For some people riding a motorcycle is far more thrilling than riding in a car. There are so many advantages to it such as traveling past cars, the speed and how awesome you look speeding down the highway. But what happens when you have baggage to carry?
You’ve just gone to the grocery store to stock up on some items, but you have nowhere to put them. You could simply sling the bag over your bike’s handles, but how safe is that really? You’re going to have to find something to store your luggage at some point.
No worries, we have you covered. Panniers are the best way to go when it comes to storing items on your motorcycle. There are so many advantages and you’ll still look cool riding down the highway.
- Features to Consider in Good Motorcycle Panniers
- Top 10 Best Motorcycle Panniers 2020
- 1. A.B Crew 2pc Waterproof Motorcycle Saddlebags
- 2. Nelson-Rigg SE-2005-BLK Adventure Bag
- 3. Oxide Deluxe Tek Leather Motorcycle Panniers Saddlebags
- 4. OGIO 110093_36 Stealth Saddle Bag Duffel
- 5. Tusk Aluminum Panniers Medium Silver
- 6. Dowco Willie & Max 58707-20 Braided Series
- 7. Nomad USA Leather Slanted Large Motorcycle Saddlebags
- 8. Stansport Saddle Bag
- 9. VUZ Moto Dry Saddlebags 2pcs
- 10. Saddlemen Sport Panniers
- Guide to Buying the Best Motorcycle Panniers
- Final considerations
Features to Consider in Good Motorcycle Panniers
Why Panniers are Must Have Items
A pannier is something all people should have attached to their motorcycles. They come in a wide variety of different shapes, sizes and designs so you can even customize them to compliment your motorcycle. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages of owning a pannier.
Not having a pannier is actually a safety hazard