15 Best Purses for Travel: Stylish and Anti-theft Options for 2023

Best Purses for Travel (Updated April 2023)

A day bag or purse is something that you’ll see on a lot of my packing lists, no matter what the destination is. Packing light is often the main focus of my blog posts, but what about after you arrive at your destination? What should you be carrying around when you’re walking around a foreign city? 

If you’re traveling to any big city in the world, pickpocketing can be a real concern. And honestly, that’s the last thing that you want to be thinking about. You should be enjoying yourself and not be worrying about your belongings or identity being stolen. One of the most important things about feeling secure when you’re in a new place is having a trustworthy anti-theft purse. Anti-theft bags can offer a number of security features while still giving you enough space for everything important that you need with you during the day or during travel. 

I’ve compiled a list of some of the internet’s favorite anti-theft travel purses so you can feel confident that you’re making a great choice for your needs while traveling. 

What You Should Keep in Mind When Choosing a Bag 

The first thing you should consider when choosing a travel purse is what you need it to do for you. Think about what you’re going to be carrying in it. Some people just like to throw a lip balm and a cell phone in their purse and call it a day. If you know that you’re going to be carrying more important things like travel documents and your cell phone (aka things you definitely don’t want to be stolen), consider a bag with some anti-theft features to give you a bit more peace of mind. 

Some of these features to keep an eye out for are durable, slash-proof straps and fabric, RFID-blocking pockets, and plenty of interior zipper pockets to keep all of your important items secure. 

Without further ado, and in no particular order, here are some top picks for travel purses that will keep you looking stylish and keep your belongings safe on your next trip. 

If you are looking for an excellent travel bag and want to look at more than the sling backpack, take a look at the following posts:

My Top Picks for the Best Purses for Travel

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  • RFID credit card protection

  • Lockable zippers

  • Cable reinforced shoulder strap

  • RFID Wristlet

  • Multiple Zippered Pockets

  • Shoulder or crossbody

  • RFID Card pockets

  • Multiple zippered pockets

  • Easy access pocket in middle

  • Quick access side pockets

  • Luggage handle sleeve

  • Organizational pockets and RFID wallet

  • Anti theft zipper location/design

  • Zippered side pocket

  • Can be worn mutliple ways

  • RFID pockets

  • Slash resistant straps and body

  • Locking compartments

  • Multiple zipper pockets

  • Holds smaller laptops

  • Water bottle pocket on side

  • RFID card slots

  • Compartments for phone and other items

  • Clutch size

  • Locakble main compartment

  • RFID blocking pockets

  • Slash resistant strap and body

  • SlashGuard strap and fabric

  • RFID pocket

  • Padded laptop sleeve

  • Zippered pockets

  • Can be crossbody or shoulder bag

  • Padded tablet pocke

  • Water Resistant

  • Can be worn left or right shouldered

  • Comes in a wide variety of colors

  • RFID Pocket

  • Water bottle holder

  • Fits a tablet

  • Slash resistant strap and bottom panel

  • Locking zippered pocket

  • RFID pockets

  • Steel cable in strap

  • RFID blocking pocket

  • Small bag for out and about

The Details on The Best Purses for Travel

Travelon Anti-theft Messenger Bag 

SHOP: Amazon

Travelon makes some great high-quality travel purses and this bag is no exception. I think that this is one of the best options out there because the design is simple but it still has some key safety features that help keep you safe. Some of these features include a cable-reinforced shoulder strap, RFID protection for your credit cards, and lockable zippers on the interior pockets. 

The lockable zipper pockets on the interior pockets are a nice feature that will keep your personal items secure, but they could be a pain when you need to get into your bag and you have to unlock all of the zippers to get something you need quickly. 

Another non-safety feature that I appreciate in this bag is the side pocket where you can keep your water bottle. I do a lot of walking when I travel so it’s important to stay hydrated. 

WHAT To watch out for

The bottle holder is small, and some reviewers wish it could hold more than about a 12 oz bottle of water.

