The Best Solar Panel Backpacks: Charge Your Devices On-the-Go! 

 December 16, 2023

By  Diane Wuthrich

Have you ever noticed in the middle of a busy day that your phone battery is about to run out? For many of us, a dead phone battery can be a disaster because it's today’s modern personal assistant. We rely on our smartphones to connect us to virtually everything we need throughout the day—so it’s especially troublesome when we run out of power.

But what if you could stay connected on the go? How much easier would that make your day? Never fear, solar panel backpacks are here! These revolutionary backpacks are equipped with solar panels that allow you to charge your devices and stay connected no matter where you are.

The most important features of a backpack with solar panels are the wattage and efficiency of the cells, the capacity and weight of the backpack, the durability of the material, and additional features such as USB ports or hydration systems. Comfort and fit are also important.

Let's explore the world of solar panel backpacks and find out which backpack best suits your lifestyle when you’re on the move. We'll look at the features of each backpack, the technology behind them, what sets them apart from other backpacks, and what drawbacks they may have. Let’s find out which solar panel backpack will be your trusty sidekick!

The Best Solar Panel Backpacks

Solar panel backpacks are quickly becoming one of the most helpful ways to charge your devices on the go. There are a variety of different designs and features available, ranging from extremely basic to advanced models. Some people may argue that solar powered backpacks are not worth the price, but those who own them disagree. Solar panel backpacks are beneficial for those who like to travel or need convenient access to their electronic devices. Those without solar panels have limited time to spend outdoors and away from power outlets.

Another great advantage of solar panel backpacks is the ability to provide power without having to worry about batteries or cables. Not only is it convenient to be able to use renewable energy, but the backpacks themselves offer a great solution to reduce the use of disposable batteries. In addition, the panels are often attached to the bag with strong Velcro and straps, keeping the solar panels securely connected during your travels.

Many solar panel backpacks also come in stylish colors and designs so you can express yourself and charge your devices at the same time. There are also many options for extra padding, pockets, and compartments for items like keys, notebooks, or pens.

Overall, solar panel backpacks are an extremely practical way to charge your devices on the go when you don’t have a power outlet. With designs in all shapes and sizes and materials that offer reliable protection from wear and tear, these backpacks are a viable option for anyone looking for ways to extend their battery life while traveling or exploring the outdoors. Now that you know more about the benefits of solar panel backpacks, let’s take a look at a few common types available on the market today.

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Mountaineer Solar Backpack

Mountaineer Solar Backpack

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We found the Mountaineer Solar Backpack to be a game-changer for keeping devices charged while embracing the great outdoors.


  • Flexible, detachable solar panel for on-the-go charging
  • Comfortable design with a ventilated back panel and padded straps
  • Durable construction with a capacious 40-liter storage space


  • Consumers may find better durability in thicker canvas backpacks for heavy-duty use
  • Full charge time for devices can be lengthy, depending on sunshine and device battery level
  • The solar feature may have limited utility in low-sunlight conditions or if you’re frequently on the move

Ever been caught off-guard with a dead phone while hiking or fishing? We’ve been there, and that’s why the Mountaineer Solar Backpack has earned a spot on our must-have gear list. Its built-in, detachable solar panel is a marvel, charging our gadgets as we meander through trails. Though it took a while to get our devices fully charged, the convenience of solar power in the middle of nowhere was invaluable.

Comfort is key for any backpack, and the Mountaineer didn't disappoint us. The straps didn’t dig in, even after hours of wear, thanks to their padding. Its 40-liter capacity swallowed all our essentials with ease, and the ripstop nylon shrugged off brushes with branches and rocks.

Some might quibble about the ruggedness of the material compared to traditional heavy-duty backpacks. True, you might not want to drag it through extreme conditions, but for a typical day under the sun, its performance was more than satisfactory. The solar charging feature is a boon, but remember its efficiency dips in cloudy weather or if the backpack isn't facing the sun directly. It's ideal for activities with consistent sun exposure – think open trails or a day at the beach.

In sum, considering our trekking and tech needs, the Mountaineer Solar Backpack struck a fine balance. It impressed us with its durability, comfort, and innovative charging feature, making it a solid choice for anyone looking to harness the power of the sun during their outdoor activities.

