The Best Tactical Messenger Bag (and Why You Need It)

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What is a Tactical Messenger Bag? 

A tactical messenger bag is a versatile carrier that utilizes compartments to store and efficiently carry materials that are convenient for a wide array of uses. They are prominently used to remain on the go while frequently revisiting the materials needed as you carry on. It provides a unique take on organization, security, and portability not found in a traditional backpack. Whether you are a frequent traveler, a business associate, or are simply in need of an organized bag to hold important or sensitive, the tactical messenger bag is right for you.    Historically, they were created for mail services to help store and deliver messages and materials while still being capable of quickly remaining on the go. As the times have shifted, they have become suited towards a diverse amount of professions including campers, photographers, lawyers, teachers, officers, and outdoorsmen. In a world designed for heightened preparedness, the tactical messenger bag may be the perfect solution. 

Why Use a Tactical Messenger Bag? 

When it comes to bags, it may be difficult to identify which kind of bag is the right option, as there are many to choose from. There are a plethora of options including backpacks, satchels, and duffel bags, but none work quite as efficiently as a tactical messenger bag. They maximize comfort, style, and purpose as the quintessential carrier on the market. Although made for more active users that remain operative, they can be functional in a myriad of experiences. They can be adjusted to meet your comfort level and have a secure closing for privacy and security. The versatility of a tactical messenger bag allows them to be an appropriate attachment for a formal business meeting or an outdoor fishing trip.    They are specifically convenient as the materials in the bag are stored and accessible in an easy-to-reach manner. They are multifaceted, more manageable than a traditional backpack, and in many cases, can help carry much more specifically targeted supplies. If you’ve ever found yourself losing pens, papers, or supplies at the bottom of your backpack, then a messenger bag may be the appropriate substitution. Most tactical messenger bags feature an adjustable shoulder strap that you can customize to suit your everyday needs. In an ever-changing society, tactical messenger bags suit the needs of lawyers, teachers, travelers, photographers, hikers, or outdoorsmen; it may be what you’ve been searching for all along.    You will find that the materials used to make tactical messenger bags can vary based on utility and style. While many are made using durable, breathable materials such as polyester or nylon, others can be made using leather or canvas. If you’re going to be in an area where your bag might be wet or exposed to other elements, the leather option is perhaps not the best for you. 

Travelling with a tactical messenger bag

When travelling, it’s important to keep some of your essential items on your person, such as identification or passports, currency or credit cards, and a camera for sightseeing. Many of us have experienced the discomfort and disturbance of having to lift a backpack off of our shoulders, hoist it around, and retrieve our items from the pack, only to have to replace it and repeat the process soon after. With a messenger bag, you not only have quick and easy access on your travels, but you can guarantee yourself the peace of mind of having items of value in front of you. If pickpocketing is a concern, the tactical messenger bag will eradicate that fear.   Their convenient size also makes them great for light travel, as they can fit into any overhead compartment on a plane, train, or a bus. Due to heightened security measures in airports all over the world, it is also beneficial to have a smaller bag so that you can pass through checkpoints easily. Simply open your bag, display its contents, and you’ll be on your way in no time. 

Which bag is the best? 

When purchasing a tactical messenger bag, it is important to have an idea of what will work best for you as there is a wide variety that accompanies them. They are secure, durable, resourceful, and fashionable which means there are also a multitude of options. It is difficult to rate the “best” tactical messenger bags as you will need to find the one that best suits your personal needs. There are plenty of questions to consider including the size, weight, material, comfort, durability, and style, which only allows you to be more satisfied with your purchase. To help minimize your selection process, here is a list of some of the best tactical messenger bags while highlighting some of their most notable features. 




