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5 Best Anti-Theft Backpacks for Travel to Keep Your Valuables Safe (2023)

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In this guide, we’re going to take a closer look at five of the best anti-theft backpack picks on the market. Each anti-theft backpack has been selected to suit a varying need, and all have a range of smart features to help prevent crime when you travel.

An anti-theft backpack is a backpack that has been designed with a number of features that help prevent thieves from stealing or damaging the backpack to get inside. Lockable zippers, hidden compartments, and slash-proof materials are some of the various features of anti-theft backpacks.

With more people traveling than ever before, opportunities for thieves have never been more prolific. Thieves are getting smarter, so investing in an anti-theft backpack is a wise decision.

While backpack security features have existed for decades, it’s only recently that the anti-theft backpack has become both fashionable and practical.

Best Anti-Theft Backpacks

Top Pick

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XD Design launched its pioneering anti-theft backpack in 2016 via crowdfunding, and since then, the anti-theft backpack has only gone from strength to strength. The brand continues to set a gold standard for anti-theft backpacks, with its stylish and practical Bobby range at the forefront of the anti-theft design.

Quick Picks

Don’t have time to read through the article? Then take a look at the quick picks, which will get you to the best anti-theft backpack in a flash, depending on your specific needs.

Best Anti-Theft Backpack for Everyday UseXD Design Bobby
Best Anti-Theft Backpack for Outdoor and HikingPacsafe Venturesafe GII 25L Anti-Theft Travel Backpack
Best Anti-Theft Backpack for TravelTravelon Anti-Theft Classic Backpack
Best Anti-Theft Backpack for MenBopai Business Anti-Theft Backpack for Men
Best Anti-Theft Backpack for WomenTravelon Anti-Theft Signature Slim Backpack

Anti-Theft Backpack Considerations

Anti-Theft Backpack Considerations

Anti-Theft Features to Look For

Hidden Access Points

If you think of a conventional backpack, you will nearly always see the zippered compartments and the zips hanging freely, or, say, a drawstring fasten easily tuggable.

Often on an anti-theft backpack, the sealed or zippered compartments are hidden behind a fabric fold, which stops someone from being able to gain easy access if you are distracted.

Built-in Zipper Locks or Clasps

Rather than letting the zippers hang freely, many anti-theft backpacks have zipper locks or clasps. This makes it much harder for a thief to quickly grab and pull a zipper to open a compartment.

RFID Block

Some anti-theft backpacks will have RFID-blocking fabric, in a similar vein to many passport wallets, that will block electric fields that can come from, say, a card scanner used by thieves to quickly scan cards and personal data when in close proximity.

If not on the whole backpack, sometimes the bag will have a specific RFID-safe pocket to store passports, credit cards, and other accessories.

Anti-Slash Material

A common tactic by thieves is to slash backpack or bag straps so that the backpack drops to the floor, allowing them to grab it and run in a matter of seconds.

Many anti-theft backpacks use anti-slash materials that are much sturdier than conventional materials, preventing thieves from slashing and swiping in one swoop.

Hidden Compartments

Often fold in folds or harder-to-reach areas of the backpack, commonly anti-theft backpacks will have a range of secret pockets, many even zippered, to store valuable items.

Separate Combination Locks or Cables

If not built in, some anti-theft backpacks will provide you with lockable accessories, such as a combination lock or tying cables, to seal the zips and compartments of the backpack before you head out.

Your Usage

While the anti-theft features go a long way to protect your valuables, you still need to approach purchasing an anti-theft backpack as you would any type of backpack.

If you plan to use it for work and business travel, make sure the backpack has a laptop sleeve. Consider the material used and how durable it is.

Often, anti-theft backpacks are designed with commuting and tech in mind, so if you want to get a backpack that can be used to carry your laptop to work but also for hiking on the weekend, an anti-theft backpack may not be the best choice.

Comfort Features

Especially if you’re searching for an everyday-use backpack, approach selecting a backpack with comfort in mind.

Look at the materials used and whether it adopts some of the conventional features of comfortable backpacks. These include padded straps, a breathable ventilated mesh back panel, and potentially even a hip belt.

Size and Capacity

For a rough estimate, 15-20L is generally spacious enough for casual everyday use, especially for commuting. Plenty of daypacks, which are often used for day trips or hikes, have a 20-30L capacity, so you have space for clothes, food, and other accessories.

