Best Sling Bag for Travel

A sling bag is a specific shoulder bag that you may wear parallel to your body or across it. One of the ends of the strap is connected to one end of the bag, and the other to the other end. 

The sling bags come in a great variety of colors, styles, and shapes, and each serves a specific purpose. Versatile and functional, the sling bags can work for travel too, but you need to do your bits and bobs before starting your shopping session.  

What makes a good sling bag for travel? 

Needless to say, some aspects make a sling bag a good or a wrong choice for travel. As the variety of models can intimidate one, it’s best that you go over some essential aspects to take into consideration when selecting your sling bag for travel. 

Water resistance & durability 

The last thing you want when you’re traveling is to have your bag all torn and ruined. A sling bag that is well-made and takes the challenges of traveling is essential to get. Canvas or hemp are sturdy materials to look for as they’re long-lasting. However, they’re not water resistant. 

Synthetic materials are dependable choices as well, especially since they’re water resistant and don’t need much time for drying out. The pet peeve is that they may not feel as comfy as the natural materials, especially after worn for many hours. 

Back padding & cozy shoulder strap

You’re going to feel the whole weight of your bag in the shoulder strap, so it’s essential for it to be comfortable. Memory foam or other padding materials are going to lower your discomfort. The more substantial and more significant the bag, the broader and more comfortable the shoulder strap needs to be. 

As for the back padding, you should give it a look too, especially if you’re carrying fragile items. More padding means less breathability, so decide which one counts the most for you. 

Anti-theft pockets and RFID 

Good sling bags for travel come with “anti-theft” pockets that keep your valuable items safe and secure. Some models include RFID pockets, which are safe places to keep your important belongings like credit cards or ID cards. 

Internal features 

Having a tiny and secure clip inside your sling bag for hooking a keyring is essential. You can also use it for securing emergency whistles, bracelets, rings, pen-lights, and all sorts of clip-on items. 

Internal sleeves and zipper pockets are also to look for in a sling bag, especially when traveling. Even though Velcro may work at times, it’s not the safest option when traveling. 

Loops& straps 

The storage space for sling bags is somewhat limited, which is why some exterior straps are always going to be coming in handy. You can find sling bags that feature compression straps on the back that may serve you a lot in various situations.  

Some little hoops of webbing material can help you hang some smaller items (sunglasses, for instance). You may also hook a carabiner for carrying your hat or a water bottle. Carabineers and exterior straps are always helpful when traveling. 

Water bottle pocket 

As long as you’re aware of the fact that the water bottle is going to add weight to your bag, you should look for a model that features this kind of pocket. However, you’re going to find that a majority of sling bags only come with a pouch that is big enough for disposable plastic bottles, and not for reusable containers.  

Strap pocket 

Many are finding this feature a bit on the useless side. They’re rather small and only fit a lip balm or a couple of coins. You may discover sling bags that come with a strap pocket big enough for providing a smartphone, but you may not want to store it in there. 

Top 7 Best Sling Bags for Travel 

   1. MOSISO Sling Backpack

When you’re going shopping with a fixed budget, finding a sling bag that suits your travel needs is difficult, but not impossible. As a matter of fact, the MOSISO Sling Backpack, Multipurpose Crossbody Shoulder Bag Travel is here to prove that even affordable single bags can be a solid choice for various travels. 

Not only that the sling bag has a zippered compartment big enough to fit your gadgets (look at the details), but it also features a smaller zippered pocket for your smaller items (power bank, wallet, or phone). It also has two mesh pockets on every side that you can use for a water bottle. 

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The storage area is highly functional, and the bag is versatile as it’s easy to switch the direction of the shoulder strap. You can also easily adjust the length of the shoulder strap (from 18in to 36in).  

Both the shoulder strap and the bag are breathable, with the shoulder strap being well-padded for extra comfort. The bag is lightweight and comfy throughout the day. The style is beautiful, and you can choose from numerous color combinations.  

On top of everything else, the sling bag is made with water repellent polyester and comes with sturdy zippers and durable strap clip. 

Here’s our note on the pros: 

  • It’s lightweight, breathable, and comfortable 
  • It can store your items in an organized way 
  • The strap is adjustable and switchable 
  • It’s stylish and comes in many color combinations 
  • Some flaws are to be expected, considering the buck you’re paying: 
  • Some doubt its durability 
  • It has an overpowering plastic smell in the beginning 

Regardless of the minor issues, the sling bag is money well spent any given day. 

