17 Best Laptop Backpacks for Every Style and Budget
Laptops follow their owners everywhere these days. These are the best options for safely and comfortably toting yours around.
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Back it up!
Backpacks are making a comeback. The reasons are numerous, and functionality and style are high on that list. But the fact that shoulder bags can wreak serious havoc on the body is one of the biggest factors for choosing the switch, especially if you’re planning to haul that affordable new laptop you just bought around with you.
“A laptop backpack is designed in a way that it distributes loads to the shoulders and hips in order not to strain your back,” says Veruska Anconitano, an award-winning food and travel blogger at The Foodellers. Even if you think your electronics aren’t too heavy, toting them in a messenger or crossbody bag puts too much pressure on a single side, and may eventually lead to neck and muscle spasms, as well as lower back discomfort.
But it’s not just adults who need to watch their backs, according to the American Chiropractic Association, young children and teens are suffering from back pain much earlier than previous generations, and the use of overweight backpacks is a major contributing cause. As kids head back to class in the fall, you’ll need all the back-to-school sales you can find to stock up on back-to-school supplies and college dorm room essentials, including the best backpacks for every day. (Side note: Be sure to check out back-to-school memes to help relieve the pressure, financially and mentally, of any new year stresses.)
Of course, not all laptop backpacks are created equal. To choose the right one for you, first consider its characteristics, comfort, and purpose. Tess DiNapoli, a style expert with Targus, explains: “The first thing to look for are the features that come with the bag itself,” she says. “Is the backpack you have your eye on capable of USB integration? Will the base of your laptop backpack be ruined once it touches rain? These are the important questions to ask up front.” More essential qualities to watch out for include padded straps, plenty of pockets, and sturdy materials. DiNapoli also points out, making sure your holdall actually fits the model of your laptop is vital.
How we made our selections
With new brands, designs, and innovations constantly popping up, we scoured the web for the best options to suit a variety of needs, whether you’re going on a global voyage, commuting to work, or starting school. And because money matters, there are also choices at every price point. From there, we consulted industry experts, combed through user reviews, and found the top picks with thousands of five-star ratings. We also concentrated on discovering creative and inventive qualities that boost value and focused on delivering durable gear that will last for the long haul. After you’ve identified your perfect match, find out how to make your laptop battery last longer.
Best overall: Matein Travel Laptop Backpack
This best-selling backpack has an astonishing 36,000-plus five-star reviews on Amazon, and it’s easy to see why. Its slim frame is surprisingly packed with ample storage. The main compartment is roomy and perfect for daily essentials, and there’s a separate padded space for laptops and other small tech devices.
The professional on the go will appreciate added extras like an external USB charging port and built-in charging cable. Multi-panel ventilated padding provides maximum back support, and breathable and adjustable shoulder straps relieve the stress of an over-packed bag. Take note: Here’s what happens when kids wear a heavy backpack every day.
Reviewers rave about the bag’s features and value. Brittany Staszak says, “This backpack is majestic. It held up to six airports in 12 days, a business trip across the country, and numerous meetings in soggy, muddy solar construction sites and STILL looks like new. It has SO many nifty pockets, it expands to hold many extra items. Overall, this bag is worth it.”
- Hidden anti-theft pocket
- Luggage strap
- Comes in eight colors and two sizes
Best multi-purpose option: Targus 15″ Newport Backpack
One of the best laptop backpacks for any occasion, DiNapoli recommends this style because of its “minimalistic, sleek exterior, and leatherette accents.” Here, you don’t have to sacrifice style for function. Made of high-density, water-repellent twill nylon, you get a durable construction that’s protective, with a luxurious sheen that’s still fashionable.
DiNapoli also notes, the numerous compartments make it as impressive on the inside as the outside. It has three different zippered pockets on the front and a dedicated section for a laptop, tablet, or other device. A hidden back panel pocket is ideal to safe-keep your phone, passport, or other valuables. Choose a goes-with-everything black or classic beige version perfect for any activity. This is definitely one product you’ll use every day.
- Padded adjustable shoulder straps
- Luggage strap
- Limited lifetime warranty
Best for parents: Paperclip Willow Convertible Backpack Diaper Bag
This modern upgrade to the traditional diaper bag will be every parent’s new obsession. Now you can conveniently and safely change baby’s diaper virtually anywhere with the unique (and patented) integrated changing station that rolls out in seconds. Side walls provide privacy and security, then detach with ease when it’s time to be cleaned (the attachment is also machine washable!).
