Fact: There's never a bad time to use up your hard-earned PTO by booking a quick trip. And unless you’re a chronic over-packer like myself, you’ll need to find the best weekender or overnight bag for your next getaway. Weekender and overnight bags are basically like the smaller, cuter version of carry-on luggage, and perfect for carrying the essentials.
Traditionally, weekend bags were sold as a part of an entire luggage set. Now, however, they’re sold on their own, giving you the perfect excuse to have a little more fun. And with quick trips becoming increasingly popular, it’s about time for you to invest in one that can carry you through the seasons.
And if we’re talking about the best weekender bags, there’s no one more equipped to turn to for advice than Shay Mitchell. The actress and mother founded her luggage brand BÉIS in 2018 to create bags that take you from the gym to the plane without compromising on style. But aside from being stylish, her bags are some of the most functional suitcases on the market. Ahead, Mitchell breaks down what to look for when shopping for a weekender bags. Read on to shop her favorites, and those of the very well-traveled team here at Marie Claire.
Best Deals on Weekender Bags
Why you can trust Marie Claire Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.
CALPAK Luka Duffel |
$120 $96 (opens in new tab)
This easy weekender comes in five limited and four core colors—and is available for under $100 right now. It has nine pockets, a trolley sleeve, and has a designated compartment for your shoes, making it a great choice for someone who hits the gym before work or the person who jets off on plenty of long-weekend trips.
Fjällräven Kånken 15-Inch Laptop Backpack |
$120 $90 at Amazon (opens in new tab)
This cult-favorite backpack is on sale right now for less than $100 at Amazon. It's great if you need to carry only your essentials for the weekend, and has a dedicated section inside for your laptop. Shop it in 12 colors now.
- Best Affordable Weekender Bag: A New Day Overnighter Duffel Weekender Bag (opens in new tab)
- Best Splurge-Worthy Weekender Bag: Coach Gotham Duffle (opens in new tab)
- Best Versatile Weekender Bag: BEIS The Weekender Bag (opens in new tab)
- Best Small Weekender Bag: Fjällräven Kånken 15-Inch Laptop Backpack (opens in new tab)
What Is a Weekender Bag?
Not just any slightly larger tote bag can be considered a weekender bag, so it’s important to know what you’re looking for when you’re shopping, especially if you’re shopping online. “I’d define a weekender as a bag that is big enough to fit every single thing that you need, and small enough to sling over your shoulder and be your tagalong for a quick jaunt,” Mitchell says in an email.
What to Look For
“I honestly don’t think I can narrow it down to just ONE single thing on The Weekender, but if I have to I will *cheat* and say ‘thoughtful function,’” Mitchell says about what she looks for when shopping (and designing!) a weekender bag. “I think a lot of times people are so focused on the way a bag looks that they can forget the very important consideration of how the bag is going to serve the person carrying it."
“Most of us have similar things we need to carry with us—phones, wallets, cards, passports, water bottles—so when we design we always think of organization that will accommodate all of the things people need while still being something they feel cute carrying," she adds.
The Best Weekender Bags
Best Versatile Weekend Bag
This weekend bag from sustainable brand Everlane includes a padded laptop sleeve, two water bottle holders, zipper pockets on the outside, and a removable shoulder strap, proving that it's the one bag that can take you just about everywhere. Available in four colors, including cream, olive, and brown, it’s easy to style and sleek by design. Reviewers even say it's lightweight before you add any of your clothes in (a major plus), and can even double as a work bag.
Pros: Can safely hold your laptop; Can do double-duty for work; Sustainably made.
Cons: Some reviewers say the nylon straps can cut into your shoulders.
Best Classic Weekender Bag
If you're looking for a no-frills weekender bag, this one (which costs under $100) from Herschel Supply Co. is for you. It comes in four easy-to-style colors including dark green and navy blue, has a double-zip design at the top for extra security, and an adjustable shoulder strap in addition to two straps on the top. There’s even a mesh pocket on the inside for extra storage, plus a zippered pocket on the exterior for the things you frequently reach for.
Pros: Costs under $100; Has an interior pocket and an exterior pocket; has an adjustable shoulder strap; comes in multiple colors.
Cons: Some reviewers note that having one pair of shoes in the bag takes up lots of space.
"Listen, I love all my babies equally, but The Weekender is my tried and true," Mitchell says about this best-selling (and under $100!) bag. "This bag looks badass, has amazing structure, maximizes space with creative organization and is the most ideal size. We love to offer consumers compartments, pockets and spaces that can be used for a variety of reasons…whatever they feel is best for keeping them organized on-the-go." Plus, The Weekender Bag is super versatile. "I always use the bottom of The Weekender for my shoes, for example, but my mom uses it for her cosmetic and bathroom items, and my friend uses it for all her baby's stuff," she says.
Pros: Plenty of compartments; Under $100; Comes in five colors
Con: Some colors can sell out
Best Patterned Weekender Bag
This nostalgic weekender bag from Vera Bradley is a classic thanks to its iconic print. It's made from a water-resistant fabric and has a trolley sleeve that fits on your suitcase for easy travel if you're taking more than one bag with you. If you are using this for a quick overnight trip, the quilted fabric is also soft on your shoulders.You can even monogram it, and you have plenty of colors and prints to choose from. Plus, it has five interior pockets!
