There are several ways to protect your ski gear, and one of the best is a well-made bag. Ski boot bags are great for anyone who loves to hit the slopes and wants to make sure their equipment stays safe.
I’ve been on many different ski trips over the years, and I’ve used a lot of boot bags during those adventures to keep my gear safe. I know what to look for in the best available bags, and I’ll share that information with you here.
The Dakine Snow Boot Locker is my pick for the best ski boot bag of the season. This is a well-made bag with a large 30-liter capacity to easily store your ski boots and some other soft goods you want to take along with you.
I’ll provide you with a handful of other high-quality ski boot bags in this post. I want to make sure you have an effective way to travel with your ski gear, so you can take advantage of every opportunity to get out there on the snow.
Let’s zip up and get to it.
- Who Should Get This
- Top Picks of Best Ski Boot Bags & Backpacks
- How to Choose a Ski Boot Bag or Backpack
- Useful Tips & Resources
- Final Verdict
Who Should Get This
Boot bags are perfect for travelers. Ski boots can be pretty expensive, so it is crucial to protect your investment. While ski boots are relatively durable, a boot bag will protect them much better than being left unpacked and exposed in the car or trunk.
If you’re going to fly with your gear, a good ski boot bag is necessary. Premium bags are nice because they allow you to pack other gear, snacks, or anything else you want to bring along. Many boot bags make for great carry-ons as a result.
Many even have pockets that let you stow away items you’ll want on the plane. If you travel any distance for skiing or go on multiple ski trips throughout the season, you need a good boot bag.
If you live in a ski town or don’t care if your boots get beat up, you might not need one of the following models. While these bags make traveling with boots much easier, they are not necessary. There are plenty of other ways to go about packing your boots.
Top Picks of Best Ski Boot Bags & Backpacks
Here are all of my top picks of the best ski boot bags and backpacks of the season. Each option you see here is built to handle steady travel.
1. Dakine Snow Boot Locker
- Best for: Overall
- Key features: Great design, changing mat included, padded shoulder strap, durable construction, tarp-lined compartment
- Size: 30L
- Style: Bag
- Cost: $$
The Dakine Boot Locker Bag is a great option that every skier can appreciate, and it earns my top pick for the best ski boot bag of the year. This bag is constructed with 100 percent polyester and is durable, functional, and looks great.
It features a split-level design with a separate compartment to keep your boots isolated and secure. The other section is perfect for any additional equipment or accessories you want to bring on your next ski trip.
The bag also has a tarp-lined bottom section that will keep the entire inside dry if it’s set down on wet ground or snow. That section also doubles as a changing mat that you can use when changing into or out of your boots.
It is available in multiple colors to match your style and comes with easy-to-carry handles along with a fully padded shoulder strap.
The boot locker doesn’t have backpack-style straps, which is about my only negative comment on it.
2. KULKEA Boot Trekker
- Best for: Backpack Style
- Key features: Large capacity, strong construction, functional design, waterproof, tarp lined bottom with drainage holes.
- Size: 69L
- Style: Backpack
- Cost: $$$
The KULKEA Boot Trekker is my choice for the season’s best backpack-style ski boot bag. It’s a very functional option that is great for either car or air travel to the ski resorts.
This is a large bag. It boasts a 69L capacity that makes it perfect for longer ski trips. It is also highly durable and is made of high-quality, water-resistant materials. That includes reinforced nylon and polyester.
One of this bag’s standout features is the different compartments and pockets it uses to keep your gear organized. There are two large side pockets for your boots, a main compartment for other gear, and several additional pockets.
It also has a helmet sling to easily carry your head protection and a tarp bottom with drainage holes.
It’s a little large if you are trying to save space and is somewhat expensive.
3. Swix Road Trip Tri Pack
- Best for: Road Trips
- Key features: Great for road trips, mid-sized, affordable, heavy-duty zippers, quality construction
- Size: 55L
- Style: Backpack/Adaptable
- Cost: $$
Just as its name implies, the Swix Road Trip Tri Pack is a fantastic boot bag for road trips and makes for a great carry-on bag for air travel.
