Travel photographers already know the value of protecting their gear with one of the best anti-theft camera bags they can find. And even if you’re not a travel photographer, keeping your equipment safe around town and on short outings is totally worth upgrading your backpack to the best.
The good news is we’ve found the 10 best anti-theft backpacks and… there are some budget-friendly options too!
Two Big Problems the Best Anti-Theft Camera Bags Solve
In a perfect world, a photographer would always be able to keep their camera on hand wherever they go. However, two factors all too often convince photographers to leave their gear behind.
- The inconvenience that comes with having to carry around bodies, lenses, and accessories
- The threat of losing valuable camera gear to prying hands.
So, we’ve found some solutions that address both issues. Check out how each of our favorite anti-theft camera bags works to keep your possessions safe.
10 of the Best Anti-Theft Camera Bags
1. Zecti Camera Backpack
This bag doesn’t rely on the traditional anti-theft traits, but still has anti-theft properties to boot!
The Zecti Camera Backpack may appear inconspicuous, but it is in fact full of secrets! Upon first glance, there doesn’t appear to be much substance. There’s a distinct lack of locks or buckles that some other bags rely on. However, there’s a bit more to this product than initially meets the eye.
A few clever tricks incorporated into the design keep thieves at bay… Rather than relying on auxiliary locks or clunky security mechanisms, the bag’s design deters unwanted access.
Notably, the bag utilizes a back opening structure making it difficult for prying hands to grab into. And when the back strap is applied, there’s little space between the bag and body for someone to sneak in. What’s more, flaps hide access zippers, making vulnerable spots difficult to locate. Your purchase is also paired with an 18-month warranty that’s backed up by 24-hour customer service.
Other perks of the Zecti Camera Backpack include modular dividers that can be switched around at your leisure. Alternatively, if you need to use the bag for something other than a photographic endeavor, they can be removed entirely. The Zecti bag is great for those seeking an option that doubles as an everyday backpack.
The bag is made with a sturdy, waterproof canvas. A breathable back panel also improves ventilation. There is also an included rain cover to protect against additional elements like rain and sand. For the discreet, style-oriented photographer, the Zecti backpack is a great choice. It sports a small build and a more casual appearance than a standard camera bag.
2. Neewer Pro Camera Case
A brand that has quite the reputation of offering premium features at a not-premium price!
It’s no secret that Neewer puts out some of the best gear money can buy. So, it comes as no surprise it was one of the first places we visited on the search for great anti-theft camera bags. The Neewer Pro Camera Case did not disappoint, living up to our high expectations of the brand.
In regards to the safety features, most visibly, the main compartment of the bag is equipped with an intimidating combination lock. Because it’s TSA accessible it also helps prevent issues at the airport. Additional features like zip tie points add another layer of protection. That being said, there are a few hidden surprises with this bag. We’re fans of the hidden security whistle built into the button connector. Neewer’s security practices are fairly straightforward but extremely effective.
Other perks of this bag include the ergonomic design (including lens-friendly strap pouches) which makes for easy access to all of your things. Neewer uses breathable materials and strong stitching to make your bag stand up to wear and tear. Alongside this, Neewer utilizes multiple layers of durable materials for this bag. A durable plastic frame holds together the internal nylon which is padded with a layer of shock-proof sponge. An exterior water-resistant nylon fabric holds it all together. Like other options, the inside is adjustable and removable. With a little careful planning, the Neewer Pro Camera Case holds multiple camera bodies and up to 6 lenses.
3. Pacsafe Camsafe Z16
This brand focuses heavily on safety of your gear, making this a fantastic choice.
This camera brand is built heavily on security and reliability, not inluding the Pacsafe Camsafe Z16 would be a disservice! This anti-theft camera bag is filled with surprises that keep all of your valuables safe.
Pacsafe goes above and beyond to ensure your gear is secure. For starters, steel-wire mesh inside the fabric prevents thieves from slashing the bag open. The strap also has a slash guard!
Exterior zippers secure to discreet zip clip hooks, stopping pickpockets in their tracks. A Roobar anchor also keeps zips secured at one anchor point. Finally, a turn and lock security hook buckles everything down. On the inside, an RFID-safe pocket keeps credit cards, passports, and other valuables safe.
