The Best Backpack Brands Compared & Reviewed

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In a Hurry? The test winners after 9 hrs of research

Vbiger Middle School Backpack for Girls – Best Value Why is it better? The handle and straps are thick & don’t strain or stretch with a lot of weightThe zippers are heavy class, and has really cute hanging decorationsThe bag is waterproof, but it feels no different to touchIt is big enough to carry a laptop, books or a binder Purchase JanSport Big Student Backpack – Premium Pick Why is it better? Doesn’t slouch down when you wear it (after adjusting the straps to hug you moderately tightly)The water bottle holder on the side holds on really tightStraps and zipper feel durableHas many compartments (very well organized design of bag- there’s sections for pens, notebooks, etc..) Purchase

9. Dagne Dover

Dagne Dover is an online company formed by Melissa Mash who offers handbags and backpacks to its female customers who are looking to purchase something extraordinary, stylish and functional for the workplace. The New York-based e-retailer has become one of the top backpack brands in the world because of thoughtfully-designed interiors, classic styles and real fashion sense.

The brand was launched in the year 2012, and within such a short period has become globally famous because of streamlined designs and organizational features.

The Dagne Dover backpacks are extraordinary because they are specially manufactured, keeping in mind the needs and requirements of working women. The eye-catching backpacks have enough storage space for carrying regular essentials to the workplace. Its product line includes items like Dakota Backpack and Indi Diaper Backpack in several sizes and colours.

Video

How do you attach a backpack?

Daisy Chains. Daisy chains are webbing loops sewn to the sides or back of a backpack that let you clip extra gear to your pack using carabiners or webbing straps. Daisy chains make it easy to attach external gear using a carabiner.

Frequently Ask Questions

What is the best backpack for middle school?

The Vbiger Middle School Backpack for Girls is our top choice for the best backpack for middle school girls. The tough materials from its handles, straps, and zippers plus its affordable value make this one of the best ones for your daughter.

Do you need a backpack for middle school?

Middle school is when the task of transporting big books and a variety of learning aids such as calculators, rulers, binders, and other equipment is applied to students. Therefore, you ought to be sure that your kid has a bag that will hold up against anything that middle school might bring at her.

How do I wash a middle school backpack for girls?

The first thing you can do is figure out which solution works with your backpack between hand washing and machine washing. If its hand-washing, make sure to pretreat the stains. Then use a gentle brush to clean the whole bag with soapy water. Make sure you use stain removers that have been proven to work.

What every girl should have in her school bag?

Tissues, wet tissues, umbrella, water bottle, hand sanitizer, lip balm, and their usual school supplies like calculators and pens are some of the things that every girl should have in their school bag, especially in middle school.

Best Lightweight Backpack: Timbuk2 Uptown Backpack

Black Packable Backpack Credit: Courtesy of Shopbop

This backpack from Timbuk2 is lightweight without sacrificing quality (or room to pack everything for your trip). Weighing 2.4 pounds and made from a durable polyester material, it can fit a 15-inch laptop comfortably and comes equipped with strategic pockets and compartments to help keep track of everything. Its ventilated back panel creates more breathability and keeps the backpack from feeling like it's weighing you down, while its custom-fit straps provide just the right support and padding. 

To buy: amazon.com, $119

6.NikeSB RPB Skateboarding

As you would expect from one of the most renowned sporting brands in the world, Nike’s Skateboarding Backpacks have almost everything you could want from an EDC backpack that will probably take a beating.

The synthetic exterior makes it incredibly durable, so if you drop it on your way home from school or going across a long stretch at a park on your skateboard, it will be perfectly fine. It also has a lot of compartments and places to hang items that you want to access quickly.

There are pockets on both sides so that you can carry bottles of water (that you are likely to need if you are out on your skateboard). The Nike SB everyday backpacks also come in over a half dozen colors and patterns. The buckle straps give you a way to carry your skateboard, freeing up your hands for other needs.

The interior gives you plenty of space for most of your school needs (provided you don’t need to bring home three large textbooks and a couple of binders).

The back part of the interior has an area for mobile devices, with space for up to a 15-inch laptop. This makes it safer to hold your belongings with a bit of added cushioning. The material between the inside and outside can also keep water and other liquids from seeping through to the items you are carrying unless it gets soaked.

There are also two zipper areas for carrying larger things, making it easy to store your mobile phone close to your back, and books and binders in their own area. This means that your papers will be at less risk of being crumpled when you have to remove your laptop or tablet.

