Buyer’s Guide To The Best Survival Backpack

A Buyer’s Guide: Survival Backpack - Bug Out Bag

When you’re thinking of survival gear, there’s pretty much something to meet every basic need. Once you have all of your odds and ends ready to go, the one thing you’re missing is somewhere to store them. Considering these handy items are responsible for keeping all of our other survival gear safe, you really need to know what you’re in for before you buy.

Whether you’re after something that can be stored away and stocked up ready for an emergency, or want an all-purpose backpack that can also be used for camping or hiking, there’s certainly no shortage of survival backpack kit options. However, wading through the thousands of survival backpack reviews can be time-consuming.

Backpacks for hiking and camping can quite literally go into the thousands when you’re looking at their price range, but for the purpose of survival and emergency preparedness, there’s no need to spend an exuberant amount. In this guide, in particular, we’ll be looking at those that are a little more budget friendly so you can find the best survival backpack review for you.

With hundreds of different options available, with everything from military grade to bug out bags, there is no shortage of choice. Depending on your location you might need a wilderness survival backpack or an urban survival backpack, so again there’s a lot to think about.

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What To Consider When Finding The Best Survival Backpack

There are quite a few things to consider when buying a survival backpack, though, and the features will depend on what the user finds most important. Here are a few things you’ll need to contemplate:

  • Capacity – how much stuff do you need to fit inside, and how many days will it last you
  • Comfort – do you want padded straps or a padded hip belt, or are you happy to carry something a little more rugged
  • Waterproof – you’ll need your survival backpack to perform well in all conditions, so how waterproof do you want it to be
  • Durability – how durable is the backpack and will it withstand harsh conditions
  • Other features – these are little extras that you might consider important such as weight, hydration sleeves, frames, and ventilation

Depending on your personal circumstances, what you’re planning on carrying, and in what location you reside, each emergency prepper will require different things from their backpack. From our research, we’ve come up with four different designs that would suit an emergency prepper’s needs and all within a reasonable budget. The size, features, and functions, though, will depend on your personal circumstance.

Best Survival Backpack Under $30

CVLIFE Outdoor Tactical Military Backpack

  • 30L capacity making it a small survival backpack choice
  • Comes in three different colors and designs
  • Made with waterproof nylon material so it’s great for all types of weather
  • Padded shoulder straps for comfort

CVLIFE are no strangers to survival bags, with their range covering everything from backpacks to admin bags, and even cell phone bags, just to name a few. Their Outdoor Tactical Military Backpack has everything you could ask for in a waterproof survival backpack, and at a great price too. As one of the more affordable options available, it’s been a popular hit with online reviewers.

CVLIFE Outdoor Tactical Backpack On White Background

This bag has a 30 liter capacity, so there’s enough room within to fit the essentials needed for any good emergency prepper kit. With three different designs to choose from you can get something to match your style, and comfort has also been considered with the padded shoulder straps and waist belt and sternum straps.

One issue with this bag comes with the straps, though, in that some users have found them to not be as reliable as they’d hoped. When you consider the price point, the quality of this bag far exceeds its competitors, but you might want to have something handy just in case you need to mend any breakages.

The best part about this bag is its storage abilities, not just in how much it can carry but how the compartments are laid out. If you’re looking for a bag that will keep you organized, this is a great choice. Particularly in survival situations, you don’t want to spend too long searching around your rucksack just to find what you’re looking for.

Eyourlife Military Tactical Backpack 20L

  • A smaller, compact backpack with 20L capacity for the essentials
  • Made from 600D Oxford cloth with a waterproof covering
  • MOLLE system possible but not included
  • Accessory loops, mesh panels, and shoulder straps
  • Six different colors and patterns for an individual look

The Eyourlife Military Tactical Backpack is one of the more compact styles on the market, but for some, this is exactly what they’re looking for in survival accessories. With a 20L capacity, you’ll need to pack smart and efficiently if you want to get the essentials in. Eyourlife does offer a larger size backpack if you require it, but we thought it best to focus on the more compact choice.

Eyourlife Military Tactical Backpack 20L On White Background

There are quite a few extras which make this a desirable choice such as a MOLLE system capability, accessory loops, mesh panels and padded shoulder straps. Just because you’ve downsized to something smaller, doesn’t mean you need to give up the nice extras. While some might find that these features crowd the bag, there will be others who prefer to have all the trimmings they can fit.

This bag has been crafted with 600D nylon Oxford cloth and then finished off with a water repellant coating, so it’s designed for use in all kinds of weather. However, being that it’s one of the more budget-friendly options for survival backpacks it probably doesn’t hold up in terms of quality as well as the others.

