how to lock a backpack

Keep Them Safe: Ultimate Guide on How to Lock a Backpack 

Need to make sure your backpack is secured enough? Looking for how to lock a backpack? You’ll get to know everything related to this today.

I’m going on trekking Annapurna Circuit for the next several months with my all-time companion, my backpack. I have been using several backpacks on my previous trekkings. I must tell you that you need to know how to lock your backpacks. 

It’s a very simple step. However, it can save you from immense disasters. 

I have sacrificed many nights looking for better protection for my belongings. I learned the strategies for maintaining the safety of my belongings. Here, I am going to share with you how to lock a backpack.

The Importance Of Securing Your Belongings 

After we quickly discuss why you should, I’ll go into the mechanics of locking your bag.

To Avoid Theft 

Every day, there are about 400 thousand pickpocketing throughout the globe. Pickpocketing occurs most often in Rome, Barcelona, the Czech Republic, Madrid, and Paris.

While you secure your backpack, no one can steal your belongings while you aren’t watching or when you’ve got the option of leaving it unattended for a short period.

Locking your backpack reduces the risk of theft, yet they could still be able to get it.

Prevent Accidental Opening 

Keep your backpack closed to prevent it from accidentally opening on the trail. Your pack should be able to keep itself closed, but there’s nothing wrong with adding a layer of protection.

As a result, securing your carry-on will ensure that it remains closed. It will also deter thieves.

Peace of Mind 

The sense of peace of mind from locking a backpack is perhaps its most significant advantage.

If you don’t have to worry about the safety of your stuff, you can relax and enjoy your vacation.

You can relax and enjoy every moment of your journey without being stressed.

Types of backpack locks

You may want to consider including any of these locks on packing your belongings:


For locking a bag, padlocks are by far the most popular and practical option. They are available in a wide range of dimensions and contours, making them adaptable to various bag styles.

Padlocks are helpful for many kinds of trekking, from short day treks to extended backpacking expeditions that last several days.

When living in hostels, campsites, or other communal lodgings, they are especially handy for hikers who need to keep their bags locked and prevent their belongings from being stolen or tampered with. They are beneficial for trekkers who are concerned about protecting their equipment from being stolen or tampered with.

A padlock may offer additional protection and assurance, whether hiking in an area with an elevated crime rate or when leaving your belongings unguarded for lengthy periods.

Also, while carrying essential objects in your possession, like cameras, electrical devices, or pricey gear, a padlock might discourage potential burglars from attempting.

Padlocks are a tool that may be handy for hikers who need to protect their equipment and preserve their valuables while they are out on the path. Although padlocks might not be required for every hiking excursion, they are still a good idea.

backpack locks

Cable Locks

Another standard method of securing a backpack is using a cable lock. A flexible cable can be inserted between the backpack’s zippers, making it impossible to access the bag without first severing the cord.

For extended periods spent in outdoor activities, cable locks would be ideal for securing your belongings without significantly increasing the pack’s weight.

When out exploring or away from the site for a few hours, it’s crucial to have a safe manner to keep your bag and belongings secure.

Compared to a tiny lock with a key on only a single zipper, the use of a cable lock, which can be wrapped around many zippers or compartments, offers a more secure alternative.

A cable lock is a convenient way to keep your belongings safe when traveling overseas and living in dormitories or other public lodgings.

You should carry your private lock, although most hostels offer lockers. You may coil up a cable lock and keep it in your bag until you need it again. You should also consider bringing a TSA-approved cord lock to keep your bag safe while flying.

Moreover, cable locks are an excellent way to keep your backpack secure when trekking through an urban region or leaving it unattended in a busy public place.

If you tie the wire around a sturdy pole or tree, you may prevent would-be burglars from making off with your bag.

Moreover, you may find it helpful to fasten your bag to a boat or another fixed item on shore when you want to engage in water-based sports such as paddling or canoeing.

TSA Locks

Locks that have been authorized by the TSA may be used at airports.
Backpacks secured with these locks may be opened and inspected by TSA personnel without risk of damage.

Also, it is a great way to keep your bag safe, whether hiking or flying overseas.
Suppose you must leave your backpack in an airport locker or use a luggage storage service. TSA locks are good to choose from.

Retractable Cable Locks

A retractable cable lock may be larger than a regular one, but its longer cable (about 1 m) provides more maneuverability.

You may use the lock for securing your belongings by fastening your luggage together, securing your luggage to the bed frame and bars, locking your helmet to your bike, and any other inventive means that come to mind!

Combination Locks

Locks known as combination locks, can only be opened with the correct password. They are simple to use and may be an advantageous alternative for hikers who prefer not to bring keys.

When you need to keep your bag locked up for a limited time, such as for a day walk or a shorter vacation, a combination lock is a decent alternative to consider.

You may prevent robbers from trying to unzip your rucksack and steal your goods by creating a code that you know. 

This is an excellent choice for safeguarding your bag and other possessions while you leave your room in a hotel or another kind of shared housing. Locks with combinations are convenient to bring along since they may be used to secure dormitory lockers as well as other types of storage.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Backpack Lock

Which backpack lock is right for you? 

While choosing, consider the following facts:


I recommend using either a keyed lock or a TSA-approved combo lock unless you have any other major reason. 

Locks that employ a combination rather than a key are more handy. However, those of us with less dexterous fingers may find them difficult to use.


The most adaptable baggage locks include a long chain or an extended cable. They make it possible to create more versatile locking configurations, particularly useful for bags with exterior pockets but just one zip cap. 

