Travellers Worldwide is reader-supported. If you buy a product we link to, we may earn a commission.
Skip to Content

The 7 Best Backpacks With Wheels in 2022

The 7 Best Backpacks With Wheels in 2022

Whether you go on long trips that last several days or short trips that have you leave home for a few hours, a backpack with wheels can completely change your traveling experience.

What’s the Best Backpack With Wheels?

Based on what we found, the best backpack with wheels is the MATEIN Waterproof College Backpack. It has all the characteristics of a fantastic rolling backpack and no significant issues, making it the best overall for its price.

Best Overall
MATEIN Waterproof College Backpack
Pros:
  • Water-resistant bottom panels.
  • Breathable and adjustable carrying straps.
  • Plenty of space for storage.
Cons:
  • Wheels can occasionally get stuck.
  • Zippers are not the best quality.
Check Latest Price
We may earn a commission when you click this link, at no extra cost to you.

What we find to be the best overall backpack with wheels may not be the best for you, so we compiled six other great choices for you to consider. The list below contains all of our top seven picks.

Our Top 7 Picks for the Best Backpacks With Wheels:
  1. Best Overall: MATEIN Waterproof College Backpack
  2. Best for Laptops: AMBOR Rolling Backpack
  3. Best for Durability: YOREPEK Backpack With Wheels
  4. Best for Handle Design: High Sierra Powerglide Wheeled Backpack
  5. Best for Compact Size: JanSport Driver 8 Rolling Backpack
  6. Best for Students: J World New York Sundance Rolling Backpack
  7. Best for Budgets: Targus Compact Rolling Backpack

While each of these backpacks brings something unique to the table, they all succeed at the primary goal of backpacks with wheels, which is to provide an alternative option to carrying your backpack on your back.

Why You Need a Backpack With Wheels

Close up of a backpack with wheels being pulled by a faceless figure on concrete

Daniskim/Shutterstock

Regardless of whether you travel long or short distances, a backpack with wheels is great for various reasons. One of the most significant reasons is the pulling ability that it grants you.

Carrying around a load can get tiring if you do it often for an extended period, especially if it’s full of items that make it heavy.

Being able to roll a backpack along instead of carrying it can save you from health issues that can arise from wearing a heavy backpack frequently. These issues can involve the back, shoulder, and neck areas.

By comparison, your arm is far less likely to suffer an injury from pulling a heavy backpack.

Since a backpack with wheels is still a backpack in all the ways that matter, you’re getting an added level of convenience with no significant downsides and at only a marginally higher cost.

From that standpoint, there isn’t a good reason not to invest in a backpack with wheels. On top of the general benefits that a backpack with wheels offers, many of these backpacks have a degree of specialty that makes them more desirable.

You’ll get a better sense of these specialties in the sections below and an understanding of each backpack’s pros and cons.

Best Backpacks With Wheels: Our Top 7 Picks

Here are our top 7 picks for the best backpacks with wheels. You can find all of these products on Amazon.

1. Best Overall: MATEIN Waterproof College Backpack

Best Overall
MATEIN Waterproof College Backpack
Pros:
  • Water-resistant bottom panels.
  • Breathable and adjustable carrying straps.
  • Plenty of space for storage.
Cons:
  • Wheels can occasionally get stuck.
  • Zippers are not the best quality.
Check Latest Price
We may earn a commission when you click this link, at no extra cost to you.

The MATEIN Waterproof College Backpack is the best overall on our list because it excels in all the critical areas with flying colors.

This backpack comes with a telescopic handle that’s sturdy and easy to use for people of all different heights, and the quality of the polyester fabric allows it to last for a long time. You’ll have no trouble getting your belongings to fit into this backpack.

It features three main pockets, a quick access pocket, a pocket for clothing, and a pocket for laptops, iPads, and tablets. These will help you keep everything adequately organized at all times.

The only unfortunate issues that frequently come up in customer reviews for this backpack are the quality of the wheels and the zippers.

The wheels are good quality, but they sometimes get stuck when rolling on certain surfaces. More problematic are the zippers that tend to get stuck more frequently and can prove challenging to get unstuck.

2. Best for Laptops: AMBOR Rolling Backpack

Best for Laptops
AMBOR Rolling Backpack
Pros:
  • Excellent for laptops.
  • Easy to carry by the handle.
  • Storable carrying straps.
Cons:
  • No inner straps to secure clothes.
  • Small front compartment for smaller items.
Check Latest Price
We may earn a commission when you click this link, at no extra cost to you.

The AMBOR Rolling Backpack is an excellent pick if you want a backpack with wheels that caters explicitly to laptops.

There is a large compartment for clothing and laptops, as well as a quick access pocket where you can safely store any laptop accessories and other small items. The straps on this backpack are also storable, thanks to the zipper on the back.

You can easily switch between having the straps in or out and carrying the backpack by hand with a sturdy handle on the top. If you plan to store any clothes in this backpack, be aware that it doesn’t include any straps to secure clothes.

This leaves your clothes vulnerable to moving around a lot during travel and potentially becoming disorganized. Some customer reviews also note that the front compartment is a little too small, so you may have difficulty storing your minor items.

