work week

The Best Commuter Backpacks on Amazon, According to Hyperenthusiastic Reviewers

Photo: Marc Hoberman/UIG via Getty Images

Here at the Strategist, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy, but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice, in which we find the best-reviewed products and single out the most convincing ones. While we’ve covered the best backpacks for students, travelers, girls, boys, and laptops, here we’re zeroing in on the best backpacks for commuters on Amazon, according to the people. See also our roundup of the best work backpacks, according to stylish professionals. (Note that reviews have been edited for length and clarity.)

Matein Travel Laptop Backpack
$30 at Amazon

“If I could give this backpack ten stars, I would. It completely exceeded my expectations in quality, design, color, and price. The amount of pockets and space that this backpack gives me is amazing!! I needed a new one that would hold my laptop, textbooks, binders, etc. for nursing school and this is beyond perfect! There is so much padding on the straps, back, and inside for the laptops that I feel comfortable and my laptop is properly supported. The side pockets fit my huge water bottles and they don’t fall out of the pockets like they did with my last backpack (HUGE PLUS). I can even fit my 40 oz. Hydro Flask in the side pockets! The phone charger connection works and I was charging my phone on the backpack while taking photos. Although I got this backpack for school I will definitely be utilizing it for travel this summer as well! I still can’t believe I only paid $29 for this!! Best purchase I’ve ever made on Amazon so far!”

KOPACK Slim Laptop Travel Computer Backpack
$30 at Amazon

“This backpack is really the perfect one, especially for commuting on the busy and always super packed subways of New York. It’s slim yet has so many compartments, and having two side pockets makes it even more perfect. A Hydro Flask and a Starbucks coffee tumbler fit perfectly in them. I haven’t used it for my laptop yet (I’ve used that pocket for my wallet and other valuables), but I know it will work great with one since it’s well made with sturdy materials, and well padded. The USB port for charging is also a great convenience when you are on the go.”

Uoobag Tigernu Series Business Laptop Backpack
$39 at Amazon

“I’ve been carrying half my office with me when I commute between my one-day-a-week office and my home office. I decided to slim down and got this great bag from Uoobag. It has forced me to go on a diet — a carrying diet. I could not possibly fit all the crap I used to carry into this new slim bag, but that was the point. I found a way to eliminate 60 to 70 percent of the stuff and yet, I still have room for my laptop, all the cords and chargers I need, plus a few personal items. The bag itself is quality, through and through. The zippers are high-quality and the pockets are well sewn. There are nine zippered pockets — some inside of others. Plenty of ways to organize what you carry. The backstraps are very sturdy. They also easily invert to the front when you want to reach into one of the two zippered pockets on the back of the bag. This bag is easily worth double what Amazon charges for it. I wish I had bought it years ago.”

Kopack Deluxe Black Waterproof Laptop Backpack
$41 at Amazon

“I was really impressed by the quality and look of this backpack! It’s professional, durable, comfortable, and very functional. This bag can easily be mistaken for a $100+ item, so at $40 I think it’s a great value. I ordered the medium size and it has as much space as you would expect from a ‘normal’ size backpack. Compartments are very well placed and the bag is secure. Would highly recommend for the business-person commuter!”

Mancro High Capacity Laptop Travel Backpack
$47 at Amazon

“I wanted a backpack that would hold a large assortment of office supplies and paperwork for me, and that I could keep in my van for fieldwork I do. I wanted it to be durable, roomy, and have a lot of compartments. When I received this backpack and started checking it out, I was blown away by how many pockets and compartments it has, large and small. It’s been perfect for me and I love it. The fabric is light enough but certainly not flimsy and seems to be durable and the zippers all work exactly like they’re supposed to. I got lucky and made a great choice for myself. At least for how I’m using it, I highly recommend this backpack.”

Yorepek Large Travel Laptop Backpack
$40 at Amazon

“This is an amazing backpack that has everything I ever could have wanted and more. It’s huge, and it allows me to travel without having to check a bag at the airport. The external headphone port and USB charging port are really cool. I wish they had included some sort of velcro strap or some way to secure your charger in the pouch they designed for it, as mine tends to fall out. If you want a huge backpack with a ton of options, this is the one for you.”

