Feral sweatpants? Check. Overpriced airport latte that tastes like jet fuel? Check. Awesome weekend bag that’ll turn heads and light a fire in the loins of every passably attractive woman within a few miles? Eh, we can’t promise too much, but what we do know is that the cornerstone of a successful weekend trip is a good holdall.
Weekend bags are ideal for when you’re packing light, making the most of the essentials, but still expecting to return home in one piece. They should fit comfortably in the overhead or under the car seat, and sustain the sort of punishment that goes with guys and boozy weekends.
Most importantly, they need to look like something you’d be happy showing to your boss if it’s a work trip, or taking into the office if you’re a stingy bastard that likes to use one bag for the gym and getting out of town.
The following nine are our picks for the best weekend bags that’ll tick the style and value boxes (even if the fire in the lions thing doesn’t work out).
The Renana welded holdall belongs to Eastpak’s latest collection of travel weekend bags designed for long-term durability, building on their origins as wartime suppliers of tough, functional outdoor kit for the US Army. It’s designed with military simplicity in mind: one external side zip, a two-way zip fastening and a small embossed designer logo on a matte black shell.
This bag is made from hard-wearing polyamide, offering a plentiful 25 litres of internal capacity. It also features heat-welded pockets to maintain dryness if you run into dodgy weather on your journey. Better yet, Eastpak have offered a 30-year guarantee on their bags since 1984. We wouldn’t be surprised if this bag travels longer than you do.
Starting as a small belt manufacturer in Somerset, England in 1971, Mulberry is currently the United Kingdom’s largest producer of luxury leather accessories, and have developed an unimpeachable reputation for understated, masculine products that pay homage to quintessential Britishness.
This ‘Belgrave’ leather holdall is produced from premium pebble-grain leather, a sturdy material well-suited to rigorous travel. It has both a detachable canvas shoulder strap and leather top handles, and can be packed to your preferences with internal zip pockets and 33 litres of room to play with. It recalls classic, masculine style without looking aged or fogeyish, offering the ideal intersection between tradition and the needs of modern travel.
The successors of C.C. Filson believe that rugged quality is as important for modern travel as it was for American pioneers and outdoorsmen in the eighteenth century. This leather trimmed twill duffel bag is something you could take over a mountain or under the seat on a seaplane. It is constructed from durable twill in a subdued forest green, with calf leather trims and handles.
This bag offers a spacious 48 litres of packing room, and is secured with a two-way zip and snap fastening, making it ideal for both a longer, arduous outdoor trek or an overnight trip. Filson’s warranty arrangement is pretty unique – they also offer a lifetime guarantee on all their products.
In a world of the disposably cheap and sweatshop-made, Anderson’s British-inspired accessories stand above the rest. Personally supervised by CEO Riccardo Valenti, Anderson’s belts and bags are meticulously hand-crafted by artisans in riverside city Parma, Italy, and pay homage to the traditions of English tailoring.
This tan suede holdall brings more of that traditional British style to short weekend getaways. It has 26 litres of canvas-lined internal volume, and leather trimmed pockets for those belongings you can’t afford to lose (again). Just don’t throw it in the boot and hope for the best. Travel can be hard on suede, so keep it to short trips that don’t involve last minute sprints to the tarmac.
Hydrogen’s 2017 offering combines their trademark athletic appeal with military graphics and prints. This bag is made from weather-resistant black PVC with camouflage panel detailing. Reminiscent of a traditional gym bag, it features two zip compartments and detachable shoulder strap. Internally, the bag totals over 30 litres of space, so you could quite easily fit a weekend’s worth of essentials and not worry about the dreaded luggage check in.
Intended for a younger audience, Emporio Armani’s line of accessories captures the brand’s famous restraint and understated masculinity. With a navy body and contrasting black handles and straps, this bag zipped holdall is constructed from a leather-polyester blend that ensures both durability and a sophisticated finish.
Rejecting unnecessary details, the bag has a primary zipped compartment and a hidden side pocket for storing essentials. It’s smart enough for the upgrade-seeking air traveller and complements a tailored Monday to Friday outfit in equal measure.
Raf Simons is fond of the collaborations we didn’t know we needed. In a creative partnership with the famously-utilitarian Eastpak, Simons has released a black textile duffel bag that combines his design sensibility with Eastpak’s rugged production qualities.
With strict utility as a primary design consideration, this bag contains twin padded shoulder straps, Velcro-fastened handles and leather-trimmed compartments. Befittingly minimal, it features a simple patch logo that nods to the collaborative spirit of the project and is finished in a monotonal black colour scheme.
DSquared2’s latest collection pays tribute to the ongoing resurgence of pragmatic military design. Produced in Italy and sourced from a blend of lightweight canvas and tough calf leather, this holdall bag is protected with a fold-over strap and contains internal compartments for secure storage.
It also has two additional external pouches and all up can fit approximately 25 litres of belongings. It’s at the upper end of the pricing scale, but a resilient investment if you’re the guy who always manages to get himself into the pointy end of travel.
APC’s understated cool goes well beyond their wardrobe staples and outerwear. This canvas trimmed duffle bag is perfect for the discreet, trend-avoidant traveller. In an appropriately minimalist matte black, the bag features a primary zipped compartment and external pouch to separate your belongings.
It also has a smaller, internal zip-secured pocket and sturdy canvas handles. This bag is constructed from resilient shell material, safeguarding your belongings from the elements during travel or daily use. It has a hearty 64 litre capacity – ideal for the interstate flyover or the daily slog to the office and weights room.