This post is also available in: Deutsch
Laptop, documents, notebooks, your daily newspaper – there’s lots of things you have to take with you on your commute. The journey to your office or to university has different requirements to a day spent on the trails. You might have delicate or fragile items with you. For example, an architect might be carrying plans or drawings between home and the office. Things needs to be protected, and that’s why a specialised bag for transporting things on an E-Bike is essential. We’ve chosen a few to test and present them to you here.
Safety is the prime concern when riding in traffic. That’s why we have selected a number of bags that you can wear or place on your rack whilst you’re riding. All the bags are highly water-resistant or even waterproof, look stylish and have a number of great features.
We tested the following bags and rucksacks:
- XLC Community-Line Messenger Bag BA-S50
- Aevor Daypack
- Evoc FR Porter
- Shimano Tokyo 23
- Ortlieb City-Biker
- Ortlieb Commuter-Bag
- Ortlieb Office-Bag
Rucksacks and Messenger Bags
XLC Community-Line Messenger Bag BA-S50
XLC have put together a great commuting bag with the BA-S50, that does more than just look good. On our daily commute we carry quite a few things: Laptop, books, documents, chargers, maybe some gym gear or even breakfast. This shoulder bag swallows everything in style. The washed cotton material feels great, is durable and doesn’t hark back to the leather briefcase of your dusty college professor.
The XLC BA-S50 is a robust messenger bag. It’s comfortable to carry, with a waist strap in addition to the shoulder strap providing extra support for carrying. The main material is a washed cotton and the rough weave gives an impression of indestructibility. Key spots are reinforced with synthetic leather to protect from wear. This comes together to create a stylish looking bag. The XLC Messenger Bag could easily be used even when you’re not riding.
- Material: waxed canvas, leather trim
- Water resistant zippers
- Classic buckled strap (with magnetic buckle)
- Organiser inside
- Wide, padded and adjustable shoulder strap
- Padded laptop slot
- Weight: 1455 g
- Size: 35x 21 x 27 cm (Width x Depth x Height)
Inside you have many options for organising your belongings. Along with pen holders, there’s also a padded slot for your laptop. Price: € 129.95.
The Aevor Daypack, as the name suggests, will fulfil all your daily needs. The 18L pack can be expanded to 28L –perfect for the extra space needed for your shopping on the way home. The back panel is padded and well ventilated. Behind it is a laptop sleeve that will fit up to a 15” machine in an easily accessible slot.
The Aevor logo is reflective and the material used here is made from 50% recycled PET bottles and is water-resistant. There’s also a completely waterproof version of this rucksack available. If the rucksack is closed, things can still be accessed with the upper zipper.
Inside there are two mesh pockets. The 28L increased capacity can be accessed by a large zip on the side of the bag, making it easy to access things inside even when it’s crammed full. In addition, the front has a small pocket for quick access to keys or food. The straps help secure the contents of the bag, but also add a necessary element of style. The Aevor Daypack is available a range of colours and designs.
- Volume: 18/28 L
- Material is made from 50% recycled PET bottles and is water resistant
- Padded 15” laptop sleeve
- Two mesh pockets
- Zipped front pocket
- Large main compartment with two-way zipper
- Adjustable chest trap
- Painted aluminium buckles
- Padded back
- Size: 34 x 14 x 48 cm (W x D x H)
- Weight: 675 g
Price: € 79.90 (Daypack) | € 89.90 (Daypack Proof, waterproof)
Evoc FR Porter
The Evoc FR Porter is perfect for carrying your laptop to work. With an 18L volume, the rucksack features a number of practical details. We particularly like the integrated back protector. Your laptop stays safe in a padded compartment. You can get it either through the top or via a water-resistant zip on the side. There is also a padded tablet slot inside. Externally you’ll find a pocket to keep your glasses with small nets to store smaller items. The bag comes in two sizes: Small (up to 170 cm tall) and M/L.
The rucksack sits securely (even on off-road excursions) thanks to the chest (with integrated whistle) and wide waist straps – both are adjustable. Further features: a waterproof cover is integrated into the bottom of the rucksack. Here you’ll also find an attachment point for your helmet. On the outside, you’ll also find a point to mount your rear light.
We’ve been using this rucksack for a while and we were happy to carry it every day. It’s durable, protects your belongings inside from bumps, scrapes and wet weather whilst maintaining its stylish looks. It’s very comfortable to wear and even through the summer months we didn’t find the padding excessively sweaty. The main material is easy to clean and our model still looks like the day we got it.
- Materials: Airo Flex, 3D Air Mesh, Neoprene/P1000/D Heather, Soft lining, Cordura 1000/D PU coated
- Water resistant zips
- Practical compartments inside
- Extra wide, adjustable and padded shoulder straps
- Padded laptop and tablet slots
- Size (M/L): 27 x 12 x56 cm (W x D x H)
- Weight: 1450 g
Price: € 230
Shimano Tokyo 23
If you need a Rucksack for your daily E-Bike commute to work, then we suggest you take a closer look at the Shimano Tokyo 23. This rucksack seems tailor made for commuting. Reflective detailing improves your visibility and the organisation and compartments inside are well thought out.
