Best Camera Backpack for Travel – Whether you’re a professional photographer, or just like to take snapshots of your vacation to bring home, having a good camera along for your trip is a great idea. We all know that every inch of room in your luggage is precious and likely already accounted for.
That’s why we’ve done the research to find the best camera backpack for travel and included five choices with in-depth reviews. We also included an extensive Camera Backpack buyer’s guide so that you have the information you need to make sure you spend your money on the perfect backpack, as well as an FAQs section to answer questions.
Some things to consider in a travel camera backpack are:
- Padded shoulder straps
- Hip belt, waist belt, hip strap, wheels
- Additional storage space for:
- Extra lenses, including zoom lens
- Travel tripod
- Secure pocket for extra battery and memory cards
- Padded dividers for other photo gear
- Water resistant material
- Is it synthetic fabric such as nylon canvas
- Being able to have quick access
- Flexibility to use it as a carry on luggage or personal item on airplane
- Laptop compartment or padded laptop sleeve
- Size: i.e. 13 inch laptop or 10 inch tablet
- Can you use it as an everyday backpack or travel backpack
- Weight limit; can it handle heavier loads?
- External pocket for water bottle
- Extra dividers
- If you want a camera backpack for hiking as well
Best Camera Backpack for Travel Reviews
TARION Camera Backpack
The Tarion camera backpack is a solid top choice for the best camera backpack for travel for many reasons. It looks trendy, is made of high-quality materials, and has room for your camera and extra gear, including additional lenses.
The Tarion camera backpack is lined with 210D polyester that helps to prevent rips and tears, even when the backpack is used heavily every day.
There are a total of two large compartments where you can store your gear; the lower compartment is designed for camera gear, while the upper area is for other essentials, such as a change of clothes or hygiene products.
The lower compartment has a compact and padded area that features hooks and loop dividers for you to put your camera, lenses, batteries, chargers, and more.
There is also a built-in adjustable strap that allows you to carry this backpack easily, even when it’s packed full of gear.
What’s more, you’ll even find a space in this camera backpack for your laptop as long as it’s 15 inches or smaller.
TARION Camera Backpack Pros and Cons
When it comes to the things we enjoy about the Tarion camera backpack, we have to mention the amazing fact that it is water-repellent.
If you’re traveling anywhere where you’ll be close to water, which is most places these days, you’ll want to make sure your bag is water-repellent, which guarantees that your gear stays as safe and dry as possible.
On top of that, it is also stain-repellent, which can be a big plus if you bring your camera along during the food stops of your journey.
The stain-repellent feature on this camera backpack will also prevent mud, oil, and other things from ruining your backpack.
It comes with an extra rain cover that adds a bit more waterproof and stain-resistance to the backpack, which is perfect for when you’re traveling in places like the Pacific Northwest, where it’s raining all the time.
The base of this backpack comes with a tripod carrying strap, too, which is incredibly convenient and will save you room in your pack for other gear and necessities.
Though there isn’t too much that we dislike about this camera backpack, one thing we do want to note is that it doesn’t come in many color choices.
Even though the tripod strap on the bottom is amazing, it’s important to know that if you have a large, heavy-duty tripod, you may find yourself bumping into things, even when it’s locked into a compact position.
- Shockproof inner lining
- Trendy design and appearance
- Organized into two compartments
- Comes with a raincoat
- Tripod straps are on the bottom
- Not many compartments
- A bit small if you need to pack a ton of gear
- Not many color options available
Qipi Camera Bag
The Qipi camera bag is one of the most affordable camera bags that’s available today. Among the reasons why it is loved by many is the fact that it is made out of durable nylon and weighs just under two pounds.
With a nylon exterior, this camera bag from Qipi is weather-resistant, but once you add the rain cover that’s included, it quickly becomes safe from the elements. There are also modular interior inserts that keep your gear organized to your liking and will keep everything stay in its place.
The way that this bag is designed allows you to swing the backpack around quickly so that you have easy and fast access to your camera when a picture-perfect moment appears out of nowhere.
