particularly thin or broad build.
One of the few exceptions to this rule is the Eagle Creek Tour 40L, which comes in both small and medium as well as medium and large torso sizes. A few of the others, which we will discuss below, are available in women-specific versions so that a more personalized fit may be achieved.
No matter which option you go with, you should always try on a few different packs before making a purchase to determine which one is the most comfortable for you (or at least purchase from a reputable manufacturer with a generous return policy).
You will want to make sure that the shoulder straps and the waist belt may be adjusted to fit closely around your torso and waist respectively. In order to bring the burden closer to your back and improve comfort as well as weight distribution, sternum straps and load lifters can be of great assistance.
List Of The 15 Best Travel Backpacks to use in 2022
Osprey Talon 22
The Talon 22 would be the backpacking equivalent of the Swiss Army Knife if it were created.
This travel backpack utilizes every square inch of space for a purpose, from the extra pocket built into the shoulder straps to the reservoir built into the hydration pack.
The hip belt and sternum straps, in our opinion, are what set this bag apart from others. These straps are more than just a few buckles strung together. They are authentic, load-bearing coverings that assist the bag in accompanying you through difficult scenarios while you are skiing, bicycling, or kayaking.
- Straps that go across the sternum and the waist
- Capable of riding a motorcycle with ease and comfort
- Can be stowed discretely behind the seat of an airplane
- Relatively diminutive for a laptop device
- Expensive per liter
Patagonia Black Hole Tote
Patagonia has manufactured a bag that is almost weightless and is constructed entirely out of recycled nylon. This massive, pliable object may be bent, twisted, and carried in one hand or slung over the shoulders with ease.
You may easily stow it away inside of your larger luggage and arrive at your destination ready to party.
After being unfolded, this substantial bag has the ability to carry a startling 27 litres in whichever configuration you choose.
- A packable bag that has a capacity of up to 27 liters when expanded
- Three distinct ways to carry the item in question
- Includes storage space for your laptop and pockets for your water bottles
- No frame support
- The primary storage area is a little bit of a black hole.
The use of Bergshell in the Ulvo makes it stand out from other models. It has a grade of 400D, which is one of the highest in the business.
Additionally, the exterior provides adequate protection against the elements to ensure that your electronic devices will survive an unexpected downpour without being damaged.
You don’t have to take our word for it; all you have to do is look about you! The well-known fox pattern is a well-known appearance among high-budget travelers; in fact, it has become so popular that it can be difficult to believe that the travel backpack gives true value.
- Surprising in its resistance to water
- Recycled materials that are scratch-resistant
- Capable of keeping pace when running with
- If you want a name-brand product, expect to pay a little extra.
- Only a few pockets on the outside.
Pacsafe Venture safe
A fantastic approach to finding hidden treasures is by wandering through crowded markets, but not everyone was willing to haggle.
In a strange country, a conventional travel backpack will attract unwelcome attention. This is where the Venturesafe PacSafe enters the picture, as well.
- Mesh that cannot be cut
- With zippers that can be locked, this bag is safe and secure.
- Women’s travel backpacks with security concerns are a popular choice.
- There is only one way to carry
- Few Pac Safe alternatives are available in sizes greater than 30 liters.
Arc’teryx Granville 16
Finding a laptop travel backpack that can withstand all weather conditions is difficult enough as it is.
Water-resistant nylon is advertised by many daypacks, but only a few can claim to be true waterproof travel backpacks. The case for the Granville 16 is as strong as anyone else’s.
- The best waterproof bag on the market.
- Large enough to accommodate a laptop computer
- In order to avoid cuts and scrapes, the outer shell is used.
- Only a single huge compartment is available.
- A water bottle pocket is missing.
Peak Designs Everyday Camera Backpack
For those who prefer to keep their toys close at hand, our last-day pack is the ideal travel backpack.
Peak Design’s travel camera backpack is the only one on the market that caters to the needs of today’s digital nomads. Perhaps this is due to the fact that all of Peak Designs’ items were funded through crowd sale
- Ample room for storing
- A roll-top can be adjusted in size.
- A coating that is water-resistant
- An unwieldy strap around the chest
- There is a lack of faith in MagLatch.
Best Backpack for Long-Term Travel
In order to carry all your belongings on your back instead of in a suitcase, you’ll need a bag that is a bit larger than those described above if you are the type of traveler who chooses to do so.
This is where these backpacks come in! Invest in one of these high-quality backpacks for long-term travel to keep your gear secure and your back strong.
Gregory Paragon 58
Bring 40 pounds of your most essential items on your next trip, no matter how distant you are from the nearest baggage checkpoint.
Many crucial zippered access points in the top-loading wide-mouth Paragon bag allow you to reach your sweatshirt at the bottom of your backpack without having to remove everything from your bag altogether!
You may attach solar panels, dirty boots, or a sleeping mat to the exterior of your pac with six external pockets and a variety of looping connectors.
- Sturdy straps for transport
- A reasonable cost
- A daypack is included.
- Not highly water-resistant if the rain fly isn’t attached
- The day pack is a simple drawstring bag. –
Matador Travel Pack
Matador designed this ultra-compact travel backpack for those who prefer to travel light and just carry a single bag.
The 40L backpack may be transformed into a mobile closet with the help of the bag’s built-in packing cubes and split inside sections.
It’s one of the larger carry-on bags on our list, and the laptop section on the exterior will keep all of your essentials close at hand.
- There are five storage areas.
- Waterproofing and a powerful D rating
- Numerous options for transporting
- It’s not the best for going on lengthy walks
- It has been observed that the storage compartments run together at times.
