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Best Dry Bags

Updated October 2021
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Best of the Best
Osprey UltraLight 12 Dry Sack
UltraLight 12 Dry Sack
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Best for Everyday Use
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Available in a variety of colors, this moderately sized dry bag is great for casual hikes or day trips.


Roll-top closure clicks closed to create a waterproof seal and bag fills to a rectangle shape making it easy to store or stand up on its own. Long-lasting nylon material can endure heavy use.


Some shoppers found nylon material to be too thin.

Best Bang for the Buck
Pelican Waterproof Dry Bag
Waterproof Dry Bag
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Best for Watercraft
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Whether you’re boating, paddleboarding, kayaking, or rafting, this dry bag keeps gear and personal items secure and dry.


Complete with carrying strap and roll-top closure. Convenient to take on travels and built-on hooks are carabiner compatible, making it easy to attach extra gear or to kayak or raft. Made of durable polyvinyl material, this dry bag is strong and sturdy against water.


Some buyers found the strap was lacking the same quality as the bag.

Osprey UltraLight 6 Dry Sack
UltraLight 6 Dry Sack
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Trusted Brand
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A high-quality dry bag from a reliable brand name makes this an easy choice when shopping for waterproof gear.


Similar to other Osprey dry bags, roll-top closure offers a secure, waterproof seal and comes in a variety of colors to match. Smaller size and great for short trips or limited amounts of gear and personal items.


While waterproof enough to hold up to rainy day hikes, this dry bag may not be able to hold up to being fully submerged in water or taking on rafting trips.

Field & Stream 10L Dry Bag
Field & Stream
10L Dry Bag
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Durable & Rugged
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This heavy-duty dry bag is made with strong PVC construction and a durable bottom to resist scratches and tears.


10L capacity can hold plenty of gear and items and secure three-roll closure keeps everything inside. Built-in ring can be attached to other gear or supplies, or to be hooked securely inside of a raft or kayak.


Doesn’t include a strap like other dry bags on the market and the would need to be purchased separately.

Franklin Sports Arctic Trails Dry Bag
Franklin Sports
Arctic Trails Dry Bag
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Most Versatile
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Available in a variety of sizes and styles, including a backpack and 30L option, this dry bag is great for backpacking or long adventures.


Made with double-stitched seams for an ultra-secure seal against water, this dry bag features a roll-top closure to keep contents inside. Durable waterproof material holds up to water but remains lightweight and able to fold down to a compact size when needed.


Some shoppers didn’t love the stiff construction of the bag and preferred more flexible material.

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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. About BestReviews  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.About BestReviews 

We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.

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Buying guide for best dry bags

Nothing compares to the thrill of white water rafting or a fun day on the water with your family, but having your belongings soaked is a real downer. With a quality dry bag, you can pack everything you need and have it remain bone dry all day long.

Not all dry bags are created equal. Some do just what they say on the package, whereas others are prone to leaks or don't stand up to all conditions. How do you tell which dry bags will keep your items dry and which will leave them soggy? It can be difficult at first glance, which is why we have created this thorough guide.

Check out the list of our five favorite dry bags or read for more information to help you make your purchase.

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Be careful not to overpack your dry bag, as stuffing it to its limit can weaken the stitching in some cases.

Key considerations


You'll find dry bags made from a range of materials. Here we take a closer look at common dry bag materials and their pros and cons.

  • Vinyl: Vinyl dry bags can be made of one of several types of vinyl, but PVC is perhaps the most widely used. These bags are relatively thick and heavy, but they're highly durable. They're naturally waterproof and don't require any type of coating, which is good since coatings can wear down over time.

  • Nylon: Nylon dry bags are made from heavy duty nylon with a waterproof coating — usually silicone or polyurethane. They're lightweight and flexible, but they aren't as tough as vinyl dry bags.  


Dry bag sizes are usually measured in liters. The smallest dry bags have capacities of two liters (or sometimes even less) and the largest options have huge capacities of more than 100 liters. The capacity you require depends on what you need to pack. If you're only heading out for a couple of hours and want to keep your phone and wallet dry, a compact two liter option will suffice. A 20 to 30 liter bag is ideal for day or overnight trips if you like to pack light, with enough space for food, water, and a change of clothes. Bigger sizes are great for multi-day trips or when you need to bring a large amount of gear with you. It's also worth looking at the exterior dimensions in addition to capacity to check that your chosen dry bag won't be too large for you to carry easily.


