15 Best Backpacks for Toddlers and Kids

Featured image of Three girls with backpacks holding hands

As an adult, you know there’s no way you can leave your house without taking all the things you might need with you: wallet, phone, keys, tissues, sunglasses, etc. When you become a parent, you’ll understand that children also have a lot of things they take along when they leave the house, and you’ll soon start looking for the best kids’ backpacks to help them carry their toys, clothes, books, and water bottles to kindergarten and school.

To help you make the best choice, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to prepare a list of 15 best backpacks for kids and toddlers you can currently find on the market.

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Products evaluated

Find the Best Rated Kids Backpacks

PRODUCTAGE 

Small product image of Skip Hop Toddler Backpack (Dog)

UNISEX
Skip Hop Toddler Backpack (Dog)

3-6 yearsCheck Price


Small product image of Skip Hop Toddler Backpack (Owl)

PADDED SHOULDER STRAPS
Skip Hop Toddler Backpack (Owl)

3-6 yearsCheck Price


Small product image of JanSport Superbreak Backpack

SIMPLE AND ELEGANT DESIGN
JanSport Superbreak Backpack

6 years+Check Price


Small product image of Clear Backpack With Reinforced Straps

EASY TO CLEAN
Clear Backpack With Reinforced Straps

7-15 yearsCheck Price


Small product image of Amazonbasics Classic School Backpac

A LOT OF POCKETS
Amazonbasics Classic School Backpack

8 years+Check Price


Product image of Nintendo Game Boy Convertible Backpack

CAN BE CARRIED IN DIFFERENT WAYS
Nintendo Game Boy Convertible Backpack

5 years+Check Price


Small product image of Tilami Rolling Backpack

CAN BE PUSHED, PULLED, AND CARRIED
Tilami Rolling Backpack

6 years+Check Price


Small product image of hotstyle TRENDYMAX Backpack

LIGHTWEIGHT AND SPACIOUS
hotstyle TRENDYMAX Backpack

5 years+Check Price


Small product image of Dinosaur Backpack

WATERPROOF AND DURABLE
Dinosaur Backpack

2-8 yearsCheck Price


Small product image of ArcEnCiel Kids Backpack

INSULATED
ArcEnCiel Kid's Backpack

5-10 yearsCheck Price


Small product image of Yodo Little Kids Bag

REFLECTIVE FABRIC
Yodo Little Kids Bag

3-6 yearsCheck Price


Small product image of Hipiwe Backpack for Little Kids

ELASTIC AND SOFT
Hipiwe Backpack for Little Kids

3-7 yearsCheck Price


Small product image of Stephen Joseph Quilted Backpack

MACHINE WASHABLE
Stephen Joseph Quilted Backpack

2-5 yearsCheck Price


Small product image of Obersee Kids All-in-One Backpacks

PADDED LUMBAR SECTION
Obersee Kid's All-in-One Backpacks

3+ yearsCheck Price


Small product image of Wildkin Backpack

17 DIFFERENT PATTERNS
Wildkin Backpack

1-3 yearsCheck Price

Skip Hop Toddler Backpack (Dog)

Parents know how important it is for kids to actually like something in order to wear it and use it, which is why Skip Hop’s toddler dog backpack is the best choice. It represents the perfect combination of functionality and fun, and this adorable dog-shaped backpack will bring much joy to children who use it.

Those who are concerned with their children’s health and the effect of different products on the environment will be pleased to hear that even though it’s made of polyester, this backpack contains neither BPA nor phthalates. Children aged three and older can use this backpack because its shoulder straps are adjustable and padded, which makes it comfortable for taking their books to school and snacks on picnics.

Benefits:

  • Unisex
  • Insulated snack pouch
  • Colorful and durable

Skip Hop Toddler Backpack (Owl)

Another adorable Skip Hop product comes in the form of an owl-shaped backpack that’s perfect for toddlers and preschoolers. In addition to the larger compartment, there is also a smaller one that can hold their snacks or some of their smaller pre-school supplies. Besides these two compartments, there is also a small mesh pocket where they can put their water bottles for later.

While the backpack might be too small for school supplies, it’s perfectly sized to hold a child’s snack, favorite toy, and an extra set of clothes when they’re going for a picnic or to visit their grandparents. It’s an excellent backpack for children who aren’t using diapers anymore too, so parents can put aside the diaper bags, and pack all the necessary items into the child’s backpack instead.

