One of the only downsides to owning a motorcycle instead of a car is the lack of storage space available.
While it is possible on some motorcycles to attach luggage boxes to provide some storage, this can mess with not only the look of your bike but also how it handles and how it feels to drive.
This is where motorcycle backpacks come in.
In this article, we will look at some of the best motorcycle backpacks on the market and include a handy buyer’s guide to help you make the best choice for you.
Why Use A Motorcycle Backpack?
As we mentioned above, one of the most inconvenient parts of owning a motorcycle is the lack of storage.
While you will never be able to match the storage capacity of a car, you can ensure that you can carry your essentials with you when you ride with a backpack.
It is possible to use a regular backpack on your motorcycle, however, they don’t offer the same level of protection as a specific motorcycle one does.
Because motorcycle backpacks have been designed to withstand the speeds and wind that they will be subjected to on your bike.
Motorcycle backpacks are made with a lightweight but durable material that doesn’t weigh you down or unbalance you on the bike.
It also features many different compartments to safely and securely store your belongings.
Similarly, most motorcycle backpacks feature special straps that are designed to carry your helmet while you are off your bike.
A common design element of motorcycle backpacks is conformity to your body shape which is something that should be considered when you buy one so that your backpack remains comfortable during even the most long-distance rides.
This also helps to keep your silhouette as aerodynamic as possible which helps with speed and fuel consumption.
Motorcycle backpacks are also often more convenient than luggage boxes or saddlebags as they don’t cause extra bulk or potentially unbalance the bike during cornering.
Regular Vs. Motorcycle Backpack
There are many reasons why a motorcycle backpack is better than a regular backpack for use on your bike.
These mainly stem from the differences between the two types of products that make them more or less suitable for the treatment they will receive on a motorbike.
There are two main ways in which motorcycle-specific backpacks are more comfortable and useful for motorcycle riders.
Due to the way that motorcycle backpacks are designed and made, they offer a much higher level of comfort than a regular backpack.
The straps of a motorcycle backpack feature much more foam padding than regular ones do, causing less irritation to the shoulders in particular.
If you have ever been caught in a rainstorm, you will know that regular backpacks are not always waterproof.
This significantly reduces their effectiveness and durability even with irregular use.
Motorcycle backpacks on the other hand feature high levels of waterproofing technology and abrasion resistance making them both durable and usable in any conditions. A great addition to your motorcycle rain gear!
Best Motorcycle Backpacks
Below we will take a look at some of the best motorcycle backpacks on the market, including the pros and cons of each option.
One look at the OGIO Mach 5 backpack and it is clear to see that it has been designed with aerodynamics as a priority.
This backpack is made from durable, high-quality materials that can withstand any weather conditions.
The zipper fastening is protected by a flap of material that helps increase the water-resistance of this product.
It also features helmet carry straps for convenience when you are dismounted, as well as a dedicated compartment for shoe storage.
One of the best features of this backpack is the adjustable divider load that helps to keep you feeling balanced no matter what you have to carry with you.
- Aerodynamic hard shell
- Weather resistance
- Helmet carry straps and shoe compartment
- Divider load
- Very large in size
The Shoei Backpack 2.0 has been designed with the user in mind.
It seems that they have thought of everything a biker could want in a backpack.
This backpack is medium to small in size, making it less bulky than the OGIO.
Despite the small size of this backpack it still features two chest straps to help keep it firmly in place during your ride.
The Shoei motorcycle backpack has a plethora of features that make it a very user-friendly product.
With a multitude of compartments for easy and organized storage, a removable visor holder, and straps to carry your helmet, this small backpack manages to hold everything that you need.
There is a high level of padding within this backpack that provides adequate protection for your electronics, helmet accessories, and your shoulders.
All of this keeps your valuables safe during your ride and keeps you feeling comfortable on even the longest of rides.
- High level of comfort
- Attachments for helmet accessories
- Multiple compartments
- Streamlined design
- On the smaller side
The Viking Moto motorcycle backpack is a great option for riders who put a lot of thought and effort into their look when they are on their bike.
This backpack offers a sleek yet aggressive look while maintaining a high level of functionality.
The main material used for this backpack is Cordura, an extremely durable material with a high level of abrasion resistance.
The piping on this bag is more than just cosmetic, made from a reflective material that adds to your visibility at nighttime and in low visibility conditions.
A fully adjustable sternum strap adds to the security of this backpack.
It also comes with an integrated helmet hood and the 15-inch laptop compartment is suitably padded to help keep your valuables safe and protected.
- Sleek and aggressive aesthetic
- Highly durable material
- Visibility increasing features
- Adjustable sternum strap
- Sternum strap can loosen during rougher rides
The Seibertron motorbike backpack is another entry on this list that has a distinctive look that lends itself to a certain aesthetic.
While it may be the bulkiest backpack we are featuring, its military molle pack style appearance makes it worth it.
Not only is the durability of this backpack visible just from looking at it, but it is also significantly weather-resistant, able to comfortably withstand a downpour during a ride.
The many external pockets on this backpack mean that you will always have somewhere to put your most important, smaller pieces of equipment.
This eye for organization doesn’t just stop with the exterior, inside this product are further compartments to help keep your belongings contained and secure.
The Seibertron also features chest and waist straps that can help to redistribute the weight of the pack, taking the pressure off of your shoulders.
The standout feature by far has to be the water bladder that can be purchased separately and attached to the backpack.
This means that you can stay comfortable and hydrated during longer stints on your bike.
- Military molle pack style
- A multitude of compartments and pockets
- Additional water bladder
- Durable and weather-resistant
- Not very aerodynamic
The CUCYMA is another hard-shelled motorcycle backpack on this list which is a very popular design.