Check the degree to which your chosen dry bag is waterproof. Some models are totally waterproof — they keep your items dry even when the bag is completely submerged for a few minutes. However, the majority of dry bags are merely water resistant, so they keep items dry when rained on, splashed, or momentarily submerged, though there may be some leakage in more extreme conditions. Before you buy, be certain the dry bag you're considering has an appropriate level of waterproofing to fit your requirements.


Closure type
The majority of dry bags either have a roll top or a zipper closure. With a roll top closure, you fold the top over three times and then secure it with a clip. It might not sound particularly high-tech, but it's an extremely effective way of keeping water from penetrating your dry bag. It also creates a carrying handle at the top of the bag when you clip each end together.

Dry bags with zipper seal closures often with extra flaps to help keep water out. Zipper seals are easier to use but they're not completely foolproof, and there aren't any additional layers of protection should something go wrong. You need to maintain proper lubrication on the zipper to keep it working correctly.

Carrying options
Some dry bags only have a carry handle at the top of the bag (created by the roll top closure). Others have either a single strap so you can wear them over one shoulder, or two straps so you can wear them like a backpack. If you'll be using your dry bag out on the water and only have a few paces to go between your car, your vessel, and back again, you won't need to worry too much about carrying options. However, if you'll be hiking with your dry bag or carrying it long distances, we'd recommend a two-strapped option.

Opening and closing your dry bag can be a pain, so it's handy to have a couple of pockets for easier access. These pockets may or may not be as water-resistant as the main compartment of the bag, so it's wise to double check before you store anything in them that would be ruined by soaking.

Some dry bags feature D-ring attachments. These are useful when you want to attach your dry bag to a boat or other vehicle. When canoeing or kayaking, some people use D-rings to attach their dry bags to a rope so they can pull the rope in to retrieve their bags if they capsize. D-rings are also useful for attaching items such as water bottles to your dry bag with a carabiner clip when you want to be able to access them easily.

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Did you know?
Dry bags with a transparent window let you see what's inside them at a glance, This is handy when you're going on a longer trip and taking several dry bags with you.

Dry bag prices

You can find some dry bags at bargain prices if you’re on a budget, but you do tend to get what you pay for. Inexpensive dry bags cost roughly $10 to $20, depending on the size. These are usually water-resistant rather than fully waterproof. Mid-range dry bags cost around $30 to $60. You can find some excellent models in this price range, including some extremely rugged options. Expensive dry bags cost between approximately $60 and $100. You'll find some extra-large models, plus high-end options with all the bells and whistles.


  • Check whether your chosen dry bag has taped seams. This stops water from leaking through, giving your items even more protection in exceptionally wet conditions.

  • Decide if you need a dry bag that floats. Some float for easier retrieval should you capsize or knock the bag overboard, which is handy if you'll be using it out on the water.

  • Pick a dry bag that's durable enough to meet your needs. If you're an avid outdoorsman and will be using your dry bag every weekend, it's worth spending a little more on a truly rugged bag that will stand up to regular heavy use.

  • Find out if you receive any extras with your dry bag. Some include accessories, such as waterproof fanny packs or phone holders.

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You can also buy compact dry bags and waist pouches for protecting small items like phones and wallets.


Q. Who are dry bags useful for?
Although dry bags are often geared toward people who do water-based activities such as sailing or kayaking, they're also useful in other scenarios. They're great for taking on hikes or camping trips when it's raining or there's a chance of rain. You can even use them for commuting by bike or on foot to keep your belongings dry when the weather isn't on your side.

Q. How should I care for my dry bag to keep it in great condition?
Dry bags don't need a whole lot of maintenance, but we'd recommend leaving them to dry before storing them to avoid mildew and mold growing.

Q. Can you buy padded dry bags?
The vast majority of dry bags aren't padded, but there are a small number of padded options on the market, which can help prevent damaging delicate items such as laptops or cameras.