- Our choice for the #1 Best Overall Laptop Backpack is the Timbuk2 Authority Laptop backpack.
- With a laptop backpack, you’ll be able to carry your computer safely as well as have room for cables and accessories.
- Some backpacks have enough room for a laptop and a jacket, plus chargers, books, and more.
No matter what type of laptop you own, whether it’s a Windows 11, MacBook, or Chromebook, you need to make sure it’s secure while traveling. Whether you are on a cross-country flight or going from your home to a coffee shop, the right laptop backpack can make all the difference.
You might need extra space for cables, chargers, thumb drives and more and so you need enough storage. Padding is also a big difference maker as you want your laptop to be protected from bumps and falls.
Let’s take a look at the best laptop backpacks you can buy in 2023.
- Best Overall: Timbuk2 Authority Laptop Backpack
- Best Budget Option: Mancro Laptop Backpack
- Best Dual Purpose: Solo Duane Hybrid Convertible Laptop Briefcase
- Best for Large Storage: Thule Crossover 32L Backpack
- Best for Commuters: Incase ICON Lite Pack
- Best for Professionals: Troubadour Apex Compact Backpack
- Best for Gadgets: Herschel Tech Daypack
#1 Best Overall: Timbuk2 Authority Laptop Backpack
Timbuk2 has long been one of the premier names in all backpacks, and the Timbuk2 Authority Laptop Backpack shows why.
With a dedicated pocket that can fit any laptop up to 17 inches in size, there are pockets aplenty here. If you need room for pens, a phone, a notebook, or chargers, you’ll have no worries about fitting everything inside the Authority backpack. More importantly, there is room inside the main compartment for everything from textbooks to a jacket as well as a side pocket for carrying a water bottle.
A luggage pass-through makes this bag good for traveling as does the water-resistant bottom portion so you can comfortably rest it beside you while on the go. Even if you pack the bag completely full, the soft shoulder straps and sternum strap ensure that carrying the backpack is comfortable. Best of all, Timbuk2 offers a lifetime warranty on all of its products, which are made from 100% recycled materials.
|The Authority backpack offers storage for just about everything you could need for a single day.||This might be too much of a backpack for just commuting back and forth to the office.|
|A dedicated laptop portion makes it easy to quickly access a computer.|
Check out the Timbuk2 Authority Laptop Backpack on Amazon.
Best Budget Option: Mancro Laptop Backpack
- 15.6" inch
- Durable dual-access zippers
- Anti-theft combination LOCK design
- Eco-friendly polyester fabric
- External USB Charger Port to charge your phone
Long considered one of the best budget backpack options available, the Mancro Laptop Backpack is perfect for keeping costs low.
One of the big advantages of this best laptop backpack is its quick-access charging port on the exterior of the bag which connects directly to a (purchased separately) USB charging pack for your smartphone. Also, another big advantage for the price is Mancro’s inclusion of a dedicated lock, which keeps the bag safe from prowling eyes while on the go.
The water-resistant interior pockets include a dedicated laptop bag sized well for up to a 15.6-inch laptop with extra padding. On top of the laptop pocket, you have multiple external pockets good for phones, sunglasses, pens, pencils, tablets, and more. The large main pocket is ideal for books or a small jacket but when the Mancro is completely full, it still feels very durable and feels far better to carry than the price would have you believe.
|Priced under $30, the Mancro backpack is perfect for every budget buyer.||The Mancro only comes in two blue colors.|
|The inclusion of a dedicated charging port makes it easy to keep your smartphone powered while on the go.||How well the bag holds up over time is yet to be determined.|
Check out the Mancro Laptop Backpack on Amazon.
Best Dual Purpose: Solo Duane Hybrid Convertible Laptop Briefcase
- One size
- Convertible laptop briefcase
- Polyester fabric
- Padded 15.6" laptop compartment
- Internal tablet compartment
- Large front pocket with organizer section
- 2 quick access front pockets
- Removable adjustable shoulder strap
- Hideaway backpack straps
Another staple name in the laptop bag field, Solo has created the Solo Duane Hybrid Convertible Laptop Briefcase, which is ideal for both office visits as well as more personal days.