Baggallini Pocket Travel Purse / Crossbody Bag 

SHOP: Amazon

Baggallini is another brand that I love. They make some of the best crossbody purses around, which is why I’ve reviewed them in the past. This Baggallini crossbody bag comes in 20 different colors so you can choose one that suits your style. It’s also pretty lightweight and durable, which makes it easy to carry around for a long time. 

Anti-theft features that I like about this bag are the removable RFID wristlet and five different credit card slots. If you’re not aware, RFID blocking technology prevents people from stealing your credit card information wirelessly right from your bag and therefore preventing identity theft. It’s not a totally necessary feature because these kinds of identity thefts don’t happen that often, but it’s still nice to know that you’ll be protected in the case that someone does try to steal your information. 

WHAT To watch out for

One pitfall of this bag is that is on the smaller side, so it will only fit essentials. If you’re more of a tote bag person, there are some larger options for you in this list. 

Baggallini Criss Cross Crossbody Bag 

SHOP: Amazon

This Baggallini crossbody bag is one that I use all the time, even when I’m not traveling. To read my full review of the bag, click here for more in-depth details. This bag is one of the best travel purses in my opinion, and for more than one reason. The size isn’t too big for a shoulder bag, which I like. A lot of women tend to overpack their purses but I find that this bag limits what I can bring in a good way. The internal pockets give you plenty of room for your ID and other essentials and the adjustable shoulder strap is comfortable. 

WHAT To watch out for

The only thing I don’t like about this bag is that it’s not quite big enough for things like a water bottle, but I consider that a minor trade-off for how well it does with storage and security.  

Baggallini Everywhere Crossbody Travel Bag 

SHOP: Amazon

If you do want to opt for a travel purse that is a little bit larger, the Baggallini Everywhere bagg may be the perfect travel purse for you. The water-resistant material just like the Criss Cross bag, which means it won’t get dirty as easily and helps protect your phone and other electronics if you get caught in a rainstorm. There’s plenty of storage within the bag, as well as in the side pockets, so you can have easy access to anything that you’ll need right away like your ID or vaccination card. 

Another thing that I like about this bag, and most other Baggallini bags, is that they come in a lot of different colors so you can choose one that fits your personal style. The design is simple, but it gets the job done and helps keep your belongings organized while you’re traveling.   

WHAT To watch out for

Reviewers were mixed about the size of the bag. Some thought it was too big, others too small.

Pincnel Travel Purse Backpack 

SHOP: Amazon

If shoulder and crossbody bags aren’t for you, a travel backpack may be a better fit. The two-strap design of this bag helps keep weight evenly distributed on your shoulders so you don’t get sore throughout the day. Backpacks tend to fit more than shoulder bags and they have a large main compartment, which means that you’ll probably be putting more into them than you need, which can make them heavier than a small travel purse. 

If you travel with your laptop or tablet, the inside pocket of this Pincnel backpack is large enough to carry them in addition to your phone and wallet.

WHAT To watch out for

In terms of travel bags, this backpack is a little larger than I care to carry personally. If you’re using it as a carry-on bag, it may do the trick, but I prefer to have something lighter and more compact with me when I’m walking around during the day. 

MORE INSPIRATION: If you love the idea of a backpack, here are some additional ideas for inspiration:

Travelon Anti-theft Metro Crossbody Bag  

SHOP: Amazon

Once again, Travelon has created a great anti-theft travel bag that meets all of your travel needs. This crossbody purse is a little more expensive than some of the others on this list, but it has consistently high ratings from people who have bought it and it comes with a lot of great safety features. 

In addition to being fairly lightweight, the Travelon Metro Crossbody features a zippered RFID-blocking pocket on the inside, locking zippers, slash-resistant straps and body material, and a keychain with LED flashlight. The design is sleek and uncomplicated, as well as water-resistant. This bag also comes with a 5 year guarantee so you can feel even more confident purchasing it for your travels. 

