After we added only a few items, the Slim Work Bag took on a balloon-like shape that made it unappealing to lug around. Justin Krajeski is a staff writer reporting on everyday carry at Wirecutter. The Bostanten brand is known for its fashionable bags made of high-quality materials. Despite the name of the Topo Commuter Briefcase, it has backpack straps that add unnecessary bulk and make it harder to carry at your side. Pockets and organization: The Knomo Princeton has two big compartments. This particular briefcase is ergonomically designed for business trips, it … Carl Friedrik offers a lifetime warranty that covers repairs or replacements for functional damages. And, if you’re into wearing a mix of high and low, it’ll go great with a pair of jeans. With small bags comes a spike in the must-have casual second bag: a canvas tote or slouchy shopper for water bottles, laptop and spare pair of heels, slung casually over your opposite shoulder and tucked under your desk during office hours. The Swissgear 1900 landed on our best laptops bags page because it is a TSA-friendly bag that you can slide under your airplane seat with ease. We then narrowed the list down to 25 bags based on specifications, aesthetics, materials, and price; we were able to dismiss some of the bags out of hand when we received them. Practically, it’s a holdover from the days when office jobs required more-formal dress. The convertible briefcase manages to pack all this storage space without looking too bulky or unstylish. A zipper underneath the briefcase can be unzipped to expand the storage area so you can fit more items in the briefcase without compromising the integrity of the seams. The Princeton also comes with a unique Knomo ID, which allows the company to find and track a lost registered bag—a useful feature that a minority of manufacturers offer. As soon as you pick up the bag, you feel the high quality of the leather strap and handles—but they’re also extremely stiff and can hurt when you’re carrying heavier loads. You can distinguish a briefcase from other bags because it’s designed to be carried primarily by a hand strap or handle. All provide plenty of space for carrying around the essential items. The briefcase itself weighs about five pounds when it’s empty. Why it’s great: The Carl Friedrik Palissy is a functional and beautiful briefcase for a more-formal office. Flaws but not dealbreakers: The Carl Friedrik Palissy is a compact bag with little in the way of organization. Dual combination locks offer another layer of security; combinations on both sides of the briefcase need to be precise to open the lid. The Mygreen Convertible Backpack Messenger can be used as either a briefcase, messenger bag, or a backpack depending on where you place the generous number of straps. Knowing what to look for in the best briefcases for men can be tricky. This bag has neither the bulky pockets nor the softness of the more-casual Fossil bag we also recommend. During our testing, we spoke to a Knomo representative who confirmed that the company would replace any defective bag at its expense. This makes it frustrating to load and unload. The Princeton also comes with a unique Knomo ID, which allows the company to find and track a lost registered bag—a useful feature that a minority of manufacturers offer. Learn more. Timbuk2 Smith Briefcase. We’ve heard of people returning their bag because they just couldn’t, erm, handle it. Why it’s great: The Filson name has long been associated with items of rugged quality, and the Filson Original Briefcase is part of that legacy. If you want to spend a bit less, the Carl Friedrik Vallance is a sleek leather briefcase that won’t hold much more than a laptop. However, it was the heaviest bag we tested—4 pounds, 3 ounces empty. Pockets and organization: The Cary has enough pockets and sleeves to easily hold everything you’ll need for a day at the office—and then some. According to The Telegraph, the best messenger bags for men should be worn high and across the body. And since all the compartments are tucked away inside, the body maintains a sleek look that makes it a great briefcase to carry in a professional and formal environment. Made from water-repellent nylon fabric, the Lifewit Men’s Military Briefcase wins when it comes to storage space. © 2021 Wirecutter, Inc., A New York Times Company, Best large, all-purpose briefcase: Stuart & Lau Cary Single Briefcase, Best small, inexpensive briefcase: Knomo Princeton, Best tough briefcase: Filson Original Briefcase, Best refined leather briefcase for daily use: Carl Friedrik Palissy, Best minimal leather briefcase for light loads: Carl Friedrik Vallance, Best inexpensive leather briefcase: Fossil Haskell Double Zip Briefcase, Amazon Basics 15.6-Inch Laptop Shoulder Bag. We just don’t think the Custom Hide bag is suited to carrying for a long day; ducking from your car into the office will likely be more of a struggle than if you used one of the other leather bags we recommend. Photo: Michael Murtaugh. By using The Balance Small Business, you accept our. Considering all that the Palissy offers, we think it’s a reasonably priced bag—even though it’s not cheap. Although