What stands out most about the Solo bag is that it looks professional enough to take into the office on any given day and then can quickly convert from briefcase to backpack when you want a more casual look and feel. Regardless of how you use the Duane, the inside of the bag offers a padded laptop compartment with a strap for computers up to 15.6 inches in size.
Converting the Duane from briefcase to backpack and back again takes less than a minute and the shoulder straps for the backpack quickly hide in a dedicated zipper compartment. Along with this hideaway zipper compartment, the bag is full of multiple quick-access pockets for chargers, books, and other accessories you might need during the day. Truly a unique option within the best laptop backpack space!
|A convertible bag, the Solo quickly converts from a briefcase to a backpack.||Solo doesn’t offer a lifetime guarantee on the bag, only a five-year warranty.|
|The Solo bag looks great for both professional purposes and casual day trips.||There is not enough storage for a jacket or sweater on windy days.|
Check out the Solo Duane Hybrid Convertible Laptop Briefcase on Amazon.
Best for Large Storage: Thule Crossover 32L Backpack
- Dolby nylon material
- Padded, zippered laptop compartment can hold up to a 15-inch laptop and a tablet
- Roomy main compartment for clothes, books and other bulky items
- Heat-molded, crush-proof compartment safeguards items
- Bottom, zippered storage pocket
- Organization compartment
- Shove-it Pocket with compression straps
- Lockable compartment
- Side pockets
Priced right around $130, the Thule Crossover 32L Backpack offers a whopping amount of storage for the price.
With up to 32 liters of total storage in all, there is plenty of room for just about anything you could want to carry. The dedicated laptop compartment works fine for laptops up to 15 inches in size with plenty of padding to secure it while on the go. The whole Thule Crossover bag feels just as secure as the laptop with Dolby nylon construction that feels like it will last forever.
Because of the 32L of storage, you have plenty of room in the Thule’s main compartment for clothes, books, or any other accessories you could want to carry on a regular basis. One highlight of the Thule’s bags is its crush-proof compartment right on the front of the bag that is perfect for sunglasses, a smartphone, or any other gear you want to purposefully protect.
|There is enough storage capacity in this bag for everything but the kitchen sink.||With 32L of storage, this might be too big for many people who just want to carry a laptop.|
|A crush-proof compartment is the perfect spot for your smartphone.|
Check out the Thule Crossover 32L Backpack on Amazon.
Best for Commuters: Incase ICON Lite Pack
As is the case with many of the bags on this list, Incase has a standout reputation for making great bags for commuters. The Incase ICON Lite Pack is perfectly sized for carrying everything you need for a day trip around town or into the office and nothing more.
The dedicated laptop compartment offers complete padding around your computer, plus Incase adds a faux-fur lining for even more protection. This space can solidly hold up to a 16-inch laptop. The bag itself is composed of 840D nylon material that is as protective as the laptop compartment and helps Incase stand the test of time.
Adjustable shoulder straps help you get as comfortable as you can without worrying about your shoulders getting sore throughout the day. An exterior pocket is a good place to store a smartphone or charger, though the ICON has no dedicated space for water bottles. If you need any extra materials with you like a notebook, they fit inside the main compartment resting right next to your laptop.
|The ICON Lite is the ideal bag for commuters who just need the basics during the day.||No dedicated space for a water bottle feels like a miss for commuters.|
|Incase’s nylon material is very tough and feels like it will last for years.||As durable as the bag feels, Incase only offers a one-year warranty.|
Check out the Incase ICON Lite Pack on Amazon.
Best for Professionals: Troubadour Apex Compact Backpack
- Vegan construction
- Spacious organization
- Great for travel, work, school, the gym, sports, or on-the-go
- Fits a full-sized 16’ laptop
- 2 side-pocket bottle holders
- Many internal pockets
There are bags that make you feel good when you walk into the office, and then there is the Troubadour Apex Compact Backpack, which makes you feel like a star.
