In a nutshell: These ten deceptively simple backpacks are ideal for light travel.
- The Best Minimalist Backpack Is The One You Already Own
- Tortuga Homebase 32L
- Timbuk2 Uptown 30L
- Minall Daily 21L or Carry On 2.0 35L
- Tom Bihn Synapse 19L or 25L
- OnePlus 20L
- Saddleback Squared Leather Backpack 18L
- Incase EO
- GoRuck GR1 21L or 26L
- Lifeasy 20-35L
A real minimalist does not require the most minimalist backpack, so you can leave that concept go. You just require something that will not fall apart. These are only bags; they will not improve your life.
However, if you’re looking to fall in love with a new backpack and want to travel light, this list is a wonderful place to start.
What Is the Definition of a Minimalist Travel Backpack?
A minimalist travel backpack is a bag designed for those who travel light.
The bag reflects its owner’s minimalist outlook. It may forego flashy features in lieu of strong basics.
It must fulfil its primary function effectively. It should be robust, lightweight, and long-lasting, and it should be ideal for transporting your belongings.
Its sole purpose is to make your life easier.
Designers should hide functional complexity beneath a straightforward initial appearance.
It is often smaller and replaces your everyday backpack and baggage.
If it could communicate with you… It wouldn’t talk, but it would sing… with the zeal of a young Chesney Hawkes in 1991…
This page will assist you in locating it.
- Durability and strength
- Design is straightforward.
Leave It Alone
- Extravagant baroque styling and branding
- Overweight material
- There are a billion interior compartments.
- Padding and features in plenty
- Features only for the sake of having them
- Parts that are prone to breaking
What Line Did I Draw?
I was looking for backpacks with capacities ranging from 20 to 35 litres.
I wouldn’t consider a 45-liter backpack to be the greatest minimalist backpack… It’s just too big.
Don’t misunderstand me. With a huge backpack, you can still be a minimalist provided everything you carry has earned its place.
However, most light travellers do not require 45 litres. Simple.
These backpacks were all small enough to fit in a carry-on. Every feature should serve a function. There are no gimmicks. There is no nonsense. And they should all be able to accommodate a tiny lightweight laptop.
Why Should You Buy A Minimalist Backpack?
A backpack, like nature, enjoys being stuffed. If you buy a large backpack, you risk overloading it with clutter and unnecessary items. This adds an unneeded strain and makes for unhappy travel.
You will impose constraints on yourself if you pick a smaller minimalist bag. If your backpack is full, you simply cannot take any more. Overpacking has been resolved.
My vacations have always been more enjoyable when I travel light with a tiny backpack. If you travel light and don’t bring much, your luggage doesn’t require as many comfort elements.
Bags with the most features Try to solve difficulties that would not exist if you packed light in the first place. Doesn’t that make sense?
Check out this fantastic movie of Megan, who began packing light and discovered that it led to significant improvements in her life.
How Do You Fit Everything In A Small Backpack?
You learn how to travel light and pack as little as possible.
Clothes take up the most room in a travel backpack. As a result, you wear less garments.
Doing laundry when travelling is quite beneficial. Purchasing odor-resistant clothing made of fibres such as merino wool or linen also helps.
You also leave beliefs about what you require and societal customs behind. You don’t need to buy a new clothing every day; that’s “only for show.” You also don’t have to travel light; that’s “only for show.”
Whatever makes you happy!
Product Thoughts in Brief
Do you need a new backpack if you already have one?
There’s a good probability you just desire a new bag and don’t require it.
The goal of minimalism is to eliminate excess. So, if you had an old backpack, wouldn’t that suffice?
Pay attention, youngsters…
As I get older and wiser, I discover that practically everything I buy gives me buyer’s regret.
Like, seriously… Except for food, 90% of what I buy ends up being a regret.
But I’m still as stupid as the next man… It’s really easy to convince yourself that you require something fresh.
We always have a blind spot when we look at the feature list of a backpack or any product. We can perceive the advantages but miss the problems.
