Best travel backpack 2023: travel hands-free with these top picks

The best travel backpacks for everything from weekends away and business trips to backpacking and hiking

Best travel backpack
(Image credit: Waterfield)

The best travel backpacks cover everything, from weekends away and business trips to backpacking and hiking. While wheeled luggage may be all the rage, it’s not for everyone. If you want to slip through airports quickly and stay hands-free, you’re better off with one of the best travel backpacks.

Combining the lay-flat opening clamshell design of a suitcase yet retaining a soft design and shoulder straps, the travel backpack is a relatively new innovation that’s now finding its niche and setting itself apart from the everyday best backpacks.

Whether you’re after something for the weekend, a business trip or a yomp across the moors, we’ve got the best travel backpack for your style, needs and budget.

Best travel backpacks ranking 2023

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How to choose the best travel backpack for you

The most important thing to consider is what you’ll use it for. Some travel backpacks are designed for city breaks, short flights and weekends away while others zero in on being professional-looking travel backpacks designed for business trips, and often building-in laptop sleeves. 

Then there are outdoor-specific travel backpacks aimed at backpackers and backcountry hikers who simply want easier access to their stuff than a traditional rucksack offers. 

In our search for the next travel backpack, we’ve reviewed and compared backpacks from trusted brands like Tumi, Peak Design, Eagle Creek, Incase and Waterfield Designs.

Jamie Carter

Jamie is a freelance journalist, copywriter and author with 20 years' experience. He's written journalism for over 50 publications and websites and, when he's not writing, spending most of his time travelling – putting the latest travel tech through its paces.

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