Top 10 Best Anti Theft Backpacks for 2019 Travel

One of the absolute last things any traveler should have to worry about is theft while abroad. Theft instantly puts a damper on any vacation and mercilessly changes the course of events. What could have been a dream vacation with Mojitos in hand while aimlessly floating around in an inner tube beneath the sun, gets crushed by a thieve or pickpocket.

While it’s impossible to be 100% safe in this world, there are precautions you can take to avoid theft while abroad. I’ve been traveling for the past five years nonstop and have seen/heard more than enough theft-related horror stories.

After having a couple of hundred dollars stolen from me during my first solo trip abroad, I swore to make major changes because I’m not the kind of guy who likes to be had.

What’s the easiest way to prevent theft while in transit? A quality anti theft backpack.

Most people who experience theft while abroad have their bags broken into when they’re not looking. I once met a guy who had his entire backpack ripped off his back by two motorcyclists in Vietnam. He made the mistake of putting his wallet and passport inside his backpack.

Don’t worry, I’ll teach you how to avoid making that same mistake in the final thoughts section.

In this article, I share my top 10 best anti theft backpacks along with a helpful buyer’s guide. By the end, you’ll know exactly which pack(s) are right for you.

Let’s start with the buyer’s guide to help you choose the best anti theft backpack for you.

Best Anti Theft Backpack Buyer’s Guide

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There are certain features to look for when purchasing an anti theft backpack: some may be overkill for you while others are essential.

Best Anti Theft Backpack Features

  • A Hidden Back Panel Pocket – This is one of the basic features that all the best anti theft backpacks should have. A back panel pocket allows you to store your valuable possessions against your body while using public transit or going through the airport. You get the peace of mind of not having to look over your shoulder yet easy enough access to your documents.
  • Hidden Zippers – Hidden zippers on the main compartment and other compartments are often included.
  • Slash-Proof Materials – This feature blocks thieves and pickpockets from cutting your bag open while you’re not looking. The backpack’s panels contain internal steel mesh.
  • Lockdown Shoulder Straps – Lockdown shoulder straps allow you to lock your bag to a fixed object.
  • RFID-Blocking Pocket – These built-in pockets block digital thieves who use RFID readers to steal credit card, debit card, and other identifying information such as on a passport.
  • External USB Port – An external USB port allows you to charge your cellphone or other USB devices without opening your backpack. You do need a power bank inside your pack for this option to work.
  • Interlocking/Kissing Zippers – Some of the best anti-theft backpacks include zipper mechanisms that allow you to lock your zippers together without the need for a separate padlock. “Kissing” zippers are similar. They contain holes that you can pass a small padlock through to keep the zippers locked together.
  • Puncture-Resistant Zippers – Experienced thieves know how to poke through a zipper quickly without you noticing. Some anti-theft packs have special zippers that block poking.
  • Minimal Outer Pockets – Several anti-theft packs eliminated outer pockets altogether.
  • Hidden Shoulder and Waist Pockets – These pockets allow you to keep your valuables secure against your body and in front of you.

I think by now you have a good idea of all the features to look for when shopping for your best anti theft backpack.

Anti Theft Backpack Price

You’ll find that the best anti theft backpacks do range in price, yet even the most premium of the bunch are usually in the $100 range.

The most expensive packs often include inner steel mesh, locking zippers, lockdown shoulder straps, and RFID-blocking pockets.

Are you ready to check out the top 10?

Top 10 Best Anti Theft Backpacks

#1 Pacsafe Venturesafe EXP45 Carry-On Pack

Pacsafe Venturesafe EXP45 Carry-On Pack Review

This pack is one of Pacsafe’s latest releases, and it appears to be the anti theft version of the Tortuga-style carry-on backpacks. Pacsafe is one of the leaders in the anti-theft travel gear industry, and they consistently release top-notch packs.

This pack comes in 45-liter and 65-liter sizes and is a great option for nomads who like to travel light with a single pack and are on the hunt for premium best anti theft backpack features.

