A good backpack can easily replace your suitcase and bring much more value to your travels. You’ll be able to bring more things to more places, more comfortably.
To experience that, you’ll need to invest in a proper backpack. A bad backpack can quickly become a strain on your back and be a hassle to organize. Having experienced that several times, we now know choosing the right backpack is important.
For this list, we’ve compiled recommendations from frequent fliers and tested them with our own criteria: comfortable, adjustable straps, waterproofing, capacity, and enough compartments for your smaller valuables. The result are these 15 backpacks one of which will become a reliable travel companion for years to come!
This product was recommended by Matej Halouska from Czech the World
Mariposa is a 60 liters backpack, which exactly fits dimensions of carry-on luggage of most airlines, if not fully loaded. Therefore you can take it on the plane and then in the destination you still have a space to add food and water. It’s ultralight (700g) and made from durable material. It also has a great massive hip belt. It’s very comfortable to wear, I am using it for more than 3 years and it has been nothing but amazing.
This product was recommended by Michelle from N/A
I travel a lot for both work and adventure. I destroyed so many backpacks in the past, and was getting fed up having to buy new ones. When I was working in Boston and living in Toronto and another backpack fell apart I did some research. I ended up buying a GR1 from GORUCK. It has 2 protected areas, if I need to travel with a work and personal laptop, and comes with either 21L or 26L of space. Now it has been 7 years since I made the switch to this backpack and there isn’t a scratch on it.
This product was recommended by Satwinder Singh from Citrus Holidays
This unisex backpack is ideal for flying; it meets all EU maximum carry-on luggage requirements, making it ideal for travelling and taking onto your flight. There is plenty of space inside, alongside a clip to attach your keys to, as well as convenient internal mesh pockets and an external pocket that is easily accessible.
This handy holdall provides a chest strap when used in backpack mode, making this bag comfortable when wearing for long periods of time. Although it has snug backpack straps, these can be swiftly stowed away, transforming the Osprey Transporter 40 into a practical carry-on bag with a side handle.
This product was recommended by Simon Hansen from Homebrew Expert
The Hynes Eagle Backpack is a great backpack option for fliers since not only does it fit IATA flight standards, it also comes with suppressible adjustable padded shoulder straps and compression buckle straps which makes it more secure and easier to carry around.
This product was recommended by Linda Morgan from MotivationNook
This backpack is a flight-approved carry-on backpack. Created for a better journey, it comes with packing cubes to help you stay organized while you travel. This backpack is designed to fit a 15.6-inch laptop alongside your other essentials. Its slick design means that you can pack all your belongings neatly and maintain a business look while you fly.
This product was recommended by Liz Brown from Sleeping Lucid
The Soldirknife Travel Backpack is safe, comfy, functional, and comes with multiple compartments and a USB charging port which makes it the best option for techie fliers looking to travel in comfort and style.
This product was recommended by Bradley Williams from Dream Big, Travel Far
Our go-to travel backpack has become the Carry On Backpack by Standard Luggage Co. Mainly for the fact that it allows you to get as much carry on space as possible! It’s purpose-built to fit the maximum airplane carry on size guidelines, but is still incredibly comfy to wear. It’s also well made of quality materials and has multiple zones for practical packing. We find it’s great for 2 people up to a maximum or 3 or 4 days on the road.
This product was recommended by Nick Sylvester from Navigator Nick
The most important feature of a travel backpack is, organization. No two trips are the same and versatility is everything. The Peak Designs Travel Backpack meets international max carry-on standards in default 35L configuration.Compression snaps reduce bag to 30L for use as a day bag which is estremely helpful when the load is lighter.
Dual external carry straps stowe away in magnetic external pouch nice and neat. Expand the side pockets to store water bottles, tripods. Dual side zippers for instant camera and item access.The backpack is sem-customizable to your needs and preferences. Organize things how you want and dial in your perfect setup. 400D weatherproof material. 100% recycled nylon canvas shell and DWR impregnated, PU-coated interior equals zero rainwater.
Oversized #10 front and #8 back zippers are weatherproof and lockable. Rugged 900D weatherproof bottom liner. Ultra-light padded foam provides security, structure, and aesthetic cleanliness throughout. Protected luggage tag holder included.
This product was recommended by Manny Hernandez from Embarky
This is a functional waterproof backpack that has a roll-top closure with an adjustable strap featuring a loop for a bike lock or similar.. Rolltop Rucksack has a large main compartment, an easy-access front pocket, and a side-access laptop compartment. It is completed with a padded backside, adjustable shoulder straps, a chest strap, and original Rains hardware.
This product was recommended by Daniel Zacarias from Clever Journey
There are some minor gripes we have about it, but for less than $30, it’s incredible to see how well it’s performed. After a year of DAILY use, it still looks great, aside from one back padding panel coming loose. Not to mention how spacious it is and how well-organized everything is inside. So if you’re looking for a new, affordable laptop backpack, then look no further. I doubt that you’ll find anything better below 50$. There’s a reason why it’s the number one bestselling laptop backpack on Amazon.
This product was recommended by M. Ammar Shahid from SuperHeroCorp
This 40L backpack is made out of water repellent polyester that comes with multiple features to keep clothes, gadgets, laptop, and other stuff in the manner that ergonomically comfort you.
This product was recommended by Ali Ubaid Ul Hassan from Decrum
This bag is best for all types of travel, with having a more substantial capacity and has a charging port as well—a smart and fashionable backpack for both men and women.
This product was recommended by Christian Antonoff from Heartifb
It’s a wonderful backpack. It’s light, but it can carry lots of stuff. Although advertised as having a 35L capacity, it can very easily expand to 45L. It’s also quite sturdy, so even when I overpack I know that the backpack will hold. I admit that it’s not the cheapest one on the market ($299.95), but it’s definitely one of the most stylish ones I’ve seen in recent years. Honestly, it’s amazing.
I really love all the small touches like the magnetic pouches, hidden straps, and clever storage spaces. They just make traveling so much more enjoyable. I love that the design is thoughtful and practical. Other backpacks I had were always too bulky or heavy. This one is gentle on my back, but at the same time, it lets me stuff it with lots of things.
This product was recommended by Sophie Anderson from Cruise Agency Australia
A bit pricier entry in the travel bag category, but honestly – fantastic bag. More than enough storage for several days, and the bag is packed with features. The water-resistant material is a huge plus – surprisingly effective, whether you leave the bag in the rain or happen to spill an airport-terminal coffee on it (don’t ask). Either way, it’s a bag I can’t recommend enough!
This product was recommended by Mason Culligan from Mattress Battle
The best traveling backpack for flying I recommend is Tortuga’s Setout Travel Backpack. I opted for Setout Travel Backpack because of its front-loading feature — making it easier to access my essentials even inside a moving car. Traveling and being away from home for weeks means more wardrobe to carry.
But, this backpack’s 45L capacity is maximized with packing cubes so I never worry about needing storage space. Setout Travel Backpack provides function with its padded electronic sleeves, padded hip belt, and molded shoulder straps — all without overlooking style. Its all-black sleek design appeals to the minimalist in me. I always carry my electronics with me and its lockable zipper and padded electronics sleeves efficiently store and protect them.
I once dropped my Setout Travel Backpack while unloading a car and my gadgets were all safe. The padded sleeves did its job of protecting my gadgets from cracks and dents