Best School Backpacks: Top Choices for Students in 2024

Updated on February 5, 2024

Top School Backpacks for Students

We’ve spent numerous hours researching and comparing a wide array of school backpacks to ensure we bring you the best options. Whether you’re searching for durability, style, or ergonomic support, our list caters to every student’s needs. Stay organized, comfortable, and prepared for the school year with our top picks.

MATEIN Travel Laptop Backpack

MATEIN Travel Laptop Backpack, Business Anti Theft Slim Durable Laptops Backpack with USB Charging Port, Water Resistant College School Computer Bag Gift for Men & Women Fits 15.6 Inch Notebook, G...

In our experience, this MATEIN backpack suits those in need of a dependable daily carrier with thoughtful features for tech-savvy individuals.

Pros:
  • Spacious compartments and organizational pockets
  • Comfortable padding and adjustable straps for ease of carrying
  • Convenient USB charging port for on-the-go power
Cons:
  • Only one size available, which may not fit larger laptops
  • The USB port requires a separate power bank, not included
  • Water-resistant material is not fully waterproof
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As we tested this backpack through the hectic pace of our daily commute, its storage capacity consistently impressed us. The various compartments and pockets made organizing a breeze, accommodating not just our laptop but also all peripherals and essentials needed for the day.

Comfort during travel is non-negotiable for us, and with this MATEIN backpack, the cushioned back design and breathable straps have been a godsend. Even when loaded to capacity, the stress on our shoulders was significantly reduced, a boon for our daily hustle.

Another feature we found particularly useful was the built-in USB port. It meant we could easily recharge our devices while on the move, provided we carried our power bank. This feature has been a game-changer for long commutes and travel days.

Despite its many attributes, we did notice that it caters to a specific laptop size, and anyone with a larger device may have to look elsewhere. Additionally, while the backpack keeps contents dry during a drizzle, it might not withstand a downpour, so keep the weather in mind.

All told, our hands-on experience affirms the MATEIN Travel Laptop Backpack is a reliable companion for daily use with its blend of spaciousness, comfort, and tech readiness. It’s been invaluable to us, and it could be the same for anyone balancing a busy lifestyle with the need for organization and connectivity.

Prime 6 Backpack

adidas Unisex Prime 6 Backpack, Two Tone White/Black, One Size

We recommend this spacious adidas backpack for its durability and comfort, making it a solid choice for anyone carrying a heavy load.

Pros:
  • Comfortable LoadSpring shoulder straps
  • Multiple pockets for organization
  • Easy to clean with soap and water
Cons:
  • Larger size may be bulky for some
  • Aesthetics not suited for all preferences
  • Potential durability concerns with heavy use
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When it comes to toting around textbooks, a laptop, and various essentials, this extra-large Prime 6 Backpack by adidas has consistently been up to the task. Its woven material withstands daily use, and despite loading it up with a hefty amount of gear, it remains comfortable on the shoulders, thanks to the LoadSpring straps. We’ve found the multiple zippered pockets extremely handy for keeping things organized on the go.

It’s not just about utility; this adidas backpack also considers our planet with its eco-friendly construction of recycled content. Plus, its lifetime warranty offers peace of mind — a welcome bonus. After a quick spot cleaning, it looks as presentable as it did on day one, handling the occasional spill with ease.

However, we’ve noticed that the generous sizing might be a bit much for those with a smaller frame or lighter carry needs. Also, while the pack has held up to date, those of us using it under exceptionally heavy loads have begun to keep an eye out for potential wear and tear. The design may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but when functionality reigns supreme, such details can take a backseat.

Adidas Excel 6 Pack

adidas Excel 6 Backpack, Jersey White/Black FW21, One Size

We found the Adidas Excel 6 Pack remarkably handy for keeping our gear organized and comfortably supported throughout the day.

Pros:
  • Made with recycled content, contributing to sustainability
  • Life-saving warranty offers peace of mind
  • LoadSpring shoulder straps greatly alleviate the weight on our shoulders
Cons:
  • Some might find it too sizable for compact lockers or spaces
  • The white variant can show dirt more easily, requiring frequent cleaning
  • Price point may be higher than other options
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When we loaded up the Adidas Excel 6 Pack with textbooks, a laptop, and other essentials, the spacious compartments and pockets kept everything in check. The separate padded laptop sleeve, accessible from the outside, allowed us to quickly retrieve our device without rummaging through other contents. The dual water bottle pockets on the sides were a cinch to use, which kept us hydrated on the go without juggling multiple items in our hands.

The backpack’s durable wipe-able material proved to be a standout feature. After a coffee spill, a simple wipe with soap and water had it looking as good as new. Having a bag that can easily be spot cleaned is a godsend, especially when surprises occur.