Pros

  • Includes 3mm locking cable to connect the bag to a fixed object
  • Chest and hip straps
  • Internal steel mesh
  • Puncture-resistant zippers
  • Various zipper locks
  • Solid internal organization
  • Padded laptop sleeve holds up to 15″ laptop

Cons

  • No luggage strap to connect to rolling a suitcase
  • Higher price than other bags
  • Too large for some uses
  • No external USB port
  • No TSA-friendly lay-flat feature for security checkpoints

#2 XD Design Bobby XL

XD Design Bobby XL

The Bobby backpack is one of the most popular and best anti theft backpacks currently on the market. It also has the cleanest appearance of all the bags on this list with zero pockets on the outer panel.

It’s a great bag to have for a short weekend trip or in conjunction with a rolling suitcase for longer trips.

Pros

  • The best bag for commuting around a city or other busy places
  • Padded 17″ laptop sleeve and 12.9″ tablet sleeve
  • Hidden side panel pockets
  • External USB port
  • Slash-proof materials
  • 180-degree opening

Cons

  • No sternum or hip straps
  • Not great for adventure travel
  • No outer pockets could be a dealbreaker for you
  • No RFID-blocking pocket

#3 Travelon Anti Theft Classic Backpack

Travelon Anti Theft Classic Backpack

Travelon’s most popular pack, the Classic, is certainly one of the best anti theft backpacks for women. It comes with an impressive set of premium anti-theft features at a very fair price.

Pros

  • Slash-proof panels
  • Internal RFID-blocking pocket
  • Slash-resistant shoulder straps
  • Lockdown straps and compartments
  • Great daypack option for exploring a new city
  • Functional design
  • Available in 8 colors

 

Cons

  • No laptop compartment (only tablet)
  • No luggage strap

#4 Kopack Travel Backpack

kopack Travel Backpack TSA Friendly Business (1)

This best anti theft backpack by the lesser-known brand Kopack is easily one of my favorites. It’s perfect for digital nomads who are always on the move and have more electronics to keep track of than other travelers.

It comes equipped with all my favorite travel pack features such as the lay-flat option, hidden back panel pocket, luggage strap, and shoulder strap pockets for holding credit cards while traveling through the airport.

Pros

  • TSA-friendly lay-flat feature allows you to go through airport security without taking out your laptop
  • Fits up to 17.3″ laptop
  • Lots of hidden pockets
  • Sunglasses pocket in the top
  • Perfect to use in combination with a rolling suitcase
  • Lockable zippers
  • External USB port

 

Cons

  • No RFID pocket
  • Missing internal steel mesh
  • No sternum or hip straps

#5 Korin Design ClickPack Pro

Korin Design ClickPack Pro

The ClickPack Pro is one of the most feature-rich anti theft backpacks out there. It comes with some cool features I haven’t seen in other packs such as the built-in TSA zipper lock and included retractable cable lock that allows you to lock the bag to fixed objects.

Pros

  • Comes with internal storage bags to keep your items separated
  • Internal padded laptop and tablet compartments hold up to a 15.6″ laptop and 10″ tablet
  • The built-in TSA zipper lock and retractable cable lock
  • Double-layer YKK zipper
  • Slash-resistant fabric
  • External USB port
  • Rain cover included

 

Cons

  • No sternum, hip, or luggage straps
  • No internal steel mesh

#6 Mark Ryden Rucksack

Water-proof Backpack Markryden large-capacity

This budget-friendly option by Mark Ryden is a perfect carry-on bag that comes with just enough anti theft backpack features to deserve a spot on this list. It’s good to have some variety instead of loading the list with Pacsafe or Travelon options.

Pros

  • Hidden back panel pocket
  • Water-repellant materials
  • Compass included
  • Fits up to a 17.3″ laptop
  • Awesome internal organization pockets
  • Luggage and sternum straps
  • External USB port
  • Sleek design

 

Cons

  • No slash-proof internal mesh
  • Missing several additional anti-theft features found in Pacsafe and Travelon bags

#7 Pacsafe Venturesafe GII

Pacsafe Venturesafe GII

The Venturesafe GII is a solid daypack option for outdoor and adventure travels. It comes in both 25-liter and 15-liter sizes.