Benefits:

  • Padded shoulder straps
  • Leaf-shaped zipper pulls
  • Name tag on the inside

JanSport Superbreak Backpack

For older kids who can’t wait to grow up and leave “childish things” behind, Superbreak Backpack from JanSport might be the best backpack for school. Because of its simple color and design, children will not feel like they’re going to kindergarten or play-dates with their friends, but more like they’re off to an adventure. What is more, because of high-quality design and materials, it’s likely they will keep using this backpack for many years, especially since it’s big enough to hold everything from books to laptops and water bottles easily.

Kids who like basic black backpacks usually like to decorate it with patches, badges, or key rings, because these types of accessories stand out nicely on simple colors.

Benefits:

  • Simple and elegant design
  • Padded shoulder straps
  • Sturdy and durable

Clear Backpack With Reinforced Straps

Clear backpack with reinforced straps from Trail maker is the best kids’ backpacks for school at the moment, especially when you take into consideration that some schools require children to use transparent backpacks in the first place. Still, it doesn’t mean that these backpacks aren’t fashionable or stylish. On the contrary, it’s because they’re transparent that children’s colorful folders, notebooks, and stickers draw more attention.

Reinforced shoulder straps make this backpack very sturdy and durable, and the smaller front pocket is perfect for accessories, pencils, and pens. Because it’s transparent, it’s likely that younger children won’t be as interested as the older ones, but you can personalize it by choosing a different color trimming. Best of all – you can clean it easily simply by wiping it with wet wipes.

Benefits:

  • Dual zipper on the main compartment
  • Easy to clean
  • Comfortable

Amazonbasics Classic School Backpack

For parents of older children who have to carry a lot of things to school, this classic school backpack from Amazonbasics is exactly what you need. Because the backpack dimensions are rather big (12 x 15 inches), it’s not convenient for toddlers and very small children, yet this is exactly what makes these models are one of the best kids’ backpacks for school.

There are a lot of pockets that are very helpful for keeping school supplies organized. The front pocket is perfect for things the child will use most often: phone, wallet, and keys, while two smaller pockets (one on each side of the bag) are big and sturdy enough to hold an item the size of a Mason jar. What is more, in the back of the inside part, there is a small pocket that’s perfect for an iPad or a tablet.

Benefits:

  • Double zipper
  • A lot of pockets
  • Very lightweight

Nintendo Game Boy Convertible Backpack

There is probably nothing better than being able to show everyone the things you really love. This is the reason why Nintendo Game Boy convertible backpack is one of the best kids’ backpacks out there. It’s a perfect replica of the old Game Boy by Nintendo and children will love carrying it to kindergarten, school, and to field trips.

It has many pockets, which makes it great for keeping things organized when going to school and field trips. Even though it’s convertible and can be carried as a messenger bag, most children don’t have the use of this feature, but it’s something that the older kids (or even adults) will love. For older kids who will carry their electronics inside, the good news is that the interior compartment is padded to keep their gadgets safe.

Benefits:

  • Can be carried in different ways
  • Padded interior compartment
  • Durable and sturdy

Tilami Rolling Backpack

For the most part, parents love knowing that their children’s posture isn’t in danger, and this is why this Rolling Backpack from Tilami is so popular. Children’s small backs aren’t always strong enough to carry everything; books, notebooks, pencil cases, water bottles, and their lunch, and this rolling backpack will give them a break. The best thing is that it can also be carried just like the regular backpack on the days when they don’t have to take a lot of things to and from school.

Aluminum alloy rod is very strong, yet light, which means that children won’t feel the additional weight when carrying the backpack. What is more, there are also concealed pockets in the back to put shoulder straps in when the backpack is being rolled.

Benefits:

  • Can be both pushed, pulled, and carried
  • Concealed pockets for shoulder straps
  • Light aluminum alloy rod

hotstyle TRENDYMAX Backpack

It seems that hotstyle’s TRENDYMAX backpack is trendy for a very good reason: its lovely prints and designs make it desirable for everyone, from 5-year-old girls who go to kindergarten, to 18-year-olds who are going to university. You can choose one from 15 different prints, and there’s also matching a pencil pouch that comes with it.

