Best Backpack for Travel: Top Picks for Comfort and Durability

Best Backpack for Travel

May 16, 2024 • Travel Tips • Views: 151

Traveling can be an exciting and enriching experience, but it can also be stressful if you’re not well-prepared. One of the most critical things to consider when traveling is the type of backpack you’ll bring with you. A good travel backpack must be versatile, durable, and comfortable, and it should also have enough space to fit your belongings without being too bulky. Keep reading to learn more about my best backpack for travel picks so you can find your dream bag. 

Best Backpacks for Travel

Overall Winner: Best Backpack for Travel – Nomatic Travel Pack $299.99
Cheapest Backpack for Travel – Asenlin 40L Travel Backpack $39.99
Best Looking Backpack for Travel – Peak Design Travel Line Backpack 45L $299.95
Best Mid Price Point Backpack for Travel – Travel Thule Subterra Backpack 34L $179.95
Best Value for Money Backpack for Travel – Osprey Sojourn Porter 30L Travel Backpack $175


As avid travelers ourselves, we understand the importance of having the right backpack for your adventures. Whether you’re backpacking through Europe or going on a weekend getaway, a good travel backpack can make all the difference. After thorough research and testing, we’ve compiled a list of the best backpacks for travel. These backpacks have been chosen based on their durability, comfort, storage capacity, and overall value. So, without further ado, here are our top picks for the best backpack for travel. 

NOMATIC Travel Pack

If you’re looking for a backpack that can seamlessly transition from a work bag to a travel bag, the NOMATIC Travel Pack is an excellent choice.

Pros

  • The expandable capacity feature allows you to pack more items for longer trips.
  • The range of pockets, including an RFID lockable security pocket, helps you stay organized.
  • The sleek design makes it a stylish option for both business and leisure travel.

Cons

  • The price point may be higher than some other backpack options on the market.
  • The backpack may feel heavy when fully packed, which could be a concern for those with back problems.
  • The zippers may not be as durable as some users would like.

We recently used the NOMATIC Travel Pack on a five-day business trip, and it was the perfect size to carry all of our essentials. The expandable feature was a game-changer, allowing us to pack more items for longer trips without having to bring an additional bag. The range of pockets was also incredibly helpful, allowing us to stay organized and easily access our belongings, making it one of the best backpacks for travel. 

One downside to the backpack is the price point, which may be higher than some other options on the market. However, we feel that the quality and versatility of the backpack make it a worthwhile investment for frequent travelers.

Another potential concern is the weight of the backpack when fully packed. While the backpack is designed to distribute weight evenly, those with back problems may find it uncomfortable to carry for extended periods.

Finally, some users have reported issues with the durability of the zippers. While we did not experience any issues during our trip, it’s something to keep in mind if you plan on using the backpack frequently.

We highly recommend the NOMATIC Travel Pack for anyone in need of a versatile and stylish backpack for both work and travel. It is hands down one of the best backpack for travel. 

Peak Design Travel Line Backpack 45L (Sage) (Expandable 30-35-45L)

If you’re looking for a durable and spacious backpack that’s perfect for traveling, the Peak Design Travel Line Backpack 45L is a great option. With its modular design and expandable capacity, it’s easy to customize this bag to suit your needs.

Pros

  • The modular design allows you to customize the interior of the backpack to match your requirements.
  • The backpack meets international max carry-on standards in its default 35L configuration.
  • Dual side zippers provide quick access to your camera and other items, while full rear access is available via large dual zips.

Cons

  • The backpack can be quite heavy, especially when fully loaded.
  • The bag is relatively expensive compared to other travel backpacks on the market.
  • The backpack’s straps can be somewhat uncomfortable if you’re carrying the bag for an extended period of time.

We recently took the Peak Design Travel Line Backpack 45L on a trip to Europe and were impressed with its durability and versatility. The modular design allowed us to easily customize the interior of the backpack to suit our needs, and the expandable capacity was particularly useful when we needed to pack extra items.

One of the standout features of this backpack is the dual side zippers, which provide quick access to your camera and other items. We also appreciated the full rear access via large dual zips, which made it easy to pack and unpack our belongings.

