Best EDC Everyday Carry Backpacks

10 Best EDC (Everyday Carry) Backpacks in 2021 – Buyer’s Guide

(Last Updated On: June 28, 2021)

A good EDC (everyday carry) backpack can go a long way, whether you’re commuting to work, on a family trip, or traveling through another country. With comfort and versatility as priorities, lots of people are now using backpacks for their daily commute, simply throw them over your shoulders and you’re hands-free for a drink, a phone call, or hanging on while the bus is moving along.

Occasionally people want a real EDC (everyday carry) backpack, while others are searching for something to be used as a travel daypack that can double as a personal item for flights or a day hike backpack. If you are one of those people, then this guide is definitely for you. Unlike EDC sling bags, EDC backpacks are much bigger and can carry more items with you.

In a Hurry? The test winners after 12 hrs of research

SwissGear 1900 Laptop Backpack

SwissGear 1900 Laptop Backpack – Best Value

Why is it better?

  • Separate TSA approved laptop storage area
  • Ample pockets and storage spaces for all your travel needs
  • It has nylon mesh pockets for odor/moisture release
  • Straps are comfortable and easy to adjust

Timbuk2 Spire Backpack

Timbuk2 Spire Backpack – Premium Pick

Why is it better?

  • Very versatile pack – roll-top makes it expandable
  • Lots of storage space for both large and small items
  • Back zipper that allows you to enter the bag through the back
  • Molle style webbing and straps for multiple attachment points

Best EDC (Everyday Carry) Backpacks – Overview

The backpacks below cover a range of possible uses, so whether you’re searching for a basic backpack to help you get from A to B or you’re hoping to travel somewhere, these EDC (everyday carry) backpacks are up for the task.

EDC (Everyday Carry) Backpacks Reviews

1. SwissGear 1900 Laptop Backpack – Best Value

SwissGear 1900 Laptop Backpack

With a road-warrior approved construct, the SwissGear 1900 Laptop Backpack relies on modernity and ScanSmart technology to hold all your business or travel essentials. With a lay-flat TSA-approved tech compartment, protect your laptop and tablet inside designated mesh pockets. Stash supplies, and your shades inside organized exterior pockets while securing your smartphone and large gear inside a roomy main compartment.

This highly functional pack also features a heavy-duty grab handle and ergonomic straps for on-the-go comfort. Its contoured, padded shoulder straps feature a sunglasses loop and built-in suspension that provides stretch and shock absorbent. Side compression straps help to customize the fit of the pack while a signature Airflow panel cushions your back. Find more great products like this by checking out our guide to the best laptop backpacks for travel.

Key Features:

  • Lay-flat design helps speed through airport security
  • Laptop compartment up to 17″
  • Padded shoulder straps
  • Water bottle pockets

Specifications:

  • Brand: Swiss Gear
  • Capacity: 31L
  • Dimensions: 18.5″ H x 13.5″ W x 9″ D
  • Weight: 2.5 lbs
Pros
  • Separate TSA approved laptop storage area
  • Ample pockets and storage spaces for all your travel needs
  • It has nylon mesh pockets for odor/moisture release
  • Straps are comfortable and easy to adjust
Cons
  • It falls over pretty easily (though part of its design is to lay flat for security screens by the TSA)

2. Timbuk2 Spire Backpack – Premium Pick

Timbuk2 Spire Backpack

Designed exclusively for Apple, Timbuk2 Spire Backpack gives your MacBook Pro and iPad plenty of protection in a serious drizzle thanks to its water-resistant TPU and canvas fabric construction. It has expandable volume via the flap or roll top main opening and easy access to your phone, MacBook or iPad.

It also has a large main compartment for books, jacket, and other carry-on essentials. The front zip pocket fits your earbuds, cards, cash, and your ID as well as an internal organizer for pens, phones, and other small stuff. In terms of fit, this backpack is designed with a ventilated back panel to give your back breathing room. Make sure you also check our selection of the best men’s backpacks for work.