Take, for example, the Minaal Daily. It costs $249 and has the following features.
- 16 lbs in weight
- 9 x 12.6 x 6.3 in.
- Pocket with a zipper
- centre top pocket
- centre bottom pocket
- Pocket on the right side
- Daily rain protection
- It will take you 30 hours of your life to get your hands on it (at minimum wage)
Did you notice the final one? It’s what I refer to as the “lost feature.” Feel free to modify the calculation to reflect your specific income rate, but you get the concept.
The “forgotten characteristic” is why your current backpack is typically the ideal one for you.
In an ideal world, no goods would be priced in dollars or euros. The price tag would miraculously inform us how much time we would need to labour to obtain it. That is the actual expense. That would be fantastic!
Isn’t it also funny that high costs tend to make something more desirable? We don’t know how to tell whether is high quality or not, so we use the price tag as a guideline.
$499 for a backpack? Dude! It must be fantastic!! It has to be… Shouldn’t it?
Well, perhaps not. So keep that in mind the next time you go shopping. Money, as my mother always said, does not grow on trees!
In any case… Is it true that you’re looking for a backpack or an identity? Just an idea…
So… don’t envy your neighbor’s bag. The bag you already own is the greatest minimalist backpack and the ultimate minimalist pick.
Backpack Tortuga Homebase 32L
Not buying my nonsense? Okay, here’s my second option. The finest minimalist bag you don’t need…
Tortuga creates the Homebase from a strange, thin, and light material. It’s a basic sailcloth fabric called Liteskin with a layer of nylon on top.
Despite its thinness, the material is quite resilient. This device is really well-built.
The fabric and YKK zippers are both water-resistant. As a result, it will be ideal for wet conditions.
It features very comfy straps and back cushioning.
The pockets on the exterior are well-organized. The primary storage section, on the other hand, is one huge compartment.
This bag is quite appealing to me. It features limited branding and is not completely covered with zips.
It easily accommodates a 15-inch laptop. The laptop is propped up against your back.
My only complaint about this bag is that it is a little too large for daily usage. It’s functional for everyday usage, but it’s a little large in terms of appearance and may be a little floppy when not completely filled.
It comes with a huge packing cube that resembles a backpack but lacks straps. It’s a shame they didn’t include backpack straps since it would make an excellent everyday carry bag.
The Daily Minaal (Approx. 21 liters)
Minaal’s Daily backpack was created to be your go-to bag for everyday use. However, it is also ideal for lightweight long-term travel.
It has a capacity of roughly 21 litres, which is little less than half of a full-sized carry-on. I’m not going to lie: it will require compromises, but with good preparation, you can travel full-time with a 21-liter bag.
It features a simple design with a blue logo on the top and strap. It is available in mild or extremely dark grey. I’d prefer it if the logo didn’t exist at all, but you can’t have it all. I’m bothered by the branding on the strap since I don’t want any company logo 6 inches away from my face.
For those tiny items, there is a small easy-access pocket on the top. That’s a spacious main compartment for all of your belongings. There’s also a great laptop compartment at the rear.
There are narrow pockets for paperwork inside the main compartment. The Minaal comes with a basic rain cover that entirely covers the bag to keep your belongings dry. It fits neatly in a pocket at the bottom of the bag.
The laptop area is well-protected and can accommodate a 15-inch MacBook. Once loaded, your laptop is suspended so that it does not contact the bag’s edges. It’s a one-of-a-kind feature and an excellent approach to give impact protection.
It has plenty of room for a daily carry, but it will be tight for long-term travel. Minaal bags are quite popular, and with cause. They’re well-made and should last a long time.
If you need extra space, Minaal has a popular bigger version that holds 35 litres. But keep in mind that a huge backpack like that would be difficult to use as a daily carry after you are at your location.
Travel-Friendly Timbuk2 Uptown Backpack
This dog is going to leap up and lick the TSA personnel in the face. It’s just so convenient for travelling.
The laptop compartment is located right near to your spine. This portion fully opens so you can show the TSA your laptop and tablet without having to unzip your backpack.
