Updated on May 1, 2020 by Lyric Fergusson
Backpacks are not just for function, they’re also fun and there are many reasons that getting a backpack for your toddler is a great idea. During the toddler stage, children want independence and love to do things on their own which makes letting them carry their belongings in a backpack a perfect way to let them exercise their independence. These bags can be used during travel, shopping, or going to preschool and, as your little one gets older, it can be used for the transition into kindergarten.Please note: due to unusually high demand, a lot of these products are selling out fast! 🙁
The Best Toddler Backpacks
(Best Budget Backpack – $)
Why it’s great: This backpack is a great, inexpensive option if you want something simple and cute. The plushy material is soft, and cleanup is easy since it can be washed in the washing machine and left to air dry. The straps are soft and cushioned as well as being adjustable so it’s easy for your little one to wear comfortably and grow with. It is on the smaller side but will fit a change of clothes and toys if you are looking for a simple, cute backpack for preschool.
Keep in mind: Because of the fabric type, this backpack might appear dirty faster than a canvas material would.
Good for: Kids ages one to three.
(Best Character Backpack – $$)
Why it’s great: This backpack is fun and whimsical as well as convenient for use by little ones. The bright colors and imaginative creature designs are a fun way for your little one to show off their big personality. There is an insulated pouch that is perfect for snacks or drinks and an adjustable mesh bottle pocket that fits most standard sized water bottles. The straps are padded and adjustable which makes it easy to let it grow with your little one as well as keeping them comfortable.
Keep in mind: Some parents have said that the backpack is a little on the small side, so looking at the measurements might be a good idea to help you decide if it’s a good fit for your toddler.
Good for: Kids ages one to six.
(Best Simple Backpack – $$$)
Why it’s great: This backpack is simple while still being stylish and fun. There is an insulated pocket that can hold snacks or a small lunch and a mesh pocket on the side that’s perfect for a water bottle. The reflective piping along the front will help keep your little one safe by making sure that they are as visible as possible, even at night. The adjustable straps make it easy for it to grow with your little one so that they don’t outgrow it so quickly and the sturdiness of it means that it will last!
Keep in mind: It doesn’t fit a standard sized folder, so it might not work for kindergarten when kids are bringing paperwork to and from school.
Good for: Kids ages one to five.
(Sturdy and Durable – $$)
Why it’s great: This backpack is not only durable, but also functional at the same time and there are quite a few designs to choose from. The mesh along the back allows air flow so that your little one stays comfortable and doesn’t overheat while wearing it. Although it is not the largest backpack, it can fit a surprising number of items inside it without becoming too heavy for your toddler to handle on their own. The material is waterproof which makes it easier to keep clean and the sternum strap helps it to stay on your little one no matter what.
Keep in mind: Parents have complained that this backpack is smaller than they expected it to be, so paying attention to measurements before purchase might be wise to make sure you know what you’re getting.
Good for: Kids ages two to five.
(Best Quality Backpack – $$)
Why it’s great: This backpack is super cute, and the drawstring design is stylish and unique. The backpack itself is made of cotton, including the sewn-on designs, which means that it is easy to clean in a washing machine. The pouch design makes for a roomy backpack that your little one can carry all their belongings in. There is an additional zipper pocket on the side which can hold small items that you don’t want to have to dig for. The number one thing that parents have said about this backpack is that it is great quality, so you know you’ll get what you pay for!
Keep in mind: The straps are adjustable, but only by about an inch or two so it might not be the best for growing with your little one.
Good for: Kids ages two to four.
(Best for Travel – $$)
Why it’s great: When you’re traveling, there are dozens of people swarming around you most of the time and it can be overwhelming trying to make sure your toddler is safe. Between the leash and chest clip, your little one will be extra secure when you’re on the move, while still allowing you to see where you’re going. Beyond that, the cute design makes this a fun accessory for your toddler to carry their belongings around with them, so they will enjoy wearing it. Two mesh pockets on the side fit standard sized water bottles and the main pocket is big enough for a change of clothes and quite a few toys.
Keep in mind: Some parents have mentioned that they wish that the harness had a little more padding because if your little one were to try to run while you held the leash, it might rub them wrong.
Good for: Kids ages one to four.
(Large and Roomy – $$)
Why it’s great: This backpack is stylish and functional. There is a large main compartment which can hold a standard sized folder which means that this could fit your little one right up into kindergarten. It is easy to wipe clean if it gets messy and the two mesh pockets on the sides are perfect for standard sized water bottles. The straps are comfortable, padded, and adjustable which makes it easy for your little one to wear comfortably and grow with.
Keep in mind: Many shoppers have complained that shipping takes a little longer with this backpack, so it might not be ideal if you needed it urgently.
Good for: Kids ages two to six.
FAQs about toddler backpacks
1. What size are toddler backpacks?
On average, toddler backpacks are about twelve inches, so about the size of a ruler. This is a size that will accommodate a change of clothes, toys, snacks, and a water bottle. However, this size will generally not fit a standard sized folder so you might need a larger size for kindergarten aged children and older.
2. Why does my toddler need a backpack?
Toddlers can use backpacks for multiple reasons. This includes travel, preschool, daycare, and just a way to bring toys along with them wherever they may be going. Not only is it a great way to get your little one to carry their own items, they will love to do it and act more independently.
3. What are busy bags?
Busy bags are a great way to keep your little one busy while at appointments, traveling, or shopping. You can fill a bag with toys, simple crafts, and activities that your toddler can pull out and use to keep themselves distracted and happy.
4. What is the best backpack for toddlers?
That depends on what your needs and your toddler’s needs are, as well as what they will be used for. If it’s for travel, you might want something that has a leash and harness. If it’s just for preschool, something small and cute will do. If you want it to last through kindergarten, you’ll want something larger and more durable. Once you figure out exactly what your needs are, it will be easy to find out which backpack is the best fit!
Toddler backpacks are where fun and function meet. It’s an unexpected way to foster independence in your little one and they will love to have possession of their own stuff. There is enough range in quality and designs that it can make it difficult to know which backpack is the best option, but this list is a great place to start when trying to decide.