Timbuk2 Messenger Bag Review

Timbuk2 Messenger Bag Review

Timbuk2 have had a longstanding reputation for their funky twists on classic bags. We’ve had our eye on their messenger bags for quite a while now, as they are specifically built for comfort and convenience to keep your items highly organised.

Some of the most popular from their collection are the Classic, Command, and Commute crossbody bags.

Each model keeps things simple, with user-friendly features to make travelling a breeze. There are a plethora of colors and patterns to choose from, and each size is adaptable enough to accommodate to different needs. These bags were created to offer an alternative to regular messengers, that can often lack comfort or style.

Original Classic Model
Timbuk2 Classic Messenger Bag 2014, M, Dusk Blue/Black
Original Command Model
Timbuk2 Command Messenger Bag 2015, Carbon Full-Cycle Twill, Medium
Original Commute Model
Timbuk2 Commute Messenger Bag, Black, Small
Timbuk2 Classic Messenger Bag 2014, M, Dusk Blue/Black
Timbuk2 Command Messenger Bag 2015, Carbon Full-Cycle Twill, Medium
Timbuk2 Commute Messenger Bag, Black, Small
Original Classic Model
Timbuk2 Classic Messenger Bag 2014, M, Dusk Blue/Black
Timbuk2 Classic Messenger Bag 2014, M, Dusk Blue/Black
Original Command Model
Timbuk2 Command Messenger Bag 2015, Carbon Full-Cycle Twill, Medium
Timbuk2 Command Messenger Bag 2015, Carbon Full-Cycle Twill, Medium
Original Commute Model
Timbuk2 Commute Messenger Bag, Black, Small
Timbuk2 Commute Messenger Bag, Black, Small

Even though they have tons of designs, we’ve picked the three that we think are the best performing and most versatile for different kinds of commuters. We’ll explore their level of comfort, durability, and why these are such popular messenger bags in general.

 

 

Timbuk2 Messenger Bag Reviews

Timbuk2 Messenger Bag Reviews

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Introduction

If we could describe these bags in two words, they would be: fun and functional. While all messenger bags, each one offers something different for various kinds of commuters. They are a little on the expensive side, but when you consider the great quality craftsmanship and materials, it seems reasonable.

Although there are heaps of fun designs (you’ve got a whopping 23 to choose from with the Classic) these bags manage to stick to the traditional side of messenger style packs. There isn’t anything super complicated, fancy, or extra about these bags, but they certainly aren’t boring.

In terms of storage, they’ve kept things simple throughout with enough room for the essentials, electronics, laptop, etc, with enough space for a little more, like a change of clothes. For the daily commute to and from school, or as a daypack travelling around, these look like reliable choices for all types of styles.  

Overview of Shared Features

  • Adjustable crossbody strap
  • Flap closures with buckles
  • Back pass-through handle for roller luggage
  • Various internal organisational pockets
  • Spacious main compartment
  • Multiple color options
  • Lifetime warranty

 

Timbuk2 Classic Messenger Bag

Timbuk2 Classic front view

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The secret really lies in the name – this is truly a classic, no fluff messenger bag. It has an upgraded look with a smarter fit for more comfort.

Key Features

  • 4 Different Sizes
  • 23 Colours & Patterns to Choose From
  • AirMesh Strap Provides Ventilation
Price

$66+

Sizes

XS, S, M, L

Weight

0.5kg

Dimensions

12cm x 25cm x 26cm

Materials

Nylon, TPU Liner

Laptop Sleeve Size

9”

Interior Organizing

Inside is rather uncomplicated, with a spacious main section for storing larger items. The laptop sleeve keeps your laptop or tablet separated, and you could also use it for keeping documents unwrinkled. In addition to distributed pockets like a large zippered pouch, you’ve got a dedicated water bottle pocket to prevent spillages.  

Durability

They don’t specify exactly what material is used here, but it looks like a nylon on polyester – basically it looks thick and robust. It is also water resistant, meaning it can withstand light to moderate rainfall.

Timbuk2 Classic handle

A waterproof TPU liner prevents leaks from entering and damaging contents. It’s also effortless to clean, as you can simply wipe it and its’s done. The outer buckles look quite heavy-duty, and there are massive steel side D-rings that attach the strap to the rest of the body.

Crossbody Strap

The body strap is curved and has AirMesh, which basically means it breathes well to prevent the bag from damaging from sweat. Their patented Double-Loop CAM buckle helps to adjust the strap easily and quickly, eliminating any dangling parts close to your body.

Timbuk2 Classic rear view

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Overall Design

This bag gives off a traditional feel with its old-school shape, which is quite rectangular and flat. Also, the front buckles sit quite low. A 3-panel front adds to its classic feel.

Timbuk2 Classic inside view

Available in various sizes, the XS is very small and is great for those looking to carry less. The largest size sits quite wide across the body, but obviously holds a lot more.

Handle

A low-profile grab handle allows you to grab-and-go with the bag, so you don’t need to haul it over your shoulder each time. It’s located at the back in the middle, and it doubles as a small pass-through strap for hoisting on roller luggage.

 

Timbuk2 Command Messenger Bag

Timbuk2 Command Messenger Bag

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This model is a little more modern than the previous, with more simplified and monotone color choices.

