Last updated: August 12, 2021

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A daypack is a small and, above all, lightweight daypack. Daypacks are ideal for short trips or small day excursions. They impress with their light carrying comfort and individuality. They are available in a wide variety of colours and designs. Whether on the way to work or to university, the daypack is an ideal companion.

Are you looking for a backpack for everyday use that doesn't bother you and is very light? Then a daypack is just the thing for you! With our unique daypack test we want to help you find the right daypack for you.

We have compared daypacks for hiking, skiing, cycling as well as daypacks for everyday use and summarised the respective advantages and disadvantages. This should help you with your purchase decision.




Summary

  • A daypack is the ideal companion for small day trips with the whole family or day outdoor tours. Thanks to the different and individual designs, everyone can find the right model for them.
  • The daypack is smaller and lighter than a normal hiking backpack. On average, it has a volume of 15 to 20 litres. By comparison, a typical hiking backpack has a capacity of 20 to 35 litres.
  • Daypacks are not only suitable for hiking, but are also ideal everyday companions. With their discreet design, they can replace handbags, training bags, work backpacks and school bags.

The Best Daypack: Our Picks

Buying and evaluation criteria for a daypack

In the following, we will show you which criteria you can use to decide between the incredibly large selection and variety of daypacks.

These factors will help you compare and evaluate the different daypacks:

In the following paragraphs we explain what the individual factors are.

Size

Daypacks usually come in sizes between 15 and 20 litres. They have enough storage space for a day trip. Or for everyday use. Depending on the model, they contain additional organisational compartments.

For a day trip, the daypack has enough storage space for a second T-shirt , jacket, water bottle and packed lunch.

There is also always a well-padded compartment for electronic devices such as mobile phones and laptops.

Design

It's almost impossible not to find a daypack that fits.

The daypack is available in a wide variety of designs and colours.

There are individual designs in very simple, inconspicuous fabrics such as light pastel shades or in very bright, flashy and eye-catching colours.

The models are mostly unisex and can be worn by both men and women. There are also very appealing fabric designs for children!

Almost all motifs and colours can be found on children's daypacks, from the Ice Queen to Batman.

Material

Daypacks are very durable and robust due to their different uses. Most daypacks are waterproof or water-repellent. They are lighter than conventional backpacks and are comfortable to carry. A wide variety of materials are used in their manufacture.

More and more manufacturers are using resource-saving materials such as hemp yarn, which requires less water than other products, or recycled plastic from the sea.

Used truck tarpaulins are also used to make modern and fashionable daypacks.

The most common materials are:

  • Polyester
  • Nylon
  • Leather
  • Cotton
  • Hemp
  • Recycled plastic from the sea

Decision: What types of daypacks are there and which one is right for me?

Every person has different preferences and characteristics, so every daypack is a little different. We have divided the daypacks into four different categories for you:

Type Advantages Disadvantages

Daypack for hiking good wearing comfort is only suitable for one day

Daypack for cycling ergonomic design less space

Daypack for skiing 100% waterproof more expensive to buy

Daypack for work and leisure laptop compartment individual design

The different daypacks with their individual designs and areas of use each have their own advantages and disadvantages. Depending on what you prefer and what you want to use your daypack for, a different model is suitable for you. To make your decision easier, we have listed everything for you here.

Daypack for hiking

Daypack for hiking

The daypack for short excursions or day trips is usually equipped with a goggle compartment, ice axe holder and pole holder. It also has a flashing light holder and emergency signal arrows. It is ideal for mountaineering or mountain hiking.

The daypack for hiking is very light and comfortable to wear

Do you like to travel in the mountains and want to get there quickly and easily? Then a daypack for hiking is probably just right for you.

Are you one of those hikers who like to reduce their equipment to the essentials? Then you are well provided for with the specially designed daypack for hiking and you have enough storage space.

These lightweight small backpacks are available in a wide range of materials. On top of that, almost all daypacks have a padded back.