Because the front area is for your skateboard, the two side pockets have zippers so that you can store pens, pencils, keys, and other small items you would usually keep in the front pocket. Both sides also have zippers so that you don’t have to worry about things falling out while you are on the go. 

  • PROS
  • Stylish design
  • External water bottle pockets
  • Good quality finish
  • Great for school
  • CONS
  • No cons, I really like this EDC backpack!

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4.Topo Designs Mens Rover Pack

For a really unique look that takes you back to your childhood, the Topo designs flap pack is ideal. While causing you to smile at its friendly appearance, these backpacks are incredibly durable and perfect for long trips or just everyday use such as school or work.

The material used for every aspect of the Topo designs bag is made for years of use. Even the hardware, such as the straps and snaps, are made from heavy-duty plastic so that it will withstand long and difficult trips. 

While working to make sure that the Topo designs backpacks are able to withstand long and difficult trips, they are also made for your comfort.

The back is padded and the straps are contoured to keep from cutting into your shoulders. The breathable mesh on the back also keeps it clean and dry.

The top flap completely covers the contents and the heavy-duty straps that secure the flap ensure that your stuff remains safe and dry. 

As much time and thought have been put into the exterior, the interior was treated with the same level of detail and consideration.

The internal laptop sleeve will keep your computer safe. The interior pocket has a zipper that will keep other items such as earphones contained and secured. The front zipper gives you a way to carry smaller items so that they don’t get lost in the depths of the main section of these EDC backpacks. 

  • PROS
  • Comfortable design
  • Laptop sleeve 
  • Heavy-duty plastic hardware
  • CONS
  • Slightly expensive

Best Lightweight: Osprey Farpoint 40

Buy on Amazon Buy on Backcountry.com Buy on Osprey.com

Accessible travel expert Stacey Marlene looks for a triple threat (lightweight, comfortable, and spacious) when it comes to travel backpacks. For her, the Farpoint 40 from Osprey fits the bill. “As a slow-traveler who backpacks on a budget, I love that it’s lightweight, you can use it as a carry-on, and it’s very comfortable to wear,” she says. “You can also store away the shoulder straps and hip belt inside the backpack, and there’s a big compartment where you can use it perfectly for your packing cubes.” Plus, it matches size regulations for most major airlines (21 x 14 x 9 inches).

Best for Adventure: Osprey Porter Travel Duffel 30

4.7 Buy on Amazon Buy on Backcountry.com

Osprey Porter 30 Travel Backpack Review

Chances are you’ve seen the Osprey Porter 30 Travel backpack in many security lines—it’s a favorite due to small design details that make it easier to tote around for long periods of time. Measuring in at 2.8 pounds and 20 x 13 x 12 inches, there’s plenty of room to pack a week's worth of gear (or two with some packing cubes). The bag also has a removable harness hip belt for more adventurous outings.

Tested by TripSavvy

You’ll never run out of room—or pockets—with the Osprey Porter 30 Backpack. This backpack has other nifty design features, too. Osprey’s StraightJacket compression system allows you to save space by tightening the dual straps on the front of the backpack. you can tuck the backpack straps into a zippered sleeve to keep them out of your way. Better yet, if you’d like to use a shoulder strap, the backpack comes with D-ring attachments. We’re not kidding when we say this backpack’s main compartment is huge. When we started packing this 30-liter bag for a week-long trip to Ireland, we were able to a ton of clothes and some travel-size toiletries. The bag still wasn’t even close to being full. Unfortunately, we were pretty disappointed with this bag’s laptop/tablet sleeve. While there’s plenty of padding on the back, it’s slightly curved, which isn’t ideal for laptop support. And, there’s no padding on the other side. Overall, the Porter 30 was incredibly easy to carry. Weighing slightly less than 3 pounds, it’s light and small enough to use as a carry-on for a flight. It’s also a fairly malleable backpack, which means that shoving it into a storage bin on a bus, train, or airplane shouldn’t be an issue. — Rebekah Joan, Product Tester

TripSavvy / Rebekah Joan

Backpacking Gear Packing Checklist

Best For Organization

A padded laptop sleeve, compression straps, headphone port, and more make the High Sierra a worthy option. Buying Options $39.88 from Amazon

The Bad

  • Won't fit a 15.6-inch laptop

The Bottom Line This High Sierra backpack is cheap but doesn't skimp on quality or features.

Pros & Cons

4. Osprey

One of the best overall backpacks is available fro

One of the best overall backpacks is available from the brand Osprey. It has been in the business for the last forty years and has an unmatched reputation in the world. The company was found in the year 1974 by Mike Pfotenhauer in Santa Cruz and dealt exclusively in backpacks. The privately-owned brand has a backpack for every situation, and this is why it offers its products in various sizes, for instance, 38 litres, 58 litres and 48 litres.