Key Features

  • Exposed User-Friendly Front Buckles
  • Large Top Handle
  • Wide Luggage Pass-Through Strap
Price

$150+

Sizes

S, M, L

Weight

1.2kg

Dimensions

13cm x 34.5cm x 43cm

Materials

Nylon, TPU Liner

Laptop Sleeve Size

13”

Durability

Since this version is mainly aimed at airline travelers, this bag is highly robust. Apart from the tough exterior materials and waterproof TPU inner liner, you’ve got sturdy aluminium hooks and tensioned, elastic loops for fast and secure closure. It’s well-designed to hold up against the rough-and-tumble of travel.

Interior Organizing

Inside is a spacious main section, with several slip pouches fir smaller items like your phone, wallet, pens, cards, etc. Another slip pocket is perfect for loose documents or notepads, keeping them free of creases. Also, there is a zippered pocket for keeping valuables from moving around.  

Timbuk2 Command rear view

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At the back is the laptop and tablet compartment, with a zipper closure to keep things secure. The zippers are quite interesting on this model, with a handy ridged zipper pull to easily open and close. Velcro silencers can be used when you’re in need of a more discreet closure method, like on a plane or in a library.

Crossbody Strap

The strap here is very different to the previous one, as it’s much more padded. It has a whole middle section of padding, which you can actually remove with Velcro. It’s certainly a highlight feature for us because comfort is one of the highest things on our list, as it allows you to wear the bag for longer.

Handle

The top handle isn’t as low-profile as the last, but this means it is more effortless to grab in a hurry. It has comfy cushioning, so you won’t strain your hand.

Timbuk2 Command storage pockets

Connected to this strap on the rear is the pass-through handle for luggage, which you can also use like a handle if you need to pick it up in a rush. We like the positioning of it because you can place the pack upright against your luggage, keeping all the contents secure.

Exterior Add-Ons

An external access zipper pocket lets you reach inside from the side to grab valuables like your phone and money. With a tricot lining, it’s completely anti-abrasive. The front Napoleon pocket is fully cushioned and fits a 9” tablet inside.

 

Timbuk2 Commute Messenger Bag

Timbuk2 Commute Messenger Bag

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Finally, we have the Commute, which is an all-round fully functional and highly durable model for hauling all your essentials.

Key Features

  • Internal Key Clip
  • Exterior Water Bottle Pocket
  • Large Easy-Grab Front Buckles
Price

$90+

Sizes

S, M, L

Weight

1.2kg

Dimensions

10cm x 30cm x 37cm

Materials

Nylon , TPU Liner

Laptop Sleeve Size

13”

Interior Organizing

You can fit quite a lot inside, with an abundance of storage spots. It has the same large main compartment that is evident throughout all 3 bags, and at the back you have multiple pouches, pockets.

Timbuk2 Commute rear view

To be exact, you’ll find 10 slip pouches at all different sizes, and 1 zippered pocket. You can fit clothes, notebooks, headphones, all with the rear laptop sleeve full.

Durability

This is the most heavy-duty out of the three editions, but it’s still ultralight and stylish to a tee. Even though it probably has some nylon or polyester elements to it, the outer sheen tells us that it may be neoprene. Either way, the overall construction is rugged to withstand constant travel.

Handle

The top handle is wide enough to effortlessly fit your hand through to pick up in a rush, plus you have two other exterior handles to grab onto. It’s also smart to make the handle wider because this is quite a lengthy pack.

Timbuk2 Commute shoulder strap

So it warrants a larger handle to manage any weight you’re carrying inside. First is the lower front handle, which is very low-profile. It’s quite stretchy, and lets you pick it up from any angle

Crossbody Strap

The strap is similar to the previous model, with the middle padded detachable strap. It’s quite wide, and also curved, so it sits comfortably and snugly on the shoulder. To adjust, you again have the Double-Loop CAM buckle, exclusive to this brand, which lets you adjust in seconds with no excess webbing left behind.

 

 

Most Asked Questions

Are the Timbuk2 Messenger Waterproof?

We rate these bags as water resistant or repellent, not fully waterproof. While robust, the materials could let some leaks through after intense exposure to large amounts of moisture. Also, even though the flaps close over the main compartment, the sides are left slightly open. If you’re looking for a fully waterproof messenger bag, we’ve reviewed a whole list of them.

Does the shoulder padding move?

On the Commute and Command models, you’ll find a removable padded panel along the shoulder strap. You can slide it up and down in different positions, which lets you customise which areas you want padded. This also means that you can wear it on either shoulder.

Where does my laptop go?

Inside the primary section of each model, there is a sleeve large enough for documents and other A4 books. This is not to be mistaken as the laptop or tablet compartment, as it is actually located in the back. You must zip this compartment open, and it remains secure and separate from everything else, so it can’t get scratched or damaged.

What size should I get?

This hugely depends on what exactly you want to fit inside the bag. Think about the size of your laptop or tablet, books, documents, if you want to fit clothes, or anything else. Also remember that the larger the bag, the heavier it will be, so keep this in mind if you’ll be travelling for long periods.

 

Conclusion on Timbuk2 Messenger Bags

Timbuk2 are clearly a front runner when it comes to bags. They offer heaps of designs and styles, whether you commute to your office daily, need something to carry schoolbooks, or everything in between. Their messenger bags are designed for those who travel frequently with their laptop, perhaps a tablet, various electronics, and other essentials.

We’ve chosen a range of sacks that fit in the business casual category, but since you can alternate with the colors, we think they can also make a fashion statement for both men and women. The great thing about this style of bags is that you can wear to them while riding your bike, as well as during every other kind of commute. They sit comfortably on the shoulder, with the strap distributing the weight, and you can still keep belongings well organised.