Lugging a crammed full tote bag through the airport can be cumbersome, heavy and not great on our backs! So when a friend recently asked me to help her find a “fashionable” backpack that she can use when she travels that can store everything she needs .. I went looking.
The backpack must fit…
- Laptop with pouch for cords etc.
- Makeup Bag
- Sunglasses, Readers
- Kindle, maybe a book, magazine and newspaper.
- Hand Sanitizer
- Protein bars
- Bottle of water
Other things to consider…weight, fabric, color (neutral and black), a sleeve to fit over a rolling bag, compartments, and spill, water resistant.
I have narrowed it down by weight and compartments. My biggest pet peeve is buying a bag that weighs more than what I want to put into it, so that is a big one for me. I wanted them to come in neutral colors so that it would work for the beach or city. Black is always fashionable, but sometimes a grey, olive or tan is a nice transition color.
Honestly – this was harder than it sounds and now I know why she asked me. I was hard pressed to find one bag that fit all the needs considering how many backpacks are sold. The main issue being there are not a lot of them that are also “fashionable”.
I know she considered the Metro Backpack as a good option but wasn’t sure that was her top choice. I have to say of all the bags I looked at, it came in pretty high on my list (Below is NOT in order of my favorites – it was random how I listed them) because it checked off all the requirements. Sometimes the first one you find ends up being the one you buy… I will be curious to see her choice.
The Best Fashionable Travel Backpacks.. I could find.
1. Metro Deluxe Backpack – Weighs 1.61lb -$275 (4 colors ) It fits a 15 inch laptop, luggage sleeve, phone pocket, 6 interior pockets, detachable pouch, key clip, exterior pockets for newspaper and water bottle. While the black is chic, I am gravitating to the pewter color. I like that it would work in a city and a tropical destination. My concern is the fabric can be a little floppy and not constructed.
2. Dakota Neoprene Backpack – Large 2.6lbs – $215 (3 sizes available) – Water resistant and wipeable fabric, holds 16″ laptop, luggage sleeve, outside pockets and includes shoe bag and dust sleeve. The weight of the bag is a deal breaker for me. I don’t want to carry more weight..this is a no for me.
3. The Beacon – Weight 1.6lbs – $298 – Black with several interior color choices. Holds 13″ laptop, luggage sleeve, exterior pocket for small items, no water bottle outside pocket which is a problem.
4.Carson Backpack – 1.6Lb – $395 (6 colors) – Fits up to a 15″ laptop, lots of compartments, luggage sleeve, phone snap pocket, tablet pocket and water resistant nylon.. I don’t know why bag makers can’t include a water bottle sleeve that will fit a good size water bottle. That takes a few points off here but I really like this one.
5.The ReNew Transit Backpack no weight listed $85 (4 colors) – It is listed in many guides as an overall favorite. Fits a 15″ exterior laptop pocket, two water bottle holders and a luggage sleeve. It’s made of recycled polyester. I am not sure about the flap over packet . that might bother me and that’s why I don’t think this would be my choice.
Honorable Mention: Two other options are from Away who is known for their suitcases. They have a everywhere backpack (2.4 lbs $195) that does not have an outside water bottle holder and the F.A.R. Backpack (super light at .78lbs $130 in 5 colors).
Almost all of the backpacks have a video to watch and see what they fit and how they look. Definitely click through to watch them.
Don’t Forget a Small Crossbody or Belt Bag..
I discovered my love for my everywhere belt bag on our last trip. I was able to keep my small wallet, passport, eyeglasses, small hand cream and lip gloss right in front so I wasn’t fumbling around in my tote. I recently got this bigger one and I loved that it had a little more room for my essentials.
It may seem overkill to have a crossbody and backpack, but it is super handy to have something in front instead of reaching around you to get into the backpack or hanging it on one shoulder which negates the reason for the backpack in the first place.. to save your back and neck.
Other Posts you may enjoy: Best Rolling Carry On Luggage that will Fit Overhead and How to Get Organized with Pouches
There are more backpack options in the slider below…
If you got this far and know of a backpack that I missed or you LOVE – please comment or message me – I will add it to the list!and update this post. Thank you.