The Osprey backpacks are very light and comfortable. It has a full suspension system, and there is enough space for storage. The best thing about some of the backpacks is that the user has an option of removing the external straps and the top lid.

It is available in several colours like white, royal blue, green black etc. Some of the items in its line up include Osprey Exos 58 Pack, Osprey Women’s Aura 65 AG and Osprey Men’s Atmos AG.

Best Packable Backpack: Zomake Ultra Lightweight Backpack

Best Selling Backpack on Amazon Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Designed with extremely lightweight and durable nylon, this Amazon best-seller backpack folds down into a sandwich-sized pouch so that you can pack it into your luggage without it taking up space. When in use, the budget-friendly backpack offers a 20-liter capacity and plenty of organizational compartments to fit everything you need for the day. Bonuses: It's water-resistant, has two stretchy side water bottle holders, comes in 10 colors, and costs under $30.

To buy: amazon.com, $15 (originally $25)

Hap Tim Laptop Backpack

(Photo courtesy of Amazon)
(Photo courtesy of Amazon)

Why this backpack: Shoshana Suzanne Schiller said this was “inexpensive but sturdy, with good pockets and plenty of room. I was slinging it over my shoulder daily before COVID-19, and about twice a week for the past year, plus travel, and it still looks as good as new.” I was skeptical that I could get a really good backpack at the bargain price of $36.99. It has a section that wraps a laptop and a water-resistant exterior. But what really excited me was the amazing number of pockets and sections to hold all my stuff. I also appreciate the quick-access exterior pockets and the large opening so I can see what’s inside. Although I use wireless headphones and earbuds, there is a cable pass-through that I can use to charge my iPhone. I’m old, so I like that there are shock-absorbing straps and back padding, along with a top handle. It also comes in five colors, but I prefer dark gray or black to hide scuffs and stains.

Sizing: 16.53 x 9.44 x 11.81 inches, 1.80 pounds

To buy: The bag is available at Amazon.com.

Related: Keep calm and carry on: Our 13 favorite travel carry-ons

Dagne Dover Dakota Backpack

(Photo courtesy of Dagne Dover)
(Photo courtesy of Dagne Dover)

Why this backpack: Grace Chu Jens loves this backpack because the interior storage pockets are useful and it doesn’t scream “I’m a tourist!” It’s also a TPG editor and reader favorite, and it’s no wonder why: It’s stylish yet practical, and easily transitions from the gym, to the office and to the airport without breaking a sweat. The neoprene bag boasts adjustable shoulder straps, interior mesh pockets and even an exterior shoe bag, although the latter is only available for medium- and large-sized backpacks. One of our favorite features, though, is the luggage trolley sleeve that slides seamlessly over our carry-on handles. It comes in five colors. We love the classic onyx (black), dune (a dusty rose) and heather gray.

Sizing: The Dakota Backpack comes in small, medium and large. The small measures 9.5  x 5 x 13 inches; the medium measures 11.5 x 5 x 17 inches; and the large measures 13.25 x 5.25 x 17.5 inches.

To buy: The small is $145, the medium is $185 and the large is $200 at the Dagne Dover website.

Best For Weekend Trips

Compact and comfortable yet expandable, making it the perfect pack for a short trips or weekend getaways. Buying Options $107.99 from Osprey

The Good

  • Travel-friendly
  • TSA approved
  • Good for organization
  • Spacious yet compact

The Bad

  • A bit pricey
  • Might feel somewhat stiff with laptop packed

The Bottom Line If you're constantly doing short trips, the Osprey is worth the price tag. It's a convenient, compact, yet spacious bag that makes it easy to take all of your necessary belongings with you by virtually any means of transportation.

Pros & Cons

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Things To Consider When Buying a Backpack

Before you go to buy a backpack for the school year, consider the following:

• How the bag will be used (Day trips? Business trips? Heavy use every day?)

• How long you’d like it to last (The school year? Multiple school years?)

• The age/body type of the person wearing it (Tall with narrow shoulders? Shorter with wider shoulders?)

• The price point (Budget? Mid-range? Expensive?)

Happy hunting! May your straps never break, and may you never sweat through your only meeting-appropriate shirt.

Why is there a loop on the bottom of my backpack?

The loop on the bottom of your backpack allows you to safely attach your ice axe and other objects with long handles. Those loops might have originally been used to attach an ice axe, but they can secure other gear as well.

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