Paul is an avid cyclist and needs his laptop half the time. He's used a number of different laptop bag brands and these are his favorites.
Laptop Backpacks and Messenger Bags as Company Gift
I'm researching laptop bags as a possible gift for all of our employees. I'd like a bag that will hold a 17-inch laptop, has storage, but is also small enough to work for people of all sizes, is very durable for everyday use, and is weatherproof or water-resistant in heavy rain. Lastly, I'd like a bag that is machine washable.
The top brands I found for high-quality laptop bags are Targus, Victorinox, Crumpler, Timbuk2, and Incase. I wish I could test use their bags before purchasing, but since I'm limited to online research, I thought I'd share what I find with all of you, and feel free to leave me comments if you have used one of these bags.
Buy Targus Laptop Bags
Targus Laptop Backpacks and Messenger Bags
Targus offers very functional laptop backpacks and messenger bags that will fit a range of laptop sizes. The largest bags will fit a 17-inch widescreen Apple laptop. The case for the computer is padded for protection, and it also has ample storage for files, sunglasses, chords, and just about anything else. The messenger bags range in styles and colors as well. For a corporate gift, the bags can be purchased online for a decent discount and then taken to a local embroidery shop to have a company logo added. I consider the Targus the most appealing laptop backpack and carrying case for the widest range of personal taste.
Buy Timbuk2 Laptop Backpacks
Timbuk2 Backpacks and Messenger Bags
Timbuk2 makes a hipper laptop backpack and messenger bags than Targus that is better suited to a more stylish crowd. The designs will be pleasing to some, but not right for others. In places like San Francisco, at a startup, they may be well received by most as a gift, but at Microsoft in Seattle, I think only half of the people would like them as a gift. The bag lines seem to update frequently with new styles and colors. Again, very trendy laptop bags. One of the advantages of Timbuk2 bags is the number of styles they have. Some laptop bags work well for bicyclists or people that walk and like the weight of the laptop distributed evenly. Others like to be able to sling a case over their shoulder. Timbuk2 seems to cover these segments of the laptop carrying backpack and messenger bag very well. They even have bags that are almost as wide as they are tall.
UPDATE: We let each person in the company select a bag and then we took them to a local embroidery shop and had our logo stitched in them. It worked very well. Also, the bag has turned out to be very durable and it washes well in the washing machine, but don't put it in the dryer.
Buy Victorinox Swiss Laptop Backpacks
Victorinox Swiss Laptop Backpacks and Messenger Bags
At the Apple store, I asked who makes the best laptop backpacks and messenger bags, and they told me while I can't get them in the store, that the folks that make Swiss Army Knives make the best laptop bags. They said that Victorinox is the Swiss Army knife of backpacks. Makes sense I guess. I didn't even know they made bags, but with a little research, it looks like they make some very nice backpacks and messenger bags. The Sardona laptop backpack will also fit a 17-inch laptop and even has room for a knife. The bag appears to be well constructed and looks to have contour to the shape of the backpack that will fit a body well. I feel like the price of the brand increases the overall price, so it's probably not the best value, but it does appear to be a very high-quality laptop back that will fit almost any size laptop.
Buy Crumpler Laptop Backpacks
Crumpler Laptop Bags and Messenger Bags
The Crumpler laptop backpacks and messenger bags are an interesting combination of storage designed for cameras and laptops. It makes sense to have an option likes this since so much photography is digital now. Crumpler is an Australian company that looks like they make high-quality bags, but they're quite expensive. Some of the bags are over $400. I feel like this is a very specialized bag, but they are for sale at our local mall. I'm planning to swing by and see the construction and how they layout the compartments.
Chrome Laptop Backpacks and Messenger Bags
The cool thing about Chrome laptop backpacks and messenger bags is they're weatherproof and guaranteed for life. I always worry a bit about bags wearing out quickly, but these sound like they're built tough and durable. While I don't have one, I'm tempted to try the Ivan Roll Top Backpack, it looks like it will hold a 17-inch laptop with the stated dimensions that are over 20 inches wide and tall. I really like products that have great warranties and Chrome puts their warranty at the top of their site. Of all the bags I researched, this is the only bag that made it easy to read about their warranty and guarantee for life. Also, this is the only bag I couldn't find for sale on Amazon. Perhaps they more tightly control the distribution of their bags online.
Buy Incase Laptop Backpack
Incase Laptop Backpacks and Messenger Bags
I'm pretty familiar with Incase cases for my iPhone, iPad, and even a hard case for my laptop. The Apple store has a few Incase bags and they give them high grades. Incase has a very simple design and has a few options that are single strap backpacks for carrying over the shoulder. My only concern with Incase bags is that it looks like it's capacity for carrying extra things like chords and files are limited. But, that said, they make excellent cases that will protect a laptop well with a nice thick padded area for the laptop.
Who Make the Best Laptop Backpack and Messenger Bag?
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Dr irum on January 12, 2011:
Nice hub .
bruzzbuzz from Texas , USA on December 04, 2010:
I like Timbuk2 because it is more stylish but it also looks like it is more rugged too. Great hub. Thanks.
Hello, hello, from London, UK on December 04, 2010:
Very tasteful selection and practical.
jcales on December 03, 2010:
I like timbuk2 as it feels very tough and almost un-rippable. These are excellent when you're on the go although I am noticing people really using notebooks like a folder walking into starbucks like their laptop is a piece of paper.
brandrocker on November 30, 2010:
Good insight. This is a very useful gift for someone (w/ laptop) you really care for.
Athlyn Green from West Kootenays on November 29, 2010:
If you have a laptop a carrying bag is essential--especially if you take your work with you or travel with your laptop.
Gredmondson on November 29, 2010:
I spilled milk in my laptop bag, and I was sure glad that the whole thing could be put in a washing machine. I got it from Costco online: high quality, low cost = great value. No one has complimented me on it for style or color.
It may not be a good idea to get everyone who works in the same office the exact same bag. Fred may accidentally take Jake's bag!