Advantages
  • very light
  • padded shoulder straps
  • ventilated back
Disadvantages
  • little storage space, not suitable for larger tours
  • not all models are waterproof
Daypack for cycling

Daypack for cycling

This daypack is ideal for small one-day cycling tours or mountain bike tours. The backpack is unisex and often has a waterproof material. Some daypacks have a drinking system integrated into the backpack. So that you can drink during the ride without having to get off your bike.

Almost all models have a helmet attachment on the back so that you don’t have to wear your helmet in between rides. Do you like cycling or mountain biking? Do you like to go on longer day tours? Then this daypack for cycling is made for you.

It is ideal for people who like to cycle and don’t need large backpacks.

Advantages
  • often have an integrated hydration system
  • adapt to the body
  • good weight distribution possible in the interior
Disadvantages
  • only suitable for day trips
Daypack for skiing

Daypack for skiing

This daypack often has a very eye-catching and gaudy design to be better noticed in the glaring snow. They are usually convincing with good additional features. Like an integrated avalanche airbag or an ice axe holder. The daypack for skiing usually has a helmet holder and a rope holder as well as a daisy chain holder.

The backpacks ensure optimal load distribution and thus make skiing easier. The daypack for skiing is suitable for people who like skiing and who want to store their personal belongings safely and easily.

Advantages
  • SOS system
  • 100% waterproof
  • comfortable to wear
  • signal lights
Disadvantages
  • expensive to buy
  • little storage space
Daypack for work and leisure

Daypack for work & leisure

The daypack is not only suitable for hiking or outdoor activities, but is much more of an everyday companion. The different organisational systems inside make it ideal for university or work. It usually has its own laptop compartment and an integrated holder for your smartphone.

Many daypacks have their own USB and headphone openings. Daypacks are available in all kinds of colours and shapes. There is an individual daypack for every style and every type. It doesn’t matter if you prefer the urban style or if you like it simple and elegant. There is something for everyone, provided you like backpacks.

Advantages
  • Opening for USB connection
  • Opening for charging cable
  • Laptop compartment
Disadvantages
  • Only the essentials have room
  • fewer organisational compartments than with conventional backpacks

Guide: Frequently asked questions about daypacks answered in detail.

Before you decide to buy a daypack, you will probably have a few questions. In our unique daypack guide, we have answered the most important and interesting questions in detail. Our guide should help you find the daypack that best suits you and your needs.

What exactly is a daypack?

A daypack is a small daypack. It is a daily companion for many people. The daypack is ideal for small day trips or hikes. It accompanies you to the gym, to work or to university. It is extremely lightweight and without a metal frame and offers enough storage space for a wide range of activities.

Daypack-1

Daypacks are among the smallest backpacks! They are ideal for short trips or shopping.
(Image source: StockSnap Pixabay)

The daypack is suitable for every season.

Its compactness and small size make it incredibly popular for outdoor trips. The different designs and models make it suitable for the whole family.

Most daypacks are made of high-quality materials and are waterproof, so they are weatherproof. Some manufacturers focus on environmentally friendly and sustainable materials and use recycled fabrics for production.

Who is a daypack suitable for?

A daypack is suitable for all those who do not need a large backpack and who can manage with less storage space. Do you want to have all the most important everyday items you need for university or hiking at your fingertips?

Daypacks are often made from sustainable materials

You want to move around light and carefree? Then the daypack is made for you. Individual design and features are very important to you? Then you're sure to find the right daypack for you.

The different colours, shapes and designs make it suitable for almost everyone who prefers backpacks to bags. It is also ideal for people who care about the environment, as many sustainable fashion labels produce daypacks.

How much does a daypack cost?

The price of your daypack depends very much on its purpose. The additional functions for outdoor sports such as avalanche and SOS systems increase the price of the daypack.

Prices range from €20 to €160 depending on the brand, features and intended use.

What alternatives are there to daypacks?

An alternative to the daypack is the classic everyday backpack. Unlike the daypack, it has a larger capacity of between 20 and 45 litres.