Shoulder straps are very wide and padded, which make it easy on the shoulders even when the child carries a lot of books to school. There is also a very convenient back pocket that’s perfect for keeping and easily reaching for one’s phone, as well as a small, hidden interior pocket that will keep their keys and wallet safe. There is also a durable outside pocket for water bottles that’s made of the same material as the backpack, and not mesh.

Benefits:

  • Secret interior pocket
  • Very lightweight
  • Spacious enough to hold a laptop

Dinosaur Backpack

Regardless of whether you’re looking for a bag for pool and beach over summer or for pre-k, Dinosaur backpack from yisibo is one of the best kids’ backpack you can choose. The design makes it highly distinguishable, and you can choose a different design if you like. It’s big enough to put an A5 book inside and keep a change of kids’ clothes, and there are also two outside pockets for holding a water bottle or a sippy cup.

Because it’s made of soft neoprene material, it’s waterproof, but you can easily wash it if need be. It also dries very quickly, which is great when your child is going to the pool or simply sweats during warmer days. Shoulder straps are padded and easily adjustable, so adults can put it on if the child feels too tired.

Benefits:

  • Waterproof and durable
  • Easy to clean
  • There is room for two sippy cups

ArcEnCiel Kid's Backpack

ArcEnCiel’s kid’s backpack is a great choice for children who like robots, and its adorable robot design makes it a wonderful present. There is a convenient inside pocket that’s perfect for separating folders and notebooks, but keep in mind that it’s not padded, which means that you probably should take any electronics in it. There is a mesh pocket for water bottles on the outside as well as a smaller pocket with a zipper for keeping phone or keys.

On the other hand, the front pocket is big enough to hold any snacks, and the backpack is insulated. It’s very sturdy and durable, and it will likely hold well through kindergarten. In addition, it’s easy to clean it – you just put it in the machine on a gentle cycle and let it air dry.

Benefits:

  • Insulated
  • Padded back and shoulder straps
  • Big and thick zippers

Yodo Little Kids Bag

If you’re worried about your kids walking home after dark, you’ll fall in love with Yodo’s Little Kids Bags and their reflective fabric. The said fabric makes it safer for children to walk home even after it gets dark because any driver will be able to see them clearly. You can choose a backpack with vivid animal faces or the one that resembles dinosaur bag, but the bottom line is that each of these has reflective fabric as well as a small name tag at the back.

This is one of the best backpacks for school because it’s large enough to fit a 12×9 inch folder and additional papers without bending them. There is also a convenient chest strap that will prevent the backpack from slipping off the child’s shoulders.

Benefits:

  • Name tag at the back
  • Reflective fabric
  • Bright and catchy colors

Hipiwe Backpack for Little Kids

Hipiwe’s adorable animal-shaped backpacks for little kids come in two sizes: S size backpacks are small enough to be worn even by kids who are under 3, while L size ones are perfect for kids between 3 and 7. It’s made of light neoprene, and it’s able to repel light water, which means that your child’s things will stay dry even if the backpack stays out in gentle rain. On the other hand, it’s also easy to machine-wash it, and afterwards, you need only leave it out to air-dry.

Even though there are side pockets, they’re not big enough to hold a sippy cup or a water bottle, but they can hold a juice box. It’s not too big, but it can fit diapers, bottles, and clothes for the daycare easily.

Benefits:

  • Elastic and soft
  • Easy to clean
  • Made of light neoprene

Stephen Joseph Quilted Backpack

This lovely colorful quilted backpack from Stephen Joseph is one of the best backpacks for kids who love bright colors and cute patches. It’s beautifully embroidered, and the colorful patches are sewed, not glued on, which makes the bag more quality and durable, and you can be sure that none of the decorations will fall off.

There is a bit of stuffing so the bag looks like an embroidered quilt, and there is a variety of designs that makes it easy for everyone to find their perfect backpack. It’s just the right size for children who want to carry a backpack but aren’t big or strong enough for a school-sized one. You can wash it in the machine, but you should use a gentle cycle as the embroidery on it is delicate.

Benefits:

  • Durable
  • Magnetic button closure
  • Machine washable

Obersee Kid's All-in-One Backpacks

This is one of the best kids’ backpacks for school because it’s sturdy, spacious, and comfortable enough for children to wear it for a long time. Not only does it have a spacious front pocket that’s perfect for keeping snacks, but it also has an insulated lunch cooler, which means that the child won’t have to take another lunch bag along.