This bag’s size and shape make it easy to carry, and it will fit into an overhead compartment even or your car with your boots and other gear stuffed inside.
It’s made with a solid and water-resistant polyester material that includes a heavy-duty tarp material on the bottom.
This bag has a capacity of 55L and comes with plenty of pockets to keep all of your extra gear organized and out of the way. It also has padded backpack-style straps and a nice smaller handle for easy carrying.
Additional features include a fleece-lined sunglass pocket and heavy-duty zippers.
It doesn’t have a shoulder strap included, which is kind of a bummer.
4. Thule RoundTrip Boot Backpack
- Best for: Simple Design
- Key features: Strong construction, simple design, comfortable straps, changing mat, optional locking zippers
- Size: 55L
- Style: Backpack
- Cost: $$$
The Thule RoundTrip Boot Backpack is an affordable model that doesn’t skimp on quality. This bag has a backpack-style design that’s effective and easy to carry and has a simple design that I really like.
In addition, it also has a lot of room where you can stow all of your gear. The zippered back compartment doubles as a changing mat when it’s time to take them on and off.
The bag is built with water-resistant and durable polyester material. It also comes with plenty of roomy pockets to keep your other gear organized.
Another great feature is the SafeZone compartment that keeps your goggles or other fragile gear from getting crushed. It can also be equipped with locking zippers and is designed to attach to Thule ski bags when traveling.
This is a somewhat heavy bag, and it doesn’t isolate your boots individually.
5. Athalon Everything Bag
- Best for: Durability
- Key features: Durable construction, affordable, nice size, many color options, lumbar support
- Size: 58L
- Style: Backpack
- Cost: $$
The Athalon Everything Bag is a good solution if you want a durable boot bag that will last for several seasons of steady travel.
This bag has zippered side pockets that are ventilated for each boot and a nicely-sized center compartment that can easily store a ski jacket.
It comes in a wide range of colors and has fully-padded straps alongside a lumbar support pad on the back. It’s a great budget option for any skier as well.
This one is a bit heavy, so it’s not the best option if you need to lug your gear around for a long distance.
6. Transpack TRV Pro
- Best for: Large Capacity
- Key features: Large capacity, durable construction, water-resistant, padded goggle pocket
- Size: 59L
- Style: Backpack
- Cost: $$$$
The Transpack TRV Pro is an excellent larger-capacity boot bag that will allow you to stow your ski boots and any other gear you want to bring along with you.
It has a solid design, is fully water-resistant, and easily stands up to the elements. That makes it a reliable option to use in inclement weather.
I also like the padded goggle pocket built into the top, and it has several well-placed handles for easy carrying.
It’s expensive but can be worth it if you are looking for a larger boot bag.
7. KULKEA Powder Trekker
- Best for: Compact
- Key features: Compact design, lightweight, good for short trips, durable
- Size: 52L
- Style: Backpack
- Cost: $$$
If you are looking for a more compact boot bag, the KULKEA Powder Trekker comes highly recommended.
This is a lightweight and efficiently designed bag that can easily carry your boots and helmet. It does not have a lot of extra room for other gear, but the slim profile makes it perfect for quick ski trips that don’t require a lot of other equipment.
It is made of durable, water-resistant nylon and polyester materials, so it can stand up to the elements no matter where you travel.
I think the Powder Trekker is pretty expensive for its size, but this is a high-quality option nonetheless.
8. Extremus Domo
- Best for: Budget Option
- Key features: Affordable, lots of pockets, waterproof, standing mat included, durable
- Size: 50L
- Style: Carry Bag
- Cost: $$
The Extremus Domo is my recommended pick for any skier on a budget who still wants to get a good-quality boot bag.
This affordable option gives you a 50L capacity, which is plenty of room for your boots, helmet, and other soft goods.
It also has a durable construction, waterproof standing mat, and plenty of extra pockets to organize your gear effectively.