The $225 price tag makes it feel like a professional purchase with room for a 16-inch laptop plus expandable dual bottle holders on the side for your drink of choice. The shoulder straps are a definite perk of Troubadour ownership as they remain some of the most comfortable in the best laptop backpack space. A trolley sleeve fits right over the handle of luggage if you find yourself on a trip for work as well.
The rest of the Apex backpack is full of elastic pockets to secure all of your accessories like pens, chargers, and other small accessories. There is also plenty of space for valuables within a zip pocket like keys or a wallet. All totaled, the Apex remains very compact so it’s not too heavy but still feels super durable while also enjoying recycled materials so it’s good for the environment.
|The Apex backpack may very well be the perfect bag for professionals.||Troubadour only guarantees the bag with a five-year warranty.|
|Even as a compact bag, there is plenty of storage for everything you could need on any given workday.||Only available in two colors and it would be great to have a different options.|
Check out the Troubadour Apex Compact Backpack on Amazon.
Best for Gadgets: Herschel Tech Daypack
Herschel makes some of the most popular laptop backpacks around, and its best option for computer owners is the Herschel Tech Daypack.
Designed for the tech-savvy among you, the Tech Daypack is perfect for travelers and daily commuters with its dedicated laptop compartment for computers up to 16 inches in size. The laptop compartment also includes an extra lining of fleece material for extra peace of mind.
Inside the Herschel bag are a series of zipper pockets including a place to hold pens, pencils, and accessories. A hidden strip pocket does a great job of hiding wireless earbuds and you can easily put a water bottle in the mesh water compartment on the side.
As is the case with most Herschel bags, the styling is superb and it feels like very quality material with a 600D polyester material. An air mesh sleeve on the rear of the backpack makes it easy to connect to a handle on a suitcase for easy maneuvering in an airport or train station.
|Typical Herschel quality with the Tech Daypack includes outstanding comfort and material.||The laptop compartment could have a little more padding, especially for larger laptops.|
|There are pockets galore for all kinds of accessories, chargers, and earbuds.||It’s only available in one color on Amazon.|
Check out the Herschel Tech Daypack on Amazon.
What to Know Before Buying the Best Laptop Backpack
Buying one of the best laptop backpacks from this list isn’t an exact science as they all eventually serve the same purpose of helping you carry your computer throughout your day. What you do need to consider is what else you want to carry around besides your laptop.
Whether this is something as basic as charging cables and a pen or more along the lines of a jacket, you need to factor in how much space you will need on any given day. The Thule 32L bag is perfect for anyone who wants to go anywhere or do anything, and it’s a backpack with enough storage to hold a laptop plus anything else you can need. Alternatively, you look at the Troubadour Apex Compact backpack which holds just enough to get you by with a laptop and a few cables.
Price matters too, and these laptops can run anywhere from under $30 to over $250, so that is also a factor worth considering. For better or worse, this is not a scenario where if you pay more, you get more storage or better padding for a laptop as these are not factors solely determined by price. Instead, you are looking at the quality of materials and length of warranty. If you are someone who changes bags frequently, spending $250 on a laptop backpack probably isn’t wise.
Using the Best Laptop Backpacks: What It’s Like
If you have ever used a backpack before, you are already pretty familiar with how a backpack works. You drop your laptop in, zip it up, put on the shoulder straps, and go.
One of the biggest factors that will be important to you personally is comfort, and because of that, you want to make sure the shoulder straps are comfortable for long periods of time. Any time you choose a backpack, no matter how much or how little you store, and find the shoulder straps uncomfortable, you’re going to end up doing more harm to your body than good.
Laptop padding is another big factor and as these computers are worth hundreds, if not thousands of dollars, you want to make sure and find one that has great padding. Backpacks like the Incase ICON Lite are among the best at offering a level of padding that makes you all but forget your laptop is on your back bouncing up and down as you walk around town.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Kate Trysh/Shutterstock.com.