   2. OutdoorMaster Sling Bag – Crossbody Backpack for Women & Men

Don’t let the price of the OutdoorMaster Sling Bag – Crossbody Backpack for Women & Men fool you as the sling bag is quite a reliable option when you’re traveling. 

The bag is compact and provides excellent space for your essentials. Thanks to its shape, carrying it as you can wear it throughout the day or as a carry-on luggage. It’s made with lightweight, yet sturdy material.  

Despite its size and style, the sling bag can comfortably accommodate your tablet, camera, or even a small laptop computer (up to 12.5″). 

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The design is well thought out, and the sling bag features hidden anti-theft pocket and water bottle holder, which recommends it for travel. You’re going to be able to fit all sorts of essentials in the multiple smart pockets.  

The shoulder strap is comfortable and has a reversible direction. It has also hoop&lopp secured channel for more storing options. Just make sure that the cable is stable when you use it. 

On top of everything else, the sling bag is made with water-resistant nylon, taking a few splashes well. 

The comfort isn’t compromised as the sling bag has interior mesh padding. It’s very well made and handles travel surprisingly well. 

Here’s what we like the most about it: 

  • It’s made with water-resistant nylon 
  • It features anti-theft pockets and water bottle holder 
  • The shoulder strap’s direction is reversible 
  • It’s spacious and well made 
  • The cons are nothing to worry about: 
  • The pocket on the shoulder strap could be bigger 
  • The shoulder strap could use more padding 

Beggars cannot be choosers and, for the buck you’re paying, the sling bag is quite the reliable option to keep in mind when shopping on a tight budget. 

   3. Leaper Retro Messenger Bag Canvas Shoulder Backpack Travel Rucksack Sling Bag

For anyone commuting daily, the Leaper Retro Messenger Bag Canvas Shoulder Backpack Travel Rucksack Sling Bag is a great pack to try. 

The sling bag is made with soft and long lasting Washed canvas but features several PU leather details that make it attractive. The material is going to hold up the use for a reasonable amount of time, whereas the material inside the main compartment is softer and more luxurious feeling. 

You may easily carry a slim laptop up to 13″, but leave the sleeve/case aside. Even if the sling bag isn’t huge, it’s still a solid choice for a day trip or your shopping spree. You may wear it on the shoulder strap or carry it by the hand handle. Either way, you should know that the shoulder strap is easy to adjust, and you can also change its direction. You can use the bag as a single-shoulder bag, or as a cross-body-it’s up to you. 

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There are many pockets on the sling bag, so organizing your items is going to be a breeze. You get one zipper pocket in the front flap, two side pockets, one open and one zipper pocket right under the flap. Even the main compartment features several pockets: one inner laptop pocket, one internal zipper pocket, and two small inner pockets. Accessing the main compartment is also easy, thanks to the two zip heads and pulls. 

We also have to mention the buckles on the top flap that are easy to open/close, keeping all your items safe. For instance, you can keep your passport in the zipper pocket on the top flap. 

The excellent built, the versatility, the efficient organization, and the stylish look are the selling points for the bag, but here’s the short list of pros: 

  • It has many compartments for organizing your belongings 
  • The shoulder strap is easy to adjust, and you can change its direction too 
  • It’s a versatile, nice looking, and durable sling bag 
  • It’s multi-functional and comfortable 
  • The pet peeves aren’t major: 
  • The durability of the mesh of the water bottle holder is questionable 
  • The buckles are a bit noisy 

Try to stay focus on the right things, as they are so many. Anyway, for the price you’re paying, the sling bag is one amazing pack to take for a spin in town. 

   4. Versatile Canvas Sling Bag/Urban Travel Backpack

NeatPack Versatile Canvas Sling Bag/Urban Travel Backpack is quite the power horse within its category, and you should scroll down for the detailed look. 

Not only that the sling bag has just the right size for traveling, but it also includes a good number of compartments for efficient organization of your essentials. You may carry books, a laptop, various gadgets, and even your water bottle. 