most modern briefcases come with shoulder straps, they’re meant for temporary use—while you’re running for the train, for instance—not for lugging around the contents of your entire office. That’s it, that’s the hook. Who is this for: Someone who wants a refined leather briefcase—for a formal or business setting—that looks as good as bags costing thousands more. It also sports a large outer pocket on either side where you can tuck in minor flat extras like newspapers. By the time you load up this bag with all your gear, it’ll be exceedingly heavy. You shouldn’t expect to fill it up with anything beyond a laptop, a tablet, and a few extra accessories. The Solo Classic Rolling Catalog briefcase is designed with a sturdy carry handle that extends to 24 ½ inches, making it easy to transport your items quickly and easily through the airport, around town or through office buildings. Its polyester exterior may not resist abrasion as well as nylon or waxed canvas, but it felt light, soft, and comfortable in our testing—even if you have a tendency to overpack. We liked its high capacity and robust organizational system, how comfortable it was, and that it could be easily dressed up or down. The bag also lost its clean, rectangular shape when loaded with our daily work essentials—the lack of external structure made it balloon when full. Bigger bags make it tempting to load in too many extras (your lunch or gym clothes, for instance), and so they can become unreasonably heavy when full. Feet pads on the bottom protect from scratches and add some extra cushion for your belongings. The benefit of buying a small core unit (£50) as well is that it doubles as a small shoulder bag with the supplied strap, which is great for casual walks around a city. It can also fit … Compartments. You can choose from four sleek, professional colors to match your professional persona: black, coffee, absolute black and absolute coffee. Pockets and organization: The Haskell’s two zippered pockets are well organized: One of them has a 15-inch laptop sleeve and a larger canopy; the other pocket features a few smaller sleeves for slim books, e-readers, or incidental cables. Our top choice is Samsonite’s Leather Expandable Briefcase – its genuine leather, with a stylish, professional look and multiple well-designed compartments make it the absolute best briefcase we’ve come across. It’s a beautiful bag, but we recommend the Carl Friedrik Palissy briefcase instead. Of all the Samsonite luggage pieces, this is by far the best looking. Even if your journey to the office these days is from your bed to the kitchen table, a briefcase can help you get into the work mindset. The Timbuk2 Hudson Laptop Briefcase 2015 was our previous top pick in this guide. He’s very well versed in carrying. It is important to note that although the briefcase is advertised as a 17-inch laptop bag, it's best used for laptops 15 inches or smaller. This simple-looking leather case has a large capacity and lots of organization, and it weighs significantly less than other leather bags its size. The Knomo has a sophisticated herringbone pattern and minimal leather detailing that make it more interesting than other cheap briefcases we tested. Why it’s great: The well-priced Knomo Princeton is our favorite slim briefcase for carrying light loads. The pairing of nylon and leather gives the bag aesthetic flexibility. Photo: Michael Murtaugh. AmazonBasics 15.6” Laptop Bags come with a padded cushion support along the strap to minimize the wear-and-tear you put on your shoulders, while also boasting a stellar accessory pocket for small electronics, pens, and flyaway items. The leather bag has room for a 15-inch laptop, a tablet or paperback book, a separate e-reader, a notebook, an umbrella, a USB battery pack, pens, pencils, and all relevant charging cables, with room to spare. How to Transform Your Small Business into a Big Business, Best Overall: Samsonite Leather Expandable Briefcase, Best Budget: Taygeer Laptop Bag 15.6 Inch Water Resistant Briefcase, Best Leather: Bostanten Leather Briefcase, Most Versatile: Mygreen Convertible Backpack Messenger, Best for Security: Alpine Swiss Expandable Leather Attache Briefcase, Best for Portability: Solo Lincoln Rolling Case, with Dual Combination Locks, Best for Business Travelers: Augus Business Travel Briefcase, Best Storage: Lifewit 17.3” Men’s Military Briefcase, The 9 Best Carry-On Luggage for Business Travel in 2021. The Vallance offers three storage pockets—and two pen pockets—inside its skinny primary compartment. He has been with Wirecutter since 2012, and previously headed our cameras section. Whether you're looking for a backpack, sleeve, or briefcase, we've found the best laptop bags for you Sign up to our newsletter Newsletter By Jamie Carter 2021-01-01T11:25:56Z Best suitcase 2020: The best suitcases and checked luggage to buy Best travel pillow: Get mile-high shuteye from just £7 Best travel mugs 2020: Top … There are plenty of pockets of various sizes, zippered compartments, a padded laptop compartment and storage space to keep your most essential items well organized and easy to locate. Although both bags are light