As you travel with your precious tech, it's crucial to make sure the bag you're using can provide adequate protection. We’ve identified the top factors that your bag must meet to earn an A+ rating so you know what to focus on when choosing the perfect tech travel backpack.
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The best backpack for traveling with a laptop (and a tablet and a wireless keyboard and an e-reader) is one you can trust implicitly to protect your tech, be stylish, and help you stay organized. Sure, old faithful from your college days probably has a laptop sleeve, but is that really enough if you’re living as a digital nomad, or traveling internationally for a meeting or a pitch? If you’re reading this article, our bet is you’re ready to find the best travel backpack for tech and hybrid work. Below are the 3 most essential features for a tech travel backpack.
A Professional Tech Travel Bag Must Protect Your Devices
If you can't rely on your bag to safeguard the devices you use for work and everyday life, then it's not worth considering as a suitable option. Imagine the potential hazards that can occur while traveling such as turbulence on a flight, sudden movements on a train ride or reckless driving by your cab driver. Your bag must have adequate padding, separate compartments for individual devices to prevent collision and potential damage, and at least some level of water resistance.
Padding & Cushioning
Consider looking for a tech travel bag that prioritizes the quality of its protective features, such as the materials used for cushioning and padding. Search for features such as fleece-lined inner pockets for your phone, external battery, or backup drive. If you plan to carry a water bottle and gym clothes, look for bags with antimicrobial linings in those areas to prevent unpleasant odors from developing.
When it comes to safeguarding your laptop, it's essential to have more than just a flimsy layer of fabric between your device and the ground. Opt for professional tech travel bags with a laptop pouch that has substantial padding directly between the bottom of the bag and your laptop. The best bags offer a generous amount of padding in this area to ensure maximum protection.
Look for bags that feature reverse coil zippers, which means that the zipper teeth are not visible on the outside, and treated fabric that is resistant to moisture. These features are usually highlighted in the product description.
If the potential for spilled coffee, a clumsy waiter, or inclement weather could jeopardize your important work or a critical presentation due soon, it's worth investing in a water-resistant bag. While you don't necessarily need a tech travel bag that can withstand a dip in the pool, it should be capable of withstanding rain, spilled drinks, and splashy puddles from passing vehicles.
The primary purpose for your tech travel backpack is to keep your stuff safe, which is why features like lockable zippers and RFID-blocking fabric should be taken into consideration when shopping for your next bag.
Tech Backpacks Need Storage For Your Laptop, and Tablet, and Headphones, and Kindle, and…
It's crucial to consider the amount of storage and organization required for both your tech devices and their chargers when selecting a tech bag. Therefore, it's essential to choose a bag with an abundance of storage and organization. It's not ideal to carry around a sandwich bag filled with almost identical cables, so investing in a tech travel bag with proper organization is critical.
Organization Solutions That Work At A Glance
Look for a bag with sufficient organization solutions that don’t require you to spend minutes digging around for the precise cable you need. You want a lot of pockets, sleeves, and segmented sections, but you should also look for a tech bag that has see-through mesh pockets to make it easy to identify their contents. If the interior sections have zipper pockets that prevent stuff from spilling out when you’re trekking around, even better.
If you have to juggle multiple sets of keys or IDs while you’re roaming around, having a quickly detachable key leash can make life easier. Beyond that, it can help you if you need to get on a plane quickly to not miss a business opportunity because you were scrambling to pack your bag last minute. No more “what did I forget” feeling or the “Keys, wallet, phone,” pat check on the ol’ pockets; you can just grab your bag and go, confident that it contains all the necessary items.
If you fly a lot, your bag should have easily accessible pockets near the top so you can throw your phone and other typical pocket carries in quickly when you’re in line for the TSA. Easy-access pockets near the top are an easy feature to overlook, but they’re pivotal when traffic has made you late and you’re tripping over your shoes in the security checkpoint.
A bag with specific slots for storing membership IDs, library cards, credit cards, passports, or office IDs in your backpack can also be a boon if you’re carrying a minimalist wallet or a phone-case-wallet-combo. If you’ve got limited slots on your regular wallet, keeping the less needed but still important cards in your bag (in a protected, zipper-lock pocket) can make life easier for you.
A Bag Sized For The Life You Lead
Adequate storage in a tech travel bag should reach beyond a mere place to store your cords and devices; if you’re rocking that digital nomad experience (or even just traveling somewhere for work) your bag should be able to support that lifestyle. We’re talking about storage for all your everyday carry items! Clothes, board games, sketchbooks, water bottles, sunglasses, umbrellas, flip-flops, and more. The storage capacity of a truly exceptional tech travel bag needs to match the life you want to live with it.