You may secure all your belongings within your bag by using a long or bendable wire shackle to attach to a different zipper or lock.


The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) allows locks made mostly of steel since they are incredibly durable.

Avoid purchasing locks entirely constructed of plastic or rubber material, as well as locks that include cables constructed from steel. 


You may choose from a variety of lock types, all of which meet TSA requirements. 

Personal preferences should play a role in the decision-making process. Do you often lose your keys?

Locks that only a single individual can unlock should be avoided. Do you require a little bit of wiggle room to fasten a bag that has modest zipper holds? 

Try to find the cable lock with an excellent, immensely tough cord.

Is the possibility of someone guessing your safe combination keeping you up at night? You should get a lock that can only be opened with a key or a card.

In general, female backpacks contain more expensive stuff than men’s. Thus, you should carry at least one TSA-approved luggage lock safeguarding your luggage if you’re a woman.

secure your backpacks while travelling

How to Lock a Backpack Effectively

There are several options for keeping your bag and belongings safe when you can’t keep an eye on them.

Using Anti-Theft Backpack 

Anti-theft backpacks are designed to prevent would-be thieves. They actually make it very difficult for them to steal your belongings. 

They appear like regular backpacks but are packed with several safety mechanisms. This type of backpack protects your belongings from theft. 

Backpack Locks 

Whether using a standard or theft-resistant backpack, a solid pair of bag locks is a worthwhile investment. 

Locking your rucksack to fixed objects like seats, radiators, and other similar fixtures can prevent a burglar from snatching and running off with it.

Quickly securing your luggage to your seat will help you get a better night’s rest while you are taking a nap. 

Locking your bag in a seat or a signpost frees your hands. You might need to make a quick trip to the restroom or the shop. You should do these without having to worry about losing it.

Locking your backpack with a bag lock is a cheap and convenient way to keep your belongings safe when traveling. Many travelers prefer double-sided cable locks; we’ve included recommendations for some of the best models below.

Safeguards and Protective Coverings

Security coverings, sometimes known as tamper-proof sacks or nets, may be put over a bag and fastened to a fixed object for further protection. Covers designed to safeguard your bag from potential thieves are often constructed of the same slash-resistant materials as theft-resistant backpacks or mesh made of metal. 

A wire and locking function, standard on most security covers, makes it possible to keep your luggage safely locked away from would-be thieves.

Using Zip Locks 

Your backpack may have several zippered compartments of varying sizes. Locking the biggest and most visible zippers on your gear may be sufficient to discourage would-be pickpockets and criminals from targeting you.

Zipper locks help keep prying eyes out of your luggage and provide the impression that you don’t carry anything of value. In some cases, robbers may pass over a bag because they see a basic security mechanism, like zip locks, and conclude that the remainder of the contents are also safe.

Additional Tips For Securing Your Backpack

  • The fewer valuables you carry, the less opportunity for theft, and the easier it gets to keep track of everything you own.
  • Create Copies of All the Crucial Documents.
  • Avoid drawing attention to yourself by keeping your expensive devices in your main bag. Only take something from your heavy backpack once you’re in a well-lit, uncrowded area.
  • Avoid carrying items in the back pockets as it makes the things vulnerable, particularly in highly crowded or populated areas.
  • Avoid drawing attention to yourself and making yourself a pickpocket target by dressing conservatively and in line with local fashion trends. 

Alternative Ways To Secure Your Belongings While Traveling 

  • If you want to avoid losing your belongings when traveling, it’s best to always wear your bag.
  • Take a Friend on Your Trip. It’s not feasible to always keep an eye on your own back; thus, traveling with a companion is always recommended. You may rest easier knowing that someone else is watching for any signs of trouble or potential theft as you enjoy the sights.
  • Some trekkers employ a wrap-around netting made of cable or metal that prevents easy access to their bag’s pockets.
  • If you are unwilling to pay for too many locks, zip ties may be used to keep your zippers closed. However, this is impractical if your bag has numerous compartments or needs frequent access to your goods during the day.
  • Zip ties are inexpensive and easy to discard once you reach your destination.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I secure my bag?

Most types of backpacks include a variety of zippered compartments of varying sizes. Even if you can’t lock every single zip on the backpack, protecting the larger and most visible ones with locks might be enough to prevent would-be burglars.

How do I lock a backpack without a lock?

You may use wrap-around netting. It simply encloses the bag on all sides. Even if robbers find a way in, they may move on to another bag if you utilize this one. A metal net is an efficient and reliable way to safeguard your belongings, but it also adds significant weight to your backpack.

How can I know whether a bag is theft-proof?

An anti-theft backpack should include several characteristics, including:
1. Suitably secure zippers
2. RFID shielding
3. Concealed pockets
4. Waterproof construction 
5. Locking cables
Each option offers advantages and disadvantages, as well as additional expenditures, based on the type of trips or business you undertake.

Wrap Up

The safety of your backpack is an important factor in determining how enjoyable and risk-free your journey or adventure will be. The exciting enjoyment will abruptly end if you lose your precious and required stuff.

Hopefully, you will apply the information you’ve gained here about how to lock a backpack to keep your belongings safe.

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Behind Best Darn Product is Kevin Pena, a passionate blogger and e-commerce enthusiast based in Atlanta, Georgia. With his finger on the pulse of the ever-growing online marketplace, Kevin is dedicated to sharing his extensive knowledge and genuine enthusiasm for the products and services that shape our modern lives.

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