The size of a standard backpack can vary, depending on the type of bag and its intended purpose. For instance, a traditional laptop bag is typically around 16 inches wide, 12 inches high, and 4 inches deep.
Most bags are designed with adjustable shoulder straps and waistbands that allow you to customize your fit for maximum comfort. There are also many different backpack styles, each with its own specific dimensions.
The everyday common backpack is generally sized at around 22 x 14 x 9 inches (55.9 x 35.6 x 22.9 centimeters). These backpacks are convenient for carrying a variety of items, with capacities ranging from 15 to 35 liters. This translates to approximately 4 to 9.2 gallons, providing plenty of room for supplies. Although, the size of a backpack can vary depending on its design and the number of items it holds.
In this post below, I will discuss different types of backpacks and their dimensions, as well as other important considerations when selecting a backpack.
Types of Backpacks by Uses
There are many different types of backpacks that are designed for specific uses. Here are a few examples:
They are essential for carrying a large number of items on the go. They usually come with soft padding and internal compartments to store larger items such as laptops, textbooks, and other stationery. Generally, they can hold up to 15-35 liters (4-9.2 gallons) of items. The typical dimensions of a standard everyday backpack are 22 inches in length, 14 inches in width, and 9 inches in height.
A larger backpack that is specifically designed for carrying gear on extended hikes or backpacking trips. These backpacks often have a frame and multiple pockets for organizing gear, as well as features like a hydration bladder for carrying water. They come in a variety of sizes and can generally hold between 20 to 60 liters (5.3 to 15.9 gallons) of supplies. Some bags can even hold more than 60 liters, allowing for more space for additional gear. The size of a hiking bag can vary significantly, ranging from 17 x 8 x 5 inches (43.2 x 20.3 x 12.7 cm) up to 30 x 18.5 x 12.5 inches (76.2 x 47 x 31.8 cm) when empty.
A backpack that is used to carry books and other supplies for school or work. These backpacks are usually medium to large in size and may have features like padded shoulder straps and laptop sleeves. Most school backpacks range in size from about 17 to 35 liters, with the most common size being around 25 liters. They have a rectangular shape with dimensions of around 11-13 inches in width, 16-20 inches in height, and 6-10 inches in depth.
A backpack designed for carrying gear while traveling. These backpacks are often larger in size and may have features like lockable zippers and RFID-blocking technology to help keep belongings secure. Most travel backpacks range in size from about 30 liters (small) to 90 liters (large), with the most common size being around 50 liters. They have a rectangular shape with dimensions of around 11-13 inches in width, 18-22 inches in height, and 8-12 inches in depth.
A backpack designed for carrying gear and supplies for a baby or young child. These backpacks often have features like padded shoulder straps and a built-in changing pad. Most baby backpacks range in size from about 20 liters (small) to 35 liters (large), with the most common size being around 25 liters. In terms of dimensions, they generally have a rectangular shape with dimensions of around 10-12 inches in width, 14-18 inches in height, and 6-8 inches in depth.
A backpack designed specifically for carrying camera gear. These backpacks often have padded compartments for protecting equipment and may also have additional pockets for storing accessories. Most camera backpacks range in size from about 20 liters (small) to 50 liters (large), with the most common size being around 30-40 liters. The camera backpacks generally have a rectangular shape with dimensions of around 11-13 inches in width, 16-20 inches in height, and 6-10 inches in depth.
Hydration backpacks are a type of outdoor bag designed specifically for carrying liquids. They are easily identifiable by their pouch or bladder, which helps to keep liquids safe and secure while on the go. Hydration backpacks come in a variety of sizes, ranging from those with a capacity of 7 liters to those that can carry up to 20 liters. The dimensions of an empty small-sized hydration backpack are approximately 11 inches by 10 inches by 4 inches (27.9 cm x 25.4 cm x 10.2 cm).
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Types of Backpacks by Capacity
Backpacks are often classified by their capacity, which refers to the amount of gear that the backpack can hold. Here are a few examples of backpacks based on capacity:
These are small backpacks with a capacity of around 20 liters or less. They are designed for carrying only a few essentials and are ideal for short trips or activities where you don’t need to carry much gear. For 4-7 day backcountry trips, 50 liters (3050 cu in) is a great and standard size for an ultralight pack.
Daypacks have a capacity of around 20-35 liters and are ideal for carrying a few essentials for a short trip, such as a water bottle, snacks, and a jacket. The typical dimensions of a standard everyday backpack are 22 inches in length, 14 inches in width, and 9 inches in height.
Multiday backpacks are specially designed for long-distance hikes and camping trips. These large-capacity bags can hold up to 50 to 80 liters (13.2 to 21.1 gallons) of supplies, making them ideal for carrying the necessary items for extended periods outdoors. If you’re looking for a backpack suitable for an outdoor trip that lasts up to five nights, then a 65-liter backpack should be your top choice. This type of backpack typically measures 27 inches in length, 16 inches in width, and 9 inches in depth (68.6 cm x 40.6 cm x 22.9 cm).
These backpacks have a capacity of around 35-50 liters and are suitable for carrying gear for a weekend trip or longer excursion. The 40-liter weekend backpack is the most common among all so it typically measures 21 inches in height, 11 inches in width, and 8 inches in depth.
These are large backpacks with a capacity of 90 liters or more. They are designed for carrying all of your gear for extended backpacking or mountaineering trips. A 100-liter bag is the standard size which typically measures 18 × 13 × 9 inches (45.7 × 33 × 22.9 cm). It usually has various compartments located on the sides and near the bottom. This makes it an ideal storage solution for transporting items of different sizes.
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Standard Backpack Dimensions
The following table provides a helpful reference for understanding backpack sizes based on their type. It can be used as a guide when selecting the right size of bag for your needs.
|Backpack Types||Dimensions (H × W × D) inches|