If you’re looking for a basic and affordable starter backpack, this is a good choice, considering that most emergency preppers hope they never have to put their gear to good use. After taking into account the issues with their 2005 model, Eyourlife has upgraded the quality since then, but there are still some areas where it could do with improvement.

Best Survival Backpack Over $30

Army CamoUSA 40L Outdoor Expandable Backpack

  • Heaps of space with 40L capacity making it a large survival backpack in comparison
  • Made with high quality 600 denier polyester material and heavy duty zips and locks
  • The main area expands to 10” so you can fit even more of the essentials in
  • Includes a mountaineering hook and room for a hydration bladder
  • Over five different design options to meet any style

If you’re looking for a survival backpack that’s full of added features, the Army CamoUSA is the choice for you. This bag is packed full of extras that will make your life easier and will allow you to carry your load in the most organized way possible.

Army CamoUSA 40L Outdoor Expandable Backpack On White Background

In addition to being a stable survival backpack with plenty of room, it also features space for a hydration bladder, a mountaineering hook, electronics pockets, and daisy chain for extra gear. These little extras might be just what you need if you’re stuck in the wilderness without any other supplies.

The best feature of this bag, though, is the size. With a 40L capacity, it’s more than enough to last for a few days of clothing and supplies, but the added bonus comes with its expandability. When compared to other budget survival backpacks, it’s definitely one of the best for space.

The 600 denier polyester makes it rugged enough to suit all types of weather, so if you’re an emergency prepper who lives in fluctuating weather then it’s best to have something that could survive through all climates. Although water-resistant, it’s not resistant enough to be submerged so don’t confuse this with a complete waterproofing.

One possible downfall with this bag is with is its lack of comfort. Although there are padded shoulder straps, after a few hours of wear you might not feel that it’s as comfortable as you’d hoped. However, in an emergency situation, this won’t be as much of a bother. Due to this, the Army CamoUSA backpack would only be suitable as a survival gear accessory and not for hiking or camping trips.

Reebow Tactical Military Tactical Assault Pack Backpack

  • A roomy 34L capacity
  • Double stitched and with heavy duty zippers to keep your belongings safe
  • Back and shoulder padding for comfort
  • Ability to use a hydration bladder to store extra water supplies
  • Small sized backpack would suit a more petite frame

Reebow Tactical have thought of it all when designing this survival backpack, with all of the bases covered. With durability in mind, this bag has been double stitched to provide you with peace of mind that your belongings will be safe and sound in whatever situation you find yourself, and the heavy duty zippers are of the highest quality.

Reebow Tactical Military Tactical Assault Pack Backpack On White Background

Without compromising on quality, this bag is packed full of nice features that you generally don’t find on accessories in this price range. There’s padded, ventilated shoulder straps to keep you cool and comfortable, a built-in bladder system for water storage, and a side and front load compression system. When compared to other models, it’s got the least amount of features but with the most beneficial to a survival situation.

The Reebow Tactical Survival Backpack has been crafted from a high-density fabric that makes it both water resistant and durable enough to survive in the outdoors. One small flaw with its make is that the straps aren’t as reliable as needed, which seems to be a common theme with these lower budget survival backpack designs.

Overall, though, Reebow Tactical seemed to have ticked all of the boxes for a reliable and durable survival backpack. Although it’s not as large as most hiking backpacks, the 34L capacity will give you more than enough room for a few days’ worth of supplies to keep you going, provided the straps don’t give you any trouble.


As the market for survival gear and emergency preparedness accessories continues to grow, we are seeing more backpacks being built specifically for this function. Although survival backpacks may seem similar to hiking and camping accessories, they generally don’t need to provide as many years of service as these types do.

For this reason, you can afford to spend a little less provided you’re still getting something of decent quality. Which is why we’ve chosen the Reebow Tactical as our top pick for ultimate survival backpack. With a 34L capacity and a handful of features, it’s a good middle ground when you look at the comparable products. In addition, this one seems to be the best survival backpack for the money you’ll spend.

Man Wearing Survival Backpack

Although we’ve covered the more budget friendly survival backpacks, there’s nothing stopping you from spending hundreds if you so desire. However, keep in mind that even the best backpack for survival is meant to be packed for a rainy day, so you don’t ever want the time to come where you have to use it. With that considered, these choices offer great reliability in a crisis and for an affordable budget.

If you have any questions on our recommendations or simply want to add your own comments on what you think makes a great survival backpack, please feel free to leave your thoughts below. Alternatively, you can send us a direct email by clicking here and sending your feedback. We’d love to hear your thoughts on what features make your must-have list.

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