WHAT To watch out for

CLUCI Women Backpack  

SHOP: Amazon

A fashionable choice, this CLUCI backpack can be worn as a shoulder bag or backpack, and offers plenty of internal space for all of your belongings. The main compartment has room for a laptop, water bottle, and other essentials, and the side and front pockets work great for smaller items. If the safety of backpacks while traveling worry you, fear not. This CLUCI bag has an anti-theft design in which the zipper closes in the back in order to keep your belongings safe. 

WHAT To watch out for

This bag is highly rated and well made, but as a day bag, I think it’s a bit large. This particular backpack might work better as a carry-on bag rather than something you take with you exploring a new city. However, if you’re someone who likes to keep your electronics with you or has to work while you’re traveling, this bag could be perfect. 

YALUXE Smartphone Wristlet Crossbody Clutch 

SHOP: Amazon

If style attracts you in a purse, this YALUXE bag is the one for you. Unlike a lot of other bags in this list, this crossbody clutch bag’s exterior is leather. It also comes in a variety of different colors, so you can make it fit into your wardrobe. While it does block RFID scanners to help protect you from identity theft, the leather exterior and straps aren’t slash proof. However, it is small enough that you can keep it close to your body. 

WHAT To watch out for

This clutch will only hold essentials like your phone and credit cards, so I think it would work best for more local trips where you’re not carrying important travel documents. The look of this bag is great, but it does come with a few tradeoffs. However, depending on what your needs are in a bag, it could work great for you. 

Travelon Anti-theft Classic Mini Shoulder Bag 

SHOP: Amazon

One of the reasons I like crossbody bags is that they’re compact enough to fit under a jacket or coat when I’m out walking around a new city. Before the days of slash-proof straps, this was the easiest way to protect your purse, and I still do it today. This Travelon Mini Shoulder Bag is a smaller version of another Travelon bag I talked about earlier. If you’re a minimalist when you pack your purse, this one will work great for you. In addition to the lockable main pocket, the back and front pockets also give you easy access to things that you don’t need locked up. 

For anti-theft features, this Travelon bag offers a slash-proof strap and body panel, as well as RFID-blocking technology built into the bag.

WHAT To watch out for

Like I said, if you’re good at keeping your purse light, this will be a good option for you. However, if you like to keep a bit more with you, I’d opt for a slightly bigger bag. 

Pacsafe Citysafe CS400 Anti-theft Travel Tote 

SHOP: Amazon

As a tote bag, this Pacsafe option gives you a lot more space while still maintaining that anti-theft status. Some tote bags don’t offer a lot of organization inside the main compartment, but this Pacsafe Citysafe bag does provide pouches on the inside to keep everything from falling to the bottom of the bag. The shoulder strap is reinforced with wire to help prevent it from being cut, and the material of the bag itself is slash-proof but still stylish. 

WHAT To watch out for

The one downside to this bag is that it is on the pricey side. However, with the increase in price, you also great some great craftsmanship and good anti-theft features that will help keep your belongings safe. 

Ogio Brooklyn Travel Purse 

SHOP: Amazon

For a bag that offers safety, organization, and style, this Ogio shoulder bag is a great choice. This might be the best purse for international travel because of the unique organizational features it offers. The main compartment is split up into three parts, and one is padded, which makes it perfect for storing your tablet while you’re on long flights. 

Even if you’re not bringing your tablet or other large electronics with you, this travel purse is still a good choice. The front pocket of the bag is hidden by design so the contents of your bag aren’t easily accessible to pickpockets. The material it’s made with is also slash and stain resistant so it’s very durable as well.

WHAT To watch out for

Because it’s made to hold a tablet safely, this travel purse may be a little bit bigger than you need if it’s just serving as a day bag, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing if you like a little extra room. 