This is thanks to the soft and padded crossbody strap that keeps the bag securely on you at all times. This strap is also comfortable and convenient at the same time.
Qipi Camera Bag Pros and Cons
One thing we like about this camera bag is the pocket on the side of the backpack that will hold your tripod nicely and snugly. Unlike other options on the market, the Qipi camera backpack is one of the best camera backpacks for travel thanks to the hidden anti-theft pocket that’s built into it.
You can easily store things like your keys, cellphone, hotel room card, wallet, and more in there. It’s also important to mention that there is a built-in compartment for your phone, as well.
You can easily customize the interior of the camera backpack with the padded divider inserts, which is convenient for people who don’t always carry the same gear every time that they travel.
One of the few things that we are not a fan of when it comes to the Qipi camera bag is that the design is a bit dated, and there isn’t a color selection to choose from.
It is also designed for someone who doesn’t have a lot of gear, which can be a big pro to some, but a negative aspect to others. Lastly, while the strap is long, if you’re over six feet tall, you may struggle with getting it to fit comfortably, even if you’re in shape.
- Built-in mesh pocket for accessories
- Body strap easily swings around
- Body strap is padded
- Customizable padded divider inserts
- Anti-theft pocket
- Side pocket for tripod
- Cell phone pocket built-in
- No color options available
- Dated exterior look
- Better for those with less equipment
BAGSMART Camera Backpack
Not only is the Bagsmart camera backpack made out of a water-resistant canvas, but it’s also carry-on compatible, making it easily one of the best camera backpacks for travel. This bag looks amazing and is made out of high-quality and eco-friendly materials to keep your gear safe as you travel the world.
Just like my top pick, this camera backpack has two different compartments that are designed for a variety of things.
The top compartment is best for storing your clothes, toothbrush, shampoo, snacks, and other personal belongings for your trip.
The lower compartment is designed for your camera gear and can fit one DSLR camera body with a lens attached, along with three to four extra lenses.
There are several pockets all around the exterior of this camera bag, including a 15-inch laptop compartment on the back that has built-in, shock-absorbing padding all along the bottom. There are also pockets on each side of the bag: one on the left for a water bottle and one on the right for tripod storage.
BAGSMART Camera Backpack Pros and Cons
Easily one of the best things about this backpack is that there are three access points so that you can reach whatever you need to reach easily. There is a cinch-top closure, quick side access, and a full front zipper on this camera backpack.
The internal dividers and compartments that hold the camera gear are divided using soft bubble foam padding, even on the bottom. This makes the bottom compartment bump-, shock-, and scratch-resistant, keeping your gear as safe as possible.
Another great thing about this pack is the lockable zipper and metal hook that makes it practically impossible for someone to break into any of the compartments and steal your expensive equipment.
While we love the overall design of this bag, there are few things that could use some improvement.
For starters, the bottom of the backpack is shock-proof, but it feels like the padding could be a little thicker, or it could use a bit more of it in general. Another thing that could improve this camera backpack would be a black waist strap to secure everything in place.
- Chest buckle
- Customizable compartments
- Shock-proof base
- Tons of pockets
- Rain cover included
- Made out of high-quality canvas
- Anti-theft locks built-in
- Not a ton of color options
- Could use more padding throughout the bag
- Requires a waist strap
CADeN Camera Backpack Bag
If you’re a professional photographer who is looking for a camera bag for your next trip, the Caden camera backpack is a solid choice. It is made out of heavy-duty materials and solely has a room dedicated to your camera gear.
Despite this camera backpack being quite large, it weighs less than two pounds and is comfortable to carry even for long periods. There is room for one camera body, four lenses, a flash, an iPad, a tripod, and more.
The inside compartments and dividers are adjustable or completely removable if need be.
Whether you shoot Canon, Nikon, or even a DJI drone, this camera backpack will keep any camera and the gear safe and sound. What’s more, there are mesh bags on both sides of this backpack that could hold things like water bottles, more gear, or an umbrella.