While enjoying its generous size and multiple compartments, we noticed how LoadSpring technology in the shoulder straps systematically redistributed the weight. This meant trekking across campus didn’t result in the typical shoulder or back strain. There’s a reassuring rugged feel to the zippers and fabric that signaled this pack was ready for long-term use.

Developed with consideration for our environment and a commitment to end plastic waste, the recycled content of the Adidas Excel 6 Pack gives it an edge over the competition. We’re confident that students and busy professionals alike will find this pack’s features, including a lifetime warranty, to align well with their active lifestyles.

JanSport Cool Backpack

JanSport Cool Backpack, with 15-inch Laptop Sleeve, Black - Large Computer Bag Rucksack with 2 Compartments, Ergonomic Straps

If you're seeking a blend of style and practicality for school or everyday adventures, this backpack is a savvy choice.

Pros:
  • Ample space with two main compartments simplifies organization
  • Sturdy construction with supportive ergonomic straps withstands daily wear and tear
  • Stylish design with a variety of colors suits any personality
Cons:
  • Limited innovative features when compared to tech-focused backpacks
  • No specific compartment for smaller electronics like tablets
  • High demand might affect availability of certain colors and patterns
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Navigating campus just got more organized with our new JanSport backpack. The two spacious compartments made packing textbooks, a lunchbox, and even a sweater a breeze. The padded laptop sleeve confidently protected our tech as we moved from one lecture to another, which was a real stress reliever.

As soon as we slung the ergonomic straps over our shoulders, the comfortable design was immediately apparent. Plus, the water bottle pocket kept hydration at arm’s reach, a simple yet often overlooked feature.

However, we noticed the absence of a designated spot for a tablet or smaller devices, which might need some improvisation. But overall, our experience reflected the durability and functional design JanSport is known for. The backpack held up well, becoming a trustworthy companion for facing daily challenges. We felt in step with the latest campus trends, and the extra style points of the leather trim certainly didn’t hurt our street cred.

SHRRADOO 52L Travel Backpack

SHRRADOO Extra Large 52L Travel Laptop Backpack with USB Charging Port, College Backpack Airline Approved Business Work Bag Fit 17 Inch Laptops for Men Women,Black

We believe this backpack is a smart investment for anyone in need of a high-capacity, durable backpack for school or travel.

Pros:
  • Abundant storage with versatile pockets
  • Designed with durability and water resistance in mind
  • Equipped with USB charging port for on-the-go convenience
Cons:
  • May be too large for daily use
  • Bulkier than typical school backpacks
  • At 2.8 pounds, it's heavier than some might prefer
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The SHRRADOO 52L Travel Backpack has swiftly become our top pick for anyone needing to transport a considerable number of items comfortably. With its multiple compartments and an array of pockets, locating my laptop, power cords, and notebooks has never been easier. The padded laptop section assuredly protects my device, lending peace of mind when on the move.

Despite its extensive capacity, the backpack’s smart design means it never appears unwieldy. Adjusting the compression straps, I was able to streamline the profile for a day when carrying less. The weather-resistant material also stood up to a light rain shower, keeping my papers dry and secure.

The inclusion of a USB charging port is particularly useful, allowing me to charge my smartphone while on a walk. However, I noted the backpack is quite sizable, so it’s something to consider for those preferring a more compact bag. Carrying this backpack through crowded hallways or busy streets took some getting used to due to its size.

All in all, the SHRRADOO 52L Travel Backpack is a reliable choice for students and travelers alike, who demand capacity and resilience from their gear. The extra features, such as the USB charging port and breathable shoulder pads, make it a standout choice against others in the market.

Dickies Signature Backpack

DICKIES Signature Backpack for School Classic Logo Water Resistant Casual Daypack for Travel Fits 15.6 Inch Notebook (Black)

We think this backpack fits the bill for those in search of a durable daypack that accommodates a 15.6-inch laptop with ease.

Pros:
  • Built to endure daily use with its sturdy construction.
  • Sleek design and lightweight feel offer comfort during commutes.
  • Water-resistant material protects belongings from the elements.
Cons:
  • Zipper durability might be a concern based on user experiences.
  • Limited organizational compartments for those who prefer more pockets.
  • Plastic zippers rather than metal could be a drawback for some.
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We recently tried out the Dickies Signature Backpack, and its minimalist design immediately caught our eye. Not only does it look sharp, but the lightweight construction also makes it a breeze to carry around campus. Its water resistance is a real bonus, keeping our laptops and notebooks dry during those unexpected rain showers.

That’s not to say it’s without its flaws. We learned to handle the zippers with care after reading about issues from other users, although so far, we’ve had no such problems. The backpack doesn’t sag or strain our backs even when packed with weighty textbooks, which speaks to the comfort and durability of the design.