KROSER Travel Laptop Backpack
$36 at Amazon

“I LOVE IT! It has several pockets and a LOT of space for storing multiple items neatly. In fact, even though I bought the size that would accommodate the laptop I now have, it ended up being much larger than I needed. At first I was disappointed with that, but we were leaving on a seven-day cruise and I didn’t have much time to pack, so I decided to keep it and use it, and I am so glad I did! It was a perfect carry-on for the plane. Since there are several compartments, I was able to keep my laptop separate from the other electronics, cords, and iPhone chargers, with snacks in another compartment. The front zipper compartment was perfect for my flight tickets while I was processing — and I still had room to tuck in some work folders, my light jacket, AND my giant book.”

eBags Professional Slim Junior Laptop Backpack
$110 at Amazon

“I work in a major U.S. city and ride the bus to work. I got tired of the humongous backpack with everything but the kitchen sink in it, and decided to be a little more thoughtful about what I was carrying and get a backpack that just fit the requirements. I love the fact that this could actually carry three thin laptops, all neatly separated, if you wanted it to. I can put both of mine in the padded computer sleeve (because it has a separator) and still have the entire main second compartment open. I also like that it’s not taller than it needs to be. It’s the perfect size for what I need; I can get plenty of stuff into it and it still has a small footprint. Very thoughtful design — I haven’t seen anything else like it. If you want a very professional-looking bag that’s efficiently laid out for a commuter, this may be the one for you. The build and materials seem very nice; if I lost it I’d be happy to pay the same amount of money for it again without giving it a second thought. It keeps its shape very well and doesn’t look like a floppy gym backpack. I shopped for quite a while to find the backpack that really fits my needs and I’m glad I put in the time. Good job, eBags.”

Tzowla Business Laptop Backpack
$29 at Amazon

“I bought this bag for a trip to Vegas and it was perfect. I packed a lot in it for the plane (books, keys, my phone, phone charger, Nintendo Switch, tablet — I keep myself entertained like a toddler on planes, don’t judge). The lock isn’t super sturdy but it did give me more peace of mind walking around the airport. Now I use it for everything. The ports on the side make it really easy to keep my phone charged. The middle pocket has a lot of inner small pockets to help keep everything organized.”

SwissGear Travel Gear ScanSmart Backpack
$70 at Amazon

“I work for the federal government and I am in the field quite a bit. That means everything I use in my office has to be transported to my midstream river workplace, and I noticed that most of the other surveyors all seemed to have SwissGear backpacks. I’ve had numerous conversations with them and all they do is praise the quality, durability, and comfort of their backpacks, which they pack full. This one is a true classic. I just received it today and I am all smiles. Small and big pockets for all of my equipment and three different spots for my laptop, tablet, and analysis machine. I even have room for my lunch and a tasty beverage. All kidding aside, this thing is very, very well made and I especially commend SwissGear for all of the padding and attention to comfort. The coolest thing about this backpack is that they put a little spot on one of the shoulder straps for my sunglasses! Holy cow, if this thing dispenses beer, I have got it made. In all seriousness, you just can’t go wrong with one of these backpacks as I have been envious for about a year and a half watching my coworkers enjoy its sheer quality and comfort.”

KAUKKO Laptop Outdoor Backpack
$40 at Amazon

“It’s a super-backpack. It’s an improvement over the brand it copied because it has discrete side pockets that don’t stick out unless you put something really large in them. They are large enough for your water bottles, so you can have ready access to them. I don’t use the laptop pocket for a laptop, but it helps with keeping important papers separated. There are also two other small pockets inside where I can keep my spare train card and collapsible grocery bag. The rear pocket is useful for pens and other small items. It’s a great backpack I use every day for commuting. I load it up with books, papers, and often a ream of copy paper. The straps and padding make it comfortable to carry all day. I will use it in the summer for day-hikes, too. Lastly, the cloth is a tight-knit and thick canvas that repels water really well. It’s a nice charcoal black color, and soft to the touch.”

Modoker Vintage Laptop Backpack
$26 at Amazon

“I wanted this backpack for work, as I commute to my job, and a shoulder bag just doesn’t hold everything and isn’t the most comfortable. I liked the idea of a backpack but didn’t want to look like a student. This backpack is perfect! It holds everything I need, the pocket sizes are perfect, it fits comfortably, and it looks great. Only had it a few weeks, so can’t speak to the durability quite yet, but so far it’s definitely worth the money.”

Yorepek Slim Laptop Travel Backpack
$28 at Amazon

“This backpack has been so durable. I’ve owned it for almost nine months now. I use it daily to carry my laptop, iPad, and papers for work. I have also taken it on several flights as a carry-on and on weekend trips. It easily fits my laptop computer, iPad, all my chargers, a pair of shoes, a couple of outfits, and a small makeup bag. It’s also very comfortable. I’ve carried it on my back all day through Boston, New York, and hiking in Arizona.”

