Messenger Bags vs. Backpacks – Who got ya?

It’s an age-old question; what style of bag will fit all your carry needs? 

Now, obviously there are a ton of differences between your standard messenger bag and backpack but before choosing, you need to identify what features are most important to you.  With the help of strangers on the streets of D.C. and our social media outreach, we’ve compiled a list of features and style that may make your decision, although still grueling, a little bit easier.

Backpacks Messenger Bags
What are they good for?

A backpack is the quintessential bag for carrying heavy loads. Dual shoulder straps allow for the bags weight to be equally distributed thus putting less pressure on your spine.  The straps also allow for added stability while performing dynamic activities.  These two advantages make a backpack the ideal bag for long trips.

Messenger bags are ideal for carrying lighter loads in hot weather because there is less body contact (We all know what happens to your poor shirt while carrying a backpack in the heat.) Messenger bags are perfect for a day trip around town and for traveling to work or university. 

Subliminal Message

You put utility above all else.  That's smart; hence, you're smart.

Messenger bags combine functionality and style.  When carrying a messenger bag you are seen as an intellectual with modern flare.


Backpacks are typically worn outdoors.  They are often used as carry-ons while traveling, at sporting events, and schools. 

Messenger bags are the most common city bag.  They are also popular among bike commuters and university students because they are small and easily accessible. 


Backpacks can hold a generous amount of items in their main compartment and have outside pockets for smaller necessities too.  New age backpacks typically have a padded compartment in the interior for laptops and other electronics.

Best for fewer items that you want to keep organized.  Messenger bags typically have numerous compartments for storing your important things.  If you have a lot of “stuff”, manage your clutter or stick to a backpack.


Use a square backpack for books, laptops, and other structured items and a rounder one for clothes and pliable things.

Use a square, structured messenger for work and a soft, broad messenger for life.


Duluth Pack Scoutmaster Deluxe Backpack

Mulholland Brothers Waxed Canvas Anglers Bag


Travel On....
District Grain

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