Looking to Find the Best Backpack?
We Looked at 6 Criteria to Help You Choose the Best Commuter Backpack.
We narrowed down the list of choices by using 6 main criteria.
- Must Be Made to Last.
- Must Protect Your Gear from Rain / Snow.
- Have Great Accessibility
- Use Great Materials
- Be Comfortable
- Be an Excellent Value
In general, all of the bags were good, but we did find one stand out that checked all the criteria, and it’s our * Editor’s Pick.
Here’s our 10 Backpacks you should consider.
Let’s get started…
The Brooks England Rivington Pickwick Backpack
Ensuring the safety of your items is a big part of commuting and a constant worry for many. With the Brooks England Rivington Pickwick Backpack, there’s no need to stress about the safety of up to 26L of your belongings.
This pack offers many sleeves and pockets all while staying composed and not looking cluttered. It offers an internal sleeve to keep your laptop safe, and the main compartment rolls up towards the back which makes it possible for worry-free travel and the safety of all of your items.
Multiple Straps to Customize How you Carry While Still Looking Professional, but at $300, we think there are better values out there.
The Brooks England Rivington Pickwick also allows a versatile way of transporting it, from carrying it in your hand or buckling up the chest strap and wearing it on your back.
There’s also no need to concern over ever looking unprofessional with its’ sleek leather trim to complement its’ cotton base, making it fit for any environment that you may be commuting to.
Click Here: Brooks England Rivington Pickwick Backpack – Price: $300
The Just Porter Weather-Proof Commuter Backpack*
This bag has some great construction detail and it accommodates to those who want to use it on a daily basis or an overnight trip. It’s minimalist design allows you to keep everything in an organized manner, but is lined throughout.
It fits a laptop in the internal sleeve compartment with padding on 5 sides. This pack did the best job with the laptop area – a huge plus if you’re carrying around an expensive laptop and want it safe.
A great weatherproof exterior plus a laptop compartment padded on 5 sides keeps your laptop safe. Solid construction, plus a lifetime warranty. At $159, it’s a great backpack, better than packs that we looked at in the $220 range. It checked off all of our must haves.
This backpack is comfortable and has nice wide shoulder straps to reduce strain. Bonus feature: they’re using magnetic buckles on the flap, and it’s the coolest thing we’ve seen. Lastly, Just Porter offers a lifetime warranty -that’s a huge plus.
Click Here: Just Porter Streeter Backpack – Price: $159
The RiutBag R15
Whether you’re commuting to work or traveling by plane this pack is an interesting choice. Starting with the exterior RuitBag R15 D-Pocket, you’re able to store items you might need during your commute like keys or your cellphone, you don’t even need to take off your bag to access them. The many interior pockets and the 15” laptop sleeve allow you to stay organized no matter how you’re traveling.
A Nice Pack at $155 with an Unusual Design. However, we’ve heard others mention problems with accessibility issues. We estimate a total cost of about $220 with shipping and import fees.
The RiutBag R15 allows you to carry it on your back or attach it to your suitcase handle with its specialized straps. Although it is a little smaller being 15L if you use all the pockets correctly you can fit more than you think.
Note: You’ll Have a Shipping and Customs Expense.
Available Here: The RiutBag R15 – Price: $155 (not including shipping and customs About $215 estimated)
The Finisterre Waterproof Rucksack
A lengthy commute can feel even more prolonged when you’re uncomfortable, and Finisterre understands that. The Finisterre Waterproof Rucksack offers the most personalized comfort from the fit of the pack to the look of it.
It can seem near impossible to get the customized fit you search for, but this pack allows you to use the waist and chest straps to maximize your comfort. It also allows you to roll your main compartment flap forward or backward to get the look you’re going for.
German minimalism means just that. Practical with few features. The size is good for daily use, but 20L is a bit small if you live in an area where you may want to bring more than a light jacket in your backpack.
Coming in a 20L size makes it perfect for your day to day travel by fitting all of your belongings comfortably, but not being too overbearing. The build of the pack also makes sure to protect against any rainy conditions. It also holds up against daily wear-and-tear, the Finisterre Waterproof Rucksack also allows you to replace specific components to help ensure that it lasts through all of your journeys.
Available Here: Finisterre Waterproof Rucksack – Price: $199
The Mission Workshop The Fitzroy
You’re already on a long commute, why make it harder on yourself and make the material of your backpack heavy as well? That’s what The Mission Workshop avoids with The Fitzroy – Advanced. This pack is made of advanced materials that make it feel extremely light and easy to carry on a long commute.
A Unique Urethane Exterior Makes This Bag Unique, BUT at 40 Liters It’s HUGE! It’s cost Matches it’s Size at $245. Solid pick if you need something huge. We found it difficult to match for daily use, but if you carry shoes, some clothes, books, computer this might be good. It may be too big for a person under 6 feet tall.
This pack is coated with double urethane which gives it the appearance of aging naturally over the time you have it and with each use, so your pack will be as unique as you are.
Don’t be fooled by its lightweight this does not take away from how durable the Mission Workshop Fitzroy – Advanced is. This urethane covering also coats the zippers along with the exterior and gives it a waterproof coating, preparing it for any rain you might encounter on your commute.
You can also pack all of your belongings throughout the five pockets and compartments this backpack offers, along with the 15” laptop zippered sleeve.
