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Find the Best Waterproof Backpacks

Water on the outside of a waterproof backpackFinding a high-quality waterproof backpack today is surprisingly tough. Whether you want to go camping or you want to protect your college laptop, the best waterproof backpack can help you stop dealing with all of the other accessories that are intended to keep you dry. Put away the umbrellas, rain covers, and dry bags because water won’t get inside the best backpacks in this category.

Some backpacks are 100% waterproof. Others are listed as being waterproof because they have high levels of water resistance. You can save some cash by purchasing a water-resistant backpack instead of a waterproof product if it meets your needs. The top-rated products in this category are below, ready for your review, so you can make the best possible value purchase.

PictureProduct NameCapacityWater RatingOur RatingPrice
PictureProduct NameCapacityWater RatingOur RatingPrice
Vitchelo Waterproof Dry Bag Backpack30LWater Proof4.3$$$
Outlander Lightweight Travel Hiking Backpack33LWater Resistant4.7$$
Vaschy Unisex Classic Rucksack19.35LWater Resistant4.7$$$
Chaos Ready Waterproof Backpack22LWater Proof4.2$$$
Mengar Backpack Daypack Foldable Pack35LWater Resistant4.5$$
Uoobag KT-01 Business Backpack30LWater Repellant4.7$$$
Gowiss Waterproof Ultralight Daypack33LWater Resistant4.3$$
Venture Pal Lightweight Travel Daypack35LWater Resistant4.6$$
HotStyle Plus College Backpack26LWater Resistant4.4$$$
CleverBees Foldable Ultra Lightweight Backpack25LWater Resistant4.6$

What Are the Advantages of a Waterproof Backpack?

You’re looking for a waterproof backpack because you need something that is actually waterproof. That in itself is an obvious advantage. Yet there are also some unique advantages that you’ll find in this product when you compare them to other backpacks of a similar size.

They are simple to use. You literally just zip up your backpack and everything it contains inside will be protected from water. You won’t need to deal with the fabric of the pack getting wet and then dripping moisture onto your stuff.
They are stronger. Backpacks in this category tend to have better seams. Instead of being stitched, most waterproof backpacks have welded seams. This gives the backpack added strength so it can carry larger loads for longer periods of time.
They are lighter. Instead of dealing with rain covers, multiple compartments, and heavy stitching or bindings, you have a lightweight carrying experience with most of the backpacks in this category. Even if you’re looking for a waterproof laptop backpack, you’ll find that the dual-layer water protection is lighter than the standard pack.

So sure – you’re searching for a backpack today because you want something that will keep your stuff dry. The advantage is that most backpacks with welded seams are up to 30% lighter than a standard pack, but are up to 30% stronger because of the design.

That leads us to an important question: why wouldn’t everyone want to own the best waterproof backpacks that are available today?

Common Issues with Waterproof Backpacks and How to Solve Them

There is this myth that a waterproof backpack is more fragile than a standard pack. You’ll have shoppers shell out $100+ for a backpack with a leather bottom because it is “stronger.” Yet the welded seams of a waterproof pack can withstand the same stresses for a price that may be half of that “premium” standard backpack. It is true that waterproofed materials are more expensive to create during the manufacturing process, but price reductions occur in the construction process. This is why most backpacks in this category are so affordable.

Waterproof backpacks are sometimes known to fray and tear. This typically occurs because a low-quality nylon or another material was used during the manufacturing process. When combined with sharp objects, the materials may tear. Avoid this issue by investing in a 600D rip-stop nylon backpack at a minimum.

Many waterproof backpacks tend to not be very breathable when being worn for an extended period of time. Sweat can collect at the small of the back or the weight distribution of the pack might be a little off. Look for MOLLE mesh along the back of the pack, between the shoulder straps, to help provide some extra comfort.

How to Find the Best Waterproof Backpack for Me

Once you’ve considered the concerns and advantages of each backpack, then you’re ready to find the perfect solution for your needs. That process often begins with the actual style of backpack you select. Most shoppers are going to benefit from a top-loading design as it is a lot easier to add or remove items from the pack.

