EDC backpacks are literally everyday carry backpacks. As in, backpacks that carry all the things you need on a daily basis. And in this post I am going to show you the best on the market right now.
To find the best EDC backpack it needs to be durable, sturdy and really comfortable. And those are the three things that all everyday carry packs featured in this review have in common. They are the best out there, fit all your EDC items, and none of them will disappoint.
At A Glance: Our Top 3 Picks for Best EDC Backpack
And since not everyone has lots of money, I have also found EDC backpacks for different budgets - from $30 to $100+. And you will also see different types of EDC backpacks - camera bags, laptops bags, biking bags etc. This wide variety of packs ensures that there’s something for everyone, no matter what it is exactly that you’re looking for.
So, read on the find the best EDC backpack for you!
OUR TOP PICKS
AmazonBasics Laptop Computer Backpack
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Pacsafe Metrosafe LS350
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Osprey Momentum Daypack
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AmazonBasics DSLR Camera Backpack
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Osprey Daylite Plus
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Mystery Ranch Urban Assault
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Herschel Little America
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The North Face Borealis
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Best EDC Backpacks in 2020
If you are on a tight budget, this is a great backpack for you. It only costs some $30, so it is super affordable. And you’re getting really good value for money; AmazonBasics products are surprisingly well made and durable.
This backpack is made from nylon, a material that has pretty good water resistance without any additional coating. That means all your EDC items will stay safe and dry in the backpack if you get caught in the rain. They might not stay entirely dry if you get completely soaked, so try to carry an umbrella with you.
It has three padded and ventilated inserts on the backpanel, which promise to keep you comfortable at all times. However, it doesn’t have a sternum strap or a hipbelt, and that’s really a shame.
The thing that I really love about this EDC backpack is how spacious it is. It has two roomy compartments, one of which holds a padded laptop sleeve. The sleeve fits all laptops up to 17”, and it can even fit 17.3” ones. You will need struggle a bit to squeeze it inside, but it will fit in the end.
AmazonBasics backpack also features a tablet sleeve, a front compartment with an organizer panel, a smaller front pocket and a scratch-free top pocket. There are two mesh pockets on the sides, perfect for a water bottle or small umbrella. And there also compression straps, which let you cinch in the backpack when it’s not at full capacity.
You could also use the compression straps to secure longer items in the side pockets - tripods, selfie sticks etc.
Do you spend a lot of time on public transport? If so, an anti-theft backpack might be the best option for you. It will ensure all your items are safe from devious pickpockets, and help you have some peace of mind while you’re commuting.
When it comes to anti-theft backpacks, you can never go wrong with Pacsafe. The company is very popular for their anti-theft technologies, which include slash-proof fabrics, hidden and lockable zippers, cut-proof straps and RFID safe pockets. And you will find all of those features on their Metrosafe backpack.
This is a bag that you can literally attach to a pole, leave it unattended and come back to find it spotless. It has a combination lock on one of the straps which allows you to secure to strap to something and just lock it in place.
And since this bag is mostly made from steel mesh, there’s no chance someone would be able to cut off the straps and run away with your EDC backpack.
But, safety is not the only reason why I love Pacsafe bags so much. They are very durable and thoughtfully designed. The main compartment on this backpack is spacious and features a suspended laptop sleeve. That means that the laptop doesn’t touch the bottom of the pack, which keeps it more secure.
In addition to that, the Metrosafe also has a front compartment with an organizer panel, stretch side pockets and padded backpanel. There’s no ventilation on the harness or the backpanel, so it’s not going to be the most comfortable backpack for hot summer days. But that’s not a deal breaker for me.
The Kanken is an iconic backpack. It is particularly popular with teens and young adults because it’s a very cool backpack. The brand has been around for decades, and almost everyone on the street can recognize that red and white logo.
One reason why this backpack is so popular is its durability. Once you buy it, you will own it for years to come. You can use it everyday, throw it around, get it wet and it will come out looking good as new almost every time. And that is because the backpack is made from Vinylon F - weaved synthetic fibers that swell when they get wet.
The Kanken features a spacious main compartment with an internal sleeve. You get a foam insert in that sleeve, which helps keep you comfortable and doesn’t let the contents of the bag poke you in the back. But the foam insert also doubles a sitting pad; just take it out and make that nasty wooden chair much more comfortable.