Voltaic Systems Solar Backpack

Voltaic Systems Solar Backpack

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We believe this backpack is an excellent choice for anyone in need of a reliable solar-powered charging solution on the go.


  • Renewable energy charging ensures devices stay powered even when outlets are unavailable.
  • The included battery pack provides convenient charging of laptops and smartphones.
  • Robust build quality with a 2-year solar panel warranty assures long-term durability.


  • Heavier than standard backpacks due to the embedded solar technology.
  • Premium price point reflects the high-tech features.
  • Solar charging can be less effective in low-light conditions.

Our experience with the Voltaic Systems Solar Backpack has proven it to be an indispensable travel companion. The integrated solar panels are efficient, turning sunlight into usable power for our gadgets. The backpack's design is thoughtfully crafted, offering ample storage and organization for our tech essentials. It's also a conversation starter—every time we take it out, it garners attention and curiosity.

Having used it for weeks, the performance is impressive. The backpack feels comfortable on our shoulders even when loaded with devices, and the rugged exterior handles the unpredictability of outdoor adventures with ease. The optional battery pack is a lifesaver, especially when the sun ducks behind clouds or when we're on the move in shaded areas.

Varying conditions do test the solar charging capabilities, but that's a limitation shared by all solar technologies. That said, under clear skies, it's truly a self-sufficient solution. The premium cost is justified by its resilience and the convenience it brings, though we're mindful that it's an investment.

In conclusion, the Voltaic Systems Solar Backpack meets our needs for a portable, renewable energy source, combining functionality with the freedom to charge devices anywhere. It's built to last, performs reliably, and supports an eco-friendly lifestyle. Whether we're trekking through the wilderness or commuting across the city, it's our go-to gear for staying charged and connected.

Sunnybag Explorer+

Sunnybag Explorer Plus

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Our team put the Sunnybag Explorer+ to the test, and we're convinced it's a solid pick for anyone needing a charge on the go.


  • Charges devices quickly with strong solar cells
  • Ergonomic design with ample storage
  • Water-resistant and durable for daily use


  • Solar charging is less effective in low sunlight
  • Limited padding for heavy gear
  • USB compatibility issues with certain iPhones

During our time with the backpack, its solar charging capability impressed us. We found that in direct sunlight, it lives up to the claim of charging a smartphone in just a few hours – ideal for trekking or city commutes when a power outlet is out of reach. The solar panel itself detaches, providing flexibility depending on our needs.

We appreciated the backpack's sleek, ergonomic design and lightweight feel, making it an easy carry even when loaded with our gadgets and personal items. Its dedicated laptop compartment provided the perfect fit for a 15-inch notebook, and the numerous pockets helped us keep everything organized.

We also wore it out during a light drizzle and were pleased by the water-resistant fabric that kept our electronics dry. However, we did notice that the solar charging pace can falter under cloudy skies, which is not uncommon for solar-powered devices. Also, those who carry heavier items may wish for additional padding.

When trying to charge an iPhone directly with the USB port, we encountered a message saying the device wasn't compatible – a hiccup worth noting for iPhone users. Despite this, we found the backpack suited our needs, easily storing our devices and gear for an all-day outing.

Overall, our experience with the Sunnybag Explorer+ was positive. Its sustainable energy source, coupled with a practical, high-quality build, makes it an accessory we'd rely on regularly, despite minor limitations.

ECEEN Solar Daypack

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We found this solar backpack to be a solid choice for casual outings and light travel, especially when staying connected is a priority.


  • Efficient solar charging capability for devices
  • Ultra-portable design, easily foldable for storage
  • Suitable for light, everyday use or short trips


  • Material durability is questionable under heavy use
  • Straps may lack comfort for longer wear
  • Limited to light packing due to size and build

We recently took the ECEEN Solar Daypack out for a spin during our weekend hiking trip and were impressed by its solar charging efficiency. Its compact size was ideal for our essentials, and the integrated solar panel kept our smartphones charged, which was particularly handy for using GPS and snapping photos along the trail.

The daypack's ability to fold into itself was a standout feature. When we traveled to a remote cabin, its slim profile allowed for easy storage in our larger luggage, saving us space and hassle.

However, when we tested its limits by packing it with heavier items, we noticed some strain on the material. So it's best for lighter loads. The straps also could have been more comfortable; we felt them digging in a bit after a few hours of continuous wear.

