Best School Bags 2019 | The Sun UK

KIDS’ bags for school have had to become a lot more durable, multitasking and stylish in recent years.

Kids are expected to carry a lot of stuff around these days, and their bags for school need to be sturdy – as well as looking good.

Here’s our pick of the best bags for school for kids for nursery and beyond, chosen based with our own expertise and the recommendations of parents (and their children).

Even your nursery kid is likely to need a bag for school, to carry any books, toys, snacks, water and wipes so they can go from nursery to the park or their football or dance class.

From Reception time, children are typically expected to carry bags for school which house their reading books, a reusable bottle of water and any letters from school or party invites from friends.

Of course, you’ll also want a bag for school that’s spacious enough to carry packed lunch, recorders, changes of clothes for PE or after-school clubs. And let’s not forget homework.

As children get older and move through secondary school, bags for school that have the capacity to carry laptops are useful; pick one from a respected brand like Cambridge Satchel Company or Vans and they can last until the uni days.

While comfort is key in kids’ bags for school, looks are also important. Graphics, sequins, cool pockets and any extras that kids won’t be expecting are all a plus.

After all, think about how important your work rucksack or bag is; school bags are a big deal for kids, especially if they’re going to be wearing them day in, day out.

1. Best toddler bag for school

  • Skip Hop Monkey backpack, £14 at John Lewis – buy here

We've seen this backpack on many a toddler's shoulders, and, crucially, they always look happy to be carrying it, which is all you can ask for from a kid's bag for school.

We think Skip Hop's Monkey backpack is the perfect choice for nursery days and beyond, with room for toys, snacks and books.

The insulated pocket keeps food cold, there's a side pocket to hold a drink and the straps are padded for comfort.

2. Best bag for school with a purpose

  • State Mini Kane Colour Block Backpack, £85 at Smallable – buy here

This stylish backpack ticks a lot of boxes that will make it popular with kids, namely the cool colour combination, roomy size and zip front pockets, but what parents love is that with each bag purchased, State donates a fully stocked backpack to a child in need.

3. Best unicorn school bag

  • Mini Melissa Unicorn Backpack, £81 from Farfetch – buy here

Of course, unicorn backpacks are always a hit, but we do love this adorable one from Mini Melissa. And comes in blue and yellow, too.

Your child will adore flashing their school supplies, and playing around with the unicorn will be a popular activity when bored, we'd predict.

4. Best all rounder bag for school

  • Fjällräven Kånken Mini backpack, £70 at Fjällräven – buy here

The Swedish brand has been crafting some of the world's most popular backpacks for the past 50 years, and the Kånken Mini has the same qualities you love in the signature Kånken, on a smaller scale.

It can be held as a bag or worn as a rucksack, is made from a hardwearing nylon fabric and has adjustable straps (that can fit kids or their adults).

Best of all (from a child's perspective), the selection of colours is like a Crayola box of totally amazing, inspired-by-nature colours.

5. Best bag for school with extras

  • Smiggle Cosmos Character Junior Backpack, £34 at Smiggle – buy here

Smiggle is a popular kid's destination for statement pencil cases, spangly backpacks, outlandish lunch boxes… everyone's kids are obsessed, because they manage to create what every child dreams of like scented pencil cases and plush toy watches.

Smiggle's range also includes backpacks that light up, feature character hoods, can be coloured in, or feature pull-out wings, like this one.

6. Best satchel school bag

  • Bakker Made with Love Glitter big satchel, £64 at Smallable – buy here

A smart satchel is a great alternative to a backpack.

We love this sparkly version which has shoulder straps and a roomy interior, but feels a bit more sophisticated than a rucksack.

7. Best Vans school bag

  • Vans Old Skool backpack, £28 at Vans – buy here

This backpack has that incredible gift of being rather lightweight (to the point that purchasers worry it's too flimsy at first) yet having impressive durability: not only do people use it as a school bag year after year, it's also a gym kit holder and travelling companion on long journeys.

There are also padded straps and organisational features in the front zip compartment.

Will work well from secondary and beyond.

8. Best leather bag for school

  • 15" Classic Batchel in Oxblood, £175 at The Cambridge Satchel Company – buy here

This is a pricier investment piece, sure, but for sixth formers or those en route to uni, it's well worth it because this is one of those great quality, bag-for-life purchases.

Called a "batchel," it's a satchel-backpack hybrid which can be personalised with initials or a symbol and can house the older-student essentials: a laptop, headphones and a smartphone.


We’re all about helping you find the best products at the best prices, so follow the link if you want to check out more of Sun Selects’ recommendations.

Enjoyed our roundup of the best school bags? We've got a whole parenting section for you to browse.

Looking for a lunch box too? Check out our round-up of the best kids lunch boxes around.


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