We're kind of obsessed with bike bags, and in many ways the most practical bags for bike commuting and bike touring are bike panniers, and bike trunk bags. There are some amazing companies out there making fantastic, ridiculously high quality, and beautiful bags for cyclists.
We're pretty lucky to carry some of these brands, by people that we love and respect. I think that if you're just starting to plan a bike commute or bike travel, you may be asking yourself: Why should I use a pannier or trunk bag?
If you're thinking this, here are a few quick reasons why using panniers or trunk bags are the best for getting around by bike.
Why are panniers and trunk bags the best for getting around by bike?
- Keeps the weight off of your back and on your bike - especially for long rides, keeping the weight off of your back can be very helpful.
- You'll sweat less - don't get us wrong, we LOVE backpacks and messenger bags, but especially on long rides or hot days, keeping less on your back will give more breathability and mean less sweating. In the winter a backpack can even be nice :)
- Hold more than can with just a backpack - with 2 panniers and a trunk bag, and a backpack or messenger bag, you'll be set for anything you need. Make that big trip to target, or the grocery store, and don't worry about getting it all home!
Those are the main pluses of using a bag on your rack vs carrying it on your back. You can of course also try to use handlebar or saddlebags, but that's for another time!
The point really is that you can take the weight off of your shoulders and make the bike do the work for you.
Here are some of the rack bags we carry and what they're good for:
1. Bicycle Panniers by Paris Packs
These bike panniers can be purchased individually or in a pair. Perfect for any bike commuter, they can easily secure to your bike rack and can be easily removed as well. Waterproof cordura fabric, a carrying strap, and j-hooks to attach do the trick!
2. Dolliver Bike Trunk Bag by Ironweed Panniers
This trunk bag is extremely useful for riding in the city, or off on a biking vacation! This one in particular which is beautifully handmade by Ironweed Panniers, is made with water-resistant canvas and can fit a change of clothes for work, a 6-pack of beers or a few delicious bottles of wine with lunch!
If you're looking for something that's fully waterproof, fashionable, and easy to carry around either on your rack or on your back, this is the way to do it! The Vaya Bags Pannier and Backpack combo can hook on to your rack, but also has backpack straps to easily carry off of your bike when you get to your destination!
Ironweed makes these spectacular, classically styled panniers. We have them in both black and olive, and they're a bit larger than the Paris Packs panniers. These also come with a removable stiffener so you can take your groceries in and out with just one hand.
If you have any questions on what to look for or what you need in a bike rack bag please let us know!
Do you have a bike pannier or trunk bag? What do you like to use on your bike commute?