Best Men's Backpacks for Work

10 Best Men’s Backpacks for Work in 2021 – Buyer’s Guide

(Last Updated On: January 7, 2021)

People used to take briefcases to work. Many people now choose a backpack, because it’s small, lightweight, and can carry more items. However, not all backpacks are ideal for working professionals. So it’s best to opt for a boardroom-friendly design. You’ll also want to check the construction of the backpack to guarantee durability. In addition, you must also consider the storage capacity. Opt for a spacious backpack with numerous compartments as much as possible to keep all of your daily essentials organized.

At Backpack Beasts, we’ve spent a lot of time looking for adult backpacks. The time led us to find the best leather backpacks, and even travel backpacks with wheels. But the world of practical-yet-stylish work backpacks is a different beast because anyone who looks knows it can be difficult to find a really stylish backpack that carries all you need to do during a day at the office yet still looks nice enough to carry you to dinner once you’re off the clock.

In a Hurry? The test winners after 10 hrs of research

Timbuk2 Q Laptop Backpack for Work

Timbuk2 Q Laptop Backpack for Work – Best Value

Why is it better?

  • The sleek “brick” design makes it easy to sling on and off
  • Straps are really solid and supportive, and you have the option to fasten them across your chest which is great
  • The material is sturdy, and it’s lined and waterproof
  • It’s got a ton of pockets

eBags Professional Work Backpack for Men

eBags Professional Work Backpack for Men – Premium Pick

Why is it better?

  • The overall design aesthetic. It’s not flashy, but looks good
  • The many different storage pockets. They vary in shapes, sizes, construction, and location on either the inside or outside of the bag
  • The backpack straps can be tucked away and the bag can be carried like a briefcase with a handle on the side
  • The little bottom cubby/compartment has proven to be very useful

Men’s Backpacks for Work Backpacks – Overview

If messenger bags for men doesn’t cut it for you anymore. There are a very specific type and model of backpacks ideal for keeping a professional and serious profile, and we have just found the best backpack for you. Choose from 10 separate best men’s backpack for work and check the buying guide below for more information about key features to consider.

Men’s Backpacks for Work Reviews

1. SwissGear Travel Gear Lightweight Bungee Backpack for Work

SwissGear Travel Gear Lightweight Bungee Backpack for Work

Rich in heritage, Swissgear will not let you down on your daily commute to school, to work or on your favorite trail. The SwissGear Travel Gear Lightweight Bungee Backpack for Work is made from durable polyester fabric and features ample carrying capacity inside & out thanks to a large capacity main compartment with a 13” laptop pocket, as well as a front bungee cord system on the outside.

This three-compartment backpack has contoured padded shoulder straps and an Airflow back system for superior support and wearing comfort. Other features include an organizer compartment, side water bottle pockets, a headphone port, a D-ring to attach gear to and reflective accent material built into the front panel for added safety at night.

Key Features:

  • Ergonomically contoured straps with padded breathable fabric for maximum comfort
  • Padded, Airflow back panel with mesh fabric for superior back ventilation and support
  • Side water bottle pockets
  • Organizer compartment with removable key/fob clip and multiple divider pockets

Specifications:

  • Brand: Swiss Gear
  • Capacity: 27L
  • Dimensions: 17.75″ H x 13″ W x 7″ D
  • Weight: 1.65 lbs
Pros
  • The straps feel strong, secure and comfortable
  • Perfect for daily use without looking so bulky
  • It’s very convenient with big compartments, nicely sliding zippers, and spacious side pockets
  • The generous bungee net on the front is great for any unexpected items
Cons
  • No padded laptop sleeve

2. Carhartt Legacy Classic Work Backpack for Men

Carhartt Legacy Classic Work Backpack for Men

The Carhartt Legacy Classic Work Backpack for Men is the optimal choice for your everyday, go-to pack. Built of heavy-duty 1200D Poly with Rain Defender durable water repellent and Duravax abrasion-resistant base, this pack will not let you down. 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. Additional features include high-quality YKK zippers, metal hardware, triple-needle stitch for reinforcement where it counts, and the Carhartt logo patch at the front. Our handy guide to the best minimalist backpacks features more great products like this.