Price Range


11” x 17” x 4”



12.5” x 10.5” x 5.5”



18.5” x 8” x 12”



15.75” x 4.92” x 11.61”



13.7” x 10” x 5”



15.70” x 13.10” x 0.7”





Direct Action

10” x 13.7” x 5”



17.5” x 12.25” x 6”


Elite Survival Systems

19” x 15” x 7”








Hazard 4







Big enough to store a 17” laptop








Rapid Dominance



First Tactical



Condor Tactical



RUSH Delivery LIMA 12L ($99.99)

This heavy-duty water-resistant 1050D nylon constructed bag is the perfect well-rounded functional use of a multi-compartmentalized carrier. It is one of the most durable on this list, with an ambidextrous waist strap, an integrated quick-draw compartment, and uniquely positioned pockets inside and out. It weighs 3.0 lbs., fits a 17” laptop, features an outside water bottle pocket, and consists of the main compartment with a size of 11” x 17” x 4”. If you’re looking for a conventionally well-rounded, durable, and versatile carrier, this bag is as good as it gets.    Key Benefits: Durable, functional, and capacious.  Get it HERE

UTG Multi-functional Tactical Messenger Bag ($29.74)

A much more affordable option, yet still very spacious and secure for its multi-faceted purpose. It comes with multiple compartments including a concealed back pocket with zipper closure. This polyester bag weighs in at 1.9 lbs., has a water-resistant cover, and dimensions of 12.5” x 10.5” x 5.5”. It’s designed for everyday usage with easy-to-access pockets interwoven throughout the entire bag. This light and comfortable bag epitomizes the versatility of tactical messenger bags and would be the right place to start if you don’t have large items to transport.     Key Benefits: Affordable, reliable, and versatile.  Get it HERE

5.11 Tactical Unisex Adult Patrol Ready Bag ($69.99) 

This Adult Patrol Ready Bag functions exactly as it sounds, geared towards first responders and those that need to be prepared in an instant. It measures at 18.5” x 8” x 12”, features over 10 pockets, and is made of 800D water-resistant nylon. Although it may appear to be simply for on-the-go responders, its intricate features make it versatile including a professional outlook as it does feature a laptop pocket. With protective foam padding, MOLLE system, and a spacious main area with multiple compartments, this is a great fit for these seeking to get the most out of their bag.    Key Benefits: Storage space, durable, and versatile.  Get it HERE

S-ZONE 3-Way Convertible Backpack Messenger Bag 15.6 Inch Laptop Briefcase ($38.99)

If you’re looking for a more professional, versatile, and stylish approach, the S-ZONE 3-way bag is designed to be just that. It’s made of durable canvas with PU leather trim to ensure it’s fashionable yet durable usage. Its “3-way” structure allows you to decide whether you want it to be utilized as a backpack, a briefcase, or a traditional tactical messenger bag. It weighs 2.2 lbs, has dimensions of 15.75” x 4.92” x 11.61”, and its multitude of pockets still makes it a great pick for a traditional messenger bag.    Key Benefits: Stylish, versatile, and affordable.  Get it HERE

MK I & MK II Messenger Bag ($79.00) 

Military, law enforcement operators, and outdoor enthusiasts that have a practical bag in mind for their specific field should look no further. This lightweight and heavy-duty bag is a reliable use for any endeavor. Its made of 500D Cordura fabric with a water-resistant coating, laser-cut MOLLE system, and has dimensions of 13.7” x 10” x 5”. This well-constructed bag allows you to pack a ton in a medium-sized space while utilizing excellent quality material that is perfect for anyone looking for a traditional durable tactical messenger bag.    Key Benefits: Durable, spacious, and functional.  Get it HERE

Berchirly Men Vintage Military Canvas Messenger Crossbody Bag ($32.97) 

This vintage style messenger bag is best suited as a comfortable yet practical bag. With an interior design that matches the exterior and aged brass buckles, it makes for a particularly aesthetically pleasing bag. Its made of high-density canvas and 100% cow leather for a durable approach with dimensions of 15.70” x 13.10” x 0.70” and a 1.8lbs weight. The old-fashioned design makes it perfect for everyday usage regardless of whether your appeal is the rugged outdoors or if you want to maintain a subtle indoors approach.    Key Benefits: Vintage style, comfortable, and practical.  Get it HERE

GES: Tactical Briefcase, 15.6 Inch Men’s Messenger Bag Military Briefcase for Men ($46.88) 

