In an era of changing business practices, backpacks are becoming increasingly common in the corporate world.
But are they professional?
This article looks at why backpacks can safely be considered professional and reviews some of the top-rated backpacks for business use.
From daily commuting backpacks to backpacks for business travel, we will explore the many advantages of business backpacks, such as increased comfort, increased energy and stamina, and increased security.
Will you be making the switch? You just might!
Let’s dig in…
Who’s Wearing Business Backpacks and Why?
Have you walked through any business districts lately?
Did you notice something a little different from the classic businessman look of someone wearing a suit and tie and holding a briefcase?
You most likely saw more people wearing backpacks.
Backpacks were traditionally used by hikers, campers, and students to carry their supplies and belongings, but now they have become an accepted part of many business professionals’ attire. It is not uncommon to see business professionals sporting a sleek, designer backpack in the corporate world.
Backpacks provide a stylish and convenient way for busy professionals to keep their laptop, documents, and other essentials close at hand while still looking polished and sophisticated.
Many backpacks offer features such as padded compartments, adjustable straps, and water–resistant fabrics, making them perfect for the modern professional on the go.
Backpacks have many advantages over the traditional briefcase and even a satchel, especially if you commute or regularly travel for business. There are many professional backpacks on the market that are meant to be used for business purposes.
Backpacks are becoming more common in the corporate world. But are they up to professional status?
Is it Unprofessional to Wear a Backpack?
If you were asked to draw a picture of a businessman, you would probably draw a person holding a briefcase, right? That is the classic image that naturally comes to mind.
However, business has changed drastically over the years, leading to adjustments to the items that the average business person carries with them at all times. Pens and papers have been traded for laptops, charge cables, phones and more.
While it is true that these items could be contained in a case, there is a growing trend of using backpacks to carry a business person’s arsenal. The market research company NPD Inc noted that the retail trends of sales of adult men’s backpacks jumped over 40% in just one year.
Why are so many making the switch?
Think of the common items the average business person carries with them each day. As useful as all of the items are, their weight adds up, especially when they are all combined into one bag.
But what does all of this have to do with backpacks?
One of the advantages of a backpack over traditional business cases is comfort. Unlike satchels, backpacks even out a person’s center of balance when carrying items. This leads to superior support and greater comfort.
It may not seem like a big deal, but considering that the average laptop weighs 5 lbs, which may not be too much, it becomes very noticeable when carrying it for an extended period.
Using a business backpack can lead to increased energy and stamina.
Another advantage of backpacks over briefcases is that it allows you to be hands-free. That alone may be the winning factor to consider for many business travelers who have a long commute using mass transit or ones who usually have a phone in one hand and a coffee in the other.
Circling back to our question as to whether it is unprofessional or not for a businessman to wear a backpack, it also depends on the appearance.
When we think of the concept of using a backpack, our minds may naturally travel back to when we were in school and we had a backpack with our favorite action hero or cartoon character on it. Other backpacks had the name brand written in large letters over the face of the bag for all to see.
Obviously, using these for business would be very unprofessional!
Thankfully many companies have produced very stylish and business-savvy backpacks.
What are some of the best backpacks for business use?
The answer really depends on the nature of your travel.
Is the scope of your business activity mostly local, or does it span abroad?
Business backpacks have been designed mostly to meet the need of those two categories:
- those for daily use
- and those for travel
If you’re in the market for a business backpack, here are some products to consider.
Best Daily Commuting Backpacks
As mentioned earlier, there are many benefits of using a backpack for business use over traditional bags.
Backpacks also provide a higher level of security.
Thieves usually anticipate that a business person’s bag contains some valuable items making them a common target. Having your laptop and other devices strapped to you with a backpack makes it even more difficult for someone to access them without you noticing.
How many times have we seen in movies people switch briefcases when the person sets them down?
So the fact that backpacks are hands-free adds another layer of security.
Selecting the right backpack depends on your needs and environment.
Does it often rain where you live? Then definitely make sure you purchase a bag that is weatherproof to protect all of your valuables inside.
There are many everyday business backpacks on the market varying in price and size.
Here are 2 of the best-rated ones:
Timbuk 2 Authority Deluxe
In August of 2021, New York Times rated this one as the best business backpack because of its durability and functionality.
- The bag has many useful compartments.
- The large compartment could house a 17′ laptop.
- Despite its size, it is comfortable to carry while commuting to and from work.
- It has a durable exterior making it equal to the abuse it may experience during everyday use.
- The company also offers a lifetime warranty against any defects.
Rains Backpack Mini
If you are a minimalist traveler, then this backpack is for you.
- It is perfect for carrying a small laptop and any necessary cords and documents.
- This bag is very sleek and light, along with being waterproof.
- It can contain a 13” laptop maximum.
- It is more budget-friendly, but it only comes with a 2-year warranty, but the minimalist design limits how many features could break on you in the long run.
Best Backpacks for Business Travel
If you regularly travel abroad for business, there are a few extra features that come into play when selecting a good business backpack.
Along with the basics, a good travel backpack with be TSA-friendly. This will help with the check-in/out at airports and other terminals.
TSA-friendly bags are designed to flip open, usually in a butterfly configuration. They have a laptop-only compartment and will contain non-metal snaps, zippers or buckles.
There are many on the market that have a variety of features and price tags. Here are 2 top-rated bags:
Nomatic Travel Pack 40L: Nomatic’s backpack is built with water-resistant material and waterproof zippers.
- It is exceptionally stylish and comfortable.
- It can easily hold a 15.5” laptop and many other accessories.
- It has many compartments and pockets, including an RFID-blocking pocket built into the back of the bag.
- Another perk is that the company offers a lifetime warranty on its products.
- Clearly, they built this bag to last you a long time.
Kenneth Cole Reaction BT Backpack: It is made from full-grain Colombian leather, making it a very stylish business-appropriate bag.
- It has a TSA-friendly laptop compartment that can contain a computer up to 16′ inches.
- The large compartment could even carry clothes or other necessities needed for your trip.
- The back panel is made of breathable mesh and with 3 padded inserts, which adds comfort while carrying the bag.
- It is an excellent choice for those who often travel by air for business.
- Business backpacks are becoming more popular in the corporate world
- Many professional backpacks are available on the market
- Advantages of backpacks over traditional bags include comfort, support, hands-free capability and increased security
- Appearance is important – backpacks should be professional looking
- Two top-rated backpacks for daily commuting are Timbuk 2 Authority Deluxe and Rains Backpack Mini
- Two top-rated backpacks for business travel are Nomatic Travel Pack 40L and Kenneth Cole Reaction BT Backpack
Are You Making the Switch?
There are clear advantages to using a backpack for business travel over traditional bags. Advantages that lead to easier travel and greater energy and stamina.
The trend is anticipated to grow as time goes on.
Will you be switching?
Perhaps in the near future, if we are asked to draw a picture of a business person, we will draw someone dressed nicely and wearing a… backpack!