One of the most standout features of this backpack is its carbon fiber outer shell.
This material makes it not only incredibly durable but also weather and abrasion-resistant.
It also gives the backpack an amazingly sleek and stylish look.
The CUCYMA also features shoulder gaskets that mold to the rider’s shoulders for ultimate comfort even on long rides.
The padding on this backpack allows for increased ventilation of air at your back and protects your helmet from scratches from the backpack.
The molding of the hard shell significantly reduces the chance of drag caused by the backpack, helping to keep your bike performing and handling as it normally does.
The interior of this backpack makes organizing and securing your possessions an easy task with the multiple compartments and mesh pockets.
- Carbon fiber molded shell
- Body conforming shoulder gaskets
- Adequate padding
- Not compatible with laptops over 15.5 inches
There is no doubt that the KINGSLONG hard shell laptop backpack has been designed with tech lovers in mind.
Not only has it been designed specifically for the transportation of laptops, but it also has a few special features that are likely to attract the attention of those who love to use their devices when they’re on the road.
One of the standout features is the integrated USB charging cable that makes it possible to charge your laptop or other devices while you are riding with the simple addition of your own battery pack.
In keeping with the tech lover and gamer target audience, the backpack features pockets and straps on the interior that have been designed specifically for holding accessories such as your mouse and keyboard.
The KINGSLONG is made from a lightweight and durable material that is splashproof as standard.
However, it also features its own rain cover that can be attached to offer a higher level of protection from adverse weather conditions when necessary.
The backpack material also has a high level of abrasion resistance.
- Hard shell front
- Integrated USB
- Compartments designed for tech accessories
- No chest support straps
Best Motorcycle Backpack: Buyer’s Guide
Buying a motorcycle backpack is a very personal decision that has many factors that are different from person to person, however, there are a few things that should be considered before purchasing a motorcycle backpack to ensure you end up with a product that is right for you.
One of the most important things to consider when looking for a motorcycle backpack is the size of the product.
Not only does the size affect the highest possible weight of the backpack, but it can also affect the comfort of the straps and the aerodynamics of your bike.
If a backpack is too small, you won’t be able to fit everything that you need inside it which can be frustrating and disappointing.
If a backpack is too big, it can be easy to over pack it and make it too heavy.
When this happens, it can lead to the rider becoming unbalanced on the bike which can have serious consequences.
Another drawback of purchasing a backpack that is oversized is that it is more likely to be uncomfortable to wear on longer rides or if it is used regularly.
Avoid purchasing an incorrectly sized backpack by either trying on backpacks in a store or measuring your chest and shoulders to ensure a comfortable fit.
The design of the shell can have a sizable impact on the aerodynamics that you experience when you ride.
There are many motorcycle backpacks available on the market that have been designed specifically to promote smooth airflow over the body of both the rider and the backpack.
This can help maintain or even improve the handling of your bike.
However, if aerodynamics are less important to you than storage space, you might prefer to have a softer, less molded outer shell.
The compartments are an important part of how much stuff you can fit into the backpack.
The more useful compartments there are in a backpack, the more essentials you can fit in and carry safely and securely.
If a backpack only features one main compartment and some side pockets, your belongings are more likely to move around during your ride which can result in damage.
Another element of compartments that is important to look out for is adjustable divider load.
This feature helps you to keep the load of your backpack balanced no matter what you have inside it.
This can be extremely useful in keeping you and your bike balanced and stable even on the most winding of roads.
When you are looking into which motorcycle backpack you should buy, you should think about the different attachments that you might want to use with your pack.
If you are prone to using helmet straps while you are dismounted or like to carry a spare visor with you, the ability to safely store these things is something to consider.
There are many options that have the ability to attach helmets and visors to the outside of the backpack safely, rather than having to take up space in the pack with the items.
Finally, the straps on the bag are an important factor to think about when making a purchase.
The straps that keep the backpack on your shoulders should be well-padded and adjustable to make sure that they remain comfortable throughout your ride.
It is sensible to look out for straps that are designed to mold to your shoulders to provide the highest level of comfort and security.
Similarly, the presence of chest and waist straps is important in providing extra security, particularly over rough terrain.
They can also be useful in taking some of the weight off of your shoulders which can ease discomfort and keep you riding for as long as you want to without hurting your back.
Again, waist and chest straps should be wide, slightly padded, and adjustable to ensure that they can be fitted properly and not cause discomfort while on the bike.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Motorcycle Backpacks Safe?
This is a significant concern for bikers when it comes to choosing any clothing or accessories that they wear on their rides.
While motorcycle backpacks offer a great solution for carrying your essentials, and can often increase the ease of some maneuvers.
However, in the instance of an accident, it is possible for the presence of a backpack to cause more harm than if it wasn’t there.
If a rider falls onto their back in an accident, their spine may arch over the shape of the backpack, which can cause significant injury.
Where a motorcycle backpack is safer than a regular backpack is in its built-in features.
Most motorcycle backpacks are equipped with the ability to be removed by the pull of a strap to separate the backpack from the rider before impact and reduce the risk of injury.
In the interests of safety, if you make use of bike jackets that feature integrated airbags, you should check with the manufacturer whether or not a backpack will affect the performance of this safety gear.
There are many different types of motorcycle backpacks available on the market these days.
Whatever your preferred style or aesthetics, whatever you need to transport with you, there will be something that meets your needs.
Technology is always changing and advancing to make motorcycle backpacks more durable, lightweight, weather-resistant, and comfortable.
So, even if you have had poor experiences with backpacks on your bike in the past, there could still be the perfect product out there for you. Maybe the best motorcycle backpack for you is “hiding” in our top 6 picks!