Best Large Duffel Bag in 2021

Large duffel bags are quickly becoming a popular option for long-distance travel due to their versatility and capacity, while still serving well as storage. Duffel bags come in varied designs and sizes and are designed to make packing, storing and transporting easier. Whether you are going on a short trip or need to haul gear on your adventure or across the town. Oversized duffle bags are often lighter and easier to maneuver than traditional wheeled suitcases while offering the same advantages when it comes to space and organization.

What You Should Know Before Buying a Large Duffel Bag

The sheer variety of duffel bags available in the market can be confusing. In this article, I will break down all the factors you should consider to help you pick the best large duffel bag that suits your needs. Before diving into the factors, ask yourself why you want the bag and how you intend to use it. This will help you pick out the most important factors for you.

Capacity and Weight

Duffel bag sizes range from 6L to about 160L. Oversized duffel bags (75L+) are perfect if you need space for your extra layers or gear and tents for your adventure. The absence of frames in the structure of most duffle bags makes them extremely light when empty. This allows you to pack more while staying within the airline checked luggage allowance. If you need to carry your luggage around on your trip wheeled or rolling duffel bags may not be the best option as they often weigh more.

Materials and durability

Materials used on duffel bags vary from nylon to polyester to tarpaulin. Some designs are coated in upcycled plastics for durability. A key feature that is determined by the material is water-resistance. Some duffel bag models are completely waterproof and are ideal for water sports while water-resistant bags are perfect for adventures on which you are likely to encounter harsh weather. Also, look out for the ease of cleaning as some materials can be wiped while others need to be machine-washed.

A good quality duffel bag can be determined by the thickness of the fabric used. This is measured in deniers and manufacturers will often include this in the product description. A higher denier value means a stronger and thicker fabric. Most oversized duffle bags are made of fabric that ranges between 600D and 1200D.

Mode of Carrying

Factors such as the size and weight of your duffle bag as well as how long you will need to carry it around are important considerations especially when buying an oversized duffel bag. Duffle bags usually have 2 basic modes of carrying:

Shoulder Straps

Many large duffle bags come with a removable shoulder strap to allow you to carry the bag in a crossbody style. If you intend to carry heavy loads, look out for padded straps for maximum comfort.

Handles

Most duffle bags come with carry handles to allow you to carry your bag briefcase style or grab handles that make it easy to load your bag into luggage compartments. Carry handles that attach in the center to form one sturdy handle are more comfortable to carry.

Backpack straps

As the name suggests, backpack straps give you the freedom that comes with carrying your luggage on your back leaving your hands free for other tasks or to carry more bags.

Rolling duffle bags

Rolling duffle bags come with wheels which makes them easy to lug around the airport especially if you’re carrying heavy equipment.

What’s the Best Large Duffel Bag?

I have gone through large duffel bags that are currently available and looked closely at various features described above as well as what real users say about them, to arrive at the list below. I found the 6 items below to be the best options for oversized backpacks, starting with my top pick.

I have also included an FAQ section at the end to give you more information. Please let me know which is your best large duffel bag in the comments section below.

1. K-Cliffs Heavy Duty Cargo Duffel Bag

Specs
Price: 💲
Capacity: 249 Liters
Weight: 2.8 lb (1.3 kg)
Size: 42 x 19 x 19 in (106.7 x 48.3 x 48.3 cm)

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I recommend the K-Cliffs Heavy Duty Cargo Duffel Bag as the best large duffel bag on the market. This duffel bag is large enough to fit a human being, which makes it perfect for use as a travel bag, cargo bag, or a sports and adventure equipment bag. It is made out of high-density 600D Polyester material, which is durable and can be handled without wear and tear. The material is also water-resistant to ensure all your gear stays dry.

The excellent construction on this bag makes it durable even when used to carry heavy equipment.

