10 Best Tactical Backpacks Under $50: Reviewed, Rated & Compared

Imagine being outdoors hiking or exploring one of your favorite back-country areas. Something goes wrong, and you end up stranded, lost, or worse. When you’re dealing with mother nature, anything can happen.

Having the right equipment when you’re exposed to the elements unexpectedly can be the difference between life and death.

Weather conditions can deteriorate rapidly. You can lose daylight quicker than you expected, and you need a heat source. A thick forest floor might call for the need to build a raised bed, so you’re not exposed to dangerous animals.

How confident are you about being caught in any one of these situations? Are you confident enough in your outdoor equipment to say you’d survive an emergency?

Best Tactical Backpacks Under 50

What Is a Tactical Backpack?

Many people get tactical backpacks confused with hiking backpacks. There are several huge differences between the two. Different backpack brands advertise being one or the other. Some brands claim to be a mixture of both. What is the difference between the two? What designates a backpack to be considered tactical? Let’s take a look at the tactical-style backpack.

Tactical backpacks prioritize resilience, low observability, and expansion. Mission-specific storage capabilities enabled by PALS webbing set them apart. Hiking backpacks prioritize convenience, carrying power, and are lightweight. They are usually available in a range of aesthetically appealing high visibility colors and designs to assist the carrier in remaining accessible to both friends and rescuers.

Perhaps the most outstanding feature of the tactical backpack is its durability. This durability is typically made possible by utilizing more rugged and heavier materials. There are also different brands and types of tactical backpacks that vary as well. For example, the 5.11 tactical backpack is a very high-quality brand.

What are the Top Tactical Backpacks Under $50 in the Market?

Here are the top 10 Backpacks:

Comparison Chart

ProductMaterialsCapacityWeight (lbs)Laptop Sleeve
Reebow Gear Backpack600D Polyester40L2.95Yes
G4Free Lightweight Backpack600D Polyester7L0.5No
ARMYCAMO Outdoor Pack600D Polyester64L3.6Yes
Orca Compact Backpack600D Polyester40L3.1Yes
Miltec Rucksack600D Polyester20L3.06Yes
Monkey Paks Small PackNylon35L2.05Yes
Eyourlife Hiking Bag600D Oxford Cloth20L1.85Yes
CVLIFE Waterproof PackNylon40L2.6No
Boxuan Tactical Bag650D Nylon0.95No
Waterfly Toddler BagPolyester10L0.5No

Why Do You Need a Tactical Backpack?

The primary reasons for a tactical backpack are its durability and storage options. The storage schemes of a tactical backpack allow you to store a wide variety of different objects in supplies in a protective and organized manner. Pens, notepads, hard drives, laptops, tools, and knives can be stored separately and safely.

Multiple sizes and shapes of pockets throughout the backpack end up being very convenient when you’re on trips of longer duration or exposed to the elements. You can store different varieties of dry and wet food without damage or moisture exposure.

A tactical backpack will be the most durable carrying item you will ever own. Most likely, all of them will be waterproof. Most are equipped with heavy-duty straps and zippers to prevent ripping or breaking if they get snagged. There is usually a very heavy lining on the inside as well.

An excellent tactical backpack will have numerous expansion options as well as compression straps. Most tactical backpack designs will have extra storage options for weapons and knives.

Review of 10 Best Tactical Backpacks Under $50

What is the best tactical backpack under 50 dollars? We’ve compiled a list of the top ten tactical rucksack choices. Several different varieties made our list. We rank the best choices that fall under the fifty-dollar mark from the tactical assault backpack to the best small tactical backpack. Read on to find the best tactical backpack Amazon has to offer.

Reebow Gear Tactical Backpack

reebow tactical backpack

This backpack is equipped with the Molle system. Molle is a special webbing designed for tactical backpacks. It’s exceptionally durable and can be used for attaching extra pouches or gear.