As your baby grows, use the pad as a sanitary place to eat snacks or play games on the go. And because parents are tasked with carrying anything kids might need at a moment’s notice, the roomy interior has two padded cubbies, two mesh pockets, and even a built-in zippered wet bag. Large expandable side pockets provide easy access for your cell and keys, or binky and sippy cups. Keep connected—or the kids entertained—with a padded pocket for laptops (up to 15-inches) or tablets. As an added bonus for parents who want to leave the environment a little cleaner for the next generation, the bag is made from water bottles and recycled plastic. Speaking of traveling with kids, these are the trips every mother should take with her child.
- Cushioned straps convert to a messenger bag
- External luggage strap
Best budget choice: XDesign Travel Laptop Backpack with Anti-Theft Lock
For only $19.99, this clean and modern design offers the best bang for your buck. Don’t let the price fool you, it doesn’t skimp on substance. Plus, the people have spoken. There are more than 3,000 glowing five-star reviews on Amazon expelling its virtues. Customers love the design details, like the durable Oxford fabric, which is made with an anti-scratch material for extra security and long-lasting protection (extra important if you’re trying to extend the life of your laptop).
Tech-friendly features include a separate laptop pocket for computers up to 16 inches, an audio jack to listen to music hands-free, as well as an external USB port to charge electronic devices on the go. It’s also built to last with reinforced stitching, and designed with ergonomic comfort in mind: A breathable, moisture-wicking foam back and padded adjustable straps provide additional support.
- Water-resistant fabric
- Anti-theft security lock
Best splurge: Tumi Voyageur Hilden Nylon Backpack
If you want to have it all and money is no object, this is the best laptop backpack for you. “With its modern style and functional design, this backpack is versatile and as good as Tumi’s reputation would lead you to expect,” says Kelly Belknap, a full-time traveler and the founder of Adventurist Backpack Co. “It’s padded, water-resistant, and comes with all the pockets, features, and bells and whistles you’d ever need.” And while the price point might be steep for some, you don’t have to worry about wasting money. Belknap adds, “It’s an investment for people that expect to get a lot of good use out of their backpack, and want to look professional doing it.”
- Available in four colors
- Adjustable straps
- Leather trim
Best for travel: Pacsafe Venturesafe X30 Travel Pack
Saurabh Jindal is a frequent traveler and the founder of the start-up Talk Travel. This sturdy backpack from PacSafe is his favorite, not only because it’s spacious, but also because it offers premium protection. It’s RFID-safe and has zip clips that prevent it from being easily opened by others. Hidden stainless-steel wire slashguards and wire-reinforced straps help fend off slash-and-run theft.
The bag itself also has mesh siding that he says prevents it from getting too sweaty on his back. A perforated EVA foam hip belt and shoulder straps also add ventilated comfort. “All these make it an ideal bag for business travel,” he explains. And while it retails on the expensive side, Jindal says it gives him “a lot of peace” because it’s so secure. While you’re at it, you might also want to check out these weekender bags that travel pros swear by.
- 15-inch laptop compartment
- Side compression straps
Best value: Mancro Laptop Backpack
According to Belknap, if you’re on the hunt for something affordable but still reliable, look no further. She’s a fan of this convenient carryall (for $36.99) because it is “water-resistant, lightweight, and comes with a built-in USB charger and cable. It fits up to a 17-inch laptop and is a great option for students who need a budget-friendly option.”
With nearly 20,000 five-star reviews on Amazon, customers confirm it’s a worthy purchase, citing its pockets (there are more than 10) and travel-friendly features like an anti-theft lock and external luggage strap. Hot tip for any penny-pinching adventurers: If you’re looking to save money on a trip, check out these mini family vacations on a budget.
- Available in six colors and two sizes
- Padded adjustable shoulder straps
Best lightweight option: Lenovo Laptop Backpack
Schlepping around heavy hardware can be a one-way ticket to back pain, which is why choosing a lightweight bag is so important. Weighing in at less than a pound, this streamlined style still offers plenty of perks. A padded interior with an integrated tech compartment keeps electronics safe and comfortably fits most laptops up to 15.6 inches. The spacious interior has several pockets for easy organizing, plus a convenient front pocket for quick access to accessories.
