There’re some really good travel backpacks out there, from small day backpacks, to large backpacks. There’re different brands to choose from. But which is the best travel backpack to buy for 2021? 

We know how difficult it can be to choose just the right bag for your needs. You should be looking for something that is lightweight, durable, within your budget and comfortable. But not every backpack will be suitable for everyone.  

We have done the research for you, digested all of the products on the market and have concluded on a range of the best backpacks to buy on a budget in 2021.  

What travel backpacks are there? 

There’re different travel backpacks depending on the adventure. The large back packs, such as the 80L backpack will be ideal for backpackers or multiple day treks. These large backpacks can store all of your belongings, including camping gear, trekking poles, clothing, sleeping bag and more.  

The smaller backpacks are lightweight and great for day hikes, or sightseeing. You’ll be surprised with how much you could store in your smaller day backpack, such as food, snacks, spare clothing, hiking poles, camera gear and more. 

What we love about most of the backpacks, are the additional pocket at the back for a hydration bladder. A hydration bladder, is a small pouch which contains water and can be drunk as you walk. We have a 2lt pouch which keeps us hydrated even if we are out sightseeing for the day.  

You could also choose an anti-theft bag. These packs are a great way to deter your belongings from being stolen. The zip to the bag will be on the internal face closest to your back. The idea behind them, is so the zip is not visible, with limited chance of theft. 

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What brands are available 

There’re many great brands out there that produce backpacks, such as Osprey, The North Face, Lowe Alpine and many more. 

You may even have your own favourite brand that you’ll want to stick with, which is fine. When we were looking for our first backpack, we researched and looked around for some time, before we found the ideal backpack for us, which we will discuss later. 

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Features you must consider when buying a travel backpack

Before purchasing your backpack, test out the backpack to find which is the most suitable for you. There are somethings however that you should look out for before purchasing your backpack. 

Lightweight 

The backpack should be lightweight. A heavy backpack to start with will only make you exhausted even before you have left your accommodation.  

Looking for a lightweight backpack will make you feel more comfortable.  

Capacity 

Backpacks can come in a variety of sizes depending on the required use and normally measured in volume. 

Small everyday backpacks are between 10-30L, while the large backpacking packs that will be used for weekend hiking trips or backpacking are between 30-80L. The larger the capacity, the more you could pack. 

Straps 

The straps on the bag should be padded to allow for comfort and to help with the distribution of the weight over your back and shoulders. 

While hiking, you’ll have your backpack on for most of the day, so purchasing an inadequate backpack could cause you pain and discomfort across your back and shoulders. 

Pockets 

Having a few pockets on your backpack will be ideal for separating your belongings and keeping things in order. 

Depending on the brand and design, some backpacks will include a laptop section and a clip to keep the keys safe.  

Waterproof 

Not every backpack is waterproof. Ideally you will want a pack that is waterproof, or comes with a waterproof cover. The last thing you could possibly want is your belongings getting soaked. 

Price 

Price is the big contender when purchasing the best travel backpack. Cheap and cheerful packs are not always the ideal purchase. Many can break quickly, may not be waterproof, or uncomfortable to wear. It wouldn’t be worth purchasing a cheap travel backpack, just for it to get a few uses before you have to purchase a more expensive one because it broke or uncomfortable. 

To purchase a very good backpack, you will need to spend a bit more than you may have initially budgeted for, however we have chosen the best travel backpacks to purchase on a budget. 

Best Travel backpacks for 2021 

With all the great brands and different backpacks, we have chosen the best travel backpacks for 2021.  

Anti-theft bag 

For the first back pack that we would recommend is an anti-theft bag. Yes, that’s right, you can purchase anti-theft bags which do actually help to prevent your belongings from being stolen.  

If you haven’t heard of, or know much about anti-theft bags, then what are they?  

We only discovered this in the last couple of years and would highly recommend them. They aren’t like any normal bag where the zip opening is on the face of the bag. But anti-theft bags have the zip opening on the rear of the bag, closest to your back.  

This means, the zips are hidden from people, making access to your bag and the belongings inside much harder. 

These great bags and backpacks have plenty of space to pack the essentials for a day out sightseeing in a busy tourist spot and some backpacks can store your laptop, that’s if you need to take your laptop with you.  

You can use it as a carry on, as it meets the requirements as a small personal bag to be placed under the seat in front of you or in the overhead locker. But would be a little small as a carry-on case.  

We purchased our backpack from Amazon for about £20.00, which is reasonable and has lasted us for many years. 

We really can’t live without our anti-theft bag and would highly recommend you purchasing one for your travels in 2021. 

Osprey Daylite Plus Rucksack 

We both have a small lightweight backpack that we take with us on our travel adventures, be it sightseeing, or a day long hike. 

Our favoured brand is Osprey. We both have the Osprey Daylite Plus Rucksack and it’s our recommended backpack for 2021. 

Its great features such as, lightweight, weighing in at 540g, durable and has a capacity of 20L, with space for a laptop, tablet and spare clothing. The pockets at the front are of a good size for small personal belongings.  