While the backpack can be quite heavy, we found that the padded straps and back panel provided good support and comfort. However, if you’re planning to carry the bag for an extended period of time, you may want to consider investing in a more ergonomic backpack.

We highly recommend the Peak Design Travel Line Backpack 45L for anyone in need of a durable and versatile travel backpack. While it may be a bit pricey, the modular design and expandable capacity make it a worthwhile investment for frequent travelers.

Asenlin 40L Travel Backpack

If you’re looking for a reliable travel backpack, the Asenlin 40L Travel Backpack is a great option.

Pros

  • The backpack has a large capacity and comes with 3 custom-made storage bags, which makes packing and organizing easy and efficient.
  • It is made of water-resistant high-quality polyester Oxford cloth material and has an explosion-proof zipper, ensuring your belongings stay safe and dry.
  • The backpack is designed to be versatile and can be used for travel, carry-on, weekend trips, cross-border tourism, overnight stays, and more.

Cons

  • The backpack’s shoulder straps may not be comfortable for extended periods of wear, especially with heavier loads.
  • Some users have reported that the backpack’s zippers can be difficult to open and close. Due to the low cost, the durability is under question. 
  • The backpack’s design may not be suitable for those who prefer a more minimalist look.

We’ve used this backpack on several trips and have found that it’s a great option for those who need a reliable and versatile travel backpack. The large capacity and custom-made storage bags make packing and organizing a breeze, and the water-resistant material and explosion-proof zipper provide peace of mind when traveling in less-than-ideal conditions.

One downside we’ve noticed is that the shoulder straps can be uncomfortable for extended periods of wear, especially with heavier loads. Additionally, some users have reported that the backpack’s zippers can be difficult to open and close, which can be frustrating when you’re in a hurry. For the price point, it’s one of the cheapest best backpacks for travel you can find. 

We would recommend the Asenlin 40L Travel Backpack for anyone in need of a reliable and versatile travel backpack. It’s a great option for those who want to stay organized and prepared while on the go.

Thule Subterra Backpack 34L Mineral Backpack

If you’re looking for a versatile backpack that can be used for both travel and everyday use, the Thule Subterra Backpack 34L Mineral Backpack is a great option.

Pros

  • The wide rolltop opening with magnetic closure provides easy access to your belongings.
  • The removable packing cube allows you to keep your clothes organized while traveling.
  • The padded laptop sleeve with safe edge construction and secure flap closure protects your laptop (15″ MacBook Pro or 15.6″ PC).

Cons

  • The lateral zip for accessing your laptop can be tempting for thieves.
  • The backpack may feel heavy when fully packed.
  • The shoulder straps may not be comfortable for extended periods of wear.

We recently took the Thule Subterra Backpack on a week-long trip and were impressed with its functionality. The wide rolltop opening made it easy to access our belongings, and the removable packing cube helped keep our clothes organized throughout the trip. The padded laptop sleeve provided peace of mind knowing our laptop was safe and secure.

However, we did notice that the lateral zip for accessing our laptop was a bit too easy to open, which made us worry about the security of our belongings. Additionally, when the backpack was fully packed, it did feel quite heavy on our shoulders, and the shoulder straps were not as comfortable as we would have liked for extended periods of wear.

We would recommend the Thule Subterra Backpack 34L Mineral Backpack for those looking for the best backpack for travel.

Osprey Sojourn Porter 30L Travel Backpack

If you are looking for a backpack that is both comfortable and durable for your travels, then the Osprey Sojourn Porter 30L Travel Backpack might be the one for you.

Pros

  • The AirScape backpanel and tuckaway harness and hipbelt make it comfortable to wear for long periods of time.
  • The unique Straight Jacket compression provides extra padding and load control, ensuring that your belongings are protected.
  • The TSID luggage registration included with each piece gives you peace of mind that your bag will always find its way back to you.

Cons

  • The waist belt isn’t as comfortable and doesn’t offload much from the shoulder.
  • The backpack might be too big for some airlines’ carry-on restrictions.
  • The price point might be too high for some travelers on a budget.