There is also a built-in area that can hold any size tripod or even a walking pole for intense destination shoots. It is made out of 900D polyester nylon that is high-density and waterproof to keep your gear from getting damaged in the rain or snow.
CADeN Camera Backpack Bag Pros and Cons
One of our favorite features of this backpack is the shoulder belts, which are adjustable and made with elastic and memory foam. Also, the way this bag is designed, you won’t be able to see the zippers, making it appear more compact and futuristic.
The seven layers of built-in PE foam on this backpack are perfect for keeping camera gear safe, as it is shock-proof and extremely durable. Another thing that makes this one of the best camera backpacks for travel has got to be the fact that it can hold over 100 pounds of gear.
Lastly, the alloy zipper is guaranteed by CADeN not to rust within three years, and it won’t break for the first five years of use, too.
While it may be a pro to some, it seems that many find the lack of extra compartments for personal belongings and travel accessories, such as clothing, as a downside to this pack.
If you have a separate backpack or luggage for your personal things, this shouldn’t be too big of a deal, as you could roll up a sweatshirt and comfortably fit it within the backpack. The last thing we weren’t a big fan of was the interior pocket size, which could barely fit a 13-inch laptop.
- Comes with a one-year warranty
- Has a front pocket inside for laptop
- It’s a waterproof camera backpack
- Tons of space inside for gear
- Can hold over 100 pounds
- Adjustable shoulder belts
- The internal pouch doesn’t have a zipper
- Some laptops may not fit in the pouch
- No compartments for clothing
Altura Photo Camera Sling Backpack
Available in three different sizes at a variety of price points, the Altura photo camera sling backpack takes the fifth place on this list. Weighing in at just over one pound, this is a great backpack to take with you on your next adventure.
This camera backpack has a padded sling strap that is curved to easily fit the body and rotate when you need quick access to your gear inside the bag.
It can fit all types and brands of DSLR camera bodies and lenses, along with mirrorless cameras, drones, and other camera accessories.
You will find that the main compartment is accessible from a side zipper and that there are removable dividers inside that are padded, durable, and customizable.
There is also a smaller top compartment that can be used to hold more gear, including flashes, battery packs, or personal belongings.
There is also a convenient mesh pocket in the interior of the backpack that can be used to store smaller things, such as extra batteries, filters, diffusers, and more.
Altura Photo Camera Sling Backpack Pros and Cons
One thing we love about this camera backpack is the easy-to-access tripod compartment on its side. This bag is equipped with an adjustable waistband, too, in addition to the other straps, which ensures that your gear is going to stay in place as long as you have the backpack on.
The colors are neutral and professional, perfect for shooting destination weddings or engagement shoots.
We also enjoyed how thick the dividers are, thanks to the extra padding. It made us feel like our gear was safe, no matter what type of photo shoot we were doing or where we were in the world.
Not a really big deal, but the fact that the pockets close with Velcro instead of zippers was something that bothered us about this camera backpack.
It could also use a few extra compartments on the outside to store your phone, camera battery charger, or even a few camera straps. While there are two other sizes you can get, this sling backpack might be small for some photographers out there who are looking to haul gear such as spare lenses.
- The body strap made it easy to access the gear
- Lightweight yet heavy-duty
- Versatile camera backpack to take hiking
- Comes with a top compartment
- A pocket for a tripod on the side
- Available in three sizes
- Small interior
- Not many compartments
- Uses Velcro instead of zippers
Camera Backpack for Travel Buyer’s Guide
Now that you know what products are available, it’s important to know what you should be looking for when shopping around for one of the best camera backpacks for travel. Below are a handful of the top features you’ll want a camera backpack to have if you’re going to spend money on one.
The first thing that you want to look for when trying to find a camera backpack that works for you is the size. Take a look at all of the gear you have and keep in mind the ones you plan to get in the near future.
Then, think about what you shoot most and how much equipment is needed for those shoots. Also consider how many padded areas you’ll need for your smallest and largest shoot.