This backpack features a large external front pocket, as well as two side pockets. The backpanel is not ventilated, and the only padding is that internal foam cushion. In addition to that, there’s no padding in the shoulder straps either. But at least they are adjustable, and feature an ergonomic X design for optimal support.
Overall, this is hardly the most functional or best EDC backpack out of the bunch. But it is a great option if you just want something simple that you can use for years to come.
The Momentum is an excellent EDC backpack for all of you that ride your bike everywhere. It has two great features for all biker riders - attachment points for your helmet and an LED light. This is amazing because it means you can just put your helmet on the backpack, and you won’t have to carry it around in your hand the rest of the day.
Osprey is also one of my favorite backpack brands because of how durable and comfortable their bags are. The Momentum features breathable Airspace mesh on the backpanel, in addition to plenty padding inside. You also get the same materials on the harness, which help keep you comfortable regardless of the weather or temperature outside.
This pack has a sternum strap and a hipbelt, which is great for bike riders. These features ensure that it stays in place on your back, and that you don’t have to think about it all. Which is super useful on a EDC backpack that’s this big.
The backpack features a spacious main compartment, a dedicated laptop and tablet compartment, a front compartment with an organizer panel and several external pockets. And it has compression straps, which let you really tighten up the backpack. This is especially useful when it’s not full, as it lets you reduce its size.
Another great thing about the backpack is that it comes with a rain cover. This ensures that all of your EDC items are safe and dry even if you get caught in heavy rain. And it increases the value for money, since Osprey rain covers are not exactly cheap.
The Parkside backpack is a great laptop backpack. It is made from polyester, and it is very sturdy and lightweight. It has a padded and ventilated backpanel and shoulder straps, for great carrying comfort.
This EDC backpack has a spacious storage compartment and a total capacity of 25 liters. It features a laptop compartment inside the main area, which can fit most 15” laptops.
There’s also a front compartment with an organizer panel, as well as a zippered front pocket for any necessities you would like to have handy. And there’s another smaller zippered pocket, which is the perfect size for your phone.
The Parkside also features one stretch side pocket, designed to fit a water bottle. There are two grab handles on the pack, one on the top and one on the front. The grab handle at the front of the pack can also be used as an attachment point for bulkier items - just use a carabiner to attach anything to it.
This is a pretty affordable backpack. Some colors are under $50, which is amazing value for money considering the quality and durability of Timbuk2 bags. It is comfortable, durable and available in six different colors, so you can easily get a bag that you actually like.
If your EDC items include a DSLR body and several lenses, this backpack is a great option for you. It is a very affordable option, and really good value for money. The AmazonBasics bag features removable padded dividers inside, which let you really optimize the space inside the backpack.
You can fit two DSLR bodies and 3-4 lenses inside the main compartment. The exterior of the pack features compression straps that can hold a tripod or any other bulky items in place, as well as a closed side pocket.
Plus, there’s also a front compartment with an organizer panel for all your other necessities. And the backpack has a separate laptop compartment, which can easily fit 17” devices.
The thing I love about this backpack is how versatile it is. Remove those padded dividers from the main compartment and you can easily use this as a carry on for shorter trips. It’s spacious enough to fit enough clothes for a couple days, but it’s also small enough that you can easily use it as a carry on.
This backpack also has a really good backpanel. It’s heavily padded and ventilated, which will not just protect your things, but also make you comfortable. There’s a really thick and heavily padded hipbelt on this bag, as well a sternum strap - both features help keep you comfortable when the backpack is full of heavy and bulky gear.
Overall, this is a great items for those of you that are looking something specifically for their tech. I particularly like the basic exterior - you can’t actually tell that this is a camera backpack, which will help keep you safe from thieves.
If you want a simple but durable everyday backpack, you should consider Osprey Daylite Plus. It is one of the brand’s most popular (and cheapest) backpacks. The backpack is made from 210D Nylon Double Diamond Ripstop - a durable and water resistant material.
The Daylite Plus backpack weighs a little over 1lb, so it is remarkably lightweight. It’s not a really big backpack, so it’s rarely going to get so heavy that it makes you uncomfortable. And if you manage to turn it into a heavy backpack, you can utilize the hipbelt and the sternum strap to transfer that weight away from your shoulders and make yourself more comfortable.
This pack features heavily padded backpanel and harness, which are also covered with breathable mesh. The shoulder straps are adjustable, so you can really make the daylight fit your body right.