This isn’t a backpack-style bag, so it doesn’t always make a great option for carrying long distances.
How to Choose a Ski Boot Bag or Backpack
This section will highlight some important things to consider when choosing a ski boot bag or backpack to meet your needs this season.
Ski boot bags come in several styles, and each one offers something a little different. It is possible to use some sort of duffel bag or to cover and protect your boots, but boot bags work much better towards that end because of their unique shape.
Split-level design ski boot bags are the most common. They feature a bag with two separate compartments. One compartment is meant for your boots and has features like water-proof fabric or reinforced material to stand up to general wear and tear.
This style stores both boots in the same compartment.
Side pocket boot bags are another option. This type of bag comes with two separate side pockets that can each hold a single boot. The advantage of this style is that your boots are separated and will not rub or scratch against each other.
The separate pockets are also nice if your boots are wet or dirty because they won’t touch the rest of your gear.
Internal divider style boot bags are another handy option. These bags look like traditional backpacks, but they have a piece of thick material or padding on the inside that keeps your boots away from the rest of your gear.
These bags are often cheaper than similar options, but they aren’t as functional as the two above styles.
You want a ski boot bag made with premium materials that protect everything inside it. Many bags are reinforced or come with special water-proof fabric to never get too dirty when left out in the snow or cold.
Polyester and nylon are common materials used in bag design. Both are good choices because they are durable and sturdy synthetic materials that dry quickly.
It’s common for the boot area of your bag to include extra construction layers. Some may also have a water-proof, tarp-like material on the bottom.
Pockets are always nice to have. They add extra storage and allow you to stay organized when you travel.
I enjoy a few smaller external pockets that enable you to keep small items tucked away from the main compartments. That allows easy access to small things like a phone charger or headphones that you need on the go.
External pockets can also ensure you don’t damage small items while you travel. Ski boots are bulky, heavy, and have sharp pieces. This means they can easily damage more fragile items like ski goggles or sunglasses.
It’s nice to have a ski boot bag that can separate all of these items from one another. Pockets go a long way towards making that happen.
Ski boot bags come in many different sizes. If you just want a bag that will cover your boots, you only need a small one.
However, larger options are available if you want something that can hold a lot of extra gear. I prefer a medium-sized ski boot bag that can store a good amount of extra equipment and accessories without being too bulky.
When getting a boot bag, it is also essential to look at its straps. Some bags will have regular backpack-style straps that can be thrown over your shoulders, while others may have a single shoulder strap more similar to a duffel or commuter bag.
Many bags come with multiple carrying strap options, which I recommend.
There are plenty of other features that you might want or need out of your ski boot bag. That includes things like ventilation or drainage considerations. Such attributes help your boots (which can get stinky) breathe.
In addition, since they may be covered in snow, drainage will allow melted water to escape rather than puddle up inside of your bag.
Some ski boot bags have locks that allow you to keep your belongings safe and secure, and some have a changing mat. That is a small piece of material that you can stand on while changing into or out of your boots to make sure your socks don’t get wet or dirty.
Useful Tips & Resources
If you’ve never used a ski boot bag before, they come in handy on long ski trips. Boots are somewhat awkward in shape, and they are definitely not flexible.
As such, it takes some effort and thought to get them packed away. Most boot bags are easy to figure out. However, if you’ve never loaded one before, check out this video for some tips.
It’s also important to unpack your bag after a big ski trip. Wet boots can cause an array of problems, and it’s best to let them dry for the sake of both your boots and your bag. Ski boots are a significant investment.
If you let them go unattended, they will not last as long. Check out the video below for some tips on caring for and drying your ski boots.
The Dakine Snow Boot Locker is my pick for the top overall ski boot bag or backpack of the year. This is a durable and spacious option that will let you safely transport your ski boots and some additional items you want to bring along for the ride.
If you are going to travel often to ski, you need to make sure your equipment is well-protected. The ski boot bags and backpacks you see in this post are built to handle that task, and every model is recommended for different reasons.