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The Best Roll Top Backpack

Last updated on June 23, 2020

We looked at the top 12 Roll Top Backpacks and dug through the reviews from 26 of the most popular review sites including Gearing Out, Globo Turf, Review Meta, In Stash, Smarter Travel, The Backpack Guide and more. The result is a ranking of the best Roll Top Backpacks.

Best Roll Top Backpack

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Our Picks For The Top Roll Top Backpacks

Show Contents
Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  The Best Overall

XRAY Expandable Trendy Laptop Pocket Roll Top Backpack

XRAY

Expandable Laptop Roll Top Backpack

Overall Take

Great for the OutdoorsWhether you're hiking in the mountains or spending the weekend at a campsite, this backpack has you covered with a basic, durable design.

Experts Included
DWYM Sports and Recreation Experts plus Review Meta, Wiki EZ Vid. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" With its weather-resistant qualities, the Xray Expandable (about $34) makes an ideal school backpack for all ages and genders. With an extra-secure aperture, it will protect electrical goods from the elements, and it is expandable to easily accommodate gym wear..."
  The Best Value

AmazonBasics Anti-Theft Roll Top Backpack

AmazonBasics

Anti-Theft Roll Top Backpack

Overall Take

Anti-Theft DesignThis backpack features a roll-top design with dual-clasp closures to discourage thieves.

Experts Included
DWYM Sports and Recreation Experts plus 9 to 5 Toys. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" With room for up to 15-inch MacBooks, Amazon’s in-house backpack is also filled with several pockets for keeping gear and other essentials organized. The roll top, rucksack-style design is said to help keep everything safe, while a water-resistant construction defends..."

Oakley Men’s Voyage 23l Roll Top Backpack

Oakley

Men's Voyage 23l Roll Top Backpack

Overall Take

Polyester FabricThis roll-top backpack features a polyester-cotton blend that's not only breathable, but also machine washable.

Experts Included
DWYM Sports and Recreation Experts plus Best Backpack Lab, Backpack Judge. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" It's made of nylon fabric which is very long lasting. The roll-up feature is a great add-on allowing you to shorten the bag at any time. The minimalistic design means that it's also a very light bag to carry, which..."
Cons
"This bag doesn’t have multiple storage compartments where you can store most of your small valuables. Some customers complain that the stitching is quite poor."

Timbuk2 Tuck Roll Top Backpack

Timbuk2

Tuck Roll Top Backpack

Overall Take

Great for CyclingWith reflective zippers and a streamlined design, this backpack is ideal for cyclists.

Experts Included
DWYM Sports and Recreation Experts plus Deteched, Gearist, Gear Institute, The Inventory, Practical Travel Gear. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" I really love the Tuck Pack. For me, less is more. I don’t like backpacks that have a million specialized pockets for each specific thing. I’d rather have a couple of large pockets to hold all my essentials. I usually..."
Cons
"You definitely need to be mindful of how you pack it – pokey objects will definitely lower the comfort level against your back."
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
19

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the roll top backpacks available to purchase.
12

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

26

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: Gearing Out, Globo Turf, Review Meta, In Stash, Smarter Travel.

7,953

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including Amazon, Dive In and 8 others.

Our experts reviewed the top 12 Roll Top Backpacks and also dug through the reviews from 26 of the most popular review sites including Gearing Out, Globo Turf, Review Meta, In Stash, Smarter Travel, The Backpack Guide and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Roll Top Backpacks.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

XRAY Expandable Trendy Laptop Pocket Roll Top Backpack

Our Expert Score
9.4
2 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
9.0
64 user reviews
Our Take

Made from ultra-strong tactical matte polyurethane fabric, this backpack can handle the elements, even keeping your electronic devices safe in the rain. The design can expand when necessary, while remaining compact if you only need to carry a few things. The padded laptop pocket can easily hold a laptop with a screen size of up to 15.6 inches.