The Tokyo rucksack has everything that you need for daily use as a commuting bag. It’s extremely durable, highly water-resistant and it seems that every detail has been considered, from versatile compartments to the padded laptop slot. Not essential, but the Tokyo bag just looks good too. We like that it’s possible to attach a helmet or even a lock with the numerous straps available.
- Well though-out compartments
- Loops to attach lock
- Straps to hold your helmet
- Reflective detailing
- Waterproof zips
- Ergonomic shoulder straps
- Rain cover
- 17 or 23 L volume
- Various colours available
- Weight: 1425 g
The designers paid a lot of attention to creating comfortable and ergonomic shoulder straps. They are not overly thick but spread the load very evenly across your shoulders. The Cordura material is incredibly abrasion resistant and lends the rucksack a sense of sturdiness. The base of the rucksack is clad in easy to clean synthetic leather. Price: € 139
Bags and Panniers for your Rack
Ortlieb is synonymous with waterproof and durable bike luggage, which is why we chose three bags from their range. The bags’ volume and design all vary. Along with the 5 year guarantee, all the bags have another thing in common – it’s possible to choose the mounting system when you buy it. Ortlieb offers the Quick-Lock 2.1 and 3.1 – the videos below explain the differences.
Quick-Lock 2.1 mounting system
Quick-Lock 3.1 mounting system
If you’re on your way to university or work, this bag will serve you well whether slung over your shoulder or mounted to your bike. The Ortlieb City-Biker is a shoulder bag in a practical size. There’s enough space for a Laptop (up to 13.3”), lots of space for smaller items and your notes and documents up to A4.
The seamless design and the sturdy outer material give this bag a real sense of sturdiness. We can only see water getting inside if you ride through a typhoon or go diving with it. The reinforced material on the back and base make the City-Biker even more hardy.
The padded shoulder strap is comfortable and can be velcroed to the inside of the lid when it’s not needed. The Quick-Lock system means it’s easy to mount and remove the bag from your rack one-handed.
- Lining has a zipped internal pocket
- Hanging loop for keys
- 2 pen holders
- Quick-Lock 3.1 or 2.1 options
- Size: 32 x 10 x 42 cm (W x D x H)
- Volume: 10 L
Price: € 99.95
This bag should be well suited to architects. The material, the subtle grey and great finishing mean this bag is destined to carry important documents, laptops, books etc. to get them safely from home to the office.
With sleek looks on the outside, inside the bag has been designed with a great compartment system. There’s enough space for a 15” laptop as well as pens and files. A key carabiner has also been added. The carrying strap and removable shoulder strap are designed for comfort and the reflectors on the side improve your visibility.
- Removable shoulder strap
- Pen holder
- Key chain
- Outside pocket (not waterproof)
- Quick-Lock 2.1 or 3.1 options
- Size: 40 x 10 x 33 cm (W x D x H)
- Weight: 1310 g
- Volume: 14 L
Price: € 139.95
Ortlieb Office Bag is almost the definition of high visibility. This bag has safety in mind – the whole PU coated Cordura material has been woven with reflective thread, making the black bag completely reflective when light is shined on it. This means it’s hard to miss you in the dark, contributing to your safety.
The roll top closure and material of this bag make it waterproof. It’s easy to mount or remove from your rack with one hand. There’s enough space for two A4 folders, phone, chargers, pens, and a tupperware with your food inside. To carry your laptop securely we recommend the optional insert from Ortlieb. The padded shoulder strap also makes this bag comfortable to carry on you.
- Large volume
- Stable feet for putting the bag down
- Extremely visible
- Quick-Lock 2.1 or 3.1 options
- Size: 40 x 17 x 30 cm (W x D x H)
- Weight: 1620 g
- Volume: 21 L
Price: € 159.95
Carrying your essentials is critical for your commute to work. What you decide to use – be it rucksack, messenger bag or pannier – is up to your personal preference. What’s important is that your things are carried securely, protected from the elements, that the bag is comfortable to take with you and that reflective detailing improves your visibility.
The bags we’ve looked at here are all durable and comfortable with well-designed storage solutions and details. Some of these are perfect for shopping, whilst others could even be used as more heavy duty luggage for travelling with your E-Bike.
Which bag do you prefer to use on your way to work?
You can find all the other articles from our Urban Special here:
- The Urban Special: Have a safe commute – we tested E-Bikes, clothing, helmets and accessories for you
- On Test: Specialized Turbo Vado 4.0 – How does this premium E-Bike perform in the city?
- The Big Urban Special: The perfect bags for commuting
- Urban Special: Haute Couture Commuting Gear or Simply the right Clothes
- Urban Special: Sturdy and strong – Locks that will anchor down your E-Bike
- The Urban Special: Useful accessories – helpers for your travels
This post is also available in: Deutsch