Key Benefits

• This is an assault pack backpack. It’s heavy duty with double-stitches, heavy-duty zippers, and utility-style cord pulls.
• It’s hydration compatible and works excellent with a hydration bladder. This is extremely useful for ensuring you have a source of hydration on long trips.
• This model is considered a 3 day assault pack. It’s extremely versatile and can be used as a hunting pack, survival backpack, army backpack, and trekking backpack.
• Fabric is high density and water-resistant. That’s what makes it great for all terrains and uses.

Why I Love It

  • Extremely versatile and weather resistant.
  • Great for carrying around liquids to stay hydrated.

Keep In Mind

  • Very tight-fitting around the stomach area

G4Free Lightweight Backpack

g4free outdoor tactical backpack

This small and lightweight tactical backpack is one of the best small tactical backpacks on the market. It’s very lightweight which makes it easy on the user when trekking through harsh conditions. This backpack can double as an everyday use bag as well.

Key Benefits

• This multipurpose chest bag is great for a sling pack, hand bag, diaper bag, or first-aid kit. This makes it extremely useful in the field or as an everyday pack.
• It’s made from 600D polyester fiber which is very lightweight and durable. The added heavy duty padded handle ensures that this backpack can take a beating.
• The strap is adjustable so it can be used by a left or right handed person. This is also convenient as it suits your body shape.
• Three external compartments and multiple internal compartments. Keeping your necessities organized is easy with the extra storage.

Why I Love It

  • Extra internal storage makes carrying smaller items easy.
  • Can easily double as a survival backpack or an everyday use bag.

Keep In Mind

  • It’s small design can make carrying larger items difficult

ARMYCAMO Outdoor Tactical Pack

ARMYCAMO Outdoor Tactical Pack

This selection from ARMYCAMO is the biggest backpack on our list. This 64L behemoth is the perfect bug out bag. If you need to get away for an extended trip or find yourself on a serious mission, this may be the backpack for you. It’s loaded with features and allows you to carry everything but the kitchen sink.

Key Benefits

• The 64L capacity allows for maximum storage. There isn’t much you can’t fit in this bag.
• It is equipped with lots of extra, hidden compartments. This allows for very efficient organization.
• It’s made of durable material. There are minimum chances of ripping or snagging.
• This is the ultimate multi-functional backpack. It has a multitude of uses for any occasion.

Why I Love It

  • Reversible zippers keep out dust and dirt
  • 3-liter bladder hydration compartment
  • Mesh pocket for a water bottle
  • Has 2 electronics pockets

Keep In Mind

  • Has issues with tearing at seams if overloaded

Orca Compact Backpack

Orca Compact Backpack

This selection from Orca is one of our larger backpacks on the list. Orca is a very reliable brand and this model doesn’t disappoint. Equipped with Molle technology and plenty of other features, this tactical backpack is for the serious prepper or outdoorsman. With this assault backpack you’ll literally be ready for war.

Key Benefits

• The shoulder straps are double stitched and padded. This is extremely important for heavier loads as it provides comfort.
• This backpack has a 40L capacity. This is ideal for longer trips or tactical missions because you can carry heavier gear.
• The Molle backpack webbing is installed throughout the backpack. This adds a final layer of durability to the design.
• 1.5L of hydration can be stored in the hydration compartment. Access to liquids won’t be a problem with this monster.
• The zippers are high-quality and rust proof. This prevents wear after the backpack is exposed to moisture.

Why I Love It

  • Huge size makes this an ideal three day backpack.
  • Everything is water and rust proof so moisture doesn’t cause premature age or wear.
  • Molle attachments and accessories allow extra equipment to be carried

Keep In Mind

  • This backpack can get a bit heavy

Miltec 20L Woodland Rucksack

Miltec 50L Woodland Rucksack

This 20L backpack is made to carry over 50 ounces of weight. It’s the perfect design for a military patrol backpack. This Mil-Tec is the perfect tactical backpack for any combat situation.