What other experts liked
With its weather-resistant qualities, the Xray Expandable (about $34) makes an ideal school backpack for all ages and genders. With an extra-secure aperture, it will protect electrical goods from the elements, and it is expandable to easily accommodate gym wear...
- Wiki EZ Vid
What other experts didn't like
Top protrudes when rolled up.
- Wiki EZ Vid

The Best Bang For Your Buck

AmazonBasics Anti-Theft Roll Top Backpack

Our Expert Score
10.0
1 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
9.0
102 user reviews
Our Take

With multiple pockets and padded compartments, this backpack is designed to keep your devices and other valuables well protected in transit. Its water repellent features will help keep items dry in harsh weather, and the size fits laptops up to 15.6 inches. It has a hidden phone pocket for extra security.

What other experts liked
With room for up to 15-inch MacBooks, Amazon’s in-house backpack is also filled with several pockets for keeping gear and other essentials organized. The roll top, rucksack-style design is said to help keep everything safe, while a water-resistant construction defends against inclement weather. It carries a 4.6/5 star rating from...
- 9 to 5 Toys
What other experts didn't like

Overall Product Rankings

XRAY Expandable Trendy Laptop Pocket Roll Top Backpack

1. XRAY Expandable Trendy Laptop Pocket Roll Top Backpack

Overall Score: 9.7
Reviews Included: 4

AmazonBasics Anti-Theft Roll Top Backpack

2. AmazonBasics Anti-Theft Roll Top Backpack

Overall Score: 9.5
Reviews Included: 2

Oakley Men’s Voyage 23l Roll Top Backpack

3. Oakley Men’s Voyage 23l Roll Top Backpack

Overall Score: 9.2
Reviews Included: 5

Timbuk2 Tuck Roll Top Backpack

4. Timbuk2 Tuck Roll Top Backpack

Overall Score: 9.1
Reviews Included: 10

Fjallraven Ulvo Roll Top Backpack

6. Fjallraven Ulvo Roll Top Backpack

Overall Score: 9.0
Reviews Included: 8

Earth Pak Waterproof Front-Zippered Pocket Roll Top Backpack

7. Earth Pak Waterproof Front-Zippered Pocket Roll Top Backpack

Overall Score: 8.9
Reviews Included: 10

KALIDI Casual Classic Roll Top Backpack

8. KALIDI Casual Classic Roll Top Backpack

Overall Score: 8.9
Reviews Included: 1

Gonex Durable Travel Laptop Casual Roll Top Backpack

9. Gonex Durable Travel Laptop Casual Roll Top Backpack

Overall Score: 8.9
Reviews Included: 2

Gecko Equipments Roll Top Backpack

11. Gecko Equipments Roll Top Backpack

Overall Score: 8.8
Reviews Included: 1

CAI Anti-Theft Rucksack Laptop Roll Top Backpack

12. CAI Anti-Theft Rucksack Laptop Roll Top Backpack

Overall Score: 8.1
Reviews Included: 2

Our Roll Top Backpack Findings

XRAY Expandable Trendy Laptop Pocket Roll Top Backpack

What We Liked: Made from ultra-strong tactical matte polyurethane fabric, this backpack can handle the elements, even keeping your electronic devices safe in the rain. The design can expand when necessary, while remaining compact if you only need to carry a few things. The padded laptop pocket can easily hold a laptop with a screen size of up to 15.6 inches.

AmazonBasics Anti-Theft Roll Top Backpack

What We Liked: With multiple pockets and padded compartments, this backpack is designed to keep your devices and other valuables well protected in transit. Its water repellent features will help keep items dry in harsh weather, and the size fits laptops up to 15.6 inches. It has a hidden phone pocket for extra security.

Oakley Men’s Voyage 23l Roll Top Backpack

What We Liked: The lightweight design of this backpack keeps it from weighing you down, even when it’s full. The fabric is a polyester-cotton blend that not only provides durability, but is breathable. The material is also machine-washable for easy cleanup whenever it gets dirty.

Timbuk2 Tuck Roll Top Backpack

What We Liked: If you prefer a simple backpack with minimal pockets, you’ll love this backpack. It has only the large compartment that fits up to a 15-inch laptop, a front pocket for smaller items and internal pockets for items like pens. Lightweight polyester provides both durability and comfort, and the laptop sleeve is padded to keep your device safe.