There’s a spacious main compartment in the pack, which features a laptop compartment. It can fit laptops up to 14”, and it will do a great job at protecting your expensive computer. The pack also has an external hydration sleeve, so you can carry both your laptop and hydration pack in the Daylite Plus. This is a fairly new feature - the old version of the backpack only has one sleeve.
The Daylite Plus also features a front stash-it pocket, which is great for quickly putting away a spare layer of clothing. It has stretch side pockets, an additional zippered front pocket and a smaller front compartment with an organizer panel and a key clip.
Overall, this is a really great EDC backpack suitable for everyone who is looking for something very durable and lightweight. It’s great as an everyday carry bag, and it is surprisingly affordable for Osprey!
It’s generally a good idea to spend money on versatile backpacks. And the Urban Assault by Mystery Ranch is one of my favorite versatile backpacks ever! It has some really unique features, a very durable exterior and it actually feels like a premium backpack.
This pack is made from 500D Cordura Nylon - a very durable and water resistant material. It has padding and breathable aerospace mesh on the backpanel and harness, for ultimate carrying comfort. And it features a sternum strap, which will keep the backpack firmly in place.
Urban Assault features three-zipper opening of the main compartment, which is a rather unique feature. You can access everything in the main compartment and its pockets by undoing the side zippers.
If you want even more access to your belongings, unzip the third, vertical zipper - this will expose the contents of the backpack entirely. This is actually pretty great for packing clothes, and one of the things that makes this pack quite versatile.
The backpack features internal laptop and tablet sleeves, several zippered pockets, as well as external pockets. It also has daisy chain webbing at the very bottom, which allows you to attach any bulkier gear to your backpack - just use a carabiner.
Overall, it is one of the more expensive options in this review, but it’s a really sturdy backpack. If you want an EDC backpack that you can also use for outdoor adventures or travel, the Urban Assault is truly an excellent option.
Herschel backpacks are really popular, especially with your adults. If you want your EDC pack to be trendy and cool, you can’t go wrong with one of their bags. Herschel Pop Quiz is actually their best selling backpack, but I think that Little America is a much better EDC option.
It’s more stylish, sturdier and has better organization features. It has that signature striped lining on the inside, as well as a padded and suspended laptop sleeve. That actually means that the sleeve is about 1-2” above the bottom of the bag - if you tend to slam your pack on top of a desk, your laptop won’t feel a thing.
The pack features drawstring closure of the main compartment, with magnetic buckles that secure the top cover in place. The external front pocket with a key clip inside also has magnetic buckles, in addition to the zippered closure. It also doesn’t hurt that they buckles are super stylish.
The Little America backpack by Herschel Supply Co. is definitely not one of the most functional or versatile EDC backpacks you could buy. But it is really cool, and that’s a pretty important thing for lots of people. If you want to let the world know that you have style and you know what’s trendy, this pack is a great way to do that. And stay comfortable at the same time.
If you need a big EDC backpack, the Borealis is a really good option. It has a capacity of 29 liters, which makes it one of the largest packs in this review. And that capacity is divided over several compartments and pockets, for easy organization.
The backpack features a padded air mesh backpanel, with Spine Chanel and PE sheet for ultimate back support. It also has FlexVent shoulder strap with added PE foam, which feel soft and comfortable against your torso. Additionally, the pack comes with a sternum strap and a hipbelt, which will transfer the weight of the backpack away from your shoulders and onto your hips.
You get multiple main compartments on the Borealis backpack. The largest one is very spacious, and doesn’t have anything inside. There’s a separate laptop compartment that can fit devices up to 15”. In addition to that, this pack also has a front compartment with an organizer panel and a dedicated tablet sleeve.
The pack is available in a lot of different colors, but be careful when choosing one. Some of the colors are actually specifically designed for men or women, which means smaller harness and more narrow shoulder straps (for the ladies). You will usually see if it’s a men’s or women’s backpack in the Amazon descriptions.
What To Look For
What Are Your EDC Items?
EDC literally stands for everyday carry. The abbreviation refers to items that you carry with you on a daily basis, be it to work, college, or the mountains. This is an individual thing, so one EDC backpack cannot fit everyone. But, it has to fit all your EDC items
Make sure that the bag you want to get has space for your daily necessities. If that’s a laptop, it should have a proper laptop sleeve. If you’re always listening to music, look for a headphone port. If you’re carrying files, folders and dozens of pens, look for multiple compartments and organizer panels.
