The best backpacks for back to school 2022

Back to school options for preschoolers, big kids, tweens and teens ranging from simple to sporty.

The countdown to back to school has begun and it’s time to think about the essentials, starting with an everyday backpack.

There are a few things to consider when choosing a bag that should, ideally, last at least one school season. First of all, will the child be happy to take him to school? Getting their input on choices (like sporty, retro, or color-blocked basics) will help ensure they don’t dismiss it come September.

Because there’s obviously a big difference between what a preschooler and a tween need, utility, durability, and space are also considerations. And for Canadians, we know that the hot weather of late summer won’t last forever and come fall, this backpack needs to be able to withstand the wet weather.

Backpacks for preschoolers and kindergarteners

SkipHop has the cutest animal backpacks (real and imagined) specially designed for toddlers. The design is simple and made for little hands. There is an insulated front pocket for snacks, a side pocket for a water bottle and an interior name tag. As they are designed for toddlers, they will not fit a large book or folder. It’s hard not to coo at the cartoonish koala, unicorn ($25.90), pug ($25 at Amazon, $30 at Indigo), and dinosaur bags. Price varies by style on Amazon.

Backpacks for children of all ages

For kids who want a classic backpack that doesn’t lack style, we’ve focused on three brands frequently spotted by adults, but also suitable for a busy (and book-filled) schedule. student.

LL Bean Backpack

LL Bean’s normcore design and space stand out, with three compartments, reinforced seams and zippers, super durable mesh and fabric. This is a tough backpack that has been carefully designed and rigorously tested. It is ideal for older children and would be perfect for someone who needs multiple textbooks and binders. $89 at LL Bean.


Jansport has been around since the 1960s, with its popularity ups and downs. Right now it’s definitely having a resurgence among cool adults and even cooler teens. One thing to watch out for when choosing a Jansport bag is the price: it varies by size, color and print. From $50 at Amazon, and Staples.

Herschel Backpack Legacy

It’s not a list of the “best” backpacks without this Vancouver staple. The Herschel Heritage backpack stands out from the basic options with its geometric design and is specially designed for children aged 8 to 12. $54.99 at Herschel.

Sports backpacks for all ages

Bag Nike Ya

Puma backpack

adidas backpack

Bigger kids, tweens, and teens who want a sportier look have plenty of branded options. We went with the three big names: Nike Kids Ya Classic Printed School Backpack ($35 at Sportchek), a colorful Puma print ($43.09 at Amazon), and Adicolor ($45 at Adidas).

Backpacks That Cost Under $25

Roblox Backpack

For a kid who prefers a pop culture-themed backpack, there’s the Heys Star Wars Deluxe ($21.97 at Walmart), Roblox ($22.69 at Amazon), and Minecraft ($24.97 at Walmart).

black color backpack

There are also simple and inexpensive options; these color block backpacks are only $12.99 on Amazon.

Amazon Essentials Backpack

​Amazon Essentials has its own range of backpacks in primary colors made from high quality canvas. The design doesn’t reinvent the wheel: it’s basic and gets the job done. From $21, depending on color, on Amazon.

Roblox Backpack

Joe Fresh kids’ backpack options are a little thin this season, with a blue dinosaur bag and a pink unicorn bag. There’s little pizzazz in these styles, but for the price, you get the standards: adjustable straps, front pocket, and fabric that can be wiped clean. $19 at Joe Fresh.

James T. Quintero