The Osprey Daylite Plus Rucksack is so versatile, you could use the backpack for a day hike, sightseeing, as personal baggage to take into the aircraft cabin, or commuting to work.  

But, one of the best attributes of the bag is the hydration sleeve at the rear. This allows for easy access to water from the pouch, with the added bonus that the weight of the water will be distributed over the entire back.  

This would be one of the more budget friendly backpacks on the market at under £50.00.  

Vango Dryft 28 Rucksack 

This is a little heavier for a day pack weighing in at 720g, but still versatile and durable. The main pocket at the front allows for easy access to spare clothing, walking poles and has a detachable rain cover. With this great backpack, you can safely say the essential items inside will not get wet.  

The smaller pockets are great for separating your belongings. Most hydration pouches compatible, ensuring you remain hydrated throughout your trip. 

It is a little bit more expensive out there but still under £50.00. 

Lowe Alpine Edge II 18 Rucksack 

A well-known brand on the market, offering a smart looking pack and lightweight, weighing in at 520g that holds a capacity of 18L. The backpack has a good number of compartments for ease of access to what you need and a key clip for safe keeping of the keys. 

Lowe Alpine Edge II 18 Rucksack is so versatile, you can use this for a day pack or an everyday bag. The included bonus is the hydration compartment, for hydration all day.  

A good little backpack and under £50.00 

Lowe Alpine Airzone Trail 30 Rucksack 

Sticking with Lowe Alpine, this backpack’s a little larger and a little more expensive at over £50.00+, however it holds a capacity of 30L but weighs in over 1kg.  

Although this might be a little heavy in weight, what counters this is the sternum and side compression straps making it more comfortable on any adventure. The belt across the hip includes pockets for valuable items, or just easy access to important items you need as you hike.  

At the rear the AirZone boosts the airflow to the back, making it more breathable and reduces the moisture build up.  

It might be a little over budget but has all the right attributes for an ideal backpack to purchase in 2021. 

Osprey Women’s Kyte 66 rucksack 

This larger backpack will be ideal with the multi day trips, with a capacity of 66L. It is a little weighted at 1.76kg, but can store the sleeping bag, hiking poles and ice axe.  

If you’re looking for a backpack with compartments, this pack comes with plenty, with internal and external lid pockets, side pockets for water bottles, front pockets and even an internal hydration sleeve.  

For comfort the backpack has padded straps and hip padding, with pockets on the hip for easy access to valuable items.  

It is designed for the woman in mind. 

The pack is a little more expensive at £100.00+, but well worth the price if it lasts for many years to come. 

Osprey Kestral 48 Rucksack 

The Osprey Kestral 48 Rucksack has a slightly smaller capacity compared to the other backpacking packs, but is lighter in weight at 1.63kg compared to the Osprey Women’s Kyte 66 Rucksack. Ideal for a multi-day hike or backpacking, with trekking pole attachments, twin ice axe loops and sleeping bag. 

You’ll find this will be an ideal backpack for all weather conditions, with a detachable rain cover for when it rains, or during the hotter climates the Airscape back panel can be adjusted for ventilation.  

The added padding around the straps and hip, will keep you comfortable throughout your journey. Pockets are aplenty including hip pockets for easy access to some small valuable items. 

The larger backpacks are more expensive at over £100.00+, but well worth the price especially if the backpack lasts for many years to come. 

Vango Contour 50:60s Rucksacks 

Vango Contour 50:60s Rucksacks is one of the more budget friendly backpacks priced over £50.00+, has a capacity of 60L, but does weigh considerably more than the many other backpacks on the market at 2.3kg. 

The products bonus is the high visibility detachable rain cover which is included, plus side pockets, padded hip belt for comfort and equipment attachments. 

We have included this one as it’s still a good backpack and within a good budget. This would be a great pack for first time travellers, backpackers or hikers. 

Tips 

The most important thing you must do before you make any purchase, is to do your research. Always visit the store and look at the backpacks. Looking at images online is great, but images are not always detailed. You may find that it’s not comfortable or something that you may not be keen to use, due to its design or the size or even its weight.  

When you are looking at the backpack, check its size, how many pockets it has, are the pockets enough and the right size for what you want, is it even lightweight and are you happy with its size and fit. All of these will be taken into account before you purchase the best travel backpack.  

What budget do you have? Buying the cheapest backpack may not be the best one for you. It could break, it might be too heavy and uncomfortable for you, or it might not be the right size for your travels. You should research the backpacks on the market, establishing what are the best ones for you, then narrow them down to what is within your price range. 

Conclusion, which travel backpack to purchase? 

We have done all the research for you, by choosing the best travel backpacks to buy on a budget in 2021. All you need to do, is visit your local outdoor store and try each of these backpacks on for size. Once you are completely comfortable with your chosen backpack, you are on your way to having the most comfortable trip, leaving only memories not a painful back. 

Did you purchase any of these backpacks? Which one did you purchase? Is there a backpack that you purchased on a budget that you would recommend? Let us know, with a comment below. 

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Best Travel Backpacks to buy on a Budget
Best Travel Backpacks to buy on a Budget

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