Best Rucksack For Travelling Guide

Different Types Of Rucksack

A Guide To Buying The Best Rucksack For Travel

What Features To Consider

Other Extra Useful Features To Consider


There are now many different types of rucksacks available on the market. The big question is, which one is the best rucksack for travelling?

The answer is, simply determined by several different factors. The two main factors being:

  • What you will be doing on your travels.
  • What you require the rucksack for.

Do you just want a rucksack to take on your travels as ‘carry on’ luggage on the aircraft as hand luggage?

Will it only be used for a short stay or as a spare bag to carry with you?

If so, then a smaller rucksack would best suit your needs!

However, if your sole intention of taking a rucksack on your travels is for backpacking, a larger rucksack would be required.

Backpacking, generally requires you carrying a larger number of items around with you, over a much longer period of time. As a result, then there are a large number of rucksacks designed for such a trip.

Different Types Of Rucksack

Daypacks: Daypacks, are designed to be lightweight and for activities such as walking when you just require it for the day. They are compact and have less features than the larger rucksacks. Daypacks, are ideal for providing easy access storage, that is required for one day activities or carrying less items.

The majority of daypacks, do not have padded straps and hip belts. However, they can be very good for using as hand luggage on planes, which can then be used for everyday use. This includes such things as going to the beach and walking when you are on holiday.

Travelpacks: Travelpacks, are a great piece of luggage and are generally designed with the traveller in mind. They are designed in a way that provides you easy access via a front opening zip.  Travelpacks, normally have a concealed compartment for your travel documents.

A large number of ‘Travelpacks’ will also have a detachable daysack. This can be detach from the main rucksack and used for everyday use whilst you are out and about on your travels. They are great for in the city, at the beach, near the pool or having a meal.

Travelpacks really are the perfect solution, for travellers going on a short break or who simply want to travel light and just take hand luggage.


Traditional Travel Backpacking Rucksacks

The more commonly used backpacking rucksack is generally larger in size than a daypack or travelpack. It also has much more useful features, designed to help with your travel.

The backpacking rucksack is designed for ‘multi’ day trips and world travel allowing you to pack much more items for your travels.

Generally, these types of rucksacks are best used for longer backpacking trips and are ‘checked-in’ as Hold Luggage on your flight. These types of rucksacks, are not really suitable for short breaks or for ‘Hand Luggage’ on board the aircraft.

Climbing Rucksacks

Climbing rucksacks, are generally taller in stature than most other rucksacks. This is specifically to help increase the stability of the rucksack whilst climbing.

As the name suggests, these rucksacks are designed for climbers and have several specific features for climbing. These features include:

  • A supportive structure that provides rigidity and durability when climbing
  • Gear loops and attachments for ice axe.
  • Removable Hip belt.

A Guide To Buying The Best Rucksack For Travelling 

Best Rucksack For TravellingMany people, like the idea of backpacking but one of the first hurdles they face, is choosing the best rucksack for travelling. There is now so much choice with regards to rucksacks and because of this varied choice, one of the most common questions people ask, is:

“Which is the best rucksack to buy for travelling?”

Well, the answer to this question is simply:

‘The One That Feels Right and Most Comfortable For You.’


Now this may sound obvious but it is true!

Although there are so many different types of rucksacks, models, shapes and sizes available on the market, if the rucksack you are carrying is uncomfortable, your travels are going to be miserable!

This simple guide is designed to provide a few key factors, that you should consider and take into account when you are buying a rucksack. As a result, it will hopefully help you choose the best rucksack for travelling to the destination you intend to visit. 

What Features To Consider


As previously mentioned, the most important factor to consider when choosing a rucksack for your travels is comfort.

Forget how much it costs, what kind of brand, make or model the rucksack maybe! If it is not comfortable, then it is not the right rucksack for you.

Yes, obviously you want a good sturdy rucksack for your travels and one that will endure months on the road but most of all, you want it to be comfortable and this cannot be stressed enough!

To ensure that you find the all-important comfort that we have previously mentioned, there are a few important features that your rucksack should have. Having these, will provide you with the comfort you need!