Don’t just take our word for it: More than 8,000 five-star reviewers on Amazon sing its praises. Jose Lopez says: “Lightweight yet very stylish! This is the perfect backpack for someone on the go or just your everyday commute. Great spacing for other things such as a charger or external hard drive. Recommend all the way at a bargain price too!” Verified shopper Johnnybays agreed: “It is very slim, yet you can pack a lot of items in it. I ride my motorcycle with it and it’s very comfortable. Even when loaded, it still feels really light, straps are very comfortable.”
- Water-repellent fabric
- Quilted back panel
- Adjustable padded shoulder straps
Best investment: Lo & Sons The Rowledge
This is the best laptop backpack if you’re looking for a luxe option that won’t ever go out of style. It’s a do-it-all nylon backpack for women who mean business. Your days of rifling through a shapeless tote are over with a front pocket that keeps pens, keys, and earbuds at the ready. It even converts to a tote with stowaway backpack straps and easily transitions into weekend mode with a removable laptop insert.
But just because this is a top-of-the-line model doesn’t mean you have to treat it with kid gloves. Don’t stress about stowing your sweaty clothes after hitting the gym—the removable insert’s water-resistant coating makes it simple to clean. For even more protection, the zippers in the laptop compartment are water-resistant too: They’re specially designed to keep rain (and coffee) out of your laptop sleeve. When it comes to comfort, you’ll love the cloud-like memory foam straps that mold to your body without digging in, and diamond-shaped stitching that prevents them from sliding off. This bag is equally as suited to your daily commute as a luxurious camping adventure.
- Leather accents
- Easy-to-reach small stash pocket
- Discreet zippered side pockets lay flat when not in use
Best for school: Modoker Vintage Laptop Backpack
This good-looking carryall will seamlessly take you from class to campus hangouts to after-hour cocktails. A durable, easy-to-clean, and scratch-resistant nylon fabric is dressed up with faux leather trimmed accents. Choose from two different sizes and six colors to suit your needs and personal style. With six pockets, there’s plenty of room to store all your stuff, including a padded device compartment for a laptop or tablet.
More than 12,000 five-star reviews on Amazon confirm it’s a stellar selection. Happy customer Anna says it looks like beloved brand Herschel, but for half the price. She explains, “I’ve been using this backpack for a year and it still looks the same as the picture even though I have lugged it everywhere like to my car, work, school, coffee shops, libraries, etc. Other students always ask me about it and think it’s the Herschel brand. There is plenty of room inside for books, a separate compartment for my laptop, which has helped keep it free of scratches, and smaller compartments for pens/chargers/etc. It is absolutely comfortable even when it’s full.”
- Water-resistant fabric
- External USB with built-in charging cable
- Adjustable padded shoulder straps
Best for commuters: Targus Urban Laptop Backpack
DiNapoli calls this the best laptop backpack if you’re looking to purchase one that will last for years. And if you bike to work, this was made for you—literally. “Without crushing your wallet in the process, this backpack is specially made with the city biker in mind,” she says. “It not only contains bike safety elements such as a whistle, bike-light loop, and reflecting dots—it also has a rugged base to protect your devices against sudden drops.”
Plus, a dedicated laptop compartment ensures your technology remains guarded. On daily treks to and from the office, airflow padding maximizes air circulation between the bag and your back, and will keep you cool during long rides. Contoured and padded shoulder straps, and a sternum strap to even out the load, also make it comfortable to wear while cruising. In the market for a new ride? Here’s how to choose the best bike for you.
- Water-resistant fabric
- Extra-large mesh water bottle pocket
Best style choice: Samsonite Executive Leather Flap Backpack
This polished pack is the optimal option to wear to work and into the weekend. In a rich port hue, the textured leather and tailored silhouette elevate any look. Structured and sleek, this timeless essential is roomy enough to fit all of your everyday office essentials, including laptops up to 15.6 inches in a separate padded compartment. When dressed up, the adjustable shoulder straps are thin (but still sturdy) and won’t overpower an outfit. Protective feet safeguard against daily wear and the elements, ensuring your pack stays pristine no matter where it ends up. For the perfect companion, pick up one of these smart wallets for people who always seem to lose theirs.
- Side pocket for water bottle or umbrella
- Luggage sleeve
Best practical choice: Peak Design Everyday Backpack V2 30L
This knapsack stands out for its thoughtful organizational details, top-notch protection, and surprising sustainability: The nylon canvas shell is made from 100 percent recycled materials. According to Anconitano, “The best thing about this laptop backpack is that it is so versatile, it can be used both for traveling and for every day.”