Key Features:

  • Made of 1200D polyester
  • Main compartment with dedicated padded laptop pocket and tablet sleeve
  • Contour fit shoulder straps
  • Padded air mesh back panel
  • Rain Defender® durable water repellent (DWR) keeps your gear dry in light rain

Specifications:

  • Brand: Carhartt
  • Dimensions: 18″ H x 11.5″ W x 8″ D
  • Weight: 1.35 lbs
Pros
  • It is minimalist and simple
  • It has a weatherproof bottom
  • This pack is sturdy and durable
  • Lightweight
Cons
  • The zipper for the front compartment is not a two-way zipper

3. Victorinox Altmont Professional Work Backpack

Victorinox Altmont Professional Work Backpack

No matter where your office is, wall street or a remote working space off the grid, the Victorinox Altmont Professional Work Backpack is your best bet for capturing the essentials of convenience and sophistication. Constructed from durable polyester. Padded back panel features adjustable padded shoulder straps and a sleeve to slide your bag over your luggage handle.

This structured, streamlined, minimalist pack accompanies you on every journey through the professional landscape. Front organizational pocket features four slip pockets, a file divider, credit card slots, a key leash, and two pen holders. Rear compartment features lockable zippers to secure your 15″ laptop and a tablet in the tablet pocket. Main compartment boasts amenities such as a file divider and three mesh pockets with built-in organization.

Key Features:

  • Durable exterior punctuated with deep vertical front pockets
  • Contains inserts, loops, and enclosures for keys, valuables, wallets, and smaller devices
  • Neat flip-top zipped lid that reveals a roomy interior 
  • Removable essentials organizer

Specifications:

  • Brand: Victorinox
  • Capacity: 26L
  • Dimensions: 19.3″ H x 13″ W x 10.2″ D
  • Weight: 2.1 lbs
Pros
  • Cubular shape makes things much easier to get in and out of the bag
  • It is professional looking and comfortable
  • The pockets are perfectly sized that you still get a cavern for large or clunky things
  • The bag does a great job of standing up even when packed full
Cons
  • No lock feature on the zipper

4. Timbuk2 Q Laptop Backpack for Work – Best Value

Timbuk2 Q Laptop Backpack for Work

Loved by students and office warriors, the Q is a mid-sized backpack with laptop & iPad protection and organization for all the gear that entails. The front panel unzips to reveal a command center – full of places for pens, cords, cards, and keys. It has a tricot-lined floating pocket protects sunglasses or smartphone.

A bottom zip pocket provides a perfect place to stash the dreaded power brick, and a roomy internal pocket provides ample room for a sweater, headphones, or change of shoes. Finally, the Q’s legitimately comfortably straps and ventilated back panel will keep you looking fresh and ready to rock, even when you’d rather be retired. Be sure to also check out our list of business backpacks for more great items like this.

Key Features:

  • Elasticized external side pocket for water bottle or U lock
  • Fully padded laptop compartment lined with quilted tricot fabric
  • Channeled air mesh ventilated back panel
  • Large main compartment
  • Smart power brick pocket remembers where your cords

Specifications:

  • Brand: Timbuk2
  • Capacity: 26L
  • Dimensions: 18.9″ H x 11.8″ W x 5.1″ D
  • Weight: 2.3 lbs
Pros
  • The sleek “brick” design makes it easy to sling on and off
  • Straps are really solid and supportive, and you have the option to fasten them across your chest which is great
  • The material is sturdy, and it’s lined and waterproof
  • It’s got a ton of pockets
Cons
  • The bag is very narrow. Its dimensions make it perfect for books, a laptop, and other items that comfortably lie flat. It isn’t as great with wider or bulkier items

5. Thule Subterra Daypack for Work

Thule Subterra Daypack for Work

The commuter-inspired Thule Subterra Daypack for Work features flexible capacity, quick-access compartments and dedicated protection for a 15″ laptop plus a tablet. Quick-access front pocket expands to hold large items such as a U-lock or power brick for a laptop. Hidden, vertical pocket stores frequently used mid-sized items such as headphones, a hat or gloves and an organization pocket with clip for an access card or keys.

