Two of the most popular carrying options for everyday use are the messenger bag and backpack.
While the backpack still reigns supreme, is the messenger bag a great secondary option to the backpack?
I’m going to breakdown the aspects and factors of each of the individual bags that make them great carrying choices in their respectives uses and functionality.
What is a Messenger Bag?
Messenger bags are getting popular as they are fashionable as well convenient to use. They are just second in popularity to backpacks for office workers, college students, and business professionals.
It comes with a broad strap take makes a for a comfortable carrying experience. In addition, messenger bags allows you to load heavier items and it can be carried effortlessly as the weight is distributed evenly on the shoulder and the back as you will wear the bag across the torso.
The messenger bags are not just the trendy sling bags, but also you can use it as a laptop bag. This is what makes them a popular choice to be your daily carry all bag.
If you want a quality messenger bag, checkout my choices for the best laptop messenger bags.
What is a Backpack?
Backpack, in simple term, it is called as cloth bag carried on individual’s shoulder and it is secured with two thick straps. You can find different designs of the backpack and they are generally used by students and hikers.
The backpacks are better than handbags as they allow you to carry heavy loads for a longer period. Also, durable backpacks can easily go through rough use which means they tend to last for years to come. The best quality backpacks are made of durable materials, including leather or nylon.
Most backpacks feature strong straps and strong zippers to ensure secure carrying to protect all your belongings inside. High quality backpacks have quality thread material and sewing that is done properly. Packs with double stitching tend to be even more durable and have great longevity.
Read our list for the best backpacks for work and gym to help you find the right pack for everyday use.
How to Pick Between a Messenger Bag or Backpack
If you want to know Messenger Bag vs. Backpack, and you want to know which bag is suitable for you? Then, the first thing that you should check is which bag design suites your needs.
Generally, backpacks are more casual in terms of style and functionality. It’s a practical carry all option that can has a versatile use.
Another common rule is that messenger bags are considered as fashionable and style forward bags.
But, at the same time, backpacks are also available in different styles from different manufacturers; however, they are completely different from the normal school backpack. The college students prefer the stylish backpacks at any time. The backpacks are more functional as they allow you to carry heavy loads like books easily.
With so many things to consider, I’ve broken down the 3 aspects to consider when deciding between a messenger bag vs back.
- Storage Capacity
- Carrying Experience.
Style is completely up to you. It’s based on personal preferences. While backpacks are a safe choice with different design from several brands, messenger bags present a more professional style that would suit an office environment or college campus.
Storage capacity is dependent on your need. While common backpacks tend to run smaller in terms of storage, messenger bags are similar in size (unless you choose an oversized option). But if your deal breaker is which bag has better storage, then I recommend getting a large laptop messenger bag that can carry everything you’ll need for school or work.
The carrying experience is important to a less stressful day. This is also up to you. Most people tend to find the dual straps of a backpack easier to carry or an over-the-shoulder design of a messenger bag. While backpacks are still a staple in ease of carrying items, a messenger bag is great choice for carrying heavy loads for short to medium length commutes. DO NOT carry a messenger bag for long periods of time because it might burden your singular shoulder.
Messenger Bag vs Backpack: Head-to-Head
Backpacks are surely the best and perfect way for you to carry medium to heavyweight stuff.
Backpacks are particularly good for longer journeys. The stylish trapping and carrying method assure that the weight is equally distributed on your shoulders and it supports your back by balancing evenly.
When you compare a messenger bag with a backpack, then it has some disadvantage. The messenger bag puts a load on only one shoulder and it may not balance your back. Even if you put the broad strap messenger bag across your shoulder, it still doesn’t help much. If you carry a shoulder bag on a daily basis and carry plenty of loads can surely cause postural damage and you have to suffer from back and spine problems when you use the heavily loaded messenger bag for a longer period.
Space & Volume of Messenger Bag and Backpack:
If you are thinking the messenger bag will win this feature, then you are absolutely wrong. If you are thinking that a backpack has better space & Volume, then again you are wrong. Both a messenger bag, as well as a backpack, fit the same volume and space.
Only the difference that you will see is that the messenger bag is quick and easy to place things, however, the backpack takes a long time as it has more pockets.
When it comes to placing a 17-inch and 15-inch laptop, then putting it in a backpack is much easier than messenger bag and the backpack also contains side access zip.
Before choosing a messenger bag or a backpack you should ask some questions like:
Do you get easy access to items?
You will carry the Messenger bag on your side, which means you will get easy access to the stuff that you placed in the bag like a getting a cell phone or a pen is easy. However, in a backpack, it is not that easy to get things quickly. But, in some type of backpack, you can find a small pocket to place all
How much can you carry?
Messenger bags carry the same volume as a backpack. But, if you are carrying heavy items on a daily basis, then consider buying a backpack instead of a messenger bag. This is because a backpack distributes the weight equally on both the shoulders and supports your back. Also, it is easy to organize in backpacks as some of the brands come with more compartments.
Do you ride a bike?
The Backpack is the best option if you ride a bike. Your both hands are free as your backpack hangs on your back. But, some individuals’ feel that the backpack makes them uncomfortable while riding a bike. So some people prefer messenger bags as they wear them across their body.
Pros and Cons of Messenger Bags
- Easier Access
- More Stylish
- You can put it across your body easily
- Ideal for laptop
- A stylish way to carry
- Not suitable to carry for the longer time
- Not good for heavy loads
- Puts weight on only one shoulder
- Not durable
Pros and Cons of Backpacks
- Allows you to carry heavy stuff
- Distributes weight evenly on two shoulders
- More versatile
- Ideal for hiking, traveling, and longer trips
- Contains lots of compartment to organize the stuff easily
- More comfortable
- Makes you feel discomfort as your back gets sweaty
- Allow you pack a lot of stuff because of excess compartments
- Easy to snatch things from the backpack
The Messenger bag and the Backpack, both are good in their own ways, but if you are a college student, then choosing the backpack is ideal as it allows you to carry heavy loads.
If you are more fashionable, then go with Messenger bag.
It is each individual choice to choose their bags. But, our conclusion is both are excellent choices to choose.