Key Features:

  • Exterior webbing offers attachment for carabineers
  • Elasticized external side pocket for water bottle
  • Waterproof rolltop plus incognito back zip access
  • Ventilated back panel 

Specifications:

  • Brand: Timbuk2
  • Capacity: 30L
  • Dimensions: 18.7″ H x 12.4″ W x 5.1″ D
  • Weight: 2.4 lbs
Pros
  • Very versatile pack – roll-top makes it expandable
  • Lots of storage space for both large and small items
  • Back zipper that allows you to enter the bag through the back
  • Molle style webbing and straps for multiple attachment points
Cons
  • More suitable for a minimalistic traveler, not intended for carrying too much items

3. Carhartt Legacy Classic Work Backpack

Carhartt Legacy Classic Work Backpack

The Carhartt Legacy Classic Work Backpack is the optimal choice for your everyday, go-to pack. It is minimalist and simple. There are so many backpacks out there but most of them are way too complicated. Too many pockets, too many straps, and other fluffs that are not needed. This backpack is sturdy and durable and perfect for your daily EDC.

It is built on heavy-duty water repellent material, this pack will keep your gear dry in light rain. The large main compartment contains a dedicated padded laptop pocket and tablet sleeve. The 2 zippered pockets on the front are great for organizing smaller items. Top it off with contour fit shoulder straps and padded air mesh back panel. Don’t forget to also check our guide to the best women’s backpacks for work.

Key Features:

  • Rain Defender durable water repellent
  • Contour fit shoulder straps
  • Padded air mesh back panel
  • Padded laptop compartment

Specifications:

  • Brand: Carhartt
  • Dimensions: 18″ H x 11.5″ W x 8″ D
  • Weight: 1.4 lbs
Pros
  • Lightweight
  • Minimalist design
  • Water-resistant
  • Abrasion-resistant base
Cons
  • No side pockets for small items like phone

4. OGIO Renegade RSS Backpack

OGIO Renegade RSS Backpack

The OGIO Renegade RSS Backpack comes with a slew of pockets and compartments to hold all of your tech gadgets and personal items, this backpack is perfect for day to day use for work, school, or travel. The pack is made from durable canvas and polyester fabrics and features a large shape with a streamlined design and multiple pockets for organization.

This backpack has a dedicated laptop compartment with integrated foam panels for protection, a padded pocket for your tablet, a padded pocket for your mouse or digital camera, a crush-proof vault pocket to hold sunglasses, and organizer pockets to hold your cell phone, pens, keys, and other small items. Increased shoulder strap foam padding creates a sweet spot comfort zone for all-day use.

Key Features:

  • Armor protected dedicated laptop compartment up to 17″
  • Crush-proof vault pocket with soft tricot liner
  • Dual side water bottle pockets
  • Fully adjustable ergonomic shoulder straps with sternum strap

Specifications:

  • Brand: OGIO
  • Capacity: 29L
  • Dimensions: 19.5″ H x 14″ W x 10″ D
  • Weight: 3.5 lbs
Pros
  • Lots of pockets to store your stuff
  • Rigid, padded laptop pocket, presumably protects better from crush loads
  • The shoulder straps are light and easily adjustable
  • Excellent build quality
Cons
  • Bag by itself is heavy

5. The North Face Borealis Men’s Backpack

The North Face Borealis Men's Backpack

The North Face Borealis Men’s Backpack is a functional backpack that will amuse the most organized of all urban hikers, whether running late to class or fighting traffic on a bike to get to the library. The FlexVent suspension system in the shoulder pads and back paneling provides a support system that makes carrying any load an easy feat. It also means you won’t be jabbed in the back by any sharp corners or unruly objects.

Large compartments and dedicated storage for your laptop ensure you’re prepared from the office to the outdoors. With quick-draw access to essentials like a water bottle or your phone, you can maintain momentum with ease. Complete with reflective elements, This backpack will be your pack of choice for seasons to come. Our guide to the best North Face backpacks offers more great products like this.