Pros

  • Very large capacity,
  • Adjustable shoulder strap with comfortable shoulder pad that prevents slipping,
  • Extremely lightweight,
  • Can easily be folded to be about a square foot,
  • Zipper extends from end to end for easy packing,
  • Zipper tabs have holes that allow you to use a lock

Cons

  • Too large for some airline linear dimension restrictions,
  • No rigid structure thus offering no protection for fragile items

2. Unplug 155L Extra Large Waterproof Duffel Bag

Specs
Price: 💲💲💲
Capacity: 155 Liters
Weight: 4 lb (1.8 kg)
Size: 33 x 17.5 x 16.5 in (83.8 x 44.5 x 41.9 cm)

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The Unplug 155L Extra Large Waterproof Duffel Bag is the best premium duffel bag on this list. The price is a bit steep, but reviews from real users should help to assure you that it is worth every penny. With double stitching on the handles, sealed seams, and a 1680 denier shell, this bag is tough as nails and designed to last even in the worst conditions.

This extreme adventure bag is designed with an extremely large 155L capacity to hold all your gear. The weatherproof material allows you to transport your gear on the roof of your car or the back of your truck while keeping it safe from even the harshest weather conditions such as tropical storms and snowstorms.

Pros

  • Waterproof materials and can be used for water sports (boating, kayaking, etc),
  • Completely weatherproof and can be transported on a car roof,
  • Adjustable shoulder straps for backpack-style carrying,
  • Comes with a money-Back Guarantee and an Extended 5 Year Warranty,
  • Water-resistant zippers,
  • Adjustable straps to shrink the bag when carrying a small load,
  • Reinforced handles

Cons

  • Not enough storage compartments,
  • Can be hard to carry when loaded as it is really big

3. AmazonBasics Large Travel Luggage Duffel Bag

Specs
Price: 💲
Weight: 1.7 lb (0.8 kg)
Size: 32.5 x 17 x 11.5 in (82.6 x 43.2 x 29.2 cm)

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This is the best budget duffel bag on this list. It is made of 100-percent Nylon which is lightweight yet durable. Aside from the main zippered compartment, it has exterior zippered pockets for quick access to smaller items such as tickets, passports, and keys. It comes with top loop handles which make it easier to carry, and with padded grab handles for easy loading and lifting.

The AmazonBasics Large Travel Luggage is completely collapsible duffel bag, which is great if you carry it on your trip to bring back extra luggage. The soft exterior means that, unlike suitcases and other wheeled bags, they are safe from being damaged when lugged around by baggage handlers. The good quality design and stitching on this bag make it a worthy buy.

Pros

  • Can be collapsed for easy storing,
  • Super lightweight nylon material,
  • Zipper pull holes that allow you to lock the bag,
  • Features an adjustable shoulder strap,
  • Shoulder pads on the strap for maximum comfort,
  • Many side zippers and compartments for easy organization,
  • Available in 3 versatile colors: red, black, and blue

Cons

  • Pretty large and hard to carry when loaded

4. Jetstream Duffle Bag

Specs
Price: 💲
Weight: 2.8 lb (1.3 kg)
Size: 36 x 16 x 15 in (91.4 x 40.6 x 38.1 cm)

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This multi-purpose duffle bag is made of 600D polyester which is water-resistant and strong while remaining lightweight. Its durability is ensured by high-quality stitching on the seams and the heavy-duty, 2-way zipper closure with attached small pulling tabs.

This 140L duffel bag is designed with 2 webbing handles that are attached at the center by a panel for easier carrying. It is the ideal sports duffle as it is large enough to accommodate most gear yet it can be folded to fit in most lockers. The convenient fold-flat feature makes it easy to store or pack on your trip. The variety of colors available for this unisex duffle bag makes it easier for you to find a model that you will like.