3. Best for Durability: YOREPEK Backpack With Wheels

Best for Durability
YOREPEK Backpack With Wheels
Pros:
  • Extremely durable design.
  • Wide array of quality features.
  • External USB Charging Port.
Cons:
  • Back straps don't always stay secure.
  • The wheel covers could be more extensive.
Check Latest Price
We may earn a commission when you click this link, at no extra cost to you.

A durable backpack can go a long way if you use a backpack more frequently than the average person, and the YOREPEK Backpack With Wheels is the most durable backpack on this list.

It comes with water-resistant polyester fabric, an adjustable aluminum telescoping handle, a rotatable strap buckle, dual lockable zippers, and padded straps.

In addition, there’s an external USB charging port that makes it easy for you to charge your phone with a power bank. There are also two compartments for storing large items and a third smaller compartment for smaller things like mini tablets and passports.

One of the flaws in this backpack that customer reviews mention is the back straps not always staying secure when you tuck them in.

This can lead to them falling out and dragging behind the backpack without you realizing it. There’s also the cover for the wheels, which some reviews say would benefit from being a bit bigger so it can better cover the wheels.

4. Best for Handle Design: High Sierra Powerglide Wheeled Backpack

Best for Handle Design
High Sierra Powerglide Wheeled Backpack
Pros:
  • Great retractable handle.
  • Zippered back panel keeps the back straps secure.
  • Media pocket for headphone ports.
Cons:
  • On the heavier side in terms of weight.
  • Not the most resistant to water.
Check Latest Price
We may earn a commission when you click this link, at no extra cost to you.

The High Sierra Powerglide Wheeled Backpack features a handle design different from the handles of the other backpacks on this list and closer to a traditional suitcase-style handle.

It’s noticeably wider, making it naturally easier to maintain a good grip on at all times. Despite its different design, it’s still fully retractable and storable under the zippered cover.

The media pocket features a headphone port that makes it easy to listen to music whenever you’re out and about.

It also has an extra zipper pocket for storing small items like keys and wallets. For cons, most customer reviews mentioned the backpack’s weight even if they loved it overall.

This backpack does weigh more than many others, which means it’s better for rolling than carrying. Also, the design of this backpack is not the best for keeping out water, as it doesn’t feature any water-resistant material.

5. Best for Compact Size: JanSport Driver 8 Rolling Backpack

Best for Compact Size
JanSport Driver 8 Rolling Backpack
Pros:
  • Very small size.
  • Reliable material that will last.
  • Easy to organize.
Cons:
  • More expensive than other options.
  • The wheels are a bit noisy.
Check Latest Price
We may earn a commission when you click this link, at no extra cost to you.

The JanSport Driver 8 Rolling Backpack is an excellent backpack with wheels if you’re looking for one that’s lightweight and compact. Typically, the more compact backpacks struggle to carry a large number of items.

However, this backpack still manages to have enough space to carry about as much as the other backpacks on this list. It features two main pockets, a third smaller pocket, and a front pocket deep enough to fit a hat or two.

You don’t get anything amazingly fancy here. Still, you get more than enough space for storage. The bag’s material is also very flexible, allowing it to stretch a bit to give you extra space when necessary.

This backpack is almost double the price of any other backpack on this list. However, it brings many of the same benefits as other backpacks, only in a more compact form that’s easy to utilize.

A more concerning downside that comes up in customer reviews is the wheels being somewhat noisy. However, you can always change the wheels out if the sound they make is bothersome.

6. Best for Students: J World New York Sundance Rolling Backpack

Best for Students
J World New York Sundance Rolling Backpack
Pros:
  • Suitable for any kind of use.
  • Lightweight design that makes for easy carrying.
  • Water-resistant fabric.
Cons:
  • Not a whole lot of room.
  • Not fully waterproof despite being water-resistant.
Check Latest Price
We may earn a commission when you click this link, at no extra cost to you.

The J World New York Sundance Rolling Backpack is a great all-around backpack that’s good for any school-related task. Whether for a grade-schooler or college student, this backpack can get the job done. As a bonus, it comes with a nice variety of color options.

The main compartment is fantastic for holding books, lunch, snacks, a hoodie, and other items most students take to school.

A padded laptop case can fit any laptop up to 15.6 inches large, and the front compartment is suitable for holding medium-sized items like a notepad or small textbook.

Compared to some of the other backpacks on this list, this one does not have a lot of space if you plan to use it for long trips where you’ll need to pack clothes.

It’s also somewhat water-resistant but not completely waterproof, so you won’t want to have it out in rainy weather for extended periods.

7. Best for Budgets: Targus Compact Rolling Backpack

Best for Budgets
Targus Compact Rolling Backpack
Pros:
  • Lower asking price than other rolling backpacks.
  • The wheels are very quiet.
  • Comes in two sizes.
Cons:
  • Not the greatest material.
  • The handle can sometimes get jammed.
Check Latest Price
We may earn a commission when you click this link, at no extra cost to you.

The Targus Compact Rolling Backpack is a low-budget rolling backpack that still gets the job done almost as well as any other backpack on this list.