This backpack is perfect for those who want a high-quality backpack that can withstand the wear and tear of travel. The heavy-duty bluesign approved, recycled high tenacity and ballistic material ensures that your backpack will last for years to come. The Sojourn Porter 30L Travel Backpack is also compatible with Daylite and Farpoint/Fairview daypacks, making it a versatile option for your travels.

The backpack’s 24L x 13W x 4H size is perfect for a weekend getaway or a longer trip. The backpack’s pocket/divider distribution is well thought out, making it easy to organize your belongings. The little chest cross strap made a huge difference in weight distribution and was helpful during long walks.

Overall, if you are looking for a durable, comfortable, and overall best backpack for travel, the Osprey Sojourn Porter 30L Travel Backpack might be the one for you.

Best Backpack for Travel

Buying Guide

When looking for the perfect backpack for travel, there are a few key features that you should consider. Here are some factors to keep in mind when choosing the best product for your needs:

Size and Capacity

The size of your backpack will depend on the length of your trip and the amount of gear you plan to bring. If you’re traveling for an extended period of time, you’ll likely need a larger backpack with a higher capacity. However, if you’re only going away for a weekend, a smaller backpack will suffice.

Comfort and Fit

Your backpack should be comfortable to wear, especially if you’re going to be carrying it for long periods of time. Look for backpacks with padded straps and back panels, as well as adjustable straps to ensure a snug fit.

Durability

A good travel backpack should be made from high-quality materials that can withstand wear and tear. Look for backpacks made from durable fabrics like nylon or polyester, and check for reinforced stitching and sturdy zippers.

Organization

Keeping your gear organized is essential when traveling. Look for backpacks with multiple compartments and pockets to help you stay organized. Some backpacks even come with built-in organizers for things like laptops and tablets.

Weight

When choosing the best backpack for travel, it’s important to consider the weight of the backpack itself. A heavy backpack can be cumbersome and make it difficult to move around. Look for backpacks made from lightweight materials to help keep the overall weight down.

By considering these factors, you can find a backpack that meets your needs and will help make your travels more comfortable and organized.

Frequently Asked Questions

What features should I look for in a carry-on backpack for international travel?

When selecting a carry-on backpack for international travel, it is important to consider the size, weight, and storage capacity of the backpack. Look for a backpack that meets the carry-on size requirements of major airlines and has enough space to hold all your travel essentials. Additionally, consider features such as lockable zippers, padded shoulder straps, and multiple compartments for easy organization.

Which backpack is recommended for both travel and work purposes?

If you are looking for a backpack that can serve both travel and work purposes, consider a backpack with a laptop compartment and a professional design. Look for features such as padded laptop sleeves, organizational pockets, and comfortable straps for all-day wear. Some popular options include the Osprey Porter and the Nomatic Backpack.

How to choose the best lightweight backpack for extended travel?

When selecting a lightweight backpack for extended travel, look for a backpack that is made of durable materials and has a comfortable suspension system. Consider features such as adjustable shoulder straps, a padded back panel, and a hip belt for added support. Additionally, look for a backpack with multiple compartments and pockets for easy organization.

What are the top-rated travel backpacks for women?

Some of the top-rated travel backpacks for women include the Deuter ACT Lite 60+10 SL, the Gregory Jade 53, and the Osprey Aura AG 65. When selecting a backpack, consider factors such as size, weight, and storage capacity, as well as features such as adjustable straps and a comfortable suspension system.

What size backpack is ideal for a two-week trip to Europe?

The ideal size of a backpack for a two-week trip to Europe depends on your personal packing style and travel needs. However, a backpack with a capacity of 40-50 liters is generally sufficient for most travelers. Look for a backpack with multiple compartments and pockets for easy organization, as well as features such as lockable zippers and a comfortable suspension system.

How do I select a travel backpack that is suitable for air travel regulations?

When selecting a travel backpack that is suitable for air travel regulations, consider the size and weight restrictions of the airline you will be flying with. Look for a backpack that meets the carry-on size requirements of major airlines and has a weight of less than 7-10 pounds. Additionally, consider features such as lockable zippers and a padded back panel for added comfort during travel.

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