If you plan to carry your laptop, check if the backpack has a laptop sleeve, whether it is padded, and the size of the sleeve. 17” is commonly the largest sleeves will go to, but some will be more in the 13-15” range. Double-check your laptop size before making a decision.

best anti-theft backpack

Now that we’re clear on what an anti-theft backpack is, let’s take a look at my five anti-theft backpack picks. With these backpacks, you’ll have peace of mind when traveling with even the most expensive of tech and gear.

Best Anti-Theft Backpack Picks

Best Anti-Theft Backpack for Everyday Use

1 – XD Design Bobby XL 17” Anti-Theft Backpack

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Summary

XD Design is a pioneer in the anti-theft backpack market, and its landmark design of backpack has influenced brands across the globe. After numerous successful crowdfunding campaigns, their backpacks are now available in over 3,000 retailers across 50 countries. For the breakthrough anti-theft backpack design, XD Design’s Bobby range is an excellent choice.

Anti-theft features

Revolutionary in its design, the XD Design Bobby features a no-access front to confuse thieves. The zippers to the main compartment are hidden, as per the landmark XD Design. You also get hidden compartments in the strap, side, and back, and Bobby’s slash-proof material stops thieves from cutting into the backpack or the straps.

Design and comfort

Smooth and sturdy, the bag is made of soft, durable polyester, and you get two designs to choose from. Reflective strips can be found on the front, and straps to make you visible in the dark.

Dimensions, compartments, and capacity

At 12.4” x 4.9” x 18.1”, this is a spacious anti-theft backpack with a total capacity of 15L. It weighs 3.38 lbs, and its design allows you to open from the back at a 30-degree angle, or 90-degree angle, or unfold the whole back to a 180-degree angle.

Waterproof level

The polyester material is water-repellent and will give you protection against rain and light showers, provided you don’t stay out too long in the downpour.

Does it have a USB charging port?

One USB charging port is located at the bottom of the side of the bag. Inside, you can connect your own power bank, and you can charge your devices on the go.

Size of laptop it can hold

As it’s a spacious bag at 15L for everyday use, a laptop of up to 17” should fit inside.

Pros

  • Use of polyester, with several layers of slash-proof material, makes this a durable backpack.
  • Anti-theft features are what brought this backpack to the mainstream in the first place.
  • XD Design is an eco-friendly company and states their materials are sourced in environmentally friendly ways.

Cons

  • As great as the hidden zipper feature is, it does make it more difficult to unzip and rezip the main compartment.
  • Doesn’t have as many compartments as other backpacks on the market.
  • You will need to purchase a power bank to use the USB port.

Best Anti-Theft Backpack for Outdoor and Hiking

2 – Pacsafe Venturesafe GII 25L Anti-Theft Travel Backpack

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Summary

Due to its multiple compartments and design heavily geared toward ease of use and comfort, this is a great anti-theft backpack for outdoor activities and hiking, provided you won’t be doing extensive water-based activities.

Anti-theft features

Pacsafe brings three anti-theft features to the foray with their well-crafted GII. The first is two sets of zippers that can be locked and secured via attached locks on the backpack.

The second is an RFID pocket that blocks card skimmers from thieves, which will keep your credit cards and smartphone safe from scanners. Finally, the backpack’s material is slash-proof, stopping opportunistic thieves cutting the straps and exterior for a quick grab.

Design and comfort

A simple but stylish backpack to behold, the design is heavily geared toward comfort. The shoulder straps are padded and fully adjustable. From the base of the straps, you get a sternum belt, and at the rear, a hip belt. Both will help distribute the weight. There is room for a hydration pack, too, on the side. You get three colors to pick from black, navy blue, and ocean blue, all of which look delicious with dashes of white and yellow clips.

Dimensions, compartments, and capacity

At 2.08lbs, it’s easy on the shoulders, and the 25L 19.7” x 11.4” x 7.9” capacity and dimensions mean this is an excellent choice of a backpack for hiking and overnight backpacking. Although, you get two exterior zipper pockets, a padded interior laptop sleeve, two exterior side pockets, the main interior zipper pocket, and finally, an RFID pocket to keep your cards and small electronics.

Waterproof level

The durable nylon exterior is water-resistant and very easy to clean. In rain showers, you’ll have protection. But do not submerge this backpack.

Does it have a USB charging port?

There is not a USB charging port included.

Size of laptop it can hold

You’ll be able to fit up to a 15” laptop inside the sleeve with no trouble.

Pros

  • An excellent array of anti-theft features make this one of the safest backpacks on the market, covering slashing, card scamming, and pickpocket attempts.
  • The sternum and hip straps, as well as the padded shoulder straps, make it very comfortable to wear as the weight is distributed well.
  • Covers both office/commute use and outdoor/hiking use, which is rare for backpacks.

