A travel bag that’s stylish enough to work with your outfits yet just right for travel is essential if you travel a lot.

Although you can probably use any handbag for your travels, the right travel purse is vital to hold your important travel documents and valuables when you’re on the go. Here are tips on how to choose the best travel bag and 10 of my favorites.

How to choose a travel bag

First, let’s talk about what you should look for in a travel purse:

1. Low key style.

For safety’s sake, it’s usually good to leave your designer handbag at home, unless you’re in Monte Carlo or somewhere where everyone is walking around with an expensive handbag so yours won’t stand out.

A non-flashy travel purse is less tempting to thieves.

2. Comfort and ease.

Choose one that’s lightweight, somewhat weather proof and easy to clean. Nylon is a good option because the material meets all three requirements.

How will you carry your purse and is the one you’re looking at comfortable? Wider straps will make the travel purse more comfortable on your shoulders.

3. Holds everything in an organized way.

You may carry more than normal when traveling, so choose a travel bag that has plenty of pockets and compartments to sort out all your items.

4. Is theft-proof.

Although no bag is completely theft proof, choose one with zippers and snaps to prevent thieves from having easy access to your items.

Choose a bag that sits close to your body, like a cross-body style. Wider or heavy duty straps make it harder for someone to cut the straps and run away with it.

There are also bags specially designed to prevent thieves from being able to cut through them. Some of those are in my top 10.

5. Versatile.

A convertible travel purse, where the straps can be changed around, is helpful when you want to carry your bag in different ways.

Some are expandable to carry more items when needed. The more versatile your travel purse is, the more likely you’ll use it often.

You may want to take one larger travel bag and one smaller travel purse on your trip. The size of the one below, as worn by Carole is ideal if you just want to slip your smartphone (to take photos) and your credit card in for a quick sightseeing trip.

Travel purse ideas: 10 of the best travel bags to choose from

These travel purses are designed just for travelers. I like them most because they are still stylish enough to use everyday to complete your outfit.

1. Travelon bags – anti theft bag

Travelon bags are some of the most highly-regarded and best reviewed travel bags out there. That’s because not only do they tick the box for low-key style, but they also have some pretty smart anti-theft features too.

The Travelon bucket bag is a classic shape, which looks like an ordinary handbag, but which actually has a slash-proof strap and lockable compartments. It will easily fit in an e-reader or small i-pad if you’re planning on some vacation reading.

Travelon Anti-Theft Cross-Body Bucket Bag | 40plusstyle.com

Travelon Anti-Theft Cross-Body Bucket Bag

2. Crossbody travel purse

Or, you could opt for the Travelon crossbody travel bag instead.

It comes in 24 colors so you’re sure to find a shade to match your travel outfits.

Travelon Luggage Anti-Theft Cross-Body Bag | 40plusstyle.com

Travelon Luggage Anti-Theft Cross-Body Bag

3. Pacsafe bags

Another good brand to take a look at is Pacsafe, which has all kinds of bag and luggage options, from backpacks to portable safes.

One of the best reviewed Pacsafe bags is the CS100 which wins praise for its anti-slash straps and the turn and lock security feature, which allows you to lock your bag to a fixture to stop anyone grabbing it while you have lunch, for example.

Pacsafe Citysafe Cs100 | 40plusstyle.com

Pacsafe Citysafe Cs100

4. Crossbody bags for travel

The Baggallini Everywhere Crossbody Bag is a hobo style travel bag with lots of pockets. You can fit an iPad in the interior one. It has card slots, ID windows and is made of heavy nylon. I love that it comes in 6 colors!

best travel purses, Baggallini Everywhere | 40plusstyle.com

Baggallini crossbody bag

5. The ideal tourist bag

Often, the idea of looking like a tourist is a something we wish to avoid. We don’t want to be hassled by street sellers (depending on our destination) and we don’t want to be a target for pick pockets.

While the Sherpani Jag LE  has an urban feel which doesn’t immediately mark you out as a tourist, it is also the ideal small cross body for when you don’t need to carry much else besides your phone and some documents.

But don’t let its small size fool you, you can definitely pack more than just a few things inside. The patterned stitching and the option of grey or black color give it a good, urban-traveler look.

Check out this article for more ideas on fashionable travel clothes that are stylish AND comfortable.

Sherpani Jag LE | 40plusstyle.com

Sherpani Jag LE

6. Travel backpack

Do you prefer a backpack when you travel? The Tumi Just in Case bag is a good option for use while you are away as you can simply fold it up and pop it into your luggage while making longer journeys.

Then, you have it to hand for your return journey if you end up coming home with more than you left with. The back section fits nicely over suitcase handles making it easy to wheel through the airport.

Voyageur - Just in Case® Nylon Travel Backpack | 40plusstyle.com

Voyageur – Just in Case® Nylon Travel Backpack

7. Leather travel bag

Of course, you don’t have to opt for a travel bag from a specialist travel brand. A leather crossbody bag can make the ideal travel bag.

Read our article on the 10 best designer handbags you can definitely afford

Not only is it durable, but it will keep your hands free for sightseeing and holding your camera.

Then, when you are home from vacation, you can obviously continue to use it for day-to-day errands.

The Tory Burch McGraw Leather Crossbody Tote is a classic style perfect for when you just want to fit your essentials in like your smartphone for taking photos, and your wallet.

McGraw Leather Crossbody Tote | 40plusstyle.com

McGraw Leather Crossbody Tote

8. Travel bags online – another leather option for you

A good style for traveling can be a classic satchel bag as you can generally fit your tablet or e-reader in lengthways, as well as having enough compartments for other essentials.

This one is made from 100% leather, and I love the vintage feel it has.

I definitely think this one could suit those who have a relaxed, natural style.

Here is a capsule wardrobe and a style guide for the NATURAL style personality.

Leather Crossbody Bag | 40plusstyle.com

Leather Crossbody Bag

9. Popular travel handbag

The Ogio Brooklyn is an “Amazon choice”.

The buttons on the bag make it stand out in its design, and it has a padded pocket for you to pop your tablet or e-reader in to prevent any scratches or screen cracks.

Brooklyn Tablet Purse | 40plusstyle.com

 Brooklyn Tablet Purse

10. Travel pouch

Of course, a handy travel handbag won’t be all you will want for your vacation. To pop in your travel back, you’re likely to want a travel pouch too.

This way, you can keep all your important documents to hand for when you need to hand over your passport at the airport check-in desk, or your driving license for car hire.

The Venture 4th travel pouch is designed to securely hold all of your valuable documents and/or cash in a way that pickpockets can’t get at. If you are traveling somewhere where you think this could be a concern, such as busy market areas, then this could be a great option.

It also comes with RFID blocking technology, which is a preventative measure to keep your electronic data safe.

Travel Neck Pouch Neck Wallet with RFID Blocking | 40plusstyle.com 

Travel Neck Pouch Neck Wallet with RFID Blocking

Which of these travel bags for women is your favorite? Do you have a special travel purse for vacations?

Like this article on the best travel bags for women? Share it on Pinterest

10 best travel purses for women | 40plusstyle.com

Feature image by @carolem_beauty

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