The bag also has breathable mesh padded straps as well as matching lumbar section on the back, which makes it extremely comfortable. School folders will fit in nicely, and there is also a chest strap to further secure the bag from slipping off the child’s shoulders. The main compartment has an organizer with pockets perfect for school supplies, but there are also slots for pens and pencils.

Benefits:

  • Padded mesh lumbar section
  • Insulated front pocket
  • Special slots for pencils and pens

Wildkin Backpack

Wildkin’s backpacks are amazing, and parents of toddlers and preschoolers love them because they are colorful and spacious enough to fit everything a child might need. Thermal insulation of the front pocket is made of food-safe materials, and the backpack itself is made of materials that don’t contain BPA, phthalates, or lead.

There are 17 different patterns and designs to choose from, and parents can also get a matching nap pad as well as a matching lunch box. In addition to being insulated, the front zipped pocket is also lined with reflective material so that your child will be safe even when it gets dark. Parents should keep in mind that because of the round design at the top, it’s impossible to put in school folders without bending them so it might be better to use the bag for carrying diapers, clothes, toys, and snacks instead.

Benefits:

  • 17 different patterns
  • Matching lunch box available
  • Durable and safe

How to Choose the Best Quality Kids Backpacks

Anyone who has ever tried to buy a backpack for their kids knows how difficult it is to find the right one. You have to think about many parameters including the price, design, and durability of the backpack in question, but even if you’re happy with all of these, there’s no guarantee you’ve chosen the best one.

If you’re looking for the best kids’ backpacks, you should be prepared to do a bit of research first and look for the best rated kids’ backpacks online. Reading through lists like ours will help you understand which manufacturers make high-quality backpacks, and which models are the most popular ones at the moment.

Make sure the model you choose is safe and sturdy, that the backpack is big enough for the child’s things to fit inside, and shoulder straps are padded. There’s no point in buying an adorable backpack for school only to discover that your child’s books and notebooks don’t fit inside.

Still, you shouldn’t forget to include your child in the choice of the backpack.  They should have a say in the matter as well because they are the ones that will be wearing the said backpack for years to come (hopefully).

Criteria We Used

While it wasn’t easy trying to pick 15 best backpacks for toddlers and kids because there are so many on the market to choose from, there are certain things all of these we picked have in common. Here’s what we paid attention to while making our choices:

Comfortability

One of the most important criteria each and every backpack on our list had to pass is comfortability. We understand that the most important concern for the parents is that the backpack their children will be wearing is comfortable enough for them and that it won’t hurt their back or their shoulders. This is the reason why padded shoulder straps are important as well as padded back section.

Functionality

Even though toddlers have no use for a lot of pockets, we still understand that a backpack that’s just pretty, stylish, and adorable won’t be very useful. This is the reason why we focused so much on smaller sections and pockets that each backpack has – these help both children and their parents to keep the things in order and easy to find.

FAQ

Why are paddings important?

You know how difficult it is to carry a backpack for a long time, even if it doesn’t contain too many things, so can you imagine how difficult it must be for children to carry their own backpacks? They are still growing and developing, and paddings on shoulder straps and back of the backpack make the item more comfortable and easy on their bodies.

How to properly wash backpacks?

For the most part, it’s enough to machine wash them, and there are also backpacks that can be safely put in the dryer. On the other hand, it’s always a good idea to read the label and follow the instructions listed there. You might have to hand-wash some of these, or use simple wet wipes. If you’re still not sure what to do, you can always contact the manufacturer and ask them for directions or simple clarifications.

Conclusion

Even though there isn’t a simple rule that can say what best kids’ backpacks look like, it’s always a good idea to do a bit of research to find out whether the materials and the design match what you’re looking for in a backpack for your kids. Remember that the print might play an important role, but it’s shouldn’t be the most important thing. Your child’s health and posture should be high on your priority list, and you will be sure that you’ve made the right choice only if you don’t rush with the purchase.

Author: Catherine Evans
Author: Catherine Evans

Catherine is a writer from Canada who simply loves toys, collectibles and superhero figurines. Writing is her passion, but she also loves reading, enjoying her “me time” and finding new ways to improve her work and ways to entertain the readers.

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