Best High School and College Backpacks For Students in 2022

High School and College Backpacks For Students

College and high school students tend to carry more tech and books than younger school kids and will need heavier backpacks. We’ve put together a comprehensive list of the best backpacks for students to ensure that there’s something for everyone. Check out these high-quality backpacks for your school adventures.

Best anti-theft pack:
MATEIN College Bookbag

Staff Pick

The outside of the MATEIN backpack is a durable, water-resistant polyester, so books and gear never suffers when it’s raining or snowing. The padded over-the-shoulder straps are comfortable and adjustable, and this pack comes with a bit of extra security to boot. You’ll get a USB charging port to keep your phone topped off, and a hidden anti-theft pocket for money and devices sits just behind your lower back. This rucksack is large enough to hold a 15.6-inch laptop, a tablet, plus lots of books.

$30 at Amazon

Eastport Mesh Backpack

A see-through pick:
Eastport XL Mesh Backpack

The oversized Eastport Mesh is semi-transparent. Whether your school requires a transparent bag or you prefer a lighter pack with more breathability, this is a fun option that’s never heavy but always strong enough for all your gear. It’s made from breathable polyester mesh material and includes an elastic front bungee for fastening bike locks, hoodies, and other items. There are three compartments and two side drink pockets in this inexpensive offering.

$25 at Amazon

Amazon Basics Back Pack Product Render

Best for big laptops:
AmazonBasics Laptop Backpack

If you carry a 17-inch notebook, you’re going to love the roomy rucksack from AmazonBasics. This large, multi-compartment pack has a padded sleeve for your laptop, mesh water bottle side pockets, plus organization compartments for pens, keys, and phones. This is a big pack that evenly distributes the weight of heavy books and electronics, and doesn’t cause shoulder or back pain. The shoulder harnesses are padded, and it comes with a cushioned carry handle at the top.

$41 at Amazon

Jansport Big Bag

Best classic pack:
JanSport Big Student Backpack

JanSport has been making packs in the US since the 1960s, and its outdoor gear is well-known and loved for its durability and longevity. The Big Student pack from JanSport features a dedicated 15-inch padded laptop compartment, a front utility pocket, an organizer, a pleated front stash pocket, and a fully padded back panel. Grab this iconic pack in one of 19 colors and patterns, and it’ll hold up to years of school and personal use.

$47 at Amazon

Under Armor Hustle Backpack

From class to the gym:
Under Armor Adult Hustle 5.0

The Adult Hustle Backpack 5.0 from Under Armor is sport and school-ready, flashy yet functional. With a tagless design and UA Storm technology, the Hustle 5.0 rests happily on your back and battles the elements with a water-resistant finish. Two large main compartments give you space for essentials like books, gym clothes, laptops, tablets, and phones. Grab this backpack from Under Armor in one of 36 colors and head back to class in style.

$49 at Amazon

Yorepak Slim Backpack

A slim option:
YOREPEK Slim Computer Backpack

The YOREPEK Slim Computer Backpack makes an excellent book bag that never weighs you down. Slender in style, the YOREPEK is plenty big enough to hold a 15.6-inch laptop, plus books, tablets, phones, and other items. Dual metal zippers are reinforced with Flexible Lock to keep wallets and other valuables safe. This pack also features USB and headphone ports to store your tech safely in your bag while listening to music or charging up devices.

$27 at Amazon

High Sierra Loop Backpack

Adjustable compression straps:
High Sierra Loop Backpack

Stuff this High Sierra backpack as full as need be and use the side compression straps to cinch the pack, shrinking your overall load. The large, multi-compartment design provides an abundance of space for pens, tablets, keys, and phones. There’s also a dedicated computer sleeve tucked inside to keep your tech wrapped in an armor of protection. The High Sierra is made of ballistic nylon fabric that will outlive your college or high school career.

$45 at Amazon

Swissgear 1900 Render

SWISSGEAR 1900 ScanSmart

If you fly the friendly skies between home and college, don’t pass up the SWISSGEAR 1900 ScanSmart backpack. Made of weather-resistant 1200D ballistic polyester, this bag can withstand heavy use and harsh weather. It also makes travel a breeze. The lay-flat technology lets you fly through airport TSA scans. The inside is organized and spacious, and this big bag has no trouble fitting a 17-inch laptop, plus notebooks and other essentials.

$90 at Amazon

North Face Jester Backpack

The rugged backpack:
The North Face Jester

The North Face Jester is about as sturdy as they come. Built for the wilds, the Jester has enough space for all your school kit, all bundled up in a waterproof material. The inner 15.4-inch laptop sleeve is padded, and there’s even an extra tablet sleeve for extra tech storage. If you want a bag that’ll outlast your college career, this is it.

$69 at Amazon

Our top three picks for this year

Our favorite backpack is the MATEIN college backpack. It’s got a slot for just about everything, like a built-in laptop sleeve, a phone pocket, and even an anti-theft pocket for your valuables. There’s even a bigger option for bigger laptops, and its relatively low price makes it a very solid option for anyone.

If you want something slimmer, the YOREPEK slim computer backpack is a compact option that also has enough space for all your gear. There’s even a little USB port on the side that you can hook your portable battery up to, and then use to charge your phone or headphones.

And if you’re a frequent flyer, you’re going to love the SWISSGEAR 1900 ScanSmart. It’s big enough to hold a 17-inch laptop, clothing, and all your gear, plus it’s TSA-friendly.

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