Laptop Bags Don’t Have to be Expensive

After you’ve bought your new laptop computer, taken it out of the box and set it up, your next thought might naturally be “What am I going to carry this in?”. That laptop you just spent hundreds of dollars for is sitting there on your desk and looks naked and unprotected without one of those fancy laptop bags that will protect your new computer when you take it on trips or to the coffee shop. They’re also great for carrying cords and extra gear as well as a few papers now and then.

There are two main problems with many laptop cases. First, they’re often expensive; case manufacturers and office supply stores like to sell you on a nice, fancy carrying case for that new computer and will happily charge you $40 or $50 or more for a leather (or leatherette) case with a dozen pockets and all the other bells and whistles. I know that after plunking down all that money for a computer, the thought of spending that much for the case leaves me feeling a little drained. The second problem is that those expensive cases are often bulky and bulky eventually means heavy since we tend to fill the space available to us with papers and other items. Pretty soon, that sleek new laptop is a large burden that you’re lugging around with you from place to place.

Focusing mainly on the price of a new bag after I bought my latest laptop, I was happy to find the AmazonBasics Laptop Bag for just under $15 on It was well reviewed and highly rated so I decided to try it out. I’ve had it for about a year now and haven’t been disappointed. The case is smaller than my old case but still comfortably carries the 15.6″ laptop and is available in other sizes for larger machines. It still offers plenty of protection assuming you’re taking a reasonable amount of care with the bag that’s likely carrying your most expensive equipment. It also has a couple of internal pockets in addition to the main compartment for the laptop, an external zippered pocket and a detachable shoulder strap – basically all the things you’d expect from a laptop case without the bulk and price.

Side by side comparison of the AmazonBasics case on the right with the case or my old laptop.
Side by side comparison of the AmazonBasics case on the right with the case for my old laptop. (Click for larger view.)

For me, it comes down to this – it’s a computer case, not a piece of luggage. There’s really no reason that you should have to spend a lot of money for something that’s just going to cause you shoulder problems after you’ve already invested in your new computer. The AmazonBasics bag does the job nicely, and is unobtrusive in both size and price.

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