If you’re staying near your home base and just taking quick trips around the city, you can reasonably get away with a bag with somewhere around a 20-30 liter interior capacity. In our experience that meets the needs of most local tech workers. However, if you spend a lot of time on a train or plane, you might want to consider a 30-45 liter bag with enough storage that you can also carry more than a single day’s worth of clothing.
Case in point: carrying around a duffel on one shoulder and a laptop bag on the other while running through an airport is a recipe for disaster. If you know you’ll need enough storage for your clothes while you travel, look for a backpack with an expandable compartment. That can give you some much-needed storage space for a few day’s worth of extra threads.
Storage for the type of travel you’re doing also means paying attention to the type of transit you frequently use. If you’re on an airplane a lot, make sure your bag meets the usual requirements for carry-on luggage.
>>MORE: Carry-On Packing Guide
A Tech Backpack Should Make A Stylish Statement
As a tech worker traveling around, having a stylish tech bag makes a powerful statement. It says you care about your work, you protect what you value, and you’re not afraid to invest in your appearance. Pair that with a stylish pair of heels and a red lip, and you’re on your way to a million followers… or just some well-earned self-confidence.
An Upgraded Look For Work And Travel
If you're a digital worker on the go, you need a bag that's tailored to your needs. While we know not to judge a book by its cover, our appearance and the objects we associate ourselves with do make a statement. Therefore, it's essential to find a bag that sends the right message.
If you frequently travel by plane, bus, or train, it's crucial to select a carry-on-sized bag that suits your preferred mode of transportation. After all, you don't want your tech backpack to shout, "I don't fit in overhead bins!"
If you're heading to a meeting in an executive office or boardroom, consider selecting a backpack that can convert to a stealth briefcase. While a stylish tech backpack may suffice for everyday coffee shop interactions, having a backpack-sized bag that can masquerade as a briefcase, complete with a side handle, can be beneficial when the CEO or a significant client visits.
Finally, the bag should not cause shoulder pain or back discomfort when worn. These may seem like minor details, but they're crucial when selecting an everyday carry tech bag.
What Is The Best Tech Travel Backpack
A tech travel backpack should be sturdy, water-resistant, and safeguarded against pickpockets. It must help maintain organization and provide ample storage space, while also looking like a backpack or briefcase designed for the workplace, not a child's bag. Moreover, it should be comfortable to wear, which is equally important. Therefore, we strongly recommend our Knack Pack for all of these reasons.
A Knack Pack is the perfect solution for tech workers and hits the three essential features we mentioned above (because we built them to do that) including keeping your belongings organized, protected, and secure.
Protection is at the forefront of Knack’s design, with its lightweight, high-density nylon fabric and tough 840 denier ballistic nylon bottom panels providing superior durability. The laptop pocket fits a 13-17-inch laptop, depending on the bag size you choose, and has a protective, suspended bottom to keep your device safe from bumps and jostles. The water-resistant YKK zippers and custom, stain-resistant polyester logo print lining with anti-microbial treatment ensure your belongings remain dry and protected from mold and mildew.
Storage and organization are key features of all Knack Packs, with multiple compartments, pockets, and pouches designed to keep your essentials organized and within reach. The front organization compartments of the Series 2: Medium Expandable Knack Pack includes lockable zippers and an RFID blocking lining to protect your personal information from skimming and scammers, while the spacious main compartment boasts a protective, fleece-lined tablet pocket and battery/cable pocket. The side water bottle pocket fits a 17 oz S'well bottle or 24 oz Hydro Flask, and the padded, side computer pocket fits up to a 15-inch laptop.
In addition to its practical features, a Knack Pack is also stylish and ergonomic, with its custom-designed cast zinc alloy zipper pullers, Duraflex buckles and sliders, and comfort-cool EVA memory foam back panel. The ergonomically-designed comfort foam shoulder straps with air-mesh backing and adjustable, removable sternum strap make it easy and comfortable to carry, even on long journeys.
Whether you're traveling for business or pleasure, Knack will keep your tech essentials organized, protected, and secure.
We’d love to hear your take on what to look for in a great tech travel backpack or if you think we missed anything. You can reach out to us at [email protected]. Also, please tag @knackbags and use #knackbags on social media when you take your Knack on your journeys!
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