Your travel backpack is as essential as your luggage. Read on for our favorite styles from brands like Fjallraven, Herschel, and Tumi.

By Katie Fish
Updated November 24, 2020
Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.
Courtesy of Retailers as Credited
| Credit: Courtesy of Retailers as Credited

One of the most important things a traveler can find is the perfect backpack. Like any great travel companion, your pack will be with your through all of your adventures — near, far, urban, outdoors — so you want to make sure that it has all the qualities you need most (just like your favorite travel shoes). Something that is comfortable enough to tote around all day, lightweight enough so that it won’t break your back after a few hours, and also something stylish enough that you feel attractive and confident throughout your trip.

Backpacks are more than just the school bag of your past; they're the best bag for walking around a new city, an amusement park (once they all re-open), hiking, or even as an alternative to luggage. No matter what your plans, there is a style for you. Whether you are looking for a sporty utilitarian one, or a more compact design with a pop of color, a backpack is the perfect bag to carry while on the go. By using a rucksack, you can distribute the weight of everything you want to carry, which means back pains aren’t an issue. Also while using a backpack, the degree of mobility is increased, so no more personal items spill out when you bend over.

We saved you a boatload of personal research and scoured the market for what's available. Here are our picks for the best backpacks for traveling, whether you are looking to take a week-long escape, a weekend getaway, a day trip, or just a short hike in a nearby recreational area. Read on to see our favorite stylish traveling packs for women.

Everlane ReNew Transit Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Everlane

Everlane has made this stylish and minimalist backpack using a strong cotton twill and leather lining, giving it a sophisticated touch for your next trip.

To buy:, $78

Knomo London Mayfair Nylon Beauchamp Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

This sleek black nylon backpack has tons of pockets and a padded 14-inch laptop section inside.

To buy:, $246

Madewell Transport Rucksack

Credit: Courtesy of Shopbop

This Madewell rucksack has plenty of pockets inside and out and is made with a beautiful Italian vegetable-tanned leather that will only look better with wear.

To buy:, $198

Caraa Cloud Stratus Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Caraa

It doesn't get much lighter than Caraa's Cloud Stratus pack, which weighs in at just one pound. Made of an ultra-light water-resistant Italian nylon, it's the perfect pick for a minimalist.

To buy:, $195

Matt & Nat Brave Vegan Leather Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Matt & Nat

This boxy, neutral pick is actually lined with an eco-friendly nylon made from recycled water bottles. It has a compartment for your 15" laptop as well as a special pocket inside that's sized to fit your phone. We love the olive shade, but there are other colorways to choose from.

To buy:, $195

Lululemon City Adventurer Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Lululemon

The perfect commuting bag, this one can fit a 13-inch laptop and so much more. The bottom compartment is perfect for separating gym clothes, lunch, or anything else you may need with you from the rest of your essentials.

To buy:, $128

Pacsafe Slingsafe LX300 Anti-theft Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of eBags

Numerous technical components on this Pacsafe backpack will help prevent pickpocketing and bag slashing, making it one of safest bags on the market.

To buy:, $66 (originally $70)

Paravel Fold-up Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Paravel

Convenience meets style with Paravel's sporty fold-up backpack. You can personalize it with a custom embroidered monogram for just $15, too.

To buy:, $65

State Lorimer Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of State Bags

This lightweight pack is made of a durable nylon material and you can personalize it with embroidered "patches" like a globe or a palm tree. The feature we love most? The sneaky side zipper entry that allows you to grab what's in the bottom of your bag without having to rummage or dump everything out.

To buy:, $90

Mark & Graham Fillmore Vegan Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Mark & Graham

The cruelty-free leather of this structured square backpack is soft to the touch and robust enough to carry all your travel essentials, from your passport to your different currencies and adaptors.

To buy:, $80 (originally $120)

Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft 17L Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of eBags

Though it doesn't look like it, this bag has all of Pacsafe's thoughtful security features built in: from RFID-blocking to a cut-resistant mesh liner to the ability to lock the zippers shut.

To buy:, $76 (originally $130)

VBG VBIGER Canvas Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Amazon reviewers are really into this retro-style canvas pack that can accommodate up to a 15-inch laptop. The straps are padded and there are lots of pockets to keep your smaller sundries organized.

To buy:, $25

Eddie Bauer Stowaway 20L Packable Pack

Credit: Courtesy of Eddie Bauer

When you don't need this ultralight bag, it packs away into one of its front pockets for easy storage. It's also water-resistant and outfitted with four D-rings for toting along extra gear.

To buy:, $15 (originally $30)

Fjallraven Water-resistant Re-Kanken Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Bloomingdale's

Sometimes a pop of color is all you need to make a gloomy day exciting.

To buy:, $90

Tumi Hagen Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Tumi

This pack by Tumi manages to be both polished and practical at the same time, making it easy to pair with your comfy travel clothes and your more stylish looks for exploring cities. It's got room for your laptop and a change of clothes, so no need to head back to your hotel in the middle of the day to change for dinner.

To buy:, $299 (originally $375)

Longchamp Le Pliage Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Nordstrom

This water-resistant nylon backpack comes in 8 colors and folds down flat in case you'd like to pack it to use as a day bag on your trip.

To buy:, $125

Herschel Supply Co. Little America Mid-volume Backpack

Credit: Courtesy of Nordstrom

This Herschel pack has a fleece-lined laptop sleeve pocket, as well as ventilated mesh back padding, to keep you cool while on the go.

To buy:, $60 (originally $100)