The molded SafeZone pockets are great for storing smartphones, sunglasses, and other essential items. Opening from the side eliminates time spent digging through the daypack from the top. The interior, zippered mesh pocket keeps small items visible yet secure and the integrated daisy chain attachment system for a carabiner or bike light.

Key Features:

  • Quick access to laptop and tablet through secondary side zipper
  • Duffel style front zipper provides easy access and full visibility
  • Expandable front pocket holds larger items such as a U-Lock or power brick
  • Hidden vertical pocket, organization panel, and daisy chain attachment system

Specifications:

  • Brand: Thule
  • Capacity: 25L
  • Dimensions: 18.5″ H x 13″ W x 11″ D
  • Weight: 2.18 lbs
Pros
  • Distributes the weight evenly on your back
  • The bag repels water well
  • The full length zipper gives you access to the entire contents of the bag
  • The side pouch zipper is located so that when you have the bag on just one shoulder it opens towards you
Cons
  • The buckles are bit difficult to work with one hand

6. SwissGear Travel Gear 1900 Work Backpack

SwissGear Travel Gear 1900 Work Backpack

Pack all of your gear and then some in this extra-roomy, full-featured laptop backpack. The SwissGear Travel Gear 1900 Work Backpack is made from durable 1200D ballistic polyester fabric and is equipped with a large opening main compartment with rugged oversize zippers, adjustable side compression straps, a heavily padded back panel with Airflow ventilation technology, padded contour shaped shoulder straps with mesh fabric and built-in suspension as well as ScanSmart lay-flat technology for the ultimate in laptop-in-case TSA scanning for most portable computers up to 17” in size.

Other features built into the case include a dedicated floating TabletSafe™ tablet pocket, an accordion file holder, an organizer compartment, multiple internal accessory pockets, side accessory and water bottle pockets, a padded media pocket with headphone cord port, a molded top handle, a webbing daisy chain and carabiner to attach gear to when you’re on the go, a front quick-access pocket and reflective accent material built into the shoulder straps for added safety when out at night.

Key Features:

  • Made with durable, weather-resistant 1200D ballistic polyester
  • Easy access laptop and iPad compartment
  • Contoured shoulder straps with mesh fabric
  • Padded back panel with Airflow ventilation technology for added support and comfort.

Specifications:

  • Brand: Swiss Gear
  • Capacity: 31L
  • Dimensions: 18.5″ H x 13.5″ W x 9″ D
  • Weight: 3.3 lbs
Pros
  • The handle atop the bag is made with hard inner materials and is attached to the bag very securely
  • There are so many storage compartments
  • The padding protecting the laptop is very thick
  • The straps do not dig into your shoulders even when packed full
Cons
  • The ability to open the bag completely flat hasn’t proved to be particularly helpful

7. BOPAI Anti-Theft Business Backpack for Men

BOPAI Anti-Theft Business Backpack for Men

The BOPAI Anti-Theft Business Backpack for Men has smooth zippers on the backside. Once pulled on the intelligent zipper, the invisible compartment will show up and be equipped with an extra 50% of space. This pack also has an external USB charging port and built-in cable to connect with your power bank inside which will charge your phone more easily.

It also features an invisible card pocket on the shoulder strap, to easily take out your transportation card. The back has a strap that can hold the backpack upright on the luggage’s pull rod for easy traveling. Anti-theft features include an invisible zip pocket on the back to place your iPhone, keys, and wallet conveniently and an anti-explosion double zipper on the main compartment. You may also be interested in some of the best anti-theft backpacks from our list, so check them out.