A well-rounded approach to first-time buyers of a tactical messenger bag. This stands true to the design of being a durable, versatile, accessible, and compartmentalized bag all for a very affordable price. It can easily be utilized as a briefcase or optimized for an outdoor experience with its quality material. Spacious enough for a17.3” laptop, made of water-resistant 600D nylon, includes the MOLLE system, and an extensive number of pockets. If you believe all of these bags are great and don’t know where to start, you can’t go wrong picking this one.    Key Benefits: Functional, versatile, and spacious.  Get it HERE

Direct Action Messenger Tactical Bag 10 Liter Capacity, Ideal for Laptop, ipad or Tablet ($69.00) 

The main compartment is lined with velcro allowing the possibility for additional customizable space. It is made of high-quality 500D Cordura fabric and measures at 10” x 13.7” x 5” allowing you to take full advantage of its storage space. It has a tough and sturdy appeal, making it both visually drawing yet still secure and protected thanks to its compartments. The laser cuts on the molle allow you to hang things from the bag if you’d like to, and the double stitching makes for a secure hold should you choose to affix anything to the front.     Key Benefits: Conventional, functional, and secure.  Get it HERE

Mercury Tactical Gear Code Alpha Computer Messenger Bag ($79.59) 

A robust, secure, and capacious messenger bag that is ideal for everyday use. It weighs 4.5 lbs., sizes at 17.5” x 12.25” x 6”, and is constructed of 600D poly materials making it water-resistant and a much more extreme version of a tactical messenger bag. With the MOLLE system and a multitude of compartments inside and out, it remains flexible and versatile. Once you own this you’ll have wondered how you survived without it.    Key Features: Durable, spacious, and versatile.  Get it HERE

Elite Survival Systems Tactical Messenger Bag ($149.95) 

If you’re looking to get an excellent quality bag without worrying about your budget, the Elite Survival Systems bag is as practical, reliable, and secure as tactical messenger bags can get. It’s very spacious measuring at 19” x 15” x 7”, constructed from 1000D nylon, contains water-resistant lining, and robust zippers, not many compare in strength and durability. With a MOLLE panel on the front and a stylish appeal, it also stands as one of the most versatile and visually appealing bags on the market.    Key Benefits: Durable, secure, and capacious.  Get it HERE

Voodoo Tactical Messenger Bag ($49.95)

For the minimalist in you, the Voodoo Tactical Messenger Bag can’t be beat. With its sleek appearance, this 16.25 L capacity bag is a no frills option whose utility speaks for itself. It features an adjustable strap, multiple zippered compartments to keep your belongings safe and secure, and a mesh pocket on the side that is perfect for a water bottle, umbrella, or other small object to take on your travels. The inside features a roomy design with more pockets and compartments, and you have your choice between black and brown. The Voodoo bag measures 16″L x 4″W x 15.5″H.    Key Benefits: Lightweight, low-cost, and durable.  Get it HERE

Allen Base Tactical Messenger Bag ($71.99)

A reliable yet attractive option, the Allen Base Tactical Messenger Bag is available in a dark green with black enhancements. Perfect for safely transporting your laptop, tablet, or any other fragile electronics, you can enjoy a virtually hands free commute knowing all of your valuables are securely stowed. This bag boasts adjustable features such as the holster and the strap, a variety of zippered pockets, and double layered fabric to keep your items from moving around too much while you are in transit. Because it is made with woven endura fabric, it is also waterproof and pet proof. The Allen Base bag measures 13.1″L x 17.1″W x 6.3″H.    Key Benefits: Weatherproof, organized, and adjustable.  Get it HERE

Hazard 4 Defense Courier Messenger Bag ($149.99)

Available in black or coyote colored, the Hazard 4 Defense Courier Messenger Bag is ideal due to its ability to contain small, flat, large, or robust items. If you are carrying a flat item, such as a book or a tablet, the Hazard 4 Bag will remain flat. If, however, you have to pack more items, it will expand easily to accommodate whatever it is that you need to fit inside it. The laptop pouch inside is lined with a soft fabric for optimal protection, and because the straps are sewn directly onto the body of the bag, it is able to hold heavier weights without buckling or breaking. The strap is also padded to protect your shoulders should you have to move around with more weight. The dimensions of the bag are 13.3″H x 21.1″W x 6.2″D.   Key Benefits: Expandable, versatile, able to carry heavy loads.  Get it HERE

