12

There are a few reasons I prefer a messenger bag or backpack over panniers: A bag on your back is easy to carry around off your bike. If you're using a bike as your primary mode of transportation and making multiple stops, it can be inconvenient to secure your panniers without detaching them and carrying them. I can get off my bike and go to a concert or ...


10

Take a look at your riding position. When I was much younger (about 10-12 years ago) I used a messenger pack all the time while in an aggressive riding position (e.g., track bike / road bike) . In that position I found your lower back supports most the weight of the bag. In a more upright position it pulls on your shoulder more. As a test, try walking ...


6

A big reason to use panniers around town is that it keeps you from getting a sweaty back on a commute. If you're dashing around a city all day couriering you'll get sweaty with our without a backpack, and you're not smartly dressed to start with. But loading and unloading a rack takes time, and the whole point of bike couriers is to be quick. A few seconds ...


5

You may want to use a cross strap if you have one (a strap that goes over the chest) to help stabilize the bag, and play with where the messenger bag sits. The width of the bag's strap also can have an effect, as well as the level of padding. I've also found that a loose bag, which can move around a lot, can cause pain while biking versus a bag that is held ...


5

Waterproof. Not with a waterproof cover, but really, really waterproof, like e.g. the Ortlieb Messenger bags. That's the one thing that is paramount if you also want to commute in bad weather. Size depends on what you carry. If it's just some tools, use a saddle bag. If it's a change of clothes, especially shirt and trousers, look for a larger one so you ...


4

I personally only use a backpack, but most of my riding is off road recreational, not commuting. I have never see a messenger bag or panniers when out on technical single tracks. Every MTBer I know or have seen either has a backpack or nothing. With a good backpack, when out on a ride, I don't even know its there most of the time, however I sometimes go to ...


4

I'll add to the already, good reasons for using a messenger bag. Backpacks, I've found, can sometimes stick up too high, making it difficult to raise your head; especially if you have an aggressive riding position (which most real messengers have) Properly packed, a messenger bag can be every bit as comfortable as a backpack. The myth that the single strap ...


4

I actually always wear a backpack. I would like to get packs to put on the back of my bike. But I only have one bike and it's carbon so I will not add any pack frame to it. I did, however try my friend's messenger bag one time and it left a bruise the size of a softball on my back. I think messenger bags could be good if you have only a lunch a ...


4

Bikeshare bikes are beasts, and their geometry (long wheelbases, particularly) is such that I wouldn't think 15 pounds in front appreciably changes the steering. My concern -- the picture isn't clear on this point -- is whether the bag can be secured in place so that it doesn't slide out. My messenger bag sometimes gets loaded unevenly (books!), which could ...


4

Is it one of those bags that go on only 1 shoulder? I've delivered news papers in England for 6 years, our bags would be close to 10 pounds on a sunday. I found that my shoulder hurt a lot after a while. I started swapping the shoulder I would wear the bag on. One day on the left, one day on the right. That seemed to work a bit better. Alternatively you ...


3

IMHO important criteria are: will the courier be leaving the bike unattended for delivery? E.g. the Pizza courier who has to go up the stairs to the flat where the Pizza was ordered vs delivery goes into the post box. If so, they either need to take the bag with them, or have the possibility to lock the stuff on their racks. Does the company rely on the ...


2

I think for many of today's commuters, it's about fashion. The messenger bag may be a better choice for the frequent stopper. Perhaps, stopping, entering a business and needing quick access to the bag, then moving on to other errands. However, just my opinion, riding from point A to B and later, returning from B to A, with no stops along the way, a backpack ...


2

For straps, ensure that the bag has a cross-strap (that loops around the other side of your body to the bag), or it will be forever falling off/moving to your front. For size - I've had a Timbuk2 Medium Messenger, but currently get away with a Timbuk2 Catapult. Certainly this manufacturer has a huge range of colours available, and being able to pick a nice ...


2

What I keep in my (not messenger) backpack for commuting: Change of clothes (I cycle in shorts & jersey) Shoes (I cycle in SPDs) Spare change in case I forget my wallet Deodorant Mobile Waterproof cover Waterproof cycling jacket Small umbrella (for when I get off the bike) If your work place lets you have lockers or some other storage you can probably ...


2

I'd suggest that you start with a used bike – perhaps the Indian craigslist would be a place to start. You could observe what people are using for commuter bikes in your area, maybe even talk with some of them, and get some ideas about what sort of bike would be appropriate for you. A used bike will be less expensive and you'll lose less money if you decide ...


2

As a food delivery rider for Deliveroo .. here're some reasons why I used to do it: 1) Speed and time saving I can just dismount and move off to customer immediately I can pack/unpack my food while going up and down the elevator or escalator 2) Space I'm staying with parents and space is small. Factor in the fact they visit the toilet several times in ...


1

There are a few reasons I can think of: When carrying heavy loads on the rear rack this will increase your risk of pinch flat/snake bites on the rear tire. the rear tire is already more susceptible to this type of puncture in my experience. If your bike has front suspension it will make it even more unlikely to get a front pinch flat/snake bite. When ...


1

I would really recommend this http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/gravity/liberty_cx.htm I'm making the assumption that you will not be traveling on pristine road surfaces and will have to negotiate some potholes and curbs .. you want a little more rubber than a MTB but don't want the rolling resistance of those fat tires. Stick with a backpack. I have ...


1

I'll add a dissenting opinion. A single strap bag is fine, and the second strap is not required. I've used several, and simply tightening the strap has always been enough to stop it moving around, even at 35 or 40km/h. Naturally, the weather resistance, size, and comfort concerns that the other answers mention are worth considering, but something important ...


1

I would suggest that you strap it to your back ONLY if it is not distracting you when cycling. What I mean by distracting is the back sliding left or right and making you feel that it is moving around your body. This could be an annoying factor for just anybody. If you have this issue, try to fasten it around the protective rail at the front. Citi bikes ...


1

There are so many options for this I can't list them all, here are a few good ones. Mission Workshop has very refined and expensive bags, very full featured multi purpose bags. Rickshaw Bagworks has several commuter bags you may want to check out. Chrome Bags has lots of laptop bags in addition to their standard messenger bags.


1

Noone's suggested neither as a practical answer. Personally I keep spare clothes and shoes at work. My tools stay on the bike's frame, as does water. If I'm carrying anything its generally small enough to take in a jersey pocket. So I say No to both backpacks and messenger bags. If I have to move something larger, I will use my bike trailer and tow it ...


1

I agree with most of the comments about messenger bags being better for riding. However... I find it very odd no one has mentioned yet that if you ride wearing a full face helmet (like a downhill or motorcycle helmet) it is always hitting the top of your backpack which it actually dangerous and motion/sight limiting. A messenger bag with the thick strap ...


1

I bought an Arkel Pannier (Signature H Urban Pannier series) and it doesnt need specific racks but you can put it on with hooks on your existing rack. I was faced with the same issues as you but the Urban Commuter H has been so convenient in putting on and off the bike with minimal effort. Only thing I would want is a better strap to carry it but it as ...


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