While we wished for a few more pockets to organize smaller items, the spacious main compartment held all our essentials without a hitch. From a sleek, functional daypack that feels robust and looks professional, we’re confident this Dickies offering will be a solid choice for many.

Coowoz School Backpack

Lightweight School Bag College Laptop Backpack for Men Women Travel bag High School Middle Bookbag for Boy Girls

We think this backpack is an excellent choice for students and travelers looking for a light and stylish option with practical features.

Pros:
  • Comfortable to carry with padded straps
  • Multiple compartments for organization
  • Fashion-forward and professional look
Cons:
  • The zipper quality may not withstand heavy use
  • Some reports of material feeling damp from the inside
  • Limited size for carrying larger items
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Recently, we had our hands on the Coowoz School Backpack, and we were pleased with its lightweight design, making it a breeze to carry around campus or through city streets. Its water-resistant polyester material kept our gear dry during a light drizzle, and the range of pockets, including one for a 14-inch laptop, made organization easy.

The shoulder straps didn’t strain our shoulders, even after long periods, thanks to the ample padding. Staying hydrated was no issue with the convenient side pockets designed for water bottles. Its sleek and classic design caught our eyes, too—it’s not just your average backpack, but one that could easily accompany us to professional settings or casual outings.

However, it’s good to note that while using the backpack, we encountered some minor issues with the zippers. They seemed less durable compared to other parts of the bag and might not withstand the test of time. Additionally, we noticed the interior material retained a bit of moisture, which might be a concern if we were to carry electronic devices on rainier days.

In summary, if you’re in need of a stylish and lightweight backpack for your daily essentials, the Coowoz School Backpack holds up nicely on short commutes and casual use. It may not be the roomiest bag on the market, but it balances functionality with a contemporary look quite well.

Della Gao Anti-Theft Laptop Backpack

Della Gao Large Anti-Theft Laptop Backpack with USB Charging Port for 17-Inch Laptops

We found this backpack strikes the right chord between space, security, and comfort for both educational and travel needs.

Pros:
  • The layered compartments make organization a breeze.
  • Built-in anti-theft features provide added security.
  • Padded back and straps offer carrying comfort.
Cons:
  • Might be too large for smaller lockers.
  • The sheer number of pockets can be overwhelming.
  • Some might find it too bulky for daily commute.
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Ever since we got our hands on the Della Gao Anti-Theft Laptop Backpack, the morning routine has been seamless. Juggling various devices, books, and personal items has never been easier with the multitude of pockets designed to keep everything accessible.

Security is a primary concern for us, and the included combination lock on this backpack puts our minds at ease. Not once did we worry about the safety of our valuables whether we were navigating busy city streets or cramped hallways. Plus, the zippers are smooth and feel sturdy—durability is clearly a priority.

And let’s not overlook comfort, because that’s where this backpack truly shines. The padded back panel feels like a cushion even when the bag is packed to the brim. Carrying heavy textbooks and a laptop is no longer a strain on our shoulders, thanks to the well-distributed weight design.

High Sierra Loop Backpack

High Sierra Loop Backpack, Travel, or Work Bookbag with tablet sleeve, One Size, Shine Blue/Lapis

We'd recommend this High Sierra backpack for anyone in need of a resilient and structured pack for school, travel, or trail adventures.

Pros:
  • Ample storage with a variety of compartments for organization
  • Suspension system eases the load, making it comfortable for heavy carry
  • Robust and water-resistant material withstands daily use
Cons:
  • Some might find it bulky due to its extensive storage options
  • The style may not appeal to everyone’s taste
  • Compression straps can dangle and may get caught if not secured
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Having recently taken the High Sierra Loop Backpack out for a spin, we were impressed by how it handled a variety of loads and activities. Its multi-compartment design made organizing books, a tablet, and personal items straightforward and easy. On recent hikes, the adjustable compression straps proved invaluable for cinching down gear, ensuring nothing jostled around.

Comfort was clearly a priority in the design of this backpack. The suspension system lived up to our expectations, significantly reducing the strain on our backs, especially under heavier loads. The padding on the shoulder straps felt cushy yet firm, striking a good balance for all-day wear.

Even with regular use, this backpack has shown significant durability. Its fabric has fared well against abrasions and light rain, safeguarding our electronics and papers. Although it’s on the larger side, which means it can sometimes feel a bit cumbersome in tight spaces, this is a small trade-off for the utility it offers.

YAMTION School Backpack

YAMTION Black Backpack for Women Men,Casual School Backpack Teen Boys and Girls 15.6 Inch Laptop Bookbag with USB Charger for College High School Travel Business

We recommend this backpack for its versatile features that cater well to both school and travel needs.