Pros

  • Suspended laptop sleeve ensures your laptop never touches the ground (holds up to a 15″ laptop)
  • Hydration pack compatible
  • Slash-proof shoulder straps and panels
  • Internal RFID pocket
  • Locking zippers

 

Cons

  • Not great for business travelers or city commuting
  • No lay-flat feature
  • Fewer hidden pockets

#8 Camsafe X17 Anti-Theft Camera Backpack

PacSafe Camsafe X17 (1)

This list wouldn’t be complete without the best anti theft backpack for photographers. The Camsafe 17-liter pack by Pacsafe comes with all the great features you’ll find in most Pacsafe bags with added specialized options to keep your expensive camera(s) safe while traveling.

Pros

  • Great internal organization for camera equipment
  • Built-in rain cover
  • Robar Sport locking system to secure your zippers
  • RFID-blocking material
  • Lockdown strap for connecting to a fixed object
  • The design doesn’t scream, “Hey, I’m carrying expensive camera gear!”

 

Cons

  • Not made for all uses
  • Higher price tag than other Pacsafe options
  • No luggage strap to connect to a rolling suitcase

#9 NOMATIC Backpack

 NOMATIC Backpack- Slim Black

You may have seen the NOMATIC pack before and not known that it does have some anti theft features. While I do love this bag as a carry-on option for digital nomads, it’s lighter on anti theft backpack features than the bags that came before it.

Pros

  • Ultimate functionality
  • Expandable
  • Great sleeve for connecting the bag to a rolling suitcase
  • RFID-blocking pocket
  • Hidden pockets
  • Magnetic water bottle pocket
  • Internal cord pass through to charge devices without opening the bag

 

Cons

  • Steeper price than other options
  • Fewer anti-theft features
  • Mixed reviews

#10 Swissdigital Extra Large Travel Pack

Swissdigital Extra Large Travel Water-Resistant Backpack

This bag is a perfect example of a diamond in the rough type of travel backpack. I chose this pack as the 10th best anti theft backpack because it has some great features for nomads, and gives you an idea of how backpacks are evolving as carry-on bags. This is actually one of the best travel backpacks I’ve seen made by a lesser-known company.

Pros

  • Unique internal organization for holding clothes (opens like a suitcase)
  • Laptop sleeve holds up to a 17″ laptop
  • RFID-blocking pocket
  • Locking zippers
  • Sturdy luggage strap
  • Waterproof internal pocket
  • Shoe pocket
  • External USB-port

 

Cons

  • Lacks several premium anti-theft features
  • The company is relatively unknown

Final Thoughts

What did you think of this list of best anti theft backpacks? Which one is your favorite?

By now, you know everything there is to know about anti theft backpacks and their features. Sometimes, the best things in life are the ones we don’t have to think about.

An anti theft backpack frees your mind from having to worry about anyone tampering with your bag while in transit or when you land in a brand-new place.

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Here’s a bonus tip. Remember the guy I told you about who had his entire backpack stolen? What I do to ensure that I at least get to keep my cash, credit cards, and passport if this type of situation does arise is use a hidden money belt.

Yeah, you won’t look cool if you have to reach under your shirt to access it, but it comes in handy when you’re bringing your passport and credit/debit cards outside in a foreign country. I always wear mine when I go to the ATM or need to visit the immigration office to extend my visa.

If you loved this list, you may be interested in this massive list of best anti theft backpacks for travel to get some additional ideas.

Safe travels!

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Looking for the best anti theft backpacks? With this helpful buyer's guide and top 10 list, you'll know exactly which best anti theft backpack is for you.

Looking for the best anti theft backpacks? With this helpful buyer's guide and top 10 list, you'll know exactly which best anti theft backpack is for you.

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