You shouldn’t worry about securing your precious items as the sling bag features an anti-theft pocket. It’s also going to be easy to carry your cell phone as the bag has a front cell phone pocket with headphone access. 

The bag has an entirely lined main compartment, a lined front zippered compartment (with three elastic loops for easier access to your essentials), and a compartment with pen sleeves, key clip/hook, credit card slots, and mesh zip pocket. It also includes a water bottle mesh pocket with an-easy-t-adjust loop. 

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It has an ergonomic design, and the shoulder strap is well padded. Another great thing improving the comfort is the breathable mesh padding so that you don’t get all sweaty after wearing the sling bag for many hours.  

The sling bag is made with water-resistant polyester canvas, and the colors are right. The zippers don’t make an exception as they’re durable and sturdy. The strap clip is tough too. 

As if all of these details weren’t enough, the sling bag presents a reflective material strip, which increases your safety while on the road. 

Summing it all up for the main pros:

  • The sling bag provides plenty of storage spaces and compartments 
  • It has an anti-theft pocket and water bottle pocket 
  • Its ergonomic design and padding ensures a comfortable wear 
  • It’s easy to adjust and comes with sturdy zippers 
  • The downsides aren’t deal breakers for us: 
  • Some would like the bag to be waterproof 
  • The RFID pocket is small 

Regardless of the minor issues, the sling bag is going to impress with the design, comfort, and versatility. And it does all that without even emptying your wallet! 

   5. KAVU Rope Bag

One thing you cannot complain about KAVU Rope Bag is the style and colors, as the sling bag comes in so many colors and patterns. 

Made 100% of canvas cotton, the sling bag feels lightweight and doesn’t put a strain on your shoulder or back. Its teardrop shape is sleek, but the kit provides functional storage space. It has two main compartments and an internal zip pocket too. You may store and easily access your smaller items in the external pockets.   

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On the outside of the bag, you’re going to notice zipper and Velcro pouches, which makes the bag more functional. 

The rope strap is soft, and the bag comes in funky styles that anyone is going to love. 

Here’s what we like a lot on the bag:

  • It has enough storage space 
  • It also includes Velcro and zipper for smaller items 
  • It comes in great patterns 
  • It’s compact, lightweight, and comfortable 
  • The downsides aren’t deal breakers for us: 
  • You cannot switch the direction of the shoulder strap 
  • As it’s made of canvas, the sling bag doesn’t slide around easily 

All in all, as it’s functional, dependable, and comes in funky patterns, the sling bag is one option to keep in mind when shopping. 

   6. Texbo Genuine Full Grain Leather Crossbody Sling Bag Travel

for those of you who like leather bags, the Texbo Genuine Full Grain Leather Crossbody Sling Bag Travel is one valid option for your traveling. 

The sling bag is made with high-quality genuine leather that is hand-made by professional artisans. Even if it’s thick, it’s soft and has a gentle touch feel. It’s cowhide leather imported from Italy. 

The storage space is generous, and the bag has one main zipper compartment, front zipper pocket, and another back zipper pocket. You may easily pack your phone, wallet, books, and 9.7″ iPad. 

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The cross-body shoulder strap is easy to adjust for a better fit. It’s well-padded so that the level of comfort is excellent. The craftsmanship is impressive, and the attention to details renders the bag to be reliable and long lasting.  

The zippers are good quality, whereas the interior material matches the thick leather as it’s healthy and ready to take the use for a long time. 

Well-made and straightforward, the sling bag is the leather option that you can rely on when traveling. 

Here’s what we like the most about it: 

  • It’s made with genuine leather from Italy 
  • It has a stylish look and it\s very well made 
  • It provides good storage space 
  • It’s comfortable and takes the long time use 
  • Let’s take a look at the minor issues as well: 
  • The magnetic latch is a bit weak 
  • It’s leather, so it may feel heavyweight even when empty 

From our point of view, the sling bag is one leather choice that is going to match your travel requirements nine times out of ten, so you should give it a chance. 

   7. Pacsafe Metrosafe LS150 7 Liter Anti Theft Sling Backpack

The Pacsafe Metrosafe LS150 7 Liter Anti Theft Sling Backpack is loaded with good things, which recommends it for travel use. 

