The best men’s work bags: for stylish commuting

Men's work bag

No matter how you get to work in the mornings, whether it is by car, bike, train or bus, having a decent bag with you will ensure you can comfortably carry all your belongings with you in style. Depending on what essentials you need to take to work with you, there are a range of different men’s work bag styles you can choose from which can be fashionable and practical for day to day use. But the best men's work bags will have room for all your gadgets and tech without looking like a cliché laptop bag.

If you work in a classic office environment and your daily attire typically involves a suit, a classic leather briefcase will likely be your best bet as a work bag. Not only are  they the most traditional form of men’s business bag; they are slim and easy to carry, and modern styles of briefcases are designed similarly to laptop bags in that they comfortably fit and protect your devices during transit. With brands such as Aspinal of London beginning to incorporate smart features for gadgets and tech items into their heritage leather goods, these classic men's bags might be traditional in style but are becoming modern in features.

If you commute to work by bike, the messenger bag is your best friend. These simple, and often retro, work bags have evolved into the modern man’s briefcase, allowing room for your laptop and your lunch as well as all your other paraphernalia. This style of bag benefits from an additional shoulder strap so it can be worn hands free when cycling, and if you are less of a traditionalist, they might just fit your style a little better than a briefcase.

The latest surge in men's work bags is thanks to the backpack trend. There are plenty of smart designs on the market, with many now having integrated laptop sleeves for extra protection when carrying your device with you. If you travel with work a lot, you may wish to opt for a larger and more durable bag like a duffel or even a small wheelie case for ease of transport. Whatever your preference, we’ve got some great options in our list to suit all styles and budgets. 

Men's work bag

1. Aspinal of London Executive Briefcase

A luxury briefcase for the professional gentleman

Best for: Luxury briefcase | Material: Italian Calf Leather & Suede | Dimensions: HWD33X40.6X10.2cm | Colour: Brown

Fits a slim laptop 
Looks professional
Not very spacious 

You can always count on Aspinal of London for their sleek and elegant products, and this briefcase is no different. This would make the perfect luxury gift for the man in your life, or a great way to treat yourself after getting that promotion. The briefcase itself can hold a slim laptop, but you’re not likely to fit much else in after that, apart from a pen and paper, and perhaps your phone and wallet. This briefcase is all about minimalist style, so if you’re a high-flying businessman who wants to look the part, this is the men’s work bag for you.  

Men's work bag

2. Tumi Andrews Slim Brief

A stylish and durable alternative to a classic briefcase

Best for: Modern briefcase | Material: Nylon | Dimensions: HWD 33x40.5x5cm | Colour: Black

Shoulder strap
Durable 
Can get quite heavy  

If you like the briefcase style but want something a bit more durable, then this slim modern briefcase is more of a posh laptop bag. The nylon outer doesn’t look as professional but it still looks smart and is stronger for carrying a laptop with you. The bag has padding inside to protect your device, which does mean the bag can get a little heavy, but you have both handles and a shoulder strap to help distribute the weight in a way that is most comfortable for your commute. The leather accents are a nice touch to this men’s work bag, making it a popular choice for those who want both style and functionality.  

Men's work bag

3. Barbour Leather Briefcase

A practical man bag for all the office essentials

Best for: Daily use | Material: Leather | Dimensions: HWD 28x41.5x14cm | Colour: Brown

Spacious 
Heritage design
Buckle fastenings a bit fiddly  

This country style leather satchel with tartan interior lining is a popular choice for a bag that looks designer without the hefty price tag. Those who have this bag say it is spacious enough to fit your everyday essentials in for the office, and the shoulder strap makes it ideal for those who walk or cycle to work. The buckle fasting can be a little fiddly but ultimately it’s a nice touch which adds to the heritage style of the bag. The soft leather also makes it more flexible and comfortable to wear on the body compared to a laptop bag or briefcase.  

Men's work bag

4. Tumi Stratton Crossbody Bag

A slim and modern cross-body bag

Best for: Slim design | Material: Nylon | Dimensions: HWD 30.5x29x5cm | Colour: Black

Discreet compartments for valuables
Adjustable strap
A bit small 

If you want something small that won’t get in the way, then this cross body bag seems to be just the right size for your essential belongings and valuables such as a tablet. It has discreet pockets and an adjustable shoulder strap so you can wear it in the way you want. It is a little smaller than the other bags, but if you often don’t need to carry your laptop from home to the office then this could be just the right size for you.  

Men's work bag

5. Brooks England Lexington Briefcase

A stylish everyday canvas bag which clips onto your bike rack

Best for: Cyclists | Material: Canvas | Dimensions: HWD 33x43x11cm | Colour: Blue

Bike clip
Magnetic front pocket
Doesn’t feel as expensive as it is  

Cyclists will want a bag that can withstand a little bit of a beating from time to time, and this coated-canvas messenger bag from Mr Porter could be just the thing. This bag is durable and has a special water resistant strap which also comes with a Klick Fix system which allows you to attach this bag to your bike. You’ll have easy access to the front pocket with a magnetic fastening, and the blue colour gives it a more casual look and feel so it doesn’t just have to be used for work purposes. It doesn’t necessarily look as sleek and expensive as the others, but you can expect this bag to be reliable on your daily commute.  

Men's work bag

6. Herschel Supply Co Retreat Backpack

A smart casual backpack to take you from the gym to the office

Best for: Smart/casual look | Material: Polyester | Dimensions: HWD 47x31x11cm | Colour: Blue

Easy to carry
Laptop sleeve
Tricky to pack

A backpack is the easiest way to carry belongings hands free, and this Herschel Supply Backpack is designed with commuters in mind. It boasts a laptop sleeve for devices up to 15” and a media pocket with headphone port so you can listen to music on the go. The only downside is it can be tricky to get something out quickly and efficiently with the drawstring top, but it is ultimately more convenient for travel.  

Men's work bag

7. Knomo Princeton Briefcase

Protect your laptop with this stylish suitcase

Best for: Laptops | Material: Twill polyester and Faux leather | Dimensions: HWD 29x41x7.5cm | Colour: Grey

Lots of pockets
Extra padding for protection
No room for anything else 

If you’re looking for something specific to carry your device, then this laptop bag with stylish briefcase design could be just the bag for you. It features extra padding to ensure your laptop is protected to and from the office, and it has lots of extra pockets ideal for paperwork and other bits and bobs. There’s not much room for anything else such as a packed lunch, but men have found this to be an incredibly practical bag for those who often carry their laptop with them at all times. it fits laptops up to the size of 15.6inch and also has dedicated compartments for your smartphone or tablet, too. Overall this is an affordable and professional-looking modern briefcase. 

Men's work bag

8. Herschel Supply Co. Novel Duffle Holdall

Pack everything you need for your business trip in this smart duffle bag

Best for: Business trips | Material: Polyester | Dimensions: HWD 29.2x52x25 | Colour: Black or navy

Shoe compartment
Spacious inside
Not the smartest looking 

When travelling with work sometimes you may not want to lug a big suitcase with you if it’s only a short trip, and this duffle bag is said to be just the right size for a couple of night’s away. The dedicated shoe compartment means you can keep your smart shoes separate from your clothing, which is also handy if you often go from the gym straight to the office as you can always use it for your trainers and sweaty clothing. It has two strong handles and is said to be deceptively spacious inside, so you can expect to fit all of your essentials in with ease.  

If you are looking for a men's bag to take you through to the weekend, check out our round-up of the best men's weekend bags.