Timbuk2 Spire Backpack
$99 at Amazon

“I can’t overemphasize how awesome this bag is. I shopped around for a long time and finally landed on this one. It looks great — you could easily take it to work and then hit the streets on your bike carrying anything you might need for the day. It’s surprisingly deeper and bigger than I expected and I love it. You can roll the top down and make the bag appear smaller or keep it closed with the flap down, as in the product pic. You could fit overnight stuff in it, as well, and it’s a good size for the airport if you’re like me and shove everything into your checked bag because you don’t like having to deal with carry-ons. Overall I gotta say it’s a dope bag. Lots of pockets, loops, and a front holder for your U-lock.”

Timbuk2 Parkside Laptop Backpack
$50 at Amazon

“I use this as an everyday bag. I love the small size and how much I can fit into it. On my day-to-day commute I carry my lunch bag, Surface laptop, paperwork, two cell phones, 16-oz. coffee tumbler, and some other small items. With all this, the bag is still compact and looks great, with room to spare for a lot more. I own many bags, but what I love about this one is that it goes well with either sporty or business casual attire. I would recommend this bag to anyone with a long commute, or even to parents with children. I use my bag mainly for work, but also for when I am off and want to carry around a few devices.”

Hynes Eagle Veegul Travel Backpack
$40 at Amazon

“I cannot tell you how much I love this bag!!! The canvas material it’s made from is of an EXTREMELY good quality. There’s a snap-closure, in case you want the handles to stay together. The side pockets are nice and deep — that’s where I stashed my ID while going through airport security and it stayed snugly at the bottom, but I had quick access to it. The front zipper pouch actually held a medium-sized amount of paperback, my travel journal, and several other similarly sized items, without causing it to bulge. And the zippers open and close so smoothly. I literally only needed one hand to operate the zippers. Inside … THIS BAG IS SO SPACIOUS!!! I love that ‘big mouth’ opening on the main compartment. To give you an idea of what I carried inside: lap-sized blanket, two pairs of slip-on shoes, makeup bag, hoodie, several bagged snacks, 5x7 pouch with essential medicines, 4x6 neoprene electronic organizer for cords, iPad, neck pillow, AND a few shirts I bought at the airport — and my bag was still only a little over halfway full!! I didn’t even need to put it in the overhead bin; it fit perfectly under the seat in front of me.”

KAKA Backpack for 17-Inch Laptops
$37 at Amazon

“I was hoping to find a small mobile office that I could take with me on my commute on Bay Area Rapid Transit, and this bag worked out perfectly. I am able to put in many office supplies and all my personal electronics, plus all the accessories. The design allows you to pack any and all items you might need on your commute. Easy access to everything is a major PLUS for me! I highly suggest this bag for those who commute daily.”

Kenneth Cole Reaction Brooklyn Commuter Laptop Backpack
$55 at Amazon

“I travel via car and plane. I needed a bag that would serve two functions: a laptop carrier/traveling office when driving; and a ‘personal item’ when flying, with room for the extras that my carry-on won’t fit as I refuse to check bags. This bag’s pockets are well thought-out and actually useful. It holds my laptop, all my miscellaneous office needs and chargers, my travel handbag, tablet, 311 bag, workout clothes for two days, running shoes, and my packable down coat. It’s not as fashionable as some of the other bags I have collected in my quest for the perfect bag, but practicality is the name of the game. It stacks perfectly on top of my roller bag and the strap is not flimsy, so it won’t flip to one side when I’m running through the airport. I’m a tough customer and would recommend this for business travelers.”

Mancro Travel Computer Bag
$29 at Amazon

“This is a great product. Good materials and water resistant, as advertised. I commute to work by riding my bike to a train station; from there I take the train to another city, then walk to my office (with this, I’m comfy the whole way). The backpack is comfortable, fits well around the stress points, and it holds up in the rain — only the outside of the bag gets wet while the inside stays completely dry. I personally don’t use the USB very much, but I do love the convenience of having it. If you’re looking for a work or school backpack, I highly recommend this one.”

BLUBOON Canvas Vintage Travel Backpack with Leather Trim
$39 at Amazon

“Love, love, love this backpack!!! Lightweight even when I have my entire life in there! Comfy straps that are sturdy! I’d buy another one in a heartbeat if I could justify the need for it. For reference: I carry my 13-inch MacBook Air, two or three five-subject spiral notebooks, a two-inch thick planner, a laptop charger, a pencil pouch, snacks, an umbrella, and my Beats wireless headphones (and their pouch) in this bag, and there is STILL space and it doesn’t even feel like I’m carrying all of that! Also, it is real leather and the drawstring is stronger than you’d think. That was the one thing I was worried about, but it works perfectly fine. My favorite backpack, hands down! I’ve received so many compliments on it and I have only had it for a week or two!”

The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best acne treatments, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, natural anxiety remedies, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

Every editorial product is independently selected. If you buy something through our links, New York may earn an affiliate commission.

The Best Commuter Backpacks on Amazon