Cons

  • The shoulder straps have less adjustable range compared to other backpacks on the market.
  • Be mindful of the water-resistant material, as this is an outdoor backpack, but it’s not fully waterproof.
  • The foam back is not as elasticated as other backpacks, so it can be less comfortable than other back panels under a heavy load.

Best Anti-Theft Backpack for Travel

3 – Travelon Anti-Theft Classic Backpack

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Summary

This is an excellent choice if you want a travel backpack with an array of anti-theft features, great to take with you through crowded airports and cities. If you’re happy to compromise a little on the size in return for less weight and comfort, you should definitely consider this anti-theft backpack.

Anti-theft features

A classic style backpack from Travelon, it’s equipped with five anti-theft features that protect you from various threats. Firstly, the lockdown straps stop opportunist thieves attempt a ‘grab and dash’ with your bag, as the strap lock can be used to attach the backpack to a stationary object. Secondly, you get two sets of locking zippers, that protect the front compartment and main compartment.

Then, you have the benefit of a backpack made from slash-proof material. This is prevalent both on the body, to stop items falling out, and the straps to stop the backpack falling off your shoulders and onto the floor. Finally, there are two RFID blocking pockets to keep cards and electronic devices to block those pesky card scammers. Together, the features form a formidable wall of protection.

Design and comfort

Composed of soft nylon and smoothly pyramid-like in design, you get seven colors to chose from. Inside, the lining is polyester, so you get plenty of padding for your belongings. The shoulder drop gives you a decent 9” to play with using the adjustable straps.

Dimensions, compartments, and capacity

It’s a very lightweight backpack at 1.43lbs, and altogether you have a capacity of 6” x 16” x 12”. Inside the main compartment, you get a tablet sleeve, back pouch, and zippered pouch, along with the main area. In the front compartment, you get a pen and small pouch on one side, and the RFID section on the inside, which gives you five card slots and a larger passport slot. There are also two pockets, one on each side of the exterior, for water bottles, and the like.

Waterproof level

The smooth nylon is water-resistant, but not waterproof. You’ll be fine if you get caught in the rain, but be wary of spillages or the bag being submerged underwater.

Does it have a USB charging port?

No, there is no USB charging port on this model of backpack.

Size of laptop it can hold

You’ll be able to stow a tablet of up to 10” in the pouch, and a small laptop of up to 13.5” in the main compartment.

Pros

  • Equipped with five anti-theft features, this is a very safe backpack to take with you in crowded areas.
  • RFID feature is a welcome addition and allows you to stow passports, small electronics, and cards, with peace of mind.
  • Very lightweight, compact, and padded, adjustable straps make it easy to carry.

Cons

  • Although ideal for travel, there is no sleeve on the back to attach to a suitcase, like many other travel backpacks.
  • If you have large electronics or a large laptop, the main compartment is going to be a squeeze, and there’s no USB charger.
  • Zippers not the smoothest pull compared to other backpacks.

Best Anti-Theft Backpack for Men

4 – Bopai Business Anti-Theft Backpack for Men

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Summary

Undoubtedly still a unisex anti-theft backpack, this backpack is a good pick for a man who travels a lot for work and business. It has plenty of compartments, and is roomy enough to carry a laptop and other items, while also looking sleek and stylish with its synthetic leather exterior.

Anti-theft features

Bopai’s smooth, synthetic leather anti-theft backpack is equipped with three features to help prevent theft. Firstly, you have the main pocket, which, by design, will cling tightly to your back, making it difficult to grab.

And secondly, the zippers use the popular anti-theft hidden design, so that wandering hands can’t get a hold of them. Finally, there’s also a hidden zippered pouch on the backpack back, which you can use to hold small valuables, cards, and the like.

Design and comfort

The back of the backpack is equipped with a breathable massage design, so is very soft and comfortable against your back. The main compartment’s 45-degree opening position allows easy access to your belongings without them falling out, and you also get a neatly concealed card pocket on the left shoulder strap.

Dimensions, compartments, and capacity

At 2.3lbs and 11.8” x 5.5” x 17.7”, this is an anti-theft backpack that’s larger than many of its counterparts on the market. This makes it a great choice for someone with plenty of tech, or who needs a backpack with enough storage for clothes and everyday items for an overnight or weekend trip.

Inside, you get a spacious main compartment, a padded sleeve for your laptop, a full-length zippered pouch on the front side, two open pouches, and two pen pouches.