Having easy access to your camera gear is incredibly convenient. While you want to be able to toss the backpack around your shoulder and grab your camera when needed, you’ll also want the access to be easy for you.
Make sure to look for camera backpacks that have locks or anti-theft systems that prevent accessibility from another other than yourself. If you are choosing a hiking camera backpack, you’ll want to be ready for impromptu shots of wildlife, etc. which makes quick accessibility something to consider.
3. Tripod Holder
The last thing you want to do after spending money on a camera backpack is to have to carry your tripod around all day. You’ll want your hands to be free to take photos and adjust your camera settings as needed without needing to set down or pick up the tripod every few seconds.
Many backpacks have a tripod holder that’s on the side of the bag for quick and easy access. You’ll want to make sure that your tripod isn’t too large for the compartment, as well as be mindful that you won’t knock into things while wearing it.
The majority of camera backpacks will have a base at the bottom, and it’s more important than you may think. The base provides protection to what’s inside the backpack, and you’ll want to make sure there is plenty of padding on the base. Some may have shock-proof features, too, which will prevent your gear from getting damaged if you drop the backpack.
One of the most important features is weatherproofing. It doesn’t matter where you shoot. You’ll want to keep everything inside the backpack, and the backpack, itself, has to stay safe from the elements.
Weatherproofing will keep the pack from getting stained, scratched, and can even prevent water from soaking into the interior. Choosing a waterproof camera backpack is key.
Compartments are where you store your gear, whether those are dividers in one area or how many pockets the backpack has. If you travel a lot, it may be best to get a backpack that has a compartment for your camera gear, as well as one for your personal belongings.
It’s always a good idea to have plenty of pockets and compartments to place things like extra batteries, SD cards, flashes, your phone, and other accessories. You’ll find lots of use for additional pockets.
Also consider if you will be bringing an iPad or if you’ll want room for an expandable pocket. Many have a dedicated sleeve for devices.
Look for different ways to carry the backpack. You may find you’ll use it more frequently the more versatile it is. Having padded straps will make all the difference. Look for ones with a chest strap and waist straps which will take the pressure off your back and shoulder blades.
A quality backpack will enable to you carry your heaviest gear with ease. Straps will be even more important if you plan to use it as a hiking camera backpack.
Camera Backpack for Travel FAQs
Do I need a camera bag?
Having a camera bag is incredibly convenient, whether you’re a professional photographer or not. With one, you’ll be able to have all of your gear on you and keep everything organized and at the ready for when you need it.
How do you pack a camera for air travel?
If you have a camera backpack that you’re bringing to the airport, you’d simply load up the bag and make sure all of the dividers are securely in place. If you aren’t using a camera backpack, consider wrapping your lenses in a couple of pairs of socks and the camera body in a sweatshirt to make sure everything stays in place.
What should I keep in my camera bag?
The gear that you have in your camera bag is totally up to you and may vary depending on what you are using your camera for. For example, if you’re hired to shoot a destination wedding, you’ll likely have tons of extra batteries, extra SD cards, and possibly a second or third camera body. You’ll also want additional lenses such as a telephoto lens.
If you just need your gear for your family vacation to Disneyland, you’ll be able to get away with much less in your pack. You’ll want a separate pocket for your money, ID, keys, and phone, that’s it.
How do you keep your camera safe in a backpack?
While most camera bags have padding built into it, to make sure your camera stays as safe as possible, you could add in some extra padding. It is also a good idea to have a lock on your camera bag to protect your photography gear even if you just have a couple of things inside.
Camera Backpack for Travel
If we have to choose one of the best camera backpacks for travel out of the five listed above, we will go for the Bagsmart camera backpack. It has everything you need; it’s waterproof, looks fashionable, has plenty of compartments, and is just an overall great bag.
We know that not everyone has a ton of money to spend on a camera backpack. Luckily, the majority of the options above are affordable. The Altura sling backpack is a great pick for those looking for enough space for their gear.