Fjallraven Ulvo Roll Top Backpack

What We Liked: This roll-top backpack features a unique, rounded design that gives it a unique look. The fabric is soft to the touch while also being durable. It has a wide opening that makes it easy to pack and unpack.

Our Roll Top Backpack Buying Guide

Hikers aren’t the only ones using roll top backpacks these days. In recent years, students, professionals and many others have discovered the benefits of this style. As the name implies, a roll top backpack has a top that rolls down, reducing the flaps, clasps and zippers that have long been a part of backpacks of all styles. By eliminating the flap, you also keep water and air from getting into the backpack, which better protects internal contents when the weather gets bad.

But there’s another benefit to the roll top style. By rolling up and down, you create a backpack that can expand and contract as you need it to. If you, for instance, fill the main compartment with a laptop and your hoodie, you may need the top to be rolled only a small amount. If you’re having a light day, though, and just need that hoodie and your phone, the roll top can be folded down to make the backpack take up less real estate on your back.

Due to this flexibility, experts recommend choosing a roll top backpack in the largest size available. You may not ever fill it to its fullest capacity, but you’ll have the space available. Simply roll the top down until you reach your contents and you’ll have a backpack that is sized to fit your belongings.

In addition to resisting the elements, roll top backpacks are popular because they feature a wide opening. Instead of trying to squeeze your items in through a narrow gap, you can easily drop them in, then roll the top to secure them. They also tend to be more durable than traditional backpacks. This is in part due to the design being more flexible, but they’re also typically made with durable, weatherproof material that can withstand years of use without losing their shape.

DWYM Fun Fact

Backpack safety is an important topic, especially for parents of children who are using backpacks to carry their belongings back and forth to school each day. Safety starts with the type of pack you choose. A backpack should have padding on both shoulder straps, as well as on the back. It should also have a hip strap to help better distribute the weight. When packing a backpack, place heavier items closer to the back. A pack with multiple compartments is best, as it allows you to pack items in a way that distributes the weight more evenly.

The Roll Top Backpack Tips and Advice

  • The first thing to look at in a roll top backpack is the material. You’ll find a variety of options in these backpacks, including polyester and nylon. The material is crucial to providing the weatherproofing you need to keep your internal contents safe.
  • If you’ll be carrying your laptop in your backpack, look for one with a padded main compartment.
  • Backpacks need at least one or two smaller pockets for storing items like your smartphone and keys. Make sure these areas of the backpack are weatherproof, as well, if you’re going for a pack that has water resistance.
  • Many roll top backpacks promise to deter theft. This often is done simply by providing multiple latches to make it harder for a thief to get in. You’ll still need to make sure your bag is supervised at all times, particularly if you’re keeping valuable electronics inside. Some also have a hidden compartment for storing your phone, which may help keep your mobile device safe if your laptop is briefly unattended.
  • Check the capacity of your backpack if you’re planning to use it to carry your laptop. Many can only accommodate a laptop with a screen up to 15.6 inches, so you’ll have to shop around if you have a larger model.
  • Occasionally, you’ll need to clean your backpack. Nylon-cotton blends are machine washable, making it easy to drop your backpack into the washing machine for a quick refresh.
  • Backpacks can get heavy when they’re filled with your belongings. The last thing you need is a material that weighs it down, as well, especially if you’re going for a long hike. Look for a backpack made with nylon or polyester to keep your load as light as possible.
  • As handy as a roll top closure is, you’ll still need something to keep it closed. Make sure it clasps in a way that it won’t fly open while it’s on your back.

About The Author

Avatar
Stephanie Faris 

Stephanie Faris is a novelist and business writer whose work has appeared on numerous blogs. She worked for the State of Tennessee for 19 years, the latter six of which were spent as a supervisor. She has written content for entrepreneurs and marketing firms since 2011. In addition to her online content, she is also the author of eight novels for Simon & Schuster, including the Piper Morgan chapter book series.