You also get a front, full-length compartment that unzips from the front. As mentioned previously, there’s an invisible pouch for cards on the strap, and finally, a pouch on the side for a water bottle or umbrella.

Waterproof level

The synthetic, water-resistant leather fusion is water-resistant, but not waterproof. You’ll have protection against water in those moments you get caught in the rain.

Does it have a USB charging port?

Located on the side of the backpack, you have a USB port that’s ready to use. A USB cable is also included with the bag.

Size of laptop it can hold

The bag will comfortably fit a 15.6” laptop, along with various other tech, such as tablets and cameras.

Pros

  • A smart, stylish backpack for men and business travelers on the go. With the synthetic leather, you get a great balance of functionality and style.
  • Its size, and number and diversity of compartments, make it perfect for business trips, commutes, and weekend trips, where a variety of different items need to be taken.
  • Well-organized, and the 45-degree angle of both the front and back opening allows you to stow items tower block style, without them falling out.

Cons

  • It’s light on anti-theft features compared to other backpacks.
  • The straps aren’t as adjustable as other backpacks on the market.
  • The USB port positioned at the bottom, which means you need a longer cord when connecting your phone or other devices.

Best Anti-Theft Backpack for Women

5 – Travelon Anti-Theft Signature Slim Backpack

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Summary

If you’re a woman who wants to prioritize safety, travel with a stylish backpack, and don’t have a lot of tech or gear to carry, Travelon’s signature slim backpack has all the features to be an excellent addition to your travel attire.

Anti-theft features

For such a slim and compact design, this backpack still packs plenty of punch when it comes to anti-theft features.

Firstly, you get five RFID blocking card and passport slots in the main compartment. Secondly, both the shoulder straps and front pocket are made of slash-resistant nylon, meaning you won’t have to worry about pesky thieves trying to cut open the bag and making a dash for it.

Thirdly, both the front and main zippered compartments can be ring locked. Lastly, one of the shoulder straps has a lockable feature, meaning you can keep the backpack locked to stationary or moving objects, without worrying about thieves making a grab for the backpack.

Design and comfort

Made from delightful nylon fabric, you get a magnetic closure feature on the top roof of the bag, and a smooth nylon lining inside. The anti-theft backpacks come in three stylish colors, and the straps are fully adjustable.

Dimensions, compartments, and capacity

With dimensions of 11” x 13” x 2”, you’ve got a slim backpack that can house a tablet, with a range of other valuables. Inside, in addition to the main compartment, you get five RFID block compartments, a zippered compartment, and an open pouch. In the front, you get a zippered pocket to place some extra valuables.

Waterproof level

The nylon exterior is stain and water-resistant. You’ll get protection from rain or light showers, but do not expose this backpack to extended time in water.

Does it have a USB charging port?

There is no USB charging port included.

Size of laptop it can hold

A tablet of up to 9.7” will fit inside, but a standard size laptop will not fit.

Pros

  • Stylish and elegant, the addition of the RFID card slots means you can do away with a purse and have this as an all-in-one backpack.
  • Strikes an excellent balance between being a functional backpack, but also a fashion accessory.
  • For such a small backpack, it has an impressive range of anti-theft features.

Cons

  • Very small compared to other backpacks. If you travel with a laptop or a lot of tech, there won’t be enough room for you.
  • While compact, the backpack is also very narrow. This could cause issues with bulkier, unconventionally shaped items e.g., camera body.
  • Straps not as adjustable as other backpacks on the market.

Best Anti-Theft Backpacks Summary

Whether you’re traveling to a faraway country or simply on the way to work, there is no substitute for safety. As thieves become smarter, day by day an anti-theft backpack becomes more of an essential purpose.

Don’t take that gamble. Especially if you’re constantly traveling and commuting with your laptop and other valuable tech. Many of the features on the backpacks featured could be the difference between you keeping your laptop, or having it stolen.

So, one final time, here are my best anti-theft backpack picks for travel, according to specific needs:

Best Anti-Theft Backpack for Everyday UseXD Design Bobby
Best Anti-Theft Backpack for Outdoor and HikingPacsafe Venturesafe GII 25L Anti-Theft Travel Backpack
Best Anti-Theft Backpack for TravelTravelon Anti-Theft Classic Backpack
Best Anti-Theft Backpack for MenBopai Business Anti-Theft Backpack for Men
Best Anti-Theft Backpack for WomenTravelon Anti-Theft Signature Slim Backpack

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Anti-Theft Backpack Considerations

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