REI Trailbreak 60
The REI Co-op is known for manufacturing products of the highest quality, which can be found in every aspect of outdoor living. Therefore, it should not come as a surprise to see one of the greatest travel backpacks on its shelves at a price that is significantly lower than its competitors.
The REI Trailbreak is our pick for the most reasonably priced hiking backpack because it offers an adaptable fit that allows hikers to grow alongside their bag as they use it.
Whether you’re getting ready for your first trip or your 50th, you’ll discover that the spacious main compartment and the multitude of stash pockets offer a lot of value.
- The camping bag on this list that offers the best value for the money
- Can be adjusted to fit the majority of bodies
- The most generous return policy in the industry
- There are not a lot of unique features
- There is just one huge primary storage compartment
Kelty Red Wing
The name given to this simple and inexpensive rucksack is the vagabond special. Hitchhikers, railway hoppers, and rubber tramps of every age group unanimously agree that the Kelty Red Wing is the best bag for their needs. There’s a good reason for this.
The low cost of this bag is the most obvious factor contributing to its widespread popularity. However, if you delve deeper than the surface, you’ll be shocked by everything that these hiking backpacks are capable of doing for you.
You are able to fully personalize your experience with the help of the comfortable form-fitting straps, an abundance of zippered pockets, and the backpack’s close proximity to the ultra-lightweight rating.
- The least expensive option on our list
- Durable and long-lasting straps
- Seven different pockets
- The smallest size in which the bag is still too big to be carried on
- There is just one entrance to the primary storage area.
Osprey Aether Plus 70
The Aether series is Osprey’s largest line of travel backpacks, and it is also the bag the owners of NOMADasaurus have been using for the past several years. It is the granddaddy of all of Osprey’s travel backpacks.
The Aether can expand to a maximum capacity of one hundred liters, but we sincerely hope that you’ll never need a suitcase of that size. When each liter has been given this much consideration, seventy liters should be sufficient for the majority of people.
A suspension system of this magnitude is required for a bag of this size.
- Comes with a daypack that may be removed.
- Plentiful possibilities for changing the torso position.
- Capable of supporting loads of up to 60 lbs.
- Unable to fit into a carry-on bag
- Most costly bag on our list
Best Carry-on Backpack for Travel
Carry-on luggage is highly recommended, as stated by a couple who has been adventuring across the world nonstop for the past 13 years.
We never check luggage since we always travel with just a carry-on, unless we are going on a significant hiking trip or traveling to a wintering area that requires us to bring specialized clothing.
Our personal suggestions for the best carry-on backpacks for travel, including the fact that they save you time (and money) at the airport, make it easier to maneuver about places, and are just far more manageable in every aspect, can be found here.
EDITOR’S CHOICE: Nomatic Travel Bag
There is a wide selection of carry-on travel backpacks available on the market today; but, until recently, there were very few that were suitable for the task at hand.
Nomatic took one glance at that void in the tourism sector and brilliantly filled it with this adaptable travel companion.
In order to provide you with more during your trip days, Nomatic researched the policies and procedures of the TSA and designed a bag that sidesteps such requirements.
- Resistant to the elements
- A Back Panel with Hidden Access
- Designed to accommodate your preferences about carry-on backpack restrictions.
Not going to work on difficult terrain.
We needed a modern answer for modern photographic equipment, and Wandrd ultimately came up with one that was simple to pack and carry.
In order to construct a bag that would be ready for the next day, Wandrd sewed compartments into whatever available place they could find. Even the back panel has a concealed aperture, which provides an excellent level of protection for critical documents like your passport.
This carry-on travel bag is not only stealthy but also modifiable; it can flex and stretch to accommodate your requirements and has the capacity to hold anywhere from 21 to 31 litres of gear.
- Built to handle camera equipment
- The size of your bag can be adjusted to meet whatever requirements you have for it.
- Despite the rain, your gear will not be damaged.
- The magnetic fastener is not the most powerful available.
- This shoulder strap is not the most comfortable option.
Osprey Farpoint 40
Osprey backpacks are undeniably the most reliable option. It is not necessary to be planning a trip into the great outdoors in order to take advantage of this company’s dedication to the environment, durability, and attention to detail.
You also do not have to purchase a technical hiking pack in order to be eligible for the product guarantee.
With the Osprey Farpoint travel backpack, you can conquer the concrete jungle with the same simplicity that Osprey provides to your time spent in the great outdoors.
- You may tuck away any straps that aren’t necessary.
- Offers the convenience of a carry-on bag while maintaining the comfort of a hiking backpack
- Opens up like a suitcase
- The front compartment may be compressed due to the size of the main compartment
- Uncomfortable after extended periods of hiking
It is a favorite laptop bag for travel because it can pack a tonne of stuff inside of a careless frame that is appropriate for any excursion.
Tortuga decided that a laptop compartment that was already padded wasn’t going to cut it, so they created an additional layer of foam that not only absorbs impact but also helps keep everything in its proper place.
The interior of the travel backpack is divided into six different smaller sections, which is a helpful feature.
Two of the compartments are dedicated to holding electrical devices, while the other four are designed to hold your clothing, cords, toiletries, and accessories.
- Built for laptop travel
- Choose between 35 and 45-liter variants
- The main compartment can be divided into a total of six distinct storage areas.
- Does not offer sufficient adaptability to serve as a daily pack.
- The shoulder straps do not have any cushioning.
Whether you’re planning to head off into the wilderness, new countries, or unequaled heights, your ultimate travel bag is somewhere on this list.