Available Here: Mission Workshop The Fitzroy – Price: $245
The Sandqvist Dante
Having to carry your commuter backpack every day can start to take a toll on you after a while. the Sandqvist Dante helps take some of that pressure off of you. With its’ adjustable straps, you are able to distribute the weight of your pack in a more comfortable and bearable way.
Even if certain days you prefer not to have your bag on your back at all during your commute the Sandqvist Dante’s allows you to carry your bag by its’ leather handle.
A straightforward rucksack that is no frills. Minimalist, but if you carry a tablet or computer look elsewhere since we are concerned about the protection aspect.
Additionally, the leather buckle going down the front of the roll top bag is double security to make sure all of your items are held in place during your commute. It’s a no frill bag, that screams minimalist, which can be great or not so great depending on your protection needs.
The pocket located on the front of the Sandqvist Dante makes for easy access and storage for essential items during your commute like headphones or sunglasses. From the canvas exterior to the leather details you will be able to commute in comfort.
Available Here: Sandqvist Dante – Price: $129
The Osprey Radial 34
The Osprey Radial 34 is crafted especially for those who like to commute via bike and try to make it as easy as possible for you. This pack has a cycling specific design starts with the extra storage space for your gear, including your helmet, so there’s no need to worry about losing it or having to hold it.
A strong pack that is utilitarian, but lacks style. The Radial 34 feels like more of a hiking pack than an urban pack.
There is a special pocket designated just for the safe keeping of your bike lock. Easy access is emphasized in this pack which includes a key fob attachment to ensure that you are not constantly having to take your bag off and sits in a natural upright position for quick access to all your attachments.
The Osprey Radial 34 also has a designated spot for a blinker attachment to help keep your commute to or from safe. Rain is nothing to fear when it comes to the Osprey Radial 34 as it has a built in rain cover to help keep all of your personal items dry and secure.
Available Here: The Osprey Radial 34 – Price: $180
The DBH Rucksack
This cheaply priced backpack has little flash. Getting to your destination is important, but so is getting there safely. The DBH Waterproof Rucksack uses its’ 25L size to ensure travel safety and durability. This pack makes sure you are seen during your commute, it includes reflective design and logos on the front and sides to ensure your visibility even in low lighting. A loop to hold an optional light on the back.
It’s a cheap alternative, but details are spared at some cost. If you’re starting out on a limited budget, this might be one to consider. If you can afford more, look at some of our other choices.
The build of the DBH Rucksack blocks out water from entering the pack, even in the seams. Stability is no joke when it comes to this rucksack. The foam harness assures the stability of the backpack on your commute. So you never have to fear it slipping off, while still offering a comfortable fit. You are also able to tighten every strap on the back. This way you avoid them flowing freely during a windy commute, and further securing the pockets in your rucksack.
Available Here: The DBH Rucksack – Price: $66
The Miir 25L Commuter – $159
The Miir Commuter Backpack is a lightweight pack straightforward design. This makes it easier to carry all of your belongings on a lengthy commute a little less strenuous. Storage is the main priority with this pack, but that is at the expense of padding for your 15 “laptop.
Has that Extra Storage Space, BUT your laptop may be in danger with lack of padding! Note: There is Minimal Shoulder Strap Padding. We found a Timbuk2 option at $79 bucks that delivers a lot of the same features.
You can store your water bottle, extra equipment, or any other belongings you deem a necessity on your commute. The sleek outside of the pack is coated with a water-resistant finish. We were trying to find out the exterior coating, but couldn’t figure out what classification it should be reported as. The Miir 25L Commuter is also equipped for bikes. It includes a designated loop on the outside for a bike light attachment. The pack is secured on the outside with a roll down top. You are able to buckle it down for optimum security.
Available Here: The Miir Commuter Backpack – Price: $159
The Topo Designs Klettersack
For on the move jobs that require equipment every day, a regular backpack just won’t cut it. The Topo Designs Klettersack is built for just the job. From the straps to the buckles this commuter backpack does not mess around. The straps are crafted with seatbelt material to ensure their security, and the buckles are nothing short of heavy duty.
Optional Attachment Space for All of Your Important Equipment for Any Adventure. It’s Really More Outdoor than a Commuter Backpack Which Means it Has Bulk.
The Topo Designs Klettersack also allows for you to attach extra equipment. This works whether that be biking or hiking gear, to a camera bag. This backpack is not one to step down from a difficult task. The interior also includes a sleeve to fit your 15” laptop and 22.4L of belongings. The pack is then closed up by a drawstring accompanied with a zipper pocket on the exterior. The leather finishes on the outside give the bag a professional look. So it is ready for any setting you might want to take it to.
Available Here: The Topo Design Klettersack – Price: $159
TL;DR – Too Long Didn’t Read
Here’s the Deal. Not all commuter backpacks are built the same. Above are some quality bags, but some are better values than others. The Fitzroy is a great pack, but HUGE almost to the point of too big unless you’re above 6’3″ feet tall. The Brooks takes it to a new level at $325 but we’re trying to figure out the price point. So, if you’re a person that like to have something high quality and a great price, our PICK IS THE JUST PORTER STREETER. It was the best constructed commuter bag we’ve seen (especially at that price), and we highly recommend it.