Key Benefits

• Great stitching and design. This is what makes this bag very durable.
• Many pockets and Molle attachment locations are found on this bag. This is great for extra storage.
• There is plenty of padding on the straps. This makes for a very comfortable carry.
• The straps can disconnect. This provides for a lot of extra slack.
• The waist belt is heavy duty. This stops the pack and your items from moving around during transport.

Why I Love It

  • Water resistant
  • Plenty of carrying space
  • Very well stitched and durable design

Keep In Mind

  • You may have a hard time fitting larger items in the main compartment

Monkey Paks Small Military Tactical Backpack

Monkey Paks Small Military Tactical Backpack

This smaller selection from Monkey Paks is perhaps the most efficient out of the smaller tactical bags. Designed with plenty of compartment space, the three main zippers allow you to carry a heavier load than you’d expect. The incredible 17 inch shoulder drop promotes maximum comfort.

Key Benefits

• This pack is small and lightweight. This makes it very comfortable to carry.
• It has a 17 inch shoulder drop. This makes chest or shoulder carrying extremely easy.
• There are 5 separate main compartments on this small pack. The combo of easy carrying but maximum storage is ideal.
• This backpack is waterproof. This makes trekking across rivers, lakes, and ponds much easier.

Why I Love It

  • Lots of space to carry supplies
  • Comes with 1 year warranty
  • 600D waterproof material make it great for all terrains

Keep In Mind

  • Does not include a water bladder

Eyourlife Hiking Tactical Bag

Eyourlife Hiking Tactical Bag

This 20L tactical backpack falls right into the category of “perfect size.” It is small enough for an everyday bag but sufficient enough to be a tactical hiking bag. This model is the perfect size to suit both men and women comfortably. The seven-inch shoulder drop gives it just enough strap to make carrying a breeze.

Key Benefits

• Professional design and dual front pockets make this ideal for carrying multiple items. On a long journey this is very important.
• It’s made of 600D oxford fiber cloth. This is topped with a water repellant coating to make this backpack almost bulletproof.
• Molle expansion system allows for extra carrying if needed. Once again, very important for long distance journeys.
• Padded and breathable to promote plenty of airflow. This helps keep you and your packs contents cool on hot days.

Why I Love It

  • Perfect size for men and women.
  • Strap length makes carrying easy.
  • Waterproof and extremely durable
  • Molle technology allows extra carrying space

Keep In Mind

  • Stitching is known to come apart after longer usage

CVLIFE Waterproof Tactical Pack

CVLIFE Waterproof Tactical Pack

This assault tactical backpack is another large size selection on our list. This 40L monster has plenty of main compartments for big storage. It is also equipped with smaller storage such as a flash light holster, tactical gears holder, and ammo pouch.

Key Benefits

• This pack has a huge compartment for a hydration bladder. This makes staying hydrated easy on long trips.
• It has ventilated mesh padding and an adjustable shoulder strap. This adds much needed comfort.
• It’s very spacious and loaded with extra compartments. You can easily carry extra equipment.
• Easily usable as a three day backpack. This makes it great for longer trips.

Why I Love It

  • Great as a survival bag or military backpack
  • Water resistant and made with 600D material
  • Hydration compatible to keep you hydrated

Keep In Mind

  • Water resistant but not airtight

Boxuan Single Strap Tactical Bag

Boxuan Single Strap Tactical Bag

This is another excellent small backpack selection. It’s made of high-density fiber and is equipped with Molle technology for added storage and durability. This pack is very comfortable and great for everyday use.

Key Benefits

• Adjustable straps are equipped on this backpack. This makes it very comfortable.
• The back panel has a thick pocket. This is great for carrying pistols.
• It has permanent zipper pulls. This avoids snags and zippers getting stuck.
• Great as a sling backpack. This makes it ideal for use as a medical bag.

Why I Love It

  • Detachable straps fit any body shape
  • Very durable zipper design
  • Made of water resistant material

Keep In Mind

  • Slightly basic design

Waterfly Tactical Toddler Bag

Waterfly Tactical Toddler Bag

This basic rucksack is great for the casual user. This particular model borders on being a hiking backpack, but certain features land it in the tactical category. You’ll find this backpack great for hiking and everyday use.