on organization, the Princeton toes the line of swanky and casual with greater ease than the more-formal Hanover, which is likely to clash with a dressed-down style. Size and weight: 11 by 15.4 by 2.6 inches; 1 pound, 13 ounces, Colors: cognac, chocolate, black with a choice of gray or red lining. And the shoulder strap runs long: A 5-foot-2 tester found that even its shortest length was a bit long for her. Flaws but not dealbreakers: The understated aesthetics of the Fossil aren’t likely to turn heads or draw attention. Inside includes a large storage area, plus expanding file folders and an organizer section for keeping all the business essentials separate, organized and easy to access. Best Softside Carry-on: Travelpro Platinum Elite 21-inch Expandable Spinner As soon as it touches the floor, and as soon you’ve removed any belongings from it, it collapses onto itself. Made from 100% polycarbonate, this case is made to absorb impact by flexing under stress and magically popping back into its original shape.. Made of a water-resistant nylon, the Taygeer laptop bag includes expandable sides that add an extra 1.3 inches to the body of the briefcase for increased storage space. Doing this may seem like a more efficient use of space, but it’ll just make the already heavy Cary unpleasant to walk around with. There’s never been a better time to own a briefcase, especially when you’re the man on-the-go. Best Overall: Travelpro Maxlite 5 29-Inch Expandable Spinner Courtesy of Bloomingdales. Flaws but not dealbreakers: The Vallance’s shorter zipper won’t open up as wide as zippers on other briefcases we recommend, but it does add to the bag’s slim and sleek aesthetic. Learn more about our review process. We loaded the remaining bags with the above-mentioned gear and carried them while walking for anywhere between 30 minutes and four hours, alternating between using the top handle and the carry strap, when applicable. The briefcase is made of genuine leather and measures 19 x 14 x 4 inches, but can be expanded an additional inch for increased storage. A low budget doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice quality or functionality. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Some cases—like the Linjer and Fossil models we tried—use softer, more forgiving chrome-tanned leather. The Palissy is constructed of vegetable-tanned leather; the process produces tougher leather that’s more prone to showing scratches but that also leads to a pleasing patina over time. Who this is for: Someone who needs a good-looking briefcase with ample space—one that can be used with almost any outfit, from a suit to jeans and a bomber jacket. This beauty has a full-capacity design that offers tons of space for your belongings. It’s stiff and well constructed, with feet that give it extra stability and raise the bottom off the ground. Amazon The Delsey Helium Aero 25-inch Luggage is an affordably-priced, hard-shell standout that's constructed with high-end materials. This bag won’t carry as much or open as wide as other briefcases we love. ECOSUSI Briefcase for Women Laptop Bag for School Briefcase Crossbody Messenger Bags Vegan Leather Satchel Purse Fit 14 Inches Laptop, Black 4.6 out of 5 stars 3,981 $46.99 - $59.99 Knomo offers only a two-year warranty for the Princeton (as well as for the Hanover). There's very little that unites the vast array of beautiful designer handbags for 2019 apart from the fact they are, indeed, the best designer handbags.These days, rather than one overarching silhouette or finish leading the charge for all bags, you'll find that each high-fashion brand has the style that most suits its unique aesthetic. Whether your daily attire is a pinstripe navy suit or a pair of dark jeans and a printed button-up shirt, the Cary will match your look. These six should work for many different carrying needs, looks, and budgets. Plus, neither its handle nor its shoulder strap are particularly comfortable (the shoulder strap has no padding whatsoever). The bag’s looks don’t suffer for its organizational capabilities, either: It’s nearly as svelte as the smaller Knomo Hanover (a similar but slightly dressier—and more expensive—case we liked). And if you’re not already carrying a briefcase, you may be considering getting one for more convenience or to improve your professional appearance. The internet is littered with stories of people’s excellent interactions with Filson repairs. Unless you’re in an industry where you do wear a suit jacket to work, consider getting a backpack or a messenger bag, both of which will do a better job of distributing their contents’ weight, saving your shoulders and spine some anguish. Though the Smith features a similar number of internal pockets, and we appreciate the inclusion of a zippered pocket for a water bottle or thermos, the waxed canvas bag’s lack of internal structure and rugged, bulky design would make it look out of place in a more-formal office setting. Carrying a bag by its shoulder strap can damage the shoulder of your coat, since it puts a large amount of pressure on the garment, and that can crumple or destroy the underlying structure. The Bostanten Leather