The ECEEN Solar Daypack won't replace your workhorse backpack, but for those in need of a lightweight solar-powered bag for day-to-day activities or occasional outdoor escapades, it's a useful companion. Just remember to pack light, and you'll be ready to stay charged and connected wherever you go.

FESTI Solar Hydration Pack

FESTI Solar Hydration Pack

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We were pleasantly surprised by the FESTI Solar Hydration Pack's mix of energy independence and utility, making it a fitting choice for trekkers and festival-goers alike.


  • Quick smartphone charging using high-efficiency solar panels, even under overcast skies
  • Adjustable and padded straps provide a comfortably tailored fit
  • Durable design with certified water resistance and robust zippers


  • Limited storage capacity for longer trips
  • Side pockets may not accommodate larger water bottles
  • Included charging cables could benefit from improved quality

Tackling a sunlit trail with the FESTI Solar Hydration Pack on our backs, the convenience of solar-powered gadget charging was clear right from the outset. The bag’s build quality impressed us; robust materials mean you shouldn't worry about wear and tear anytime soon. Being able to adjust various straps proved beneficial for comfort during a day's hike, and the backpack's airflow design kept us cool throughout.

However, the storage space was more suited to day trips than long excursions. We found ourselves longing for a tad more room to stow away essentials, although the hydration bladder's capacity was sufficient for moderate activity. The power bank’s given cables functioned adequately, yet upgrading to higher-quality ones for faster charging could be a wise move.

In our experience with the FESTI Solar Hydration Pack, it stood out for casual adventurers focused on staying connected while exploring the outdoors. Despite storage constraints, the pack’s clever features, like the effective solar charging facility, make it a strong contender if energy efficiency and hydration are at the top of your list.

ECEEN 78L Solar Backpack

ECEEN 78L Solar Backpack

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We recommend this backpack for those who love to stay charged and organized on their outdoor adventures.


  • Integrated solar panel offers convenient charging on-the-go
  • Large 78L capacity accommodates extensive gear for longer trips
  • Multiple compartments and pockets for organized storage


  • Solar charging efficiency can vary with weather conditions
  • The backpack's size may be bulky for day trips
  • Specific solar panel attachment methods may not suit all

Hiking through the redwood canopies, we found the ECEEN 78L Solar Backpack to be a real game changer. With our devices plugged in, capturing the majestic scenery was a snap without worrying about battery life. Its solar panel soaked up the sun's energy, keeping our cameras and phones topped off throughout the daylight hours.

As someone who tends to pack everything but the kitchen sink, the generous volume of the backpack was a boon. We were able to fit all the essentials for a week-long trek, from our tent to our trail mix. The separate shoe compartment was especially handy, preventing dirt from trailing into the main compartment.

We navigated our way easily with this backpack, and even when fully loaded, the comfort was unquestionable. The well-padded straps distributed the load evenly across our backs, making the weight almost imperceptible. Yet, on overcast days, the solar charger's pace slowed, which reminded us to always plan for enough power.

The ECEEN 78L Solar Backpack isn't just for the backcountry; we also found it useful in urban settings. Walking through the city, our devices remained charged, and the backpack's form factor wasn't too out of place. However, the full capacity of the backpack wasn't as needed in these scenarios, but the surplus of space was never a downside for impromptu shopping trips or to stow away extra layers.

Bear in mind, this backpack has a robust build; therefore, it might come across as too sizable for short jaunts. Nonetheless, for extensive expeditions, its satchel and storage capabilities shine. Be prepared, though, for the solar charger's performance variability—sunny days are best to take full advantage of this feature. Just as well, the way the solar panel attaches might have you improvise, but once secured, it stays put, harnessing solar power effortlessly.

Kingsons Solar Backpack

Kingsons Solar Backpack

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We found this solar-powered backpack to be a reliable companion for our daily commutes and outdoor adventures, offering both convenience and eco-friendly charging on the go.


  • Built-in solar panel keeps devices charged while outdoors
  • Waterproof with anti-theft features for security
  • Ergonomic design provides comfort and back support


  • The solar charging can be slower than expected
  • Limited troubleshooting information provided by the manufacturer
  • Some users report discomfort with strap design

Our experience with the Kingsons Solar Backpack was mostly positive. The integrated solar panel caught the sunlight easily as we walked, providing a steady trickle of power for our devices. It's a satisfying feeling knowing that while we're out, our gadgets are harnessing solar energy.