I’ve also showed you some backpacks that are specifically designed for carrying around drones, action cameras and DSLRs. These packs have padded organizers that you can use to separate the main compartment however you want, and fit in all the lenses, accessories, tripods and whatnot.
Additionally, some of the backpacks featured here have attachment points for LED lights. Some even have attachment points for helmets, and they are the absolute best option for those of you that ride your bike every single day.
Size And Capacity
How many items do you carry around on a daily basis? This is going to determine the size of the backpack you need. If it’s usually a laptop, a charger, your wallet, keys and a few other things, then you really don’t need a huge backpack. In that case, just make sure that the backpack you like can actually fit your laptop.
But, it you tend to carry around a lot of items everyday, then you will need something pretty big that can fit everything. I recommend something with multiple compartments, since this makes organizing your EDC items very simple.
You can check out the dimensions of each backpack in the product info boxes. Be sure to do that, in order to have an idea of just how big that backpack you are getting is.
If you want a backpack that you can use as a carry on, make sure that you’re getting something shorter than 20”. And look for compression straps; these really help you tighten up the backpack, so that it is easier to squeeze it under the seat on an airplane.
Additionally, consider your own body type. Big backpacks are not the best fit for petite people; they are generally uncomfortable and difficult to properly adjust. And vice versa; bigger people will find larger backpacks more comfortable than really small bags. The shoulder straps are wider and a better fit, as is the backpanel.
I’ve showed you backpacks that cost anywhere from $30 to well over a hundred dollars. So, before you fall in love with a bag that you can’t afford, look at the pros/cons section. If the bag is around or under $50, the pro box will say that it’s affordable.
And if a backpack is well over $100, the con box with say that it’s pricey. This way, you have an idea of what sort of price range every backpack is in. Backpacks that don’t feature any price info in pros/cons boxes are generally between $50 and $100.
But, keep in mind that the really cheap backpacks are never going to be as durable as the pricey ones. If you want a bag that you can use for years, then go with something a bit more expensive.
If you are okay with having to replace your bag after a year or less of everyday use, then check out the cheaper options.
Best EDC Backpacks: Our Top Choices
Can’t decide on a single EDC backpack? That’s okay; go with one of our top options depending on your price range, and you won’t have any regrets!
If you can’t afford to spend a lot of money, get the AmazonBasics backpack. It’s super affordable, and surprisingly high quality for the price. The backpanel features three padded and ventilated panels, which will keep you comfortable throughout the day. There are multiple main compartments on this backpack, as well as loads of internal and external pockets. And it can fit 17” laptops in the dedicated sleeve, so it’s a good choice for virtually any device!
- Large multi-compartment backpack with a padded sleeve for laptops
- Holds up to 17" notebook computer
If you can afford to spend a little more on a backpack, go for the Timbuk2 Parkside. The brand is known for premium quality, and this particular backpack is really cheap compared to their other bags. It has a padded and ventilated backpanel, an internal laptop sleeve that fits 15” devices and a front compartment with an organizer panel. The pack also features a stretch side pocket, as well a smaller zippered pocket on the front panel.
- THE PARKSIDE: A dressed up travel-friendly backpack with laptop protection
- KEEP IT ORGANIZED: Front zip pocket for keeping small items in check; Internal organizer for pens, phones, and other small stuff; Secure zip pocket for earbuds, stylus, cards, and cash; Large main compartment fits books, lunch, and a light jacket;
If money’s not an objects, grab the Mystery Ranch Urban Assault. It is a high quality backpack, with some excellent features. The entire backpanel and harness are padded and ventilated, for superb carrying comfort. Additionally, the backpack has a spacious main compartment with three-zipper opening, for easy access. There’s a padded laptop sleeve inside, as well as lots of smaller zippered pockets. This is a very versatile pack, so it can be much more than your designated EDC bag.
- URBAN ASSAULT 21 - Inspired by military assault rucksacks, this 21 liter versatile daypack is the epitome of clean, functional design
- EVERYDAY URBAN MISSIONS - With built-in laptop and tablet sleeves, your devices will hug closely to the back panel for optimal carrying comfort & protection
Those are our top three EDC backpacks. You can see the color options and prices of each of them if you go over to Amazon. And if you would like to explore more options, check out our related posts!