Key Benefits

• This backpack is equipped with a large main compartment. This is great for putting everyday hiking gear in.
• The straps are very adjustable. This design is created with comfort in mind.
• It is equipped with rain-proofing material. This will keep your equipment dry.
• The small design makes it great as an everyday use bag. This is convenient for everyday carrying.

Why I Love It

  • Smaller size makes it great for children.
  • Great for carrying keys, water bottle, and other everyday items
  • Adjustable third strap makes it very comfortable

Keep In Mind

  • May not be ideal for heavy use

Suggestions and Recommendations

Out of all ten of these backpacks, deciding which was the best was nearly impossible. It’s hard to pick out the best backpack with different levels of usage and designs for all occasions.

The best possible solution was to break the recommendations down into three categories.

Best Backpack For Serious Outdoor Activity

ARMYCAMO Outdoor 3 Day Expandable 40-64L Backpack Military Hiking Bug Out Bag

This was a no-brainer. The 64L extra expansion made this the perfect pick for the true outdoorsman. When you’re on a long journey, you’re going to want to be extremely prepared.

The added compartment space on this design makes it ideal for carrying all the essentials with you. You can put nearly 30 pounds of equipment into this bag, and it still holds quite nicely.

The hydration bladder, along with the water bottle holder, makes it great for carrying extra liquids. You won’t dehydrate quickly with this backpack. Having a good supply of water is crucial when you’re on a long journey.

For three-day plus excursions, the ARMYCAMO has our vote. You can comfortably carry all the essentials, plus bring a few extras.

Best Small Backpack Selection

Monkey Paks Small Military Backpack

This rucksack made our pick for the best small backpack for several reasons. For a smaller pack, the design of this model is very efficient. Don’t let the fact that it’s a shoulder pack fool you.

The design has five main compartments. Each of them is designed with a heavy-duty zipper to prevent any snagging or premature wear.

The straps have a 17-inch drop on the shoulder portion. This allows for maximum comfort when carrying this backpack like a chest or shoulder pack.

Equipped with a waterproof design, this small backpack is also ideal for any water situation. You can easily make your way across a river or pond without worrying about getting your gear wet.

Although it’s equipped with a one-year warranty, you shouldn’t have to worry about trading this backpack anytime soon. The 600D polyester material makes this a very durable pack.

Most Versatile Backpack

REEBOW GEAR Military Backpack Large Army 3 Day Assault Pack Molle Bag Backpack

When we say most versatile, we mean the backpack that functions best for tactical purposes, as a hiker, and for general daily use.

Although this Reebow backpack was designed mainly for use in tactical situations, it’s great for various conditions. It has enough Molle storage add-on options to make it a tremendous medical bag.

The hydration bladder compartment gives it the bonus of being able to carry water. This makes it great for tactical, military, and hiking purposes.

The durability of this backpack makes it efficient enough for rough and tough use in the outdoors. It can also be used as a daily backpack to work or school.

Factors to Consider When Buying a Good Tactical Backpack Under $50

Even though the price may seem minor, there are some significant factors to consider before purchasing your backpack. A lot of the bags on the market are made for crucial situations. It’s important to decide what environment you’re going to use the backpack in. You’ll also want to factor in the level of abuse the backpack may take. Before making your final decision, ask yourself these essential questions.

• Will the backpack be used in the elements in extreme situations, or just for daily use?
• Do you need extra compartments to store your gear?
• Is access to water important for hydration needs?
• If there is a lot of wear and tear, will you need something with a warranty?
• Are the straps adjustable to fit your frame?
• Do you want something to carry on your back, or would you prefer a chest bag?
• Besides the main compartments, do you need any extra holsters or carriers?

People Also Ask About Tactical Backpack

FAQ

What are the loops for on a tactical backpack?

The loops on a tactical backpack are often referred to as gear loops. Although many outdoor enthusiasts have improvised and used them for a multitude of reasons, they serve one major purpose.