It has a standard padded compartment for protecting laptops, a clothing compartment, tuckaway shoulder straps, and a retractable handle. The wheel department is one area where this backpack excels.

Its wheels are practically soundless regardless of the surface they are rolling on, which is more significant than you may realize at first because there’s nothing more annoying than listening to wheels constantly squeaking or grinding against the ground.

Because it’s a bit cheaper than other backpacks, the material of this backpack is not top-of-the-line. That said, it’s still more than serviceable.

Less serviceable is the retractable handle that sometimes jams, according to customer reviews. You may not experience this issue, but keep it in mind before purchasing this rolling backpack.

Finding the Best Backpack With Wheels

Man looking through the store trying to find the best backpack with wheels

Caftor/Shutterstock

If none of the choices in our top seven picks seem like the right fit for you, then don’t worry because many more options are available.

However, you will want to have several key points in mind as you begin looking around at other rolling backpacks to find the one that’s best for you.

Specialization vs. Well Rounded

Some rolling backpacks are better than others in specific areas due to a specialization that makes them very desirable. However, a well-rounded backpack that’s good at everything without specializing in a particular area is also desirable.

By thoroughly understanding what you want from a rolling backpack, you are more likely to choose one that specializes in a particular area.

For example, if you’re a college student, you’re going to want a bag you can use daily that’s lightweight and has enough storage space to hold all your school supplies.

On the other hand, if you do a lot of traveling and want something that bridges the gap between a suitcase and a regular backpack, a rolling backpack that’s well-rounded will be best.

A well-rounded rolling backpack is also good if you don’t necessarily know what kind of specialization you’d like to have.

Long Trips vs. Short Trips

Suppose you’re thinking about getting a backpack with wheels. In that case, it’s no doubt for future travel purposes, and the distance you’re going to be traveling should play a factor in the backpack you choose.

This is because you don’t want to buy a backpack that doesn’t suit the distance you’re traveling, as that can have real repercussions.

If you’re going to go on long trips, consider getting a larger rolling backpack with plenty of storage space. Something more along the lines of a suitcase is preferable.

This will ensure you have enough room to store all your things for the trip, and being able to roll the backpack means you won’t have to worry about it being too heavy on your back. For shorter trips, a smaller backpack with wheels is best.

The smaller size won’t be a negative because you won’t have as many things to bring as you would on a longer trip, and it’ll be lighter overall. The backpack’s more compact size will also make it easier to carry around.

The Price

Most backpacks with wheels cost more than regular backpacks because of the addition of wheels. Still, the increase in the price isn’t that drastic, and you should find yourself spending somewhere between $60-$90 on average.

However, certain backpacks from popular brands can cost significantly more than that, so if you see an expensive backpack, it’s likely due to the brand.

Some rolling backpacks also come with an external USB charging port that you can use for your phone if you have a power bank. This will raise the backpack’s price a bit, though not necessarily out of the average price range.

Regardless, always check how much you’re paying for a backpack and compare it to backpacks of a similar price to ensure you’re not overpaying.

Information in Reviews

Consulting reviews is an excellent way to understand some things that can go wrong with a rolling backpack before buying it. Because some issues are due to user error, you should always take anything you read in customer reviews with a grain of salt.

The only exception is if an issue is consistently appearing across multiple reviews. When this occurs, it likely means that the problem has more to do with the product than user error.

Frequently Asked Questions

Two women walking on a sidewalk pulling the best backpacks with wheels and wearing casual travel outfits

RapunzielStock/Shutterstock

Here are answers to some questions you may still have about backpacks with wheels.

Are rolling backpacks better for your back?

Yes, rolling backpacks are better for your back than regular backpacks. Not always carrying the backpack relieves your back of any extra weight.

Do college students use rolling backpacks?

Yes, college students do use rolling backpacks often. This is because they typically have many school supplies to carry for extended periods multiple times a week.

Is a rolling backpack considered a carry-on?

Yes, if a rolling backpack is small enough to fit beneath your seat, it’s considered a carry-on. Do note that some rolling backpacks are not small enough to be carry-ons.

How heavy is too heavy for a backpack?

16 to 25 percent of your body weight is the best weight range for a backpack. It would be best if you never went beyond that. Otherwise, the weight will put your back at risk.

Can a heavy backpack cause scoliosis?

No, a heavy backpack does not necessarily cause scoliosis. However, it can cause other back problems.

So, What’s the Best Backpack With Wheels in 2022?

For us, the best backpack with wheels in 2022 is the MATEIN Waterproof College Backpack. As we said before, this rolling backpack may not suit you.

Best Overall
MATEIN Waterproof College Backpack
Pros:
  • Water-resistant bottom panels.
  • Breathable and adjustable carrying straps.
  • Plenty of space for storage.
Cons:
  • Wheels can occasionally get stuck.
  • Zippers are not the best quality.
Check Latest Price
We may earn a commission when you click this link, at no extra cost to you.

If that’s the case, then use our helpful tips to find the rolling backpack that best fits your needs! You’re sure to find one that meets your requirements. Happy travels!