In terms of utility, she adds, the first thing to mention is that the lid closes over the top and onto the front of the bag, allowing you to easily grab your gear with one hand. But what really makes this design stand out is the side pockets. She explains, “Both sides of the backpack open completely, so you can access the main compartment without taking the bag off. This is such a cool feature when traveling, and it saves so much time!” In addition, Anconitano says, “The interior of every compartment is lined with Velcro, so you can attach dividers at any height.” It’s a backpack ideal for people interested in looking good, who are also concerned about taking care of their belongings, she adds.
- Weatherproof outer fabric
- Vented quick-drying mesh back panel
- Protected compartment fits a laptop up to 15-inches
Best sustainable option: Targus 15.6 Balance EcoSmart Checkpoint-Friendly Backpack
Targus turns bottles into bags with this eco-friendly pick, made completely from recycled water bottles and PVC-free materials. If you’re a frequent flier, this backpack is both a smart and environmentally friendly choice for simplifying TSA screenings. A patented checkpoint-friendly design opens completely flat to allow your bag to roll through scanning. It’s a feature sure to make your life so much easier as you make your way to the plane, and cut down on any unwanted attention from TSA.
Whether you’re traveling or commuting to work, your electronics are guaranteed to stay secure with the bag’s signature SafePort Sling Plus suspension system, which helps protect your laptop in case of drops. It may look like a typical tech pocket, but it’s anything but standard: Inside, a neoprene cradle is surrounded by foam and suspends your laptop to avoid contact with the floor of the bag. This clever case certainly proves it’s possible to minimize your carbon footprint without forgoing function.
- Structural piping keeps the bag upright wherever you set it down
- Sternum strap helps relieve shoulder weight
- Padded lower back panel helps distribute weight evenly
Best security: Tzowla Business Laptop Backpack
When carrying around a laptop and other valuable electronics, the last thing you want to worry about is theft. Whether you’re at the gym, a day trip, or beach outing, your tech is taken care of with this bag’s durable metal zipper lock. Enter a passcode to access the soft padded interior, which offers 360-degree protection from scratches, knocks, bumps, or accidental dropping. A hidden external zipper pocket is perfect for your phone or other small pricey possessions.
More than 16,000 five-star reviews on Amazon advocate for this trusted bag, including satisfied customer Leslie, who says, “GREAT quality backpack. Material feels very durable, backpack is well constructed. Comes with a lifetime warranty too. Integrated charging feature, lockable zippers (for travel), strap for hooking to luggage pull handle, padded shoulder straps with breathable mesh finish, ample compartments for improved organization, and interior hook for easy access to keys are all bonuses on this product.” And as Leigha Patterson simply put it: “This could be the best invention ever.”
- Available in two sizes and six colors
- Water-resistant nylon
- Breathable mesh shoulder straps
- USB charging port
Best casual option: JanSport Big Campus Backpack
For more than 50 years, JanSport has been a go-to source for reliable rucksacks, and there’s a reason both adults and kids continue to return to the trusted brand. The simple, convenient designs and top-notch construction are unparalleled. The brand is so confident, in fact, that all bags come with a lifetime guarantee. If one breaks, they’ll replace or fix it, no questions asked.
This tech-friendly bag is an updated version of their classic design and our choice for any low-key outings where you might need to bring along a laptop. There are two large compartments, an internal 15-inch padded tech sleeve, a zippered front mesh and utility pocket, and a side water bottle holder. The best part? It’s ultra-lightweight for all your daytime adventuring. With 14 cool colors and fun patterns to choose from—like funky florals, groovy tie-dye, and far-out galaxy prints—these are the best laptop backpacks for anyone who wants to stand out in a crowd.
- Lifetime guarantee
- Ergonomic S-curve shoulder straps
- Fully padded back panel
Best convertible option: Samsonite Encompass Convertible Brief Backpack
Take the guesswork out of packing for a long day with this carryall that caters to any occasion. Four wearable modes provide the flexibility and convenience needed for the fast-paced, modern city dweller. Simply switch out the straps to don the bag as a backpack, crossbody, across the shoulder, or as a tote.
Electronics are safe with a padded compartment that fits most laptops up to 14.1-inches, plus an external cushioned pocket designed for tablets. A powerhouse nylon fabric has a water-resistant coating for protection against the elements. As a trusty globe-trotting companion, a retractable luggage loop fits over suitcase handles for hassle-free toting, while an RFID “Data Vault” pocket safeguards your travel essentials from identity theft. For more essential items to keep your belongings close, check out these classic handbags to add to your wardrobe.
- Available in three colors
- Can be worn four ways
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