If this list isn’t enough to convince you that this is a secure backpack, we don’t know what could possibly be enough!
On top of all those anti-theft features, there are other big bonuses that this bag packs. It’s a small but mighty option with a measly weight of 3 lbs but it offers you 25 liters of storage space!
A sternum strap and hip belt evenly distribute weight and these can be adjusted to your liking, ensuring long-lasting comfort over long days. The Pacsafe bag features modular padded dividers to organize your gear. Equipped with velcro, you can personalize the insides to fit all of your lenses and accessories with ease.
4. BAGSMART Sling Bag
The best budget option on the list, this bag will keep your gear safe for under $30.
BAGSMART is a brand with a slew of different camera-carrying accessories to pick from! From backpacks to slings, they’ve got it all (with great design to boot). The BAGSMART Sling Bag is an especially effective anti-theft bag and is just the right size for a day outing with your camera.
Although it isn’t big enough to hold a full arsenal of equipment, it is just the right size for one camera, two to three lenses, and some accessories (such as batteries and extra memory cards).
The sling bag’s unique shape makes it comfortable to hold in any fashion. For extra safety, you can even strap it to the front of your body, deterring thieves from trying to pickpocket. Additionally, the BAGSMART Sling Bag features anti-theft zippers, with each zipper tucking away into a little elastic band strap. The inside is made up of a suede material that won’t scratch, and all of your pockets are interiors (so there is nothing to steal from the front).
Other benefits of this bag include the ability to remove the camera insert and turn the bag into a regular ol’ outing bag, water-resistant fabric, and padded shoulder straps that are fully adjustable for your comfort.
This really is the perfect little bag that promises to keep your gear safe from prying hands.
5. Peak Design Everyday Backpack
This option from popular camera accessory brand Peak Design offers a unique and creative camera carrying solution for every photographer.
The Peak Design Everyday Backpack has been included in our list because this is a really sleek backpack that can be designed to fit your every need. It features many key anti-theft mechanisms, too!
Alongside being very stylish, anti-theft protection was very clearly thought out in the Peak Design Everyday Backpack. The inside features RFID pocket protection, which is great for when you’re on the go and you want to store your passport or credit cards. Theft-deterrent zipper straps are easy to tighten up after you’ve packed everything in, making it a struggle to pick-pocket. And the metal clasp is both durable and designed to outsmart your average pickpocketer. Rather than just pulling the clasp out, it requires a very specific maneuver to open the bag.
Outside of all of this, the fabric is great quality so you know it won’t rip on you during use. There are plenty of straps and pockets so you can carry everything you need, and a hidden laptop sleeve compartment is an added bonus!
6. Pacsafe Camsafe X17
If you’re willing to dish out a few extra bucks, the X17 is a full around improvement on the Z16 mentioned above.
Although we did have a different Pacsafe Camsafe bag on our list, if you’re willing to dish out some extra money, you can upgrade to the Pacsafe Camsafe X17 which has even more anti-theft features.
The Pacsafe Camsafe X17 packs a lot of great features into its very discrete-looking design. Thieves will think twice before wanting to mess with you! The entire backpack is made of RFID blocking material, so you’re able to put all of your belongings wherever you need them for your own convenience.
The bag has a pop-n-lock security clip that helps prevent bag snatchers from ripping the backpack off of your person. The straps and fabric themselves are all anti-slash, so you don’t need to worry about someone taking a pair of scissors and trying to cut the bag off of you when you’re not looking. The zippers themselves are all lockable and Roobar Sport locking system helps lock the straps up nice and tight.
You can be confident that all of your gear will be safe in this bag!
7. AERFEIS Backpack
For the frequent flyers reading this list, this backpack is designed to make your travels easy peasy.
Travel smarter not harder! The AERFEIS Backpack tries to make your travel both hassle- and worry-free with its comfortable design. Stylish and sleek on the outside, the AERFEIS Backpack has some nice travel-oriented features in it to keep you going.