Key Features:

  • Adjustable shoulder strap to convert to a briefcase
  • External charging port
  • Made of water-resistant materials and synthetic leather
  • An invisible card pocket on the shoulder strap

Specifications:

  • Brand: BOPAI
  • Capacity: 23L
  • Dimensions: 17.7″ H x 12.6″ W x 6.3″ D
  • Weight: 2.8 lbs
Pros
  • Very stylish and doesn’t scream geeky computer bag
  • Has nice features: luggage strap, transit pass pocket on the shoulder strap, water bottle holder on the side, built-in charging plug
  • The main compartment has a piece of fabric that lets you unzip it without letting your stuff fall out
  • It has organizational pockets inside
Cons
  • There’s barely any padding in the laptop compartment

8. eBags Professional Work Backpack for Men – Premium Pick

eBags Professional Work Backpack for Men

The eBags Professional Work Backpack for Men is made for the traveling pro who doesn’t travel anywhere without a laptop, a tablet, several smartphones, and the accessories and AC adapters for all of them. Made of woven polyester fabric, the bag feels sturdy, and the fabric’s Teflon coating repels water effectively.

Featuring several padded tech pockets for all your devices and several internal and external pockets make this bag a dream come true. Plus, the vented air mesh back panel and contoured straps make for an incredible fit—absolutely ideal for a lengthy commute. This pack boasts supreme organization, unlike any other backpack you’ve ever seen. With a streamlined look and sophisticated design, this pack will take you everywhere you need to go from nine-to-nine, no pit-stops necessary.

Key Features:

  • Pass-through sleeve secures bag to rolling luggage and top carry handles
  • Easy-access compartments; Front vertical exterior zip pocket; Diagonal stash pocket inside middle compartment
  • Breathable, padded air-mesh back panel for comfort
  • Padded laptop sleeve fits up to 17″

Specifications:

  • Brand: eBags
  • Capacity: 22L
  • Dimensions: 18″ H x 12.75″ W x 8.5″ D
  • Weight: 3.8 lbs
Pros
  • The overall design aesthetic. It’s not flashy, but looks good
  • The many different storage pockets. They vary in shapes, sizes, construction, and location on either the inside or outside of the bag
  • The backpack straps can be tucked away and the bag can be carried like a briefcase with a handle on the side
  • The little bottom cubby/compartment has proven to be very useful
Cons
  • The water bottle holder could be bigger

9. Pacsafe Unisex Metrosafe LS450 Anti-Theft Backpack

Pacsafe Unisex Metrosafe LS450 Anti-Theft Backpack

The Pacsafe Unisex Metrosafe LS450 Anti-Theft Backpack will get you and your belongings from point A to point B, and everywhere in between safely! Made of durable 210D nylon. It has adjustable padded shoulder straps with padded carry handle. It has zippered main and front compartments with organization for cards, phone, and passport.

This pack has durable YKK zippers with zipper pullers that can be attached to discreet security hooks or placed under & through a secure tab to prevent pickpockets from reaching into your bag. The bottom front zippered compartment with slip and organization pockets. A flexible and lightweight, stainless steel wire is integrated into the adjustable Carrysafe® straps making it invisible to the eye, yet very effective at preventing bag slashers from slicing through and running off with your gear. 

Key Features:

  • eXomesh slashguard in the most commonly vulnerable areas of bag
  • Quick access front pocket
  • Comfortable, adjustable shoulder straps
  • Protective sleeve for a 15-inch laptop
  • RFID-protected pocket

Specifications:

  • Brand: Pacsafe
  • Capacity: 25L
  • Dimensions: 18.9″ H x 12.2″ W x 6.3″ D
  • Weight: 1.84 lbs
Pros
  • The locking feature is nice so you don’t have to worry when in a crowded space and it is lockable
  • The straps are well padded and you can tuck and hide the excess straps so they are not in the way
  • When the bag is full, the weight is evenly distributed
  • The laptop holder is suspended so it never touches the ground when setting the bag down
Cons
  • Uncomfortable if wearing for extended periods

10. Incase Icon Work Backpack for Men

Incase Icon Work Backpack for Men

The Incase Icon Work Backpack for Men from Incase Designs Corp holds a 15″ laptop inside a dedicated compartment at the back, and an iPad or similar size tablet in another dedicated side zip pocket. The dedicated laptop compartment is fully padded and faux-fur lined for optimal laptop protection. It also has purposeful pockets for organizing extra accessories and other essentials.

