16 best tote bags of 2021 for air travel, souvenir shopping, and beach days


Totes are one of the most essential travel essentials you can own – the best tote bags are endlessly versatile and tend to have room for everything. To some, a sturdy leather tote is an obvious personal item for thefts: it’s larger than a purse, so you can more easily fit a laptop, water bottle, and more in it. For others, an easy-to-fold cotton option might be the item you take out halfway to the beach or market.

Whatever your style, a tote bag you love is a must have, but the right one can be notoriously hard to find. Below, we’ve rounded up the best tote bags for travel, from value purchases to investment bags you’ll receive compliments on for years to come.

This article has been updated with new information since its original publication date.

Béis weekend travel bag

Every Béis bag is designed for travel, and this weekend tote is no exception. It is made of durable and water resistant canvas and there is a metal frame in the liner which makes packing easy. Inside you will find patch pockets, a zip pocket and a laptop sleeve. In the lower zip compartment, you can neatly store extra shoes so they don’t get mixed up with the other items at the top of your weekend bag. Finally, there is a trolley pocket so you can slip this bag directly into your luggage. Béis has thought of everything. Buy the bag in black or beige.

Classic Cuyana Structured Tote

Cuyana’s whole philosophy is to own fewer high-quality items, and this grained leather bag is the perfect example of the only tote you’ll ever need. It’s made from beautiful Italian leather with a microsuede interior and comes in a handful of neutral tones that will go with anything. The brand offers both a flexible and structured take on its classic tote, but we love the latter for travel: it retains its shape enough when you fish your passport at the check-in counter, but remains soft and pliable when you. need it. And although the bag comes with a single inside pocket, the brand does sell a organization insertion that has four pockets, and will make sure you always find what you need, just when you need it.

Marc Jacobs Traveler canvas tote bag

This large canvas tote bag folds easily, which is essential when you take it on a trip. The interior has three storage compartments and a full zipper to secure all your odds and ends. It’s big enough for a laptop, so you can also use it as a work bag if you want. Shop the bag in black, beige, ombre blue, slate green and sweet peas.

Madewell Medium Carry Bag

Madewell’s classic leather tote bag is one of the brand’s bestsellers, and it’s easy to see why. The slim but sturdy body is made of leather with a lightly waxed finish, so the bag can both fold under the seat in front of you and stand on its own. It has top handles and a longer extra strap, perfect for hanging over your shoulder when walking around a new city. This tote doesn’t have a top zip closure, but there is an interior pocket perfect for stashing valuables (and the large exterior pocket is perfect for items you want to take in and out often, like sunglasses). The bag comes in multiple sizes, but we love how the stand easily transforms from a work bag (most laptops can fit in) into a casual handbag that you can use every day.

Kate Spade Reusable Tote

Some of the best tote bags serve as a sturdy backup when you don’t want to use your purse or backpack. Whether you’re heading to the south of France for a beach getaway or spending a long weekend in New York City, a reusable bag is always worth packing. These bags, which take up hardly any space in your suitcase, are perfect to fold up and take with you just in case. We love this eco-friendly nylon pick from Kate Spade (it rolls up easily and attaches neatly). Whether you want to shop for fruit in the local market, want to avoid using a plastic bag for your souvenirs, or need a cute beach bag, these bags always do the job – and they’ve got the job. looks good to do it.

Large Le Pliage Longchamp tote

This minimalist leather and nylon tote comes in a variety of neutral tones. It is a great everyday tote, even on rainy days, because it is water resistant. The best part about this bag? You can fold it into a small square and close it, making it another must-have in your checked baggage.

LL Bean Boat and Tote

Anyone who grew up on the East Coast knows the Boat and Tote, it’s an LL Bean classic that’s been around for decades. (Some have even described them as more “household object” than a bag, noting how much of a mainstay they’ve become, and not just with the throng of boat enthusiasts they were originally intended for.) And what’s not to love? These tote bags are roomy, have a classic design, and they start at $ 25, up to $ 40, depending on which size you choose. The open-top option is great for day trips when you might have beach towels sticking out from the top, but the zippered version will hold up better on long trips (or if you’re traveling with kids who might be inclined to tip the whole thing over). This tote is available in a natural canvas color, with the ability to monogram and customize the color on the straps.

Tory Burch Perry Leather Tote Bag

Say hello to your new work bag. This stylish bag is made of leather with a fully lined interior. There are two open compartments and a zipped compartment. And if you’re looking for both function and form, then the contrasting luggage tag is an eye-catching addition. Shop the tote in black, tan, gray heron, calendula, seashell pink and shiny red.

Cloud Baggu bag

Baggu has the tote game: whether you are looking for a chic (and affordable) model leather option, a classic canvas bag, or one nylon spade for your shopping, they have it all. The Spacious Cloud Bag is our favorite travel tote because it’s lightweight, machine washable, and comes in cool colors like lenses and honey leopard. Better yet, the compressible bag costs a little over $ 50; but, trust us, it will hold up trip after trip, whether you use it as hand luggage or overnight.

Saint Laurent Noe Cabas Rive Gauche linen canvas tote bag

This great beauty is destined to become your must-have travel bag. It is made in Italy, of high quality and features the print of the Saint Laurent logo. The top closes perfectly with three press studs. This tote (which measures 14.2 by 18.9 inches) is available in a slightly smaller size (15.4 by 15 inches), if you prefer.

Street Level Reversible Faux Leather Tote Bag and Strap

If you ask us, this reversible grained leather tote is a travel staple. You get two bins in one, saving valuable packaging space. Whether you wear an all-black ensemble or go for something that will look best with cognac accessories, this bag can do both. Slightly flexible, well made and spacious, buying this bag is a no-brainer.

Large vintage Gucci canvas tote

This vintage-inspired canvas tote is instantly recognizable as Gucci, thanks to the iconic green and red strap and pair of gold interlocking Gs on top. If you’re looking for an investment-worthy tote, you’ve found it.

MZ Wallace Medium Metro Tote

There are a lot of MZ Wallace fans in the Traveler office, we never tire of the brand’s quilted bags. Our favorite is the Metro tote, which is arguably the chicest bag you’ll find in lightweight nylon. It’s nice and spacious, which means you can store all your essentials, including a laptop inside, and it has a smart zipper on the top so your belongings don’t fall out. the upper tray. For most of us, there are also six interior pockets, plus a phone pocket and a keychain strap to keep us organized. Best of all, the bag – which comes in over a dozen colors, like Magnet Gray and Apple Red, and just as many prints – can fold up into a small pocket when you don’t need it.

Tom Ford Logo Medium Tote Bag

This sleek canvas tote looks great, thanks to the gold hardware and leather trim. There are four interior pockets hidden inside. It’s big enough for everyday essentials and can easily fit a light jacket and a Hydro Flask. Seen here in gold and black, this designer tote bag is also available in off-white with beige finishes.

Leatherology Uptown Vertical Tote Bag

For simple, luxurious leather pieces, all of which you can personalize with monograms and a diverse selection of color options, leatherology is the place to go. While they make several larger bags (including zippered options), their upright bag stands out. The full grain leather tote is still incredibly versatile, so you can use it day or night. Plus, it’s perfect for those who want something more compact – it’ll fit your laptop, but maybe not your reusable water bottle, umbrella, and stack of in-flight reading material.

Everlane The Oversized Tote

This oversized and flexible tote is the biggest tote in this roundup, so you can store your laptop, a change of clothes, a pair of shoes, a notepad and still have room to spare. As an added bonus, this nylon tote is actually machine washable. Buy the bag in black, mustard or pine.

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