Briefcase is made of genuine, cow split leather. The original bag we tested in 2018 was updated and renamed the Single in 2019. Briefcases may offer that classic look that won’t go out of style, but many workplaces are a little more relaxed than they used to be. Samsonite 15.6-Inch Classic Business Wheeled Business Case- Overall Best For Men It is not surprising that our top pick for men is also a Samsonite product- the brand is actually that fantastic. The Bellroy Slim Work Bag’s canvas exterior seemed hearty, and it appeared to have decent organization. But if you don’t mind that, this is a beautiful briefcase that comes in a bunch of colors and is made in the USA. But we expect that it will soon become difficult to track down. The Princeton’s herringbone pattern and leather detailing elevate it high above other affordable bags we tested. THE BEST LEATHER BRIEFCASES. The leather backpack is designed with both carrying handles and a leather strap with shoulder pads. Who this is for: Someone who wants a light, slim briefcase with a good balance of organization and style at a very reasonable price. Its large capacity might encourage you to fill the bag with just about everything you can imagine—clothes, lunches, textbooks. If you plan to get a briefcase, you’ll be happiest and most comfortable if you keep in mind that these bags are designed for short trips between car, office, and boardroom, or for commuters who travel light. Inateck Travel Carry on Luggage is our top pick for the best travel luggage The first thing that must be noted about the Inateck Travel Carry on Luggage is the fact that despite its impressive size and dimensions it still counts as carry on compatible for most of the world’s major airlines. The lightweight locking telescopic handle has … Though the Princeton’s removable strap is unpadded, this bag was still comfortable to wear. Photo: Michael Murtaugh. Unfortunately, the bag has only a limited, one-year warranty that covers “defects in material or workmanship.”, Size and weight: 13 by 16 by 3½ inches; 2 pounds, 10 ounces. We are committed to researching, testing, and recommending the best products. A passthrough strap on the back of the bag is great for business travelers to securely fasten the laptop bag to most rolling luggage handles. Flaws but not dealbreakers: The Cary’s robust organizational system can feel like too much of a good thing. Who this is for: Someone who wants a hard-wearing briefcase for a casual environment. Most laptop bags come with a variety of pockets as well, allowing you to fit not just a laptop, but also a notebook, battery pack, pens, water bottles, and other items. You don’t have to strain your shoulders or deal with back pain from carrying around a heavy backpack. And, MarketWatch states, “In 2014, men's bags sales rose 35%.” That means guys are buying. But you can be the judge of that based on the occasion and venue. Forbes Personal Shopper. Ideal for extended trips, the Travelpro Maxlite 5 is a durable and lightweight option that can handle the airport’s toughest treatment. We appreciated the robust internal organization system of the Bellroy Classic Brief bag, but we found its shoulder strap and handle uncomfortable. On the front, the bag has leather straps that you can slide an umbrella through and a few pockets for small miscellaneous items. Being a premium, high-quality material, it ensures a long-lasting use. Wirecutter is reader-supported. Quick access side pockets can be used to store a coffee mug, water bottle or umbrella for safe storage and easy access. You can also personalize the bag with your initials (either inside the main compartment or on the shoulder strap) for an addition $35. The most valuable piece of equipment you’ll store in your luggage, both in terms of cost and productivity, is your laptop.Most rolling briefcases have a laptop compartment, but as we suggest above, confirm that it has appropriate shockproof padding and is the proper size for your hardware. Instead of the heavier-duty straps that line the sides of the Palissy briefcase, the handles on the Vallance touch only the top of the bag. We looked for bags that weren’t more than 5 inches thick but that could still hold a 13-inch laptop, an e-reader, a book, a notebook, an umbrella, pens, a USB battery pack, a pair of headphones, and associated charging cables. Photo: Michael Murtaugh, The Knomo Princeton won’t hold a lot, but its smart layout allows it to hold enough. The shoulder strap is padded enough that you shouldn’t experience any discomfort while carrying the bag, even if you fill it to capacity (the Cary fits a laptop, an e-reader, a notebook, a pair of over-ear headphones, an umbrella, a portable USB charger, several charging cables, and a pen and pencil, and still has room for more). (Though for now you may just use it to store your laptop when it’s time to eat.) Also, this bag doesn’t have a shoulder strap. The Filson offers less structure than other briefcases, but it has a rugged charm and includes a lifetime warranty for wear and tear. If you’re a fan of compartments, you’ll love this briefcase that much more. None of the internal pockets have closures, and if