Gear can be dropped through these loops for easy carrying. Things like trekking poles, axes, shovels, picks, and larger knives can be lowered through these loops and carried with relative ease.

To use the loop for items like axes, drop the article through the loop. Rotate the loop up over the handle and twist. This makes for secure placement of any of your tools into the backpack.

Sometimes when you’re in the elements, things can get tricky. The loops can also be used any way you see fit in a life-threatening situation. They come in handy for tying knots through if the bag has to be hung or fastened.

How do you pack a tactical backpack?

Most tutorials you read that teach about packing a tactical backpack describe using the pyramid technique. This is the most efficient way to pack your gear.

Put your more oversized items in the bottom of the backpack. Heavier items can go on the bottom as well, even if they aren’t necessarily the largest.

After placing the heaviest items on the bottom, place your medium-weight items on top of that. You should be about to the midway point of the backpack at this point.

Your lightest items can go in on top. Follow this by placing anything clothe or any trash bags on the very top.

Anything that needs to be fastened in the loops or any special holsters can go in last. After everything is placed, you can securely attach any straps to the backpack.

Packing the bag in this manner makes it much easier to carry around. With the weight distributed this way, you’ll prevent the bag from moving around too much during your journey.

What do you carry in a tactical backpack?

There are a few essential items that should always be carried in a tactical backpack. Make sure there’s always a first-aid kit or IFAK pouch in the bag.

You should also make sure there’s always food packed in the bag as well. Food items should include high-protein and energy-boosting snacks. These come in handy, especially on long-distance journeys.

Other items you may want to include are:
• Clothing
• Bedding Items
• Equipment for Communication
• Defense Items
• Firestarting Kit
• Shelter/Tent

When it comes to being prepared for the outdoors, it’s essential to have all the necessary items for your journey. Depending on the terrain, this list may be altered or added to any way you see fit.

How do I wash a tactical backpack?

Cleaning a tactical backpack is very simple. It can be placed in the washing machine with other items.

Make sure you wash it using cold water under a gentle cycle. Use detergent for cotton items, not delicate.

Do not place the backpack in the dryer. Hang dry the backpack on a clothesline or over a railing and allow adequate time for drying.

If the backpack has any major stains from usage, you may pre-treat it before placing it in the washing machine.

How long can I expect my backpack to last?

The answer to this question depends on several factors. Although many high-quality tactical backpacks are built to last for years, sometimes events beyond our control can cut their life short. Extreme situations and exposure to volatile elements come into play when it comes to the shelf life.

Assuming that the stitching is high quality and the zippers are rust-proof, a bag exposed to harsh elements should last at least five years. There are many situations where bags last longer than this. Once again, this all depends on exposure.

Check with the maker about the warranty of your backpack. If shelf life is a concern, you may want to purchase a backpack with an extended warranty.

Conclusion

Purchasing a tactical backpack can be a significant decision. You should always keep one key thing in mind. There may come a time where this backpack will save your life. If you plan on using the backpack in back-country situations or extreme weather, the quality of your backpack is going to be very important.

Be sure to examine the specifications of the bag before making a final decision. Use the “Things to Consider” section of this article as a guideline before deciding what bag you want.

It can be beneficial to have a checklist or some guideline when you’re shopping for a backpack. Make a list of all the potential items you’re going to carry in the backpack. It’s also important to keep in mind the places where you plan on using the bag.

Many places that sell tactical backpacks also carry different accessories that go with them. It can be very convenient to purchase the backpack and accessories all at one time. Doing this allows you to take an inventory of everything you’re going to have available while you’re using the bag.

Most outlets and retailers will sell first aid items and emergency food kit supplies as well. It’s a good idea to pick up these items with your backpack as well. These will be the two most essential items you will stock in your backpack.

There’s one last note to leave you with. I’ve learned this lesson the hard way. Always be sure to get a waterproof backpack. Weather can change quickly, and the worst thing that can happen is getting your clothes and essential items wet during a long journey.