Key Features:

  • Armor protected dedicated laptop compartment up to 17″
  • Crush-proof vault pocket with soft tricot liner
  • Dual side water bottle pockets
  • Fully adjustable ergonomic shoulder straps with sternum strap

Specifications:

  • Brand: North Face
  • Capacity: 28L
  • Dimensions: 19.8″ H x 13.5″ W x 8.5″ D
  • Weight: 2.67 lbs
Pros
  • Comfortable to wear during normal activities
  • Very protective laptop sleeve, that can be used to keep other things
  • Thick padding on shoulder straps makes it so it doesn’t wear you out physically and the ‘aerodynamic’ back-padding lets your back breathe during activities
  • Lots of design and color selection
Cons
  • Hip-strap has no padding – just nylon webbing. Can get pretty uncomfortable with heavier packs

6. Thule Crossover Laptop Backpack

Thule Crossover Laptop Backpack

The Thule Crossover Laptop Backpack is designed to accommodate all of your portable electronic gadgets, this sleek, streamlined backpack has a modern design that makes it perfect for the daily commute or weekend trips. This pack is made of lightweight and waterproof nylon fabric with die-cut EVA shoulder straps for ventilation and breathability.

This backpack contains a padded laptop pocket, a crush-proof compartment that provides protection for your cell phone, headphones, mp3, and other portable electronics, and a front compartment with stylos, keys, and other objects. Other features of this backpack include a side water bottle pocket, compression straps that stabilize the overall load, and multiple grab handles for quick hauls. You may also be interested in some of the best tech backpacks from our list, so check them out.

Key Features:

  • Perforated EVA shoulder straps with mesh covering provide ventilation and breathability
  • Heat-molded, crushproof compartment for sunglasses and fragile gear including dedicated phone pocket
  • Padded internal sleeve fits up to 15 in. laptops
  • Padded tablet sleeve; dual side mesh pockets; multiple grab handles

Specifications:

  • Brand: Thule
  • Capacity: 25L
  • Dimensions: 18.9″ H x 12.6″ W x 10.6″ D
  • Weight: 1.94 lbs
Pros
  • Comfortable to wear for long periods of time
  • Easy access to pockets on the front and top
  • Multiple grab-and-go handles allow for easy transport
  • Two side mesh pockets for water bottles or accessories
Cons
  • Lack of padding on the bottom base of the bag

8. Under Armour Hustle 3.0 Backpack

Under Armour Hustle 3.0 Backpack

When you need reliable, durable performance, opt for the water-resistant Under Armour Hustle 3.0 Backpack. Built with UA Storm technology to repel water and comfortable, cooling HeatGear shoulder straps, this 30 L bag keeps you calm and collected in the elements. A 15” laptop sleeve offers secure and convenient storage perfect for students or workers. Two side water bottle pockets make the Hustle 3.0 your go-to bag.

The durable, abrasion-resistance bottom panel and top handle provide an easy to transport backpack that will last over time. Even if you need room to carry a change of clothes, this backpack offers a gusset front laundry and shoe pocket that’s placed at the bottom of the bag.

Key Features:

  • 2 side water bottle pockets
  • Water-repellent front pocket
  • Adjustable, padded HeatGear shoulder straps provide total comfort
  • Abrasion-resistant bottom panel

Specifications:

  • Brand: Under Armour
  • Capacity: 30L
  • Dimensions: 18.9″ H x 13.6″ W x 9.3″ D
  • Weight: 2 lbs
Pros
  • Top grab handle for on-the-go convenience
  • Large, gusseted front laundry/shoe pocket placed at bottom of bag
  • Fits up to a 15″ laptop
  • UA Storm Technology provides a water-resistant finish
Cons
  • No sternum strap to keep it from slipping off shoulders

9. Herschel Supply Co. Pop Quiz Backpack

Herschel Supply Co. Pop Quiz Backpack

The Herschel Supply Co. Pop Quiz Backpack is an essential backpack from heritage bag makers Herschel Supply Co. Traditional backpack silhouette is made with a tough woven poly shell and a reinforced synthetic leather bottom. The large main compartment is lined in Herschel’s signature stripe nylon and features a 15″ padded laptop sleeve and a media pocket with a headphone port that’s perfect for your iPod or cell phone.

Padded shoulder straps enhance the comfort of a classic zip-closure backpack with a reinforced faux-leather bottom. The front pocket comes with internal organizers and key clip. A top-zip pocket allows grab-and-go convenience for keys and other items you’ll need in an instant. Be sure to also check out our list of Herschel backpacks for more great items like this.