Mosiso Sling Backpack 

SHOP: Amazon

This Mosiso backpack is another great option if you want the weight from your bag to be more evenly distributed on your shoulders. This is a great option for those of us who have back problems. The padded shoulder strap provides even more comfort by preventing the adjustable strap from digging in. Another thing that I like about this travel backpack is that it’s very affordable and comes in over 30 different colors. 

WHAT To watch out for

The internal and external pockets do a lot for organization, but one drawback to this Mosiso bag is that it doesn’t have many anti-theft features that some others on this list do. If you do opt for this bag, I’d wear it under a jacket or keep it close to your body so you can keep a better eye on your belongings. 

NeatPack Crossbody Bag for Women

SHOP: Amazon

For someone who’s seeking comfort in their purse, this NeatPack crossbody might be one of the best travel bags. The adjustable shoulder strap is padded to keep you comfortable during the day while you’re exploring. There’s also plenty of pockets, both inside and outside to help keep everything organized and easily accessible. 

For anti-theft features, it has a designated RFID slot for your credit cards and a lockable zipper. I also appreciate the fact that this NeatPack bag has a pocket for your water bottle. Some of the bags that I’ve reviewed here are small enough that they don’t fit a water bottle, so the fact that this one does makes it stand out.

WHAT To watch out for

The only thing that I don’t like about this bag is the design. It’s a bit bulky-looking and doesn’t have that compact feel that many other bags on this list do. 

Travelon Anti-theft Heritage Crossbody Bag

SHOP: Amazon

This Travelon bag is another great option if you’re a minimalist when it comes to packing your purse. This small crossbody bag is a great neutral option that has a lockable zipper to the main compartment and a RFID-blocking pocket on the inside. The other internal pockets are great for holding small things like your phone, lip balm, and glasses. Another cool feature of this bag is the included keychain with and LED light. 

WHAT To watch out for

Again, if you’re only packing the essentials for the day, this bag works great because it’s on the smaller side. I usually need a little more room than this bag allows, so personally, I would opt for a slightly larger bag to make sure I’m set for the day.  

Lewis N. Clark Messenger Bag 

SHOP: Amazon

This Lewis N. Clark bag might look small, but it fits a lot more than you might think. The main compartment is lockable and the bag stays lightweight even when you have it packed fully which helps a lot when you’re walking around all day. Safety features of this bag include RFID-blocking pockets, an anti-slash shoulder strap, and the locking swivel zipper on the main compartment. 

WHAT To watch out for

This bag only comes in two darker colors, so it’s not as personal to your style as some of the other options in this list, but the darker fabrics are durable and don’t show stains and dirt, so they’ll stay looking new much longer. 

FAQ: Best Purses For Travel

Having your belongings stolen while you’re traveling can really throw a wrench in your plans, I get it. And as the place where you keep all of your important documents and essentials, the purse you choose matters. If you’re struggling to choose from among the best purses for travel that will keep you protected, keep ready to have any last-minute questions answered. 

Are anti-theft purses worth it? 

For a well-made, high-quality anti-theft purse, you’re probably going to be paying a little more than you would for a normal purse with no safety features. Pickpocketing and identity theft may never happen to you, but I think it’s completely worth having a little more protection in the event that it does.

What is the safest bag for travel?

Travel purses and bags that are made out of nylon and other durable materials are popular choices because they much harder to cut and slash than other less-sturdy bags. If a bag is slash-proof, the manufacturer will most likely be advertising that as a selling point. These may not be the most fashionable-looking bags, but they will help keep your belongings safe while you’re traveling. 

Are crossbody bags safe for travel?

Crossbody bags, as opposed to backpacks or fanny packs, are actually preferable travel purses. These bags sit much closer to your body, so a pickpocket would have to be uncomfortably close in order to steal something from your bag. I also like to wear crossbody bags while I’m traveling because I can wear them under my jacket and protect the strap a bit more. The type of bag you choose is totally up to you, but if you’re unsure, I would opt for a crossbody bag. 

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15 Best Purses for Travel: Stylish and Anti-theft Options for 2023

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