Pros:
  • Robust waterproof fabric safeguards contents from weather.
  • Ergonomic design makes carrying even heavy loads comfortable.
  • Built-in USB port provides on-the-go device charging.
Cons:
  • Internal space may not accommodate larger laptops comfortably.
  • The material might not endure harsh conditions over extended periods.
  • Limitation of only one main compartment for organization.
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Having recently carried the YAMTION School Backpack on a bustling day across the campus, we can vouch for its ease over lengthy periods of wear. The shoulder straps distribute weight evenly, preventing any strain on the shoulders, a blessing when the bag is packed with textbooks and a laptop. Even during a sudden downpour, the contents remained dry, thanks to its effective waterproof fabric.

Another aspect we appreciate is the subtle inclusion of a USB charging port— a lifesaver when you’re in transit and your phone’s battery is dwindling. Combining this feature with a sufficiently powerful power bank, you’ll find your devices juiced up without having to be tethered to a wall socket.

Despite these benefits, we’ve noticed the space can be quite restrictive for bulkier items or larger laptops, which may require a bit of maneuvering. Additionally, the fabric, while waterproof, might not stand up to rough treatment over time, suggesting a need for careful handling to ensure longevity. Yet, for everyday use, this backpack ticks the majority of the boxes for a reliable school companion.

Buying Guide

When selecting the best school backpack, we consider several vital features to ensure it meets our educational and comfort needs.

Durability

We look for high-quality materials that can withstand daily use. Backpacks made of robust fabrics like nylon or polyester are key to longevity.

  • Material: Nylon, Polyester
  • Zippers: Metal, Heavy-duty

Comfort

Comfort is paramount. We focus on backpacks with padded shoulder straps and a padded back panel to reduce strain on our shoulders and back.

  • Straps: Padded, Adjustable
  • Back Panel: Padded

Size and Capacity

We must choose a backpack that can hold all our books and supplies without being too bulky. We aim for ample space and good organization.

  • Main Compartment: Large enough for textbooks
  • Compartments: Multiple, for organization

Feature Checklist

FeatureDescriptionImportance
Water-ResistanceProtects against liquid damage.High
Reflective ElementsIncreases visibility for safety.Medium
Padded Laptop SleeveGuards electronics from impact.High
Adjustable StrapsEnsures a custom fit.High
Multiple CompartmentsHelps with organization.High

We ensure that our backpack has a good balance of these features to cater to our daily academic requirements. Keep in mind the overall weight; a heavy backpack can be tough to carry when filled with books. Always try on a backpack if possible to check for a proper fit.

Frequently Asked Questions

In our experience, we find that students often have specific needs when it comes to selecting the right backpack. Below, we address common questions to guide you toward making an informed choice that balances durability, organization, style, and comfort.

What brand of backpack is most durable for daily school use?

We often recommend brands like JanSport, The North Face, and Herschel as they are known for manufacturing backpacks that withstand the rigors of daily school use. Their use of high-quality materials ensures longevity and customer satisfaction.

Which backpack features are essential for optimizing organization in high school and college?

A backpack with multiple compartments, including a padded laptop sleeve, pen organizers, and a water bottle pocket, is crucial for high school and college students. This design allows for easy accessibility and organization of school supplies and tech devices.

Presently, students are gravitating towards sleek, minimalist backpack designs with smart features like built-in USB ports. Brands such as Fjällräven and Away are particularly popular for their combination of style and functionality.

How do I choose the right size backpack for a college student’s needs?

Look for a backpack with a capacity of about 20-30 liters, which provides ample space for textbooks, notebooks, a laptop, and other essentials. Ensure that the size suits the student’s frame for added comfort.

What are the top-rated backpacks for comfort and ergonomic support?

Ergonomic support is vital for protecting the back and shoulders. Backpacks from brands like Osprey and Gregory often receive high ratings for their supportive design, featuring padded straps, a sternum strap, and a well-constructed back panel.

How can one balance style and functionality when selecting a school backpack?

Choose a backpack that not only appeals to personal style but also meets practical needs. For style and functionality, brands like Timbuk2 and Incase offer a variety of trendy, durable designs with multiple compartments and tech-friendly features.

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Rohit Mittal

Rohit Mittal is the co-founder and CEO of Stilt. Rohit has extensive experience in credit risk analytics and data science. He spent years building credit risk and fraud models for top U.S. banks. In his current role, he defines the overall business strategy, leads debt and capital fundraising efforts, leads product development, and leads other customer-related aspects for the company. Stilt is backed by Y Combinator and has raised a total of $275M in debt and equity funding to date.