Pros: Has five interior pockets; Has a adjustable, removable, and cushioned shoulder strap; Is monogrammable, comes in many prints and colors.
Cons: Costs more than $200.
Best Weekender Bag for Longer Trips
We have long waxed poetic about Cuyana here at Marie Claire (see: our guide to the best laptop bags), but this larger weekender bag from the brand is one of our favorites, too, and it’s not hard to see why. It has three zippered internal compartments for organization and has a trolley sleeve so it can attach to your roller luggage. Plus, it comes in three color combinations, is made of a sturdy canvas fabric, and has a crossbody strap along with the top handles.
Pros: Has an adjustable shoulder strap; fits on a suitcase, Has three internal zippered pockets.
Cons: Costs more than $100; Is not water-resistant.
Most Functional Weekender Bag
"I haven’t met a Calpak product I didn’t love, but their classic duffel is perhaps my favorite of them all. Aside from it being an objectively attractive weekender bag, the Luka’s streamlined design doesn’t come at the expense of practical features. With a bottom compartment for shoes (one of nine (9!) pockets in total), a slit for sliding the bag over the handle of rolling luggage (for quick sprints through the airport or trudging along city streets), and a plush, lightweight, comfortable design, it’s everything you could want in a bag—and then some." — Lucia Tonelli, Social Media Editor
Best Weekender Bag for Quick Trips
"This bag has been everywhere with me. It’s lightweight, has an adjustable shoulder strap as well as a top handle, and has interior pockets so that my stuff stays organized. Great for a quick few-day trip, this bag is just big enough to fit a few changes of clothes and two pairs of shoes at most." — Julia Marzovilla, E-Commerce Writer
Best Sustainable Weekender Bag
"I tend to overpack when going out of town for the weekend, but this weekend tote is ultra roomy. Deep interior pockets mean I don't have to choose between my hair dryer and a pair of shoes—they're both coming with me. Plus, I feel good about using it—this bag is constructed from 12 upcycled water bottles!" — Sara Holzman, Style Director
Best Weekender Bag For Under $50
"This weekender bag is the perfect size for a weekend and it's lasted me through many trips home! Plus the straps are cushiony enough not to hurt through long lines." — Brooke Knappenberger, Editorial Fellow
Best Expandable Weekender Bag
This water-resistant nylon-and-leather overnight and weekender bag from Longchamp (another favorite brand of team Marie Claire) is great for longer trips because it’s actually expandable courtesy of a zip insert. Plus, it folds down to lay flat, making it great for trips where you expect to shop or are planning to come home with more items than you left with. Even if it is completely full, the soft leather straps will keep your shoulders feeling fine all day. Plus, it’s still eligible to be a carry-on, even if it’s fully-expanded.
Pros: Water-resistant; Has a removable shoulder strap; Expandable design; Comes in several colors
Cons: Costs over $200; Has one interior side pocket.
Best Weekender Bag for Light Packers
This neutral, small-but-mighty backpack from Fjällräven will hold your laptop plus all of your weekend or overnight essentials. If you're someone that can travel the world with just one single pair of jeans, one pair of sneakers, and a few T-shirts, this is the one. It has a sleeve inside for a laptop, will fit your tablet plus most 15” laptops, comes in a few different colors, and is water-resistant. The lightly-padded shoulder straps also make it great for all-day carrying.
Pros: Costs under $200; Water-resistant; Fits most 15" laptops; Has a dedicated laptop sleeve; Has adjustable shoulder straps; Comes in several colors.
Cons: Small in size.
Best Waterproof Weekender Bag
This sleek weekend bag from Rains is available to shop in eight neutral colors (like this deep green color) and is made from a shiny coated fabric that literally wicks away moisture and rain to guarantee that your belongings stay dry all day long. And when it comes to its design, this one’s a winner: It has one large compartment in the middle, has webbed detachable handles for better grip, and slider buckles on the side to keep everything secure.
Pros: Costs less than $200; Water-resistant design; Has removable handles; Has an adjustable shoulder strap.
Cons: Only has one large interior pocket.
Best Leather Weekend Bag
Made from luxe Glovetanned leather, this brown duffle-style weekend bag from Coach is nearly 20 inches long, so it can fit enough clothes to last you a week plus your computer and all of your other essentials. Yes, it’s pricey at $695, but it has one interior side pocket, a matching exterior pocket, and reviewers say that it’s comfortable to carry. One reviewer even noted that it has a “surprising amount of space” inside, noting how the interior pockets made it easier to stay organized.
Pros: Has several interior pockets; Is large in size; Has an exterior pocket.
Cons: Costs more than $200.
Meet The Expert
Shay Mitchell is an actress, multi-faceted entrepreneur and travel expert. Shay founded the travel and lifestyle essentials brand BÉIS in 2018, which offers stylish, functional, durable, and responsible fashion-forward luggage, baby bags, pet travel and accessories, cosmetics cases and more. Shay has been traveling extensively over the past 20 years. Whether flying cross-country or cross-continent, or navigating the daily hustle of an active lifestyle, Shay knows firsthand the joys and pains of every type of travel. With over 45 million followers across all platforms, Shay is one of the most celebrated voices on social media.