Zippered backpacks are another option that is sometimes available in this category. Zippers do need to receive some additional care to prevent corrosion, so this design is not usually recommended. A zipper is a good solution for those who want a waterproof pack and do a lot of travel by vehicle or airplane.

You will also find some cinch-sacks being billed as a waterproof backpack. The materials may be waterproof, but the cinching process will not completely keep out moisture that comes from above. You may need to invest in a rain cover in order to protect your items if this is the type of backpack design you prefer.

Your final consideration is the storage capacity of the backpack. Many of the choices in this category will have a total capacity which falls between 20-30L. Larger models tend to top out at 33L. Some laptop models may only carry 15L. If you need backcountry support, however, you’ll want to look for the best waterproof backpack that holds a minimum of 55L so you can safely carry all of your gear.

What Are the Prices of the Best Waterproof Backpacks?

It is true that you can find waterproof backpacks that exceed $200 in price. These high-capacity waterproof packs are generally designed for hiking and traveling use. If you’re looking for something that can help you with your daily commute, then this premium type of backpack is a bit of overkill.

Look instead at the waterproof travel packs, laptop backpacks, and similar products for a more affordable solution. Some of the smaller waterproof backpacks cost less than $50. Even padded laptop backpacks in this category are often less than $75. As an added benefit, you can still use these packs when you want to go camping because they are waterproof!

Product Reviews

Vitchelo

We loved the compact nature of this waterproof backpack. Not only does it keep your stuff dry and safe, but there are outer carrying pockets and mesh to help you carry water bottles, phones, or other important items. The materials are non-rip and double-stitched for toughness. The roll-top plastic closure takes a little to get used to using, but overall we found the adjustable nature of this design and its effectiveness to keep things dry outweighed any negatives we experience. Make the small investment today and we think you’ll be pleased with it as well.

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Outlander

This is an incredibly large, very lightweight backpack that is one of the most durable we’ve ever had the opportunity to test. It may not be completely waterproof because of the zippered components of the design, but it’s about as good as it gets. Abrasion resistance goes internally as well, so you don’t have to worry about your pockets getting cut up. An internal security zippered pocket is another nice feature included with this pack. Then check out the price – you can’t be this backpack as a value purchase.

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Vaschy

This is your classic backpack, modified so that it can be waterproof. The exterior is 100% polyester, giving you a traditional dry bag experience. The straps are padded and adjustable as well, making this pack suitable for both men and women. It’s large enough to hold a 13-inch laptop as well, with a suitable amount of interior padding available to keep the electronics safe. This isn’t the pack to take into the backcountry, but for heading to class or an overnight camping trip? It’s absolutely perfect.

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Chaos Ready

This Class 3 waterproof backpack is one of the few that is made from PVC tarpaulin instead of nylon or polyester. The end result is a very flexible backpack that is still comfortable and waterproof. There is one exception – the front pocket on the exterior of this backpack is actually water-resistant, so should only be used for quick-access items like your keys. We wish the main compartment was a little larger, by the mesh sides do you give you a little extra space. It’s flexible, floats if dropped in water, and is pretty comfortable to wear. It earns one of our highest recommendations.

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Uoobag KT-01

This business backpack is the perfect solution for the active professional. It is large enough to hold some 17-inch laptops. The nylon is a little less in rating than we’d like to see, but it still gets the job done. Anti-theft zippers can be locked to prevent access to your professional items, even if you need to leave your backpack at the office or the gym. Bottle pockets, a specific laptop pocket, and a place to store your pens or pencils is also included. If you want to be organized while keeping your stuff safe, then this is the waterproof backpack for you.

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The best waterproof backpacks will keep your important items dry, even if you are in the water, while also providing enough storage space and padding to keep them safe. Choose the comfortable option that works for you from these top packs and you’ll be able to attack your to-do list every day.

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