With dedicated compartments for your MacBook, iPad, and iPhone, along with intelligent organization for extra accessories and other essentials, this tech-optimized pack is designed to handle any situation. Airflow channels engineered into the compression molded back panel and padded shoulder straps with multiple adjustment points provide a customizable fit and stable support while on the move with your gear. Additionally, the integrated sternum strap helps to disperse the weight carried in the backpack for added comfort.

Key Features:

  • 3 large dedicated compartments
  • Molded back panel and padded shoulder straps with multiple adjustment points
  • Made with durable 840D ballistic nylon
  • Integrated sternum strap

Specifications:

  • Brand: Incase
  • Capacity: 17L
  • Dimensions: 19″ H x 13″ W x 9″ D
  • Weight: 1.74 lbs
Pros
  • Stands up right even empty
  • Dedicated pockets for laptop and glasses/phone are fur lined
  • Even with the bag full, pockets are still very accessible and don’t encroach on each other
  • Aesthetics are clean and professional
Cons
  • No water bottle

Buying Guide

Capacity

Professional use involves stashing and storing multiple items from the workplace. Itineraries, paper sheets, a laptop, and their cords and cables alike. Small size always means a smaller capacity, and that will appear small and bulky on your back, emulating the look of a kid leaving school. Therefore it is a good idea to pick something above 20L.

Laptop Pocket

Your laptop is an extension that enables you to work. While a dedicated pouch isn’t a breaking point, getting one is definitely good, particularly if you’re known to overfill your bags. Too much pressure on your screen will inflict damage over time but with a designated laptop pocket, there’s a significant amount of padding to protect it.

Weight

Men’s backpacks for work should not weigh more than 2 or 3 lbs and should be well-built with durable stitching throughout. A work backpack heavier than that will be a big drag to be toting around the whole time. As for the full weight; it’s recommended you’re not carrying more than 15 percent of your body weight in your bag. Something more than that and you risk damaging your back and shoulders.

Materials

A backpack made of good materials ensures you’ve got the backpack for a few years. There may be a different quality of zips or meshes added but one of the following: Canvas – It is usually cheaper than other ones. It’s pretty robust and easy to keep. It’s lightweight and can be waterproofed easily with little effort. Cordura – It is valued for its lightweight and resistance to abrasion. This is more durable than canvas or regular nylon and is used in high-end bags on occasion. Polyester – It is durable and has the added advantage of being extremely resistant to UV rays. This tends to hold light very well too.

Zippers

Zippers are a frequently overlooked aspect of backpack construction. The zippers should be rust-proof and dependable. Zippers are one field in which manufacturers frequently trying to save money. They rightly assume that, when making their decision, people focus on the size, number of pockets, and the overall look of the backpack. Go the extra mile and make sure you have high quality, YKK-grade rust-proof zippers.

Water Resistance

Any bag wishing to be considered the best work backpack for men must be extremely water-resistant or waterproof. A backpack constructed from water-resistant material (or material treated with a waterproofing agent) will most of the time keep your laptop and other electronics secure. The need for real waterproofing comes into play only when you’re riding your bike to work, whatever the weather. You’ll want a bag made of lightweight nylon or polyester, in that case. Not leather or canvas.

Conclusion

We hope this guide was helpful for finding the best men’s backpacks for work as well as our guide on features to look for in a men’s backpack for work. If you have any questions or concerns regarding this guide, feel free to let us know in the comments section.