To start, there is a conveniently hidden pocket slip on the shoulder strap closest to your face, where you can slip in travel cards, passports, a wallet, or anything else you may need easy access to! This hidden compartment being so close to you makes it virtually unattainable to prying hands. The various removable reinforcement belts keep everything on your person tight and secure, and also helps with weight distribution! The zippers are built sturdy and won’t rust or break on you. The inside is lined with velvet, with the camera and lens dividers made of shock-absorbing material.
Additionally, the inside is completely modular and adjustable depending on how much gear you are bringing and what kind of gear you need to pack away, with plenty of pockets for the safekeeping of all of your smaller items!
8. K&F Concept Multi-Functional Camera Backpack
If storage is the name of the game, this backpack has a lot of potential.
Talk about a great-looking camera bag that’s also lightweight (weighing in at under 2 lbs)! The K&F Concept Multi-Functional Camera Backpack is quite nifty in several unique ways.
The first is that the camera insert is actually fully removable and turns into its own bag with handles, allowing this bag to either be converted into an everyday bag or turn any of your other bags into a camera bag! There is a hidden compartment for laptop or tablet that is 13″ or less. This sleeve is also quite difficult to reach from the outside, deterring those that may try to slip in and nab whatever you prefer to work with.
The camera compartment is accessed from either the small side pocket or through a hidden compartment in the back of the backpack, so you’ll know well in advance if somebody was trying to grab something! The back pocket also makes reaching your gear much easier.
You cannot really access the camera from the main pocket or top of the bag, making this bag perfect for washing away your worries of theft. The main compartment can easily be used to store any of your travel needs, such as extra clothes or shoes. Which also doubles as a disguise feature for those who really want to go the extra mile in keeping their gear safe.
9. Newt Fully Waterproof Padded Camera Shoulder Bag
If you want a camera bag that doesn’t look like a camera bag, this lunchbox style shoulder bag is for you!
Probably the most unique looking bag on our list, the Newt Fully Waterproof Padded Camera Shoulder Bag looks like a lunchbox! Some of the best anti-theft bags are those that don’t advertise that you’re carrying thousands of dollars worth of equipment, and this one does just that with its square design. Some might find it quite aesthetically pleasing as well, but generally, it’s a lunchbox for your photo-taking stuff.
Although it doesn’t feature many of the key anti-theft characteristics that our other bags on the list have, its unique look is a deterrent in and of itself. What makes this bag really awesome is the fact that it is totally waterproof, with a leak-prevention zipper! It closes up so tightly that water isn’t able to reach your camera gear, which can equally state that the zipper is sturdy so that it takes a bit of effort for someone to try and pry it open.
The strap itself is removable, so you can even carry this bag like a lunchbox if you so desire!
10. Pelican Air 1615 Case
Not traditionally seen as a camera bag like the rest on our list, but it’s worth including a carry case. Pelican has a very long-standing relationship with photographers, with its insanely large array of hard cases to protect gear! Used by everyone from military personnel to photographers and drone operators, Pelican cases are the industry standard for gear protection. But did you know that Pelican cases do have anti-theft properties to them?
For traveling, the Pelican Air 1615 Case is the Pelican line you should be looking at. Designed for air or car travel, the Pelican Air 1615 Case is made with a crush-proof exterior that’s fully waterproof and shock absorbent should it be tossed around all over the place. Sized as a checked bag, you can be certain that your gear will come back in top-notch condition with its highly packed (and customizable, tear out the size you need) foam insert.
What makes this case anti-theft is the ability to lock the container itself. There is a lock built-in, or you can add one yourself. The latches are press-and-pull latches, requiring a good amount of effort to open – and thieves don’t tend to want to mess with latches that are difficult. You can rest confidently with the Pelican Air 1615 Case.
What Anti-Theft Bag Is Right for You?
Keeping your gear safe is of the utmost importance, and the various bags on our list all aim to do just that! If you’re looking for an affordable anti-theft backpack, BAGSMART’s Sling Bag is highly effective without breaking the bank.
For those who want a stylish backpack that is functional in all areas, the Peak Design Everyday Backpack is bound to be a hit. You can even explore the rest of Peak Design’s products for ultimate compatibility.
Finally, the Pacsafe Camsafe X17 is a truly premium option that has all the anti-theft features you could dream of and more!
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