Daypack-3

(Image source: SnapwiresSnaps Pixabay)Your hiking backpack should have enough capacity and storage space to accommodate your planned activities.

It's not as light as a daypack, but it offers a lot more interior space. It also often has more compartments for organisation than a typical daypack.

We have listed all the advantages and disadvantages of the daypack here.

Advantages
  • cheaper to buy
  • more space
  • more compartments for laptop and smart devices
  • suitable for several days
Disadvantages
  • fewer features
  • heavier to carry
  • less comfortable

What is the best way to clean my backpack?

If you have had your daypack for a long time and it is heavily soiled, you will need to keep it clean. You can rinse your daypack carefully or wash it by hand. However, it should not be put in the washing machine.

Here we have listed all the steps you need to take when cleaning your daypack:

  1. Preparation: Before washing, completely empty the backpack and vacuum or shake it out. This is so that the backpack is really completely empty and nothing can be damaged during cleaning.
  2. Cleaning: Afterwards, you can gently rinse the backpack in the shower or wash it by hand in the bathtub. A large bucket can also be used.
  3. Cleaning agents: Only lukewarm water or mild soap should be used. Chlorinated or other aggressive detergents will destroy the waterproof coating of your daypack. You can clean the zip with an old toothbrush and the rest with a microfibre cloth.
  4. Rinsing: After cleaning, rinse all soap residues well to avoid residues and stains.
  5. Drying: After all the soap residues have been successfully removed, it's time to dry. It is best to dry the rucksack upside down.
    This allows all the water to escape. Dry the rucksack either in a well-ventilated room or outdoors.
  6. Waterproofing: If you have been using your rucksack for a long time and it has been cleaned several times, you should waterproof it after washing so that no water can get into the inside of the rucksack. And in no time at all your rucksack will be ready for use again.

What sizes of backpack are there?

The different backpack sizes range from 5 to 90 litres.
For a day trip, 10 litres is quite enough. For smaller excursions, a daypack is just right.

We have listed all the common sizes in a table here and shown you which size is best suited to your project. From a small day trip to an adventurous week-long trip.

litres kilograms type of backpack

0- 5 L 5 kg Kids backpack, City backpack

5 - 10 L 10 kg Daypack, touring backpack for one day

20 - 40 L 15 kg large hiking backpack, climbing backpack, touring backpack for 3 days

40 - 90 L 25 kg touring backpack for 7 days, suitcase backpack

How do I pack my backpack properly?

Before you start packing your backpack, you should think about what you really need and what you could possibly do without.

When packing your backpack, it is important to distribute the weight evenly

You should simply not take anything unnecessary with you. The main centre of gravity of your backpack should be at about shoulder height.

This ensures that the rucksack cannot pull you backwards when you carry it. In this short video we would like to show you how to pack everything correctly and in which order.

Here we have summarised a few more helpful and interesting tips for packing your backpack:

  • Bottom compartment: sleeping bag, blanket, light items
  • Middle compartment: clothes
  • Shoulder compartment: tent, food, heavy jackets,
  • Lid compartment: small items, things you want to reach quickly
  • Side pockets: Side pockets should be packed evenly on both sides to prevent weight from shifting to one side.
  • Pack sacks: are a good alternative to rain covers.

What do you need to take with you for a day hike?

Here again, the motto less is more applies. You have to remember that everything you take with you you also have to carry and that can be very exhausting after a few hours.

We have written down a few things that you should never be without on a day trip. What you actually take with you, you have to decide for yourself.

When you are in the mountains, it can easily happen that the weather conditions change quickly and you need to be prepared?

Packing list with the most important items:

Clothing Equipment Additional equipment

T-shirt to change Hiking poles First aid kit(plaster,disinfectant)

Rain jacket Rain cover if the backpack is not waterproof Identity card

Cap Headlamp Cash

Sun cap Pocket knife Drinking bottle,Food

Image source: Poprotsky/ 123rf.com

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