Padded Straps: Padded straps, are essential and if a rucksack does not have these, you really should avoid buying it.

Padded straps offer you the comfort that is necessary, when wearing your rucksack for long periods of time.

Remember that when you are backpacking, you will be required to carry the rucksack on your back for long periods of time. After a while, the weight of the rucksack will begin to tell! Anything that can provide comfort is a blessing and padded straps enable this.

Hip Support: Having adequate hip support is essential and as the load of your rucksack becomes heavier, the amount of load that is carried on your hips should increase. Having a suitable padded hip belt will provide the comfort and support that is required to carry your load.

Adjustable Back System:

The majority of larger backpacks now have an adjustable back system. This allows you to adjust the distance between the shoulder straps and the hip belt accordingly. This can be achieved by either increasing or decreasing the distance, depending on your height and size. This allows you to find the correct and most comfortable setting, for your own torso.


One of the most important things to consider when buying a rucksack is the size of your backpack.

Rucksacks now come is many different sizes and these sizes range from: 40L, 50L,60L,70L,80L and 90 Litres.

Choosing the correct size of rucksack for your travels is essential and although you can buy 90L rucksacks, it is advisable to choose a rucksack no bigger than 70L when travelling.

The reason for this is very simple, if you have any size larger than 70L, it will feel like you are carrying a small house around on your back!

Think of it this way, the bigger the rucksack you have, the more you will pack in it! This generally means, that you will pack a lot of items that are not necessary, simply because you have the space to fit them.

Obviously, it is your decision but what you must bear in mind, is that the larger the rucksack, the heavier it will be to carry.

The art of successful backpacking is to pack as light as possible and only pack the essential items you require!

You can read more about this on the following page: Back Packing Essentials

Other Extra Useful Features To Consider

Expansion Section: An ‘Expansion’ section on a rucksack is simply an extra piece of material (at the top of the rucksack on the opening). It is a very useful feature to have, as it allows you to increase the storage of the rucksack, if you have to overfill the rucksack at anytime.

Water Resistent:

The majority of rucksacks are somewhat water resistant, especially the main body of the rucksack. The more expensive rucksack should certainly be water resistant but if possible, try to find a rucksack that has a rain cover attached.

Rain Cover:

Most rain covers, are situated in either the base or lid of the rucksack and can be packed away when not in use.

Having a rain cover is not only very useful in protecting your rucksack from the rain or other water hazard but it also provides protection for your rucksack when travelling.

Remember, when you are backpacking around the world, your rucksack will be subject to all different types of abuse. This can range from from being thrown onto buses, planes and trains to being subject to different weather conditions. The added bonus of a rain cover is that it also offers protection for your rucksack from thieves who may target vulnerable travellers.

Bellows: Bellows are simply collapsible pockets that can be used for extra storage. If required, unlike fixed pockets, can be packed away when not in use to keep your rucksack nice and compact.


When you buy a backpack, it is nice to have one which offers you easy access to your belongings or necessary items that you may need. Having various compartments that can be accessed from the top, sides and even the bottom is very beneficial!

Fixing Points: Fixing points are a great additional extra to have but not essential. However, if your rucksack has additional fixing points, it allows you to attach a number of different items to your rucksack, if required.

Base Opening: Base openings are a handy feature, that allow you to access your rucksack from the bottom. However, these are generally only found on the bigger sized rucksacks.

The Frame:

You want your rucksack to be breathable and you don’t want something that will make you sweat, the entire time you are wearing it. Equally, you want a compact frame, that is concealed and not one that is sticking out.


If you are buying a rucksack to go travelling with, you certainly do not want to scrimp on price!

You should ensure that you buy a rucksack that is strong, durable and will not fall apart after a couple of months.

The price on rucksacks certainly vary but a good quality reasonably priced one should be adequate. If your budget will allow, it is better to pay a little more in the beginning, as it will save you money in the long term.

As you can see, there are many factors to consider when deciding which is the best rucksack for travelling and we hope this short guide helps you choose the right one for you.