Pros

  • Can be folded up into a super small size for storage (10 by 10 by 2 inches),
  • U shaped opening of the main compartment for easy packing,
  • Dual zippered compartments on each side for smaller equipment or dirty gear,
  • Water-resistant fabric,
  • Available in an array of colors,
  • Heavy-duty zippers that are reinforced to be water-resistant,
  • Comes with blank panels that are customizable for a team or personal use,
  • Great for carrying hockey/sports gear

Cons

  • Quite heavy and hard to carry when loaded

5. Wrangler 30″ Multi-Pocket Rolling Travel Duffel Bag

Specs
Price: 💲
Capacity: 76.6 Liters
Weight: 6.2 lb (2.8 kg)
Size: 30 x 13 x 12 in (76.2 x 33 x 30.5 cm)

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The Wrangler is made of nylon that is lightweight and durable whether you intend to store the bag for a long period or use it frequently on your trips. This rolling duffel bag features an easy-glide, in-line blade wheel system and a retractable telescopic handle.

The bag has strong fabric and a large enough capacity to hold all your necessities for a long trip. The nylon fabric is easy to care for and clean. The best perk of this bag is that it has numerous pockets: a large main compartment, two large side pockets and two middle pockets in the front with two additional small zippered compartments.

Pros

  • Exterior zippered pockets for added convenience and easy organization,
  • Has both a top and rear carry handles,
  • Large main compartment,
  • Strong seams

Cons

  • Can be unstable and flip over while rolling,
  • Can’t stand upright when packed,
  • Wheels are easily breakable under heavy load

6. Samsonite Andante 2

Specs
Price: 💲💲
Weight: 8.5 lb (3.9 kg)
Size: 34 x 18 x 15 in (86.4 x 45.7 x 38.1 cm)

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The Samsonite Andante 2 is an upgrade of a previous model with new features such as the front U-zip for convenience. The large U-shaped main opening makes it easier for you to pack and access the contents of your bag. The Andante 2 has still retained the premium build quality that Samsonite is known for. It is designed for a refined but functional look and comes in several color assortments.

This rolling backpack is made of durable, water-resistant 840-denier polyester and comes complete with smooth-rolling wheels and a locking pull handle that is retractable for easy maneuverability. It features corner protectors to guard against wear and tear, and bumper runners on the bottom.

Pros

  • External grab handles for easy loading,
  • Large U-shaped opening for easy packing and access,
  • Separate water-resistant packing compartments for shoes or wet items,
  • Smooth-rolling soft spin wheels that are durable for any terrain,
  • Water -resistant construction,
  • Drop-bottom construction for easy organization

Cons

  • Cannot stand upright,
  • Zippers break easily

Finding a durable large duffel bag will not only help make your travels easier, but it will also save you money. The K-Cliffs Heavy Duty Cargo duffel bag has excellent features for durability, convenience, and comfort. It is also designed to protect your belongings. These features have earned it the top spot on this list of the best large duffle bags to get in 2021.

Questions and Answers About Large Duffel Bag

Can a large duffel bag be a carry-on?

Most large duffel bags exceed the size requirements provided by various airlines. The duffels on this list have a capacity of over 100L while the best duffles to use as carry-ons are those under 35L. Although airline requirements vary, allowed sizes range from 22 x 14 x 9 inches (56 x 36 x 23 centimeters) to  22 x 16 x 8 inches (35 x 20 x 20 centimeters).

How big can a duffel bag be?

The maximum capacity for most large duffle bags is around 160L, while the overall maximum size is usually around 85 x 43 x 44cm/ 33 x 17 x 18″ (LxWxH).

What is a hybrid duffel?

A hybrid duffle, also known as a duffel backpack, is a duffel bag that features dual function straps that allow you to wear it as a backpack. These straps allow you to have all the amazing features of a duffel bag and the convenience of a backpack. 
However, a hybrid duffel is not as comfortable as a dedicated travel backpack. Since they lack structure, duffle backpacks will likely slouch against your back which may cause discomfort when worn for long periods.

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Agness Walewinder
Agness Walewinder
Travel freak, vagabond, photography passionate, blogger, life enthusiast, backpacker, adventure hunter and endless energy couchsurfer living by the rule "Pack lite, travel far and live long!"
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