Key Features:

  • Two-way zip-around closure
  • Exterior zip pockets with organizational compartments
  • Fits most 15″ laptops
  • Polyester with nylon fleece lining

Specifications:

  • Brand: Herschel
  • Capacity: 22L
  • Dimensions: 17.5″ H x 11.75″ W x 6″ D
  • Weight: 1.9 lbs
Pros
  • Stylish and clean looking
  • The inside of the main pocket is a very soft material and more spacious than expected
  • The pockets come with waterproof zipper covers
Cons
  • No side pockets for water bottles

10. KAUKKO Laptop Outdoor Backpacks

KAUKKO Laptop Outdoor Backpacks

The KAUKKO Laptop Outdoor Backpacks is made of nylon and the inner lining is polyester, which is easy to clean. The design of the bag allows you to arrange your belongings in the most efficient and tidy manner possible, thanks to its spacious main compartment and several exterior pockets. It allows you to fit much of your gear as well as laptops and gadgets.

The rucksack backpack is more high-end with the water-repellent polyester fabric, durable and easy to clean. The pockets on the front gives you some space to place your things and easy to access. The contoured shoulder straps and back side comes with protective air mesh padded design, easy and comfortable to carry throughout all day. Love backpacks? Check out our review of the best tactical laptop backpacks for our top picks.

Key Features:

  • Contoured shoulder straps
  • Laptop compartment fits up to 15″ Laptop
  • Adjustable Drawstring closure at main compartment
  • Backside comes with protective air mesh padded design

Specifications:

  • Brand: KAUKKO
  • Capacity: 22L
  • Dimensions: 18.5″ H x 10.63″ W x 6.69″ D
  • Weight: 2.10 lbs
Pros
  • The canvas looks and feels sturdy
  • Two bottle pockets on the sides of the backpack
  • Adjustable buckles depending on how full the backpack is
Cons
  • When full of items, you have to unpack the bag to get to bottom items

Buying Guide

Comfort

Choose a bag that is convenient for the commute to work or school to avoid unnecessary strain. Features such as sufficient padding, a waist belt, sternum strap, wide shoulder straps, and adequate ventilation all play their part in keeping you relaxed on the go.

Organization

The degree of organization depends on what you will bring in it. Make sure that it can accommodate your everyday equipment and hold items like snacks, jackets, tech devices like your laptop or tablet, and small items from your normal everyday carry.

Durability

Planning to go backpacking or biking or just need a backpack to get around the city or college grounds? Questions such as these will help you identify the type of material that suits you best. For hiking or camping, heavy-duty waterproof fabrics may be ideal. On the other side, lighter, smoother materials may be better for day-to-day travel.

Versatility

EDC (Everyday Carry) backpacks can be specifically designed to carry technology/electronics such as laptops and/or tablets, high-end cameras, sports equipment, survival gear, and important travel products among other product items. Through determining your daily needs, you will be able to refine your choices and choose one that best suits your specific case of use.

Frequently Ask Questions

What to carry in an everyday bag?

What you want to bring in your daily life will depend on your personal needs and lifestyle. Most people would need to bring their laptop, tablet, keys, a water bottle, maybe deodorant, energy-energized snacks on the go, pens, earphones, and power banks. And if you are traveling, a first aid kit might come in handy.

What is an EDC backpack?

Like EDC bags, an EDC backpack is a carry bag for daily usage. Typically these are backpacks with a ton of extra features making them your best go-to bag. Whether you’re at the gym, work, or traveling, they are perfect for holding your things. Throw your gym clothes in there, the essentials of your work, and head out the door, knowing you have all you need. They’re good for daily usage and when you’re out in the wild, they make a fantastic companion.

How to pack an everyday carry backpack?

The easiest approach to pick a layout is easy to think of where, and how much you may need to use an item. Bulky things such as beverage drinks and laptops can be troublesome, luckily most bags nowadays provide a designated laptop pocket, and if you bring a water bottle, go for external mesh bottle pockets. No backpack arrives with flawless organizing, given how amazing it may be, you will have a chance to do better. This is where convenient pouches can fall in. Finally, make sure that you do not overpack particularly on an EDC backpack.

Conclusion

We hope this guide was helpful for finding the best EDC (Everyday Carry) backpacks as well as our guide on features to look for in an EDC (Everyday Carry) backpack. If you have any questions or concerns regarding this guide, feel free to let us know in the comments section.