5.11 Tactical Push Pack 6L ($59.99)

If you prefer a super light option and don’t have an extensive packing list of items to take with you, then consider the 5.11 Tactical Push Pack 6L. Offered in two colors, black and flat dark earth, this is one of the most durable, comfortable packs available for purchase. While this is not the kind of pack you’ll want for bigger items such as a laptop or documents, it’s just right for those who have to carry around small yet important items, such as medication, glasses, a medium sized water bottle, and little gadgets such as a phone or a camera. It also features dual expanding pockets, and is made from 1050D weather resistant nylon. The main compartment of the bag measures 8.75” H x 7.75” L x 4” D.    Key benefits: Lightweight, compact, and easy to carry.  Get it HERE

5.11 Tactical MultiCam Black Covert Box Messenger ($118.49)

For quick access to your belongings with little to stand in your way, the 5.11 Tactical MultiCam Black Covert Box Messenger is ideal. Big enough to store a 17” laptop or devices of a similar dimension, the bag is also professional looking, features a comfortable shoulder strap so that your upper body can handle the fluctuations in weight when you pack or walk, and fully zips across so that your belongings will remain secure on the go.    Key benefits: Stylish, spacious, and reliable.  Get it HERE

Outdoor Tactical Messenger Bag ($50.39)

Waterproof and built to last with its sturdy cotton fabric, this messenger bag offers 18 different pocket compartments for your smaller belongings, trinkets, and gadgets. It features padded straps for extra comfort, padding on the back so that it won’t chafe against your skin, a strong buckle to keep your items secure, and can be worn either as a backpack or a bag at your side.    Key benefits: Versatile, adjustable, and waterproof.  Get it HERE

Mercury Tactical Concealed Carry Messenger Bag ($52.95)

For safe, secure storage of precious items such as a small firearm, a tablet, or documents, this messenger bag distributed by U.S. Patriot Tactical is a great choice for your accessories. The front zipper pocket works to organize your items, while on the inside, there is a plastic protective flap for you to carry flat or smaller paraphernalia. What’s more is that the company offers a lifetime warranty, so you can be sure of the durability of this product.    Key benefits: ample storage, strength, longevity.  Get it HERE

Rapid Dominance T311 Tactical Messenger Bag ($89.95)

Another bag that offers comfort as well as durability in addition to an organized way to hold your things. The Rapid Dominance T311 bag is lightweight and on the smaller side, but is convenient for those who need to reach their belongings quickly and without too many flaps and obstacles in their way. There are three compartments in total: one large and two medium sized, and the expandable side pockets will give you ample opportunity to change up your packing list. The overall dimensions of the bag are 14”W x 12”H x 6.5”D.   Key benefits: Lifetime warranty, comfort, versatility.  Get it HERE

First Tactical Ascend Messenger Bag ($99.99)

Patriot Outfitters is offering this sleek “field to office” style bag which features the ruggedness and durability of a field quality bag with the dependability and subtlety of an office-appropriate one. Available in both black and coyote tan, the bag has six different exterior pocket compartments and three interior drop pockets. It is made from 500D and 1000D nylon, so you know it’s going to be able to bear any heavy load you want it to carry. The main compartment measures 18” L x 12.5” H x 5.5” D.   Key benefits: Rugged nylon fabric, multiple compartments, durability.  Get it HERE

Condor Messenger Bag ($44.95) 

Trusted by police officers and other members of law enforcement, the Condor Messenger Bag is known for its sturdy build and for being able to weather the elements, be it snow, rain, or sleet. Molle attachments allow you to affix things securely to your bag along with multiple different compartments that conform to your belongings to keep them snug. The large compartment measures 6”H x 12”W x 3”D.    Key benefits: Comfortable, weatherproof, adjustable.  Get it HERE