The Uptown contains a modest front pocket as well as a thin pocket with several organising compartments.
Behind it is a bigger pocket with even more organising possibilities.
It’s fantastic to be able to keep all of your trinkets in one place without having to go inside the main compartment.
On the top, there is a fleece-lined pocket for your glasses or phone.
The back is cushioned, with adjustable straps and a bottle opener.
There is a briefcase handle, however it is not really comfy.
It feels good on the back.
It’s well-made and long-lasting.
It is not the most costly, but it is quite nicely built and constructed. It’s the greatest minimalist bag for through airport security.
Synapse 19L or 25L by Tom Bihn
The Synapses are available in black, blue, red, or grey ripstop nylon or ballistic nylon.
This item has a lot of huge pockets, which results in a lot of visible zips.
To further personalise your Synapse, you may select different coloured internal linings.
On the front of the bag, there’s a Tom Bihn insignia that shouts adventure. Some compare this brand to a dad-bag… I strongly disagree.
The Tom Bihn Synapse backpacks are ideal for folks who want to organise their belongings. If you have a lot of little items that need to be organised, the Synapse may be for you.
And those are only the possibilities for the base model. Tom Bihn supplies a variety of items that may be hung within the pockets. So, if you want detachable pockets to put in your pockets, you’re in luck!
I simply place finicky stuff in plain see-through freezer bags and toss them in with the rest of the garbage.
The bag is water-resistant; don’t go scuba diving with it, but it will keep your valuables dry in a rainstorm.
The main disadvantage of this bag’s basic form is the lack of laptop protection. Although there is an inside compartment, the laptop is not protected. It may be dangerous if you dropped or banged the bag.
But, then again… When was the last time you banged your backpack against a wall?
Some difficulties with anger control there, buddy?
Because you will always be the one carrying your bag, you should exercise caution.
You can also purchase an additional attachment if desired. It’s known as a cache. It’s a huge pocket that fits inside the bag’s pocket. This way, if you have a temper tantrum and start thrashing your bag around, your laptop will not fall to the ground.
A heavy item, such as a laptop, should be placed near to your back for weight distribution.
However, it is preferable to have something soft against your back, such as clothing.
You don’t care about weight distribution because you’re a light traveller, not a heavy pack horse.
With the Tom Bihn Synapse, you won’t have a hard laptop against your back. The laptop is placed closer to the bag’s centre.
The 25-liter model is their most minimalist backpack and is ideal for short trips. It is approximately 55% of the maximum carry-on size.
The construction quality is the major reason this bag rates so high. It’s produced in the United States and is built to last.
A minimalist travel bag must have the following characteristics: strength, durability, and reliability. The Tom Bihn Synapse checks all the boxes and is a bag that will not disappoint.
You simply have to determine if it’s your style.
OnePlus 20L Travel Bag
OnePlus manufactures smartphones. Furthermore, they specialise in producing phones with great specifications yet inexpensive pricing.
However, they have just begun producing a backpack in a very simple form.
This is an everyday carry bag for most people, not a travel backpack.
However, for lightweight backpackers, 20 litres is a manageable capacity.
20 litres is around 44% of the maximum carry-on size. You’ll need to pare down your packing list!
It is available in two distinct colours: black and grey/blue/red.
If you’re seeking for a simple design at a reasonable price, OnePlus might be the answer. That is why it is on this list.
Perhaps the OnePlus is the ideal minimalist bag for those who own a OnePlus phone and are fans of the brand.
However, the build quality is poor. What does OnePlus know about producing durable backpacks?
In my opinion, it is advisable to purchase your phone from a phone manufacturer and your rucksack from a backpack manufacturer.
You’ll have more trust that you’re obtaining something solid this way.
Squared Leather Saddleback Backpack
It’s constructed of hefty leather, which adds needless weight.
It opens and loads from the top, making it difficult to get items in and out.
It’s hardly the most pleasant setting.
It lacks excellent organisational features.
