The 9 Best Backpacks of 2019

Tote your gear with style and ease

Tourist with backpack walking on Regent Street in London, UK
Alexander Spatari / Getty Images
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Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Herschel Supply Co. Pop Quiz Backpack on Amazon

“Quality-made bags combine the classic, timeless look with modern practicality.”

Best Budget: AmazonBasics Classic Backpack on Amazon

“This classic backpack is easy on the wallet.”

Best Travel Backpack: eBags TLS Mother Lode Weekender at Amazon

“Plenty of options to make both packing and carrying stress-free.”

Best Backpack Diaper Bag: Multi-function Large Diaper Backpack at Amazon

“Parents agree that this is the best diaper bag they have ever used.”

Best for Toddlers: Skip Hop Zoo Kids Backpack on Amazon

“Has oversized zipper pulls and a mesh side pocket for a sippy cup."

Best for High School: FJÄLLRÄVEN 'Kånken' Backpack at Nordstrom

“Design accommodates books, lunch, or travel supplies all in its slim profile.”

Best for College: Victorinox Vx Sport Cadet Backpack at Amazon

“It can handle toting around heavy textbooks.”

Best Laptop Backpack: Kopack Slim Laptop Backpack on Amazon

“Thoughtfully designed with the commuter in mind.”

Best for Work: ISM The Classic Leather Backpack at Amazon

“Sleek bag crafted from full-grain black leather and waterproof nylon.”

  • 01 of 09

    Best Overall: Herschel Supply Co. Pop Quiz Backpack

    This classic backpack from Herschel Supply Co. built a solid reputation that backs up its good looks. There’s a lot to love about Herschel backpacks. These quality-made bags combine the classic, timeless look with modern practicality. The internal mesh organizer, key clip, and padded laptop sleeve provide the organization inside. And the extra cushion on the Pop Quiz backpack keeps your equipment protected when toting your computer across town. This medium-sized option works perfect for a kid's school backpack but doesn't have the space for extended overnight trips. Offered in an abundance of color combinations, some that include a faux-leather bottom (which looks great, but may peel over time), this durable backpack is perfect for anyone needing grab-and-go style.

  • 02 of 09

    Best Budget: AmazonBasics Classic Backpack

    The AmazonBasics Classic Backpack proves that a back-to-school pack doesn’t have to cost a bundle. This budget-friendly option boasts three zippered compartments (including the main center section of the bag) and two side pockets with Velcro closures. For extra comfort, this version offers a padded back panel and generously padded shoulder straps. Purchasers had minimal expectations for this economical bag but were pleasantly surprised by both its capacity and its durability to withstand conditions. Yes, you may be able to find a cheaper backpack still, but you'll be giving up both space and quality materials. This classic backpack is easy on the wallet, competes with some of the biggest brand names, and holds up to any task asked of it. 

  • 03 of 09

    Best Travel Backpack: eBags TLS Mother Lode Weekender Convertible

    The Mother Lode Weekender Convertible Backpack suits any weekend adventure or trans-continental trip. This backpack is thoughtfully designed with the traveler in mind and has plenty of options to make both packing and carrying stress-free. Inside the pack are foldout dividers in the main compartment to organize your goods. A large mesh pocket on the top of the backpack adds more space for packing and compressing. And the expandable zipper and compression straps allow you to add 10 percent more space to the bag, while still keeping the profile slim and compact. On route to your destination, you’ll appreciate the padded straps and additional waist belt that make this backpack comfy on your back. But if you decide to carry it duffel-bag style instead, just stow the straps behind the zippered panel and clip on the shoulder strap. Purchasers claim this is the only travel bag you’ll ever need. 

  • 04 of 09

    Best Backpack Diaper Bag: HapTim Multi-function Large Diaper Backpack

    Equal parts fashionable and functional, the HapTim Multi-Function Diaper Bag Backpack is perfect for parents on-the-go! This bag holds all of your gear in its many zippered pockets (there are 17 pockets total), so keeping the essentials organized will be a breeze. Using a backpack diaper bag instead of a traditional diaper bag frees up your hands, which parents agree is easier when traveling.

