When you're traveling and far from the comforts of home, packing and carrying essential items like ID cards, passports, and electronic devices can put your mind at ease. Instead of taking chances and storing these belongings at your hotel, the best travel purses are equipped with anti-theft features that will keep your valuables safe.
The latest "anti-theft" bags and purses are designed with features like RFID-blocking technology, which is a kind of insulation that blocks electronic pick-pocketers from stealing information with an RFID reader that can pick up clues about your identity, including your passport and financial info. The hope is, of course, that this never happens to you in the first place, but RFID blockers embedded in the pockets of these bags provide an added level of assurance that you're safe while traveling.
Most of these travel bag options also feature bodies and straps that can't be slashed while you're distracted. Plus, lockable zippers and secure flaps add to the feeling of security that these cross-body, backpack, and tote bags provide.
You'll notice a few brands like Travelon and Pacsafe pop up time and again — the reason for this is simple: they design their bags with an impressive number of anti-theft features, and make some pretty cute bags, too. While you're preparing for your next trip and packing travel-friendly accessories, don't forget one of the most important of all: one of these quality travel purses.
1. The Overall Best Anti-Theft Purse For Travel
With a low-key design and loads of security features, this cross-body bag has everything you need in a good travel purse at a great price.
First, as mentioned, this is a cross-body bag — and the majority of the bags listed here are, too. What's great about having a bag that straps across your body is that it's both more convenient and more secure than a hand or shoulder bag. This bag also has a spacious main compartment as well as two exterior pockets that can hold a water bottle and/or umbrella, so it's great for an all-day excursion without being too big and bulky.
Bottom Line: Perfect Size, Good Price, & Secure As Hell
But what really sets this purse apart from your standard cross-body bag are the security features — and this bag has them all. First off, it has a compartment with an RFID-blocking card to keep someone from digitally stealing your identity and financial information. On top of that, it has slash-proof fabric and straps to prevent anyone from physically cutting your bag while you're distracted. The straps are designed to be locked down to stationery items, like a chair, so it can't be snatched by a passer-bier. Even the zippers are made to clip shut so you don't have to worry about anyone reaching into your purse either.
The only downfall to this bag would be that the over-all look of this bag may not fit your personal style. But even though this bag is pretty basic looking, it does come in more than 25 colors with a variety of lining shades, as well.
2. The Best Small Anti-Theft Purse
Not everyone needs a large or even medium-sized bag while site-seeing and if you're looking to keep your load light, this cross-body bag can carry everything you need (read: cash, credit cards, tickets, and your ID) but doesn't compromise when it comes to anti-theft features. Just like the top pick on this list, this compact bag has eXomesh slash guards in the lower front, side, and bottom panels, as well as a slash-proof shoulder strap and RFID technology in the zippered main compartment. The body strap can be used to lock the purse down to stationary objects and zippers can be clipped down to make it harder to access the contents of the purse.
It comes in three colors — merlot, blush tan, and black — and looks a little more elegant than most anti-theft bags. However, it does cost more, too.
3. A Great Mid-Sized Messenger Bag
This cross-body messenger bag offers the best of both worlds when it comes to purses. It's not too big and not too small, and for those who felt like the top pick on this list didn't fit their style, they may find that this one does a better job of passing as just a regular messenger bag — at the very least it won't announce to the world that you're a tourist. Despite its minimalist exterior, this bag contains a wealth of anti-theft features that include a large RFID zipper pocket where you can keep ID cards and passports, a security flap and steel-reinforced adjustable strap guards, and a strap that you can remove to wrap around your chair arms when you stop for a bite to eat.
This bag is designed from nylon twill and comes in five neutral colors like taupe and pewter. And you can opt to get this in one of two sizes: medium or large.
4. A Large Basic Tote
If you want something much bigger, then this tote is great for anything from an afternoon at the beach to an overnight trip to a secondary location.
It has all of the anti-theft features but is simple in its design and won't break the bank. It has hidden eXomesh slash-proof stainless steel wire mesh designed right in the fabric and a slash-proof strap. The main compartment pocket has RFIDsafe blocking material that keeps hackers from scanning your info and there's even a turn-and-lock security hook that you attach to the strap. This tote comes in three colors: almond, black, and cranberry.
5. A Stylish Large Tote
In terms of functionality, this oversized tote is very similar to it's less expensive counterpart listed above. But if you're looking for a chicer (or at the very least objectively more attractive) bag that is still on the larger size, this one is worth the investment.
As for security features, it has stainless steel wire and slash guards in the lower front, side, and bottom panels; a slash-proof shoulder strap, and an adjustable Carrysafe strap that allows you to anchor the bag somewhere that's safe when you make longer pitstops. A zippered main compartment is designed with RFID technology and there's a separate electronics pocket for iPads and laptops. This tote comes in black, Merlot, and dark tweed.
6. A Cheaper Large Tote
This is the most affordable large tote-style bag on the list, and although it has all the impressive anti-theft features that Pacsafe is known for, there is one pretty big flaw: it's a shoulder bag. That is to say, it doesn't securely attach to your body the way a cross-body bag or a backpack does. But, considering it still has most of the anti-theft features, is a large-capacity bag, and is less than $50, it's still a noteworthy option.
Its security features include RFIDsafe blocking material built into a pocket, slash-proof fabric, and a strap that can be secured to any fixture and that has a strong, anti-theft buckle. This bag is large enough to carry items you'll need when you're checking out new places. And while you're paying a little less for it, you'll also gain options in terms of colors and prints — choose among five fashion-forward designs that include denim and grey camo.
7. A Small Anti-Theft Backpack Purse
This small backpack is a great alternative to the traditional purse-style travel bags. Like the cross-body bag, a backpack purse secures to your body and is convenient to carry. And while standard backpack purses have serious security flaws that make them less than ideal to wear in crowded areas, this Travelon purse is loaded with anti-theft features such as compartments that lock and slash-resistant fabric, and straps that can be secured to objects like chairs when you're ready to take a break. This backpack comes in onyx, sapphire, and sable and is made from durable nylon twill.
8. A Larger Backpack Purse
A bit of compromise can yield you a really great travel bag like this roomy backpack, which is half the price of the previous option, but lacks nearly all of the anti-theft features. The one feature that still merits note in terms of security is that the opening can only be accessed if the bag is not on your back. This means, while you are wearing it, no one would be able to open the bag.
On top of the great price and single, but still good, security feature, this bag is made from waterproof PU leather and nylon and has removable, adjustable shoulder straps, two exterior zipper pockets and side pockets, one main pocket, two interior pockets, and one interior back zipper pocket. That's a lot of pockets to help you keep all of your belongings neatly organized. It comes in black, blue, or khaki.
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This post was originally published on 6/17/2018. It was updated on 07/1/2019.
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