The sling bag has an anti-theft design as it’s made with cut proof materials (lightweight steel mesh) and lockable zippers. It also comes with RFID blocking pocket, so that you don’t worry about your credit cards. It’s a patented bag in the USA and an anti-theft brand. 

The bag is very well organized as it features two compartments with lockable zippers, two zipper interior pockets (one of them is RFID safe), and two padded sleeves for storing your fragile items. It also includes a key/wallet clip. 

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You can lock the main compartment and secure the front zippers with a clip, for more comfortable, yet always safe access. 

The bag is made with long-lasting nylon that is also easy to clean and water resistant. The strap is well padded, which increases your level of comfort. 

Easy to use and to access, the sling bag has an ergonomic design, and it’s very well made. 

Let’s check the best things once again: 

  • It has an anti-theft design and comes with RFID blocking pocket 
  • It provides easy to access storage space 
  • It’s made with water-resistant and durable nylon 
  • It has an ergonomic design and has a durable feel to it 
  • The downsides don’t make it as a reason for one to back down: 
  • It’s not ambidextrous 
  • Some expected the storage space to be more generous 

If you’re planning to travel a lot and not to worry about your essentials, the sling bag is one of the best choices as it keeps everything well-stored, but well-protected against thieves. 

FAQs

Q: What are the benefits of sling bags for travel?

A: Many benefits sling bags present for travel, and here are the most important ones: 

They increase your agility and mobility 

A sling bag is easy to put on/take off than any other backpack, which may count when you’re running against the clock. It also provides easy access to your essentials, so it helps you be faster when traveling. 

They’re lightweight, small& easy to carry 

Most sling bags out there are small and light so that you can put it in another bag. A sling bag is one of the best choices for the carry-on travelers, fitting in a laptop bag/suitcase just fine. 

They’re easy to access 

You don’t need to take your sling bag off for accessing the essentials. It’s effortless (or so it should be) to move it from your back to the front and the other way around, without even detaching it from your body. 

They’re safe 

Many sling bags come with locked zippers or various safety features so that you never worry about losing or having your essentials stolen by thieves. 

Q: Are there any downsides for the sling bags for travel? 

A: Even if the flaws don’t come as deal breakers for many, you should still be aware of the limitations of sling bags:  

You carry the weight on just one shoulder 

Due to their unique design, you’re going to take the sling bag on only one shoulder. You should get a sling bag that has a switchable shoulder strap or slides easily from the back to the front. 

Even if some sling bags are versatile, it’s still one aspect to think about before buying. 

The storage space is limited 

It’s pretty standard for sling bags to provide less storage space than most two-shoulder strap backpacks. You may carry an iPad or an 11-in laptop, so take a good look at your essentials before packing. 

With the majority of sling bags presenting a teardrop shape, the chances are you’re not going to be able to pack an A-4 sized folder either. 

Q: Is the sling bag terrible for your back? 

A: A sling bag is going to lead to strain on just one shoulder. You should look for a sling bag that allows you to switch the orientation of the shoulder strap so that you don’t put much pressure on just one shoulder. Some sling bags slide easy, which is still an option for relieving the tension off your shoulder. A sling bag that is lightweight when empty is going to be light when loaded, more often than not. 

Q: How to decide if the sling bag is for you or not? 

A: Sling bags are more and more popular for travel purposes, but there are a couple of questions that may help you decide whether this type of bag fits your travel needs. 

When will you use the sling bag? 

How do you intend to use it? 

How much are you willing to spend? 

The moment you know the answers to these questions, the easier is going to be for you to select/or not a sling bag. 

Q: Is the sling bag good for school? 

A: On the cause of the shape of sling bags, it’s going to be cumbersome to fit an A4 book or notebook in a sling bag. However, if you’re planning to carry some gadgets or essentials for a day in school, you may very well grab a sling bag and be on your way. After all, lightweight and easy to carry are some of the main advantages of sling bags.  

Q: Can you machine wash the sling bag? 

A: As long as your sling bag is made of cotton canvas, you can give it a nice clean in the washing machine. Check the label instructions before throwing it in the washing machine, nevertheless. 

Many sling bags are made of nylon or another type of materials, which you may also clean accordingly. 

Resources 

Your Backpack Is Killing Your Back and You Don’t Even Know It 

Types of Sling Bags | The Only Guide You Need About Purses