    The unisex color of this backpack is perfect for both mom and dad, and it boasts an ultra-cozy fit thanks to the 3D breathable padded backside and shoulder straps. The bag’s exterior is crafted from waterproof, high-quality nylon and the zippers are non-fraying and extra-strong. Customers agree that this diaper bag backpack (which also comes with a changing pad, stroller straps, and three insulated pockets) is the best they have ever used and will last a lifetime.

    Continue to 5 of 9 below.
  • 05 of 09

    Best for Toddlers: Skip Hop Zoo Kids Backpack

    For a kid-friendly backpack that houses the essentials in a fun design, the Zoo Kids Backpack is a runaway winner. This compact kid’s backpack comes in more than twenty-four designs, each featuring a cute animal face. It's small enough for pint-sized people, but also fits a surprising number of items, too. Little ones can easily open the backpack’s oversized zipper pulls and the mesh side pocket can hold a water bottle or a sippy cup for easy access. It's also lined with an easy-to-clean phthalate-free interior. Pack it for daycare with a change of clothes, small toys, a snack, and diapers. But don't expect to squeeze in a standard-sized notebook. Because of its shape and small size, Skip Hop's backpack is great for toddler-aged kids, but not well suited for school-age children.

  • 06 of 09

    Best for High School: FJÄLLRÄVEN 'Kånken' Water Resistant Backpack

    Courtesy of Nordstrom

    This iconic Scandinavian backpack has been making its rounds in the fashionable set since the 1960s. Its basic design accommodates everything you need to carry—books, lunch or travel supplies all in its slim profile. You can choose from dozens of colors to find the right match for you.

    For those who need to carry a laptop, this bag will fit most 13" models with its boxy construction. It also has a handle on the top of the pack so you can carry it like a briefcase when you want to give your shoulders a break. Plus, it's water resistant which will keep all your goods secure and dry if a rainstorm appears out of nowhere. 

    If you are looking for a simple design that makes a style impact this is the backpack for you. They have a few different models to suit all of your needs. 

  • 07 of 09

    Best for College: Victorinox Vx Sport Cadet Backpack

    Back to school time already? Since busy college students rely on their backpacks for, well, pretty much everything, a durable-yet-stylish bag is a must-have. We love this backpack because it can handle toting around heavy textbooks in the padded rear compartment (it can also hold a 16-inch laptop), and there’s a padded electronic device pocket with anti-scratch lining. It also has several other multi-function pockets, card slots, and mesh ID pockets for odds and ends.

    The padded back panel and adjustable shoulder straps also give this bag a huge leg up. Because they'll be using their backpack throughout the day, your college student will appreciate the extra padding. The Cadet even has side compression straps for when you’re dealing with a particularly heavy load. All in all, when it comes to storage, durability, and comfort, the Victorinox Vx Sport Cadet is the ideal backpack for college.  

  • 08 of 09

    Best Laptop Backpack: Kopack's Slim Laptop Backpack

    Kopack's Slim Laptop Backpack tops the charts for toting technology safely. This laptop backpack is thoughtfully designed with the commuter in mind. The water-resistant exterior protects the contents inside and the USB charging cable adds easy access to power outlets. It features two separate main compartments—one that sits against your back for a laptop, and the other for on-the-go accessories. This computer-minded backpack will fit a laptop up to 15.6 inches in size, which is adequate enough to fit most traditional laptop computers. What sets Kopack's laptop backpack apart from competitors is its four-tooth zipper that resists punctures and can be locked for extra security. Purchasers also enjoy the slimmer profile of this pack over other heavy-duty laptop backpacks. But don’t feel like you have to compromise on storage to get it. Many people use Kopack's Slim Laptop Backpack to carry multiple laptops, chargers, external hard drives, and more.

    Continue to 9 of 9 below.
  • 09 of 09

    Best for Work: ISM The Classic Leather Backpack

    For the ideal work bag, look no further than the ISM Classic Leather Backpack. The price point may be a bit high, but this bag is thoughtfully crafted from full-grain black leather and waterproof nylon and it offers plenty of storage for your belongings. Organizational compartments include a separate laptop compartment with YKK waterproof zippers, a main compartment with a zippered pocket and two pocket sleeves, and a leather side flap for easy-to-access charging. Classic and ultra-functional, the ISM Classic Leather Backpack is perfect for professionals, whether you’re whizzing through TSA, headed to a client meeting in the city, or commuting to and from the office. If you're hesitant about spending the money on a backpack, this bag is backed by a lifetime warranty.