The backpack's water-resistant material and the anti-theft buckle system gave us peace of mind when we had to brave the elements or navigate crowded areas. The thoughtful design elements, such as the reflective logo, also added to our sense of security during low-light conditions.

However, while the solar charging is an attractive feature, it's important to manage expectations. On overcast days, the charging pace slowed down more than we'd hoped. A power bank can be a good backup for such scenarios.

Adjustment of the shoulder straps took us a bit of time to get just right, and we've noticed comments from other users who felt the straps could be more comfortable. Nevertheless, once adjusted, the weight distribution felt good on our shoulders, minimizing any lower back pressure.

In conclusion, the Kingsons Solar Backpack is a solid choice for anyone looking for a practical and innovative solution to carry their belongings and keep their devices charged.

RuK Solar Backpack

RuK Solar Backpack

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We think the RuK Solar Backpack presents a unique blend of technology and functionality for modern-goers who appreciate a charge on the move.


  • Solar panel integration keeps devices powered up outdoors.
  • Versatile design transitions from sports to business needs smoothly.
  • Comfort-focused features offer ease during extended wear.


  • Some may find the backpack’s aesthetic less suitable for formal settings.
  • The weight could be burdensome for day-long excursions.
  • Limited consumer reviews may not reflect a broad range of experiences.

On the trail this week, the solar panels proved their worth, keeping our gadgets juiced up while our phones were busy tracking routes and taking pictures. It’s a reassuring feature for those of us who often find ourselves away from power outlets during hikes or long bike rides. The compartmentalization inside makes organization a breeze; we managed to fit a laptop, a couple of water bottles, and all our pickleball gear without hassle.

We used it on a business trip recently, and the transition was seamless. Slipping through airport security was smoother than usual, thanks to the TSA-friendly layout. Attaching it to our rolling luggage with its built-in strap was such a convenience. The padded straps and back also got us through the day pain-free, which is a significant plus for those long travel days.

However, after several hours of wear, the backpack's weight did start to weigh on us, which could be something to consider for those planning to use it for extended periods. Although we like the style, it's worth noting it may not suit every professional environment. Given the limited number of user reviews, it's hard to gauge the longevity of the backpack, but our time with it has been promising.

Types of Solar Panel Backpacks

Solar panel backpacks come in different shapes and sizes, each with various features for different purposes. Depending on your needs, you can choose between two types of solar panel backpacks: flexible microfibre and rigid canvas.

Flexible microfibre solar panel backpacks are the newest type on the market. They are often made of an inconspicuous fabric, like a regular backpack, so they don't stand out as much as their rigid canvas counterparts. This type of solar panel backpack is ideal for frequent travelers because it takes up less space and is nor easily damaged during transport. Many shoppers also prefer these lightweight and comfortable backpacks because they have soft padded straps, adjustable waist buckles, and chest straps that provide a secure fit.

On the other hand, there are people who find traditional backpacks made of solid canvas desirable for solar panels because of their size and the possibility of accommodating additional items. Their bulky shape makes them difficult to store and they can weigh a considerable amount when fully loaded. However, the added protection of reinforced construction will withstand all weather conditions and wear and tear. If you're looking for an efficient way to charge multiple devices at once while on the go, rigid canvas backpacks tend to offer larger solar panels than flexible microfibre backpacks and are capable of charging larger devices such as laptops.

Features to Look for in a Solar Panel Backpack

When choosing a solar panel backpack, you should pay attention to the most important features. Choose backpacks made of waterproof and high-quality material to protect your belongings and ensure a long life. Look for sturdy metal buckles and thick straps so you can carry a heavier load. An adjustable sizing system for the torso is also important to find a comfortable fit and distribute the weight evenly. Finally, opt for backpacks with multiple compartments, pockets, and pouches to organize and store your belongings efficiently.

It is also worth discussing whether backpacks with solar panels should have built-in batteries or whether an external battery should be used. While some manufacturers equip their backpacks with built- in batteries, others suggest the use of an external power bank, which allows the owner to meet their own energy needs while reducing the overall cost of the backpack. 