you’ve ever accidentally upended an open bag, you know that a snap or zip can be very handy. Pockets: The Vallance has one full-length pocket for a 13-inch laptop (you can fit a 15-inch laptop in the center of the briefcase, as shown above) and two pen pockets across from two medium-size pockets. Inside, you’ll find a large laptop sleeve, a medium-size zippered sleeve, and three smaller, open pockets for accessories like a small battery pack, phone, or a stack of business cards. (That said, the Linjer does have a larger interior.) Your belongings are protected from spillage with a durable zip-top closure. Samsonite Winfield Hardside Spinner Suitcase. Check out our reviews of the best briefcases for men! Beyond these basic features, the bag is chock-full of little extras, including a magnetic dock for keys and a sleeve that slides over a rolling suitcase’s handle, for easier travel. The Palissy also has a unique design that makes it easy to load and unload, with zippers that run all the way around three of its sides (the Linjer, which looks most similar to the Palissy, has a zipped opening across its top only). We’ve found 14 backpacks that will suit every taste and need. Also, the Palissy has a considerable zipper, while the Vallance zips only across its top. 8 Of The Best Travel Bags For Men. Plus, Stuart & Lau bags are all guaranteed by a lifetime limited warranty against manufacturer’s defects. Whereas the Palissy uses clean lines and symmetry to sell itself, the Vallance could be marketed by its spotlessness. We assembled a list of more than 70 briefcases from manufacturers that were either extremely well known and respected (such as Jack Spade, L.L.Bean, and Tumi) or smaller boutique brands with strong editorial and customer reviews (such as Carl Friedrik, Linjer, and Custom Hide). If you want a briefcase that will stand the test of time and troubles, wait until you have the money to buy one of our more expensive—and higher-quality—recommendations. Regardless of your career, there’s a chance your daily work attire includes a briefcase. The Samsonite Leather Expandable Briefcase has a professional appearance and spacious design. The Balance Small Business uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. Buy from Bloomingdales. If you can still find it, it’s a good briefcase. But it didn’t hold up against the Carl Friedrik Palissy: The Linjer didn’t open as wide, and it had fewer pockets for organization. The Cary is comfortable to wear, has an impressive capacity, and will look good dressed up or down. Who is this for: Those who want a slim leather briefcase that’s less practical but more gorgeous, for a couple hundred dollars less than the Carl Friedrik Palissy bag. Despite its compelling price and decent size, the AmazonBasics’s handles were uncomfortable to wear, and its material felt scratchy. But even when it’s full, the Haskell maintains its silhouette, because its canopy is divided into two zippered sections that encourage organized packing. When it comes to picking materials, a laptop case made of genuine leather is one of the best options you can choose. He previously wrote about tech at Wirecutter. Unfortunately, Timbuk2 has informed us that the Hudson is being discontinued. Photo: Michael Hession, The Haskell’s double-zip layout helps it keep your stuff organized. You’d need to spend far more, on brands such as Berluti, Mulberry, or Burberry, to find the style and extras that come standard on the Palissy. Read Less We may receive commissions from purchases made after visiting links within our content. The waterproof leather ensures your briefcase and contents are protected from rain or spills. The briefcase is 5.5 inches, which provides a lot of space for storing a laptop, iPad or tablet, documents and other business essentials. The Solo Classic Rolling Catalog Case includes dual combination locks that offer safe storage and transportation for your belongings. This briefcase also doesn’t attach easily to a roller bag, so frequent flyers might be better served by a bag like the Stuart & Lau Cary Single Briefcase. On the back, the Cary hides an easy-to-access but discreet zippered pouch for your cell phone, and there’s another large sleeve with a magnetic closure. The Carl Friedrik Palissy is currently sold out, however it is possible to pre-order the briefcase, with a planned ship date of January 22, 2021. Despite its ongoing stock issues, we love the minimal, chrome-tanned leather of the Linjer Soft Briefcase. As long as you’re aware of what you’re packing, you should have no trouble holding the briefcase by its handles. This leather is the sort that will soften and become more comfortable to hold with age, but it will be a bit rough on your hands for a while. Other minimalist briefcases we tested suffered from an overly soft structure, a limited zip, or an uneven hide, but the Palissy manages to deliver in all of these categories for less than $600. But if you want an ultra-traditional-looking briefcase, this is the one we’d recommend. This bag is water-repellent, with a storm flap to make doubly sure your laptop doesn’t get splashed. 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