There is no cushioned area for a laptop.
All of this sounds rather horrible, doesn’t it?
Yes, but this bag will last a lifetime or more.
This bag is awesome for three of my four important characteristics!
Nothing can be broken.
There is no zip, only buckles.
Everything has been built to last. The quality is incredible.
You have around 35% of the allowed carry on size. You’ll need to travel light so that the weight of the leather doesn’t become an issue.
It’s the ideal simple bag for those who dislike shopping. Buy it once and you’ll never need to buy another backpack again!
Nothing else on this list compares in terms of strength and durability.
But it will come at a cost. How many hours of your life would you have to give up to get your hands on something like this?
If that figure is too high for you, you should search elsewhere.
If you can afford it without breaking the bank, can travel light, and appreciate the look, the Saddleback may be your one and only.
If EO occurs
The Incase is a simple black bag, but there’s more to it than meets the eye.
On the exterior, this is just a regular black laptop bag.
However, it is extendable.
This means that when enlarged, it makes an excellent lightweight travel bag. However, when you hop on aircraft between places, it may expand in size to accommodate your clothes.
When you arrive at your location, just place your clothing in a drawer and zip it back up; it makes an excellent everyday carry bag.
People who don’t travel light may find this to be a useful feature while going away for the night.
This backpack has the potential to be an ultralight traveler’s main bag for everyday usage and travel. If they are able to travel very light.
In the event that it is claimed that it will take two days, clothing. For light travellers, this implies two more days plus the outfit you’re wearing. Long-term travel is entirely possible with a sink and a universal sink plug.
It’s in the centre of the price range. It’s not as high-end as some of these niche backpack manufacturers. It also lacks the cachet of a brand like Minaal or Tortuga.
In terms of durability, this won’t last forever, but it may be the greatest minimalist backpack at this price point.
GR1 21L or 26L GoRuck
The GoRuck is backed by a lifetime warranty. Don’t you simply love it when a company stands behind its products?
They can afford to do so since it is well-crafted and constructed of high-quality materials.
It is built to withstand big weights while remaining comfortable.
If you’re using this bag for travel, you’re probably not carrying a lot of items. The GR1 is offered in two sizes: 21-liter and 26-liter.
However, if you need to bring a 17-inch performance laptop for business, you may still have a big load. Or if you require a gaming laptop.
So, if you have a little but heavy load, something like the GoRuck GR1 is certainly worth considering.
If you’re going to use it on an aircraft, don’t get the camouflage version. You’ll just draw unwelcome attention to yourself.
The plain black variant is quite simple. The construction is sturdy, long-lasting, and trustworthy. It’s the greatest minimalist backpack for large weights.
It’s a good competitor if you can afford it.
Lifeasy 20-35L Travel Laptop Backpack
Finally, I wanted to provide a less expensive choice to help you choose the finest minimalist backpack for your money.
The Lifeeasy, like the Incase, features a simple design.
It may be expanded from 20L to 35L.
It is constructed with lesser-grade materials and has a poorer construction quality.
Manufacturing may be hit or miss, so I’d thoroughly test your luggage before using it on a lengthy vacation.
It enlarges a little too much for my taste. Because 9.5 inches exceeds most carry-on size limitations. That would only be an issue if you stuffed so much in that it couldn’t be squeezed much smaller.
It would be good to be able to conceal the backpack straps so that it seems to be a cool basic cloth briefcase.
While it may be sufficient for short travels to and from a home base. I wouldn’t take this bag on a long trip.
The majority of businesses target several market segments. They urge us to have two bags, one for travel and the other for everyday usage.
So many of these options need a tradeoff. We wind up with a bag that isn’t exactly suited for vacation or everyday usage.
I’d like to see some extensible designs built to better standards. I don’t believe the best minimalist backpack has yet to be invented. Expandable packs, in my opinion, are the best option to create a one-bag that is suitable for both travel and daily usage.
What are your thoughts? What is the finest minimalist backpack you’ve ever seen? Have you located your onebag yet? Tell us in the comments.