Proponents of hip-mounted battery packs argue that they are more ergonomic and provide easy access to the main power source. On the other hand, critics point out that the overall weight of the backpack is increased by the built-in components and does not provide enough space for additional items such as clothing or books.

Pros and Cons of Solar Panel Backpacks

When buying a solar panel backpack, it is also important to weigh the pros and cons to determine if it is suitable for your lifestyle. On the plus side, they are an excellent source of renewable energy that you can use to stay connected on the go. Solar backpacks are often lightweight and durable enough to withstand outdoor activities such as hiking and camping. Most backpacks feature adjustable straps and waterproof material to provide comfort and protection. Additionally, these backpacks can be used anywhere there’s sunlight, so you can power up your devices wherever you go.

On the downside, solar panel backpacks can be expensive compared to traditional models and can be clunky and bulky due to the added weight of the battery and solar panels. Also, not all devices are compatible with these backpacks, although most devices today have USB ports that allow them to be charged via a solar backpack. Since light intensity affects charging power, solar backpacks can be inefficient on cloudy or overcast days.

Given the above information, it’s important that you research the different brands and types before buying a solar panel backpack – weighing the pros and cons with your needs and budget is key to finding something suitable. With this knowledge, you can make an informed buying decision that will benefit you the most during your adventures in the great outdoors. With that in mind, let’s look at some tips on how to get the most out of your solar panel backpack so that it serves you well now and for years to come.

Tips for Using Solar Panel Backpacks

If you’re considering buying a solar panel backpack, there are a few things to consider. In addition to the pros and cons of these innovative backpacks described in the previous section, here are some tips for using them.

First, check what types of charging your backpack supports. Certain backpacks can accommodate charging cables for smartphones, iPads, and other devices, while others only charge with USB cables. Make sure that the device you want to charge is compatible with the bag you have chosen.

Next, check how much sunlight is needed for charging. Many bags require full sun for optimal charging time, but some newer models have batteries that can be charged in partial sun or indirect light. Knowing how much sunlight is necessary can help you avoid frustration when it’s time to plug in and charge the batteries.

Finally, determine the potential power and efficiency of your particular model. Solar panel backpacks come in all shapes and sizes, and the amount of electricity they produce at any given time depends largely on their size and design features. Check the wattage of your backpack before using it as your primary power source; different models offer different charging times and amounts.

All in all, solar panel backpacks can be an incredibly useful tool for anyone looking for a flexible way to charge their devices on the go. Knowing how much sunlight is available at your destination, what devices you want to charge, and what wattage each model offers are all important steps to ensure reliable use of this investment. With a little research and thought beforehand, you can harness the sun’s energy and ensure you never miss a call (or a tweet) again!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the benefits of using a solar panel backpack?

There are many advantages to using a solar backpack. First and foremost, they provide an easy way to charge your devices on the go. Instead of relying solely on power sockets or power banks, you can place the solar panel backpack in direct sunlight and to generate enough power to charge your devices wherever you go. This is especially handy when you’re camping or doing other outdoor activities where you need to keep your devices charged and ready to go.

In addition, such backpacks provide green energy as an alternative source to traditional power generation methods. Solar panels have little impact on the environment and produce no emissions. They are also more economical than traditional energy sources because they rely on a reusable resource—the sun's rays—instead of fossil fuels or power generation plants.

Last but not least, solar panel backpacks offer safety and comfort due to their lightweight design and protective cover. Many models are equipped with additional pockets and compartments so that they are functional and can be carried comfortably over a longer period of time.

What features should I consider when looking for a solar panel backpack?

When looking for a solar panel backpack, there are several features you should look for:

  • Capacity: Look for a backpack that has enough space for all your tech gadgets and other things you want to take with you.
  • Battery capacity: Make sure the backpack has enough battery capacity to charge all your devices on the go.
  • Ease of use: Choose a backpack with a straightforward design and user-friendly setup so you can charge your devices quickly and easily.
  • Durability: Look for a durable and weatherproof backpack that can withstand harsh conditions.
  • Portability: Choose a lightweight solar panel backpack that is easy to carry and leaves your hands free when you move.

By considering these features, you can find the perfect solar panel backpack for your needs and charge your devices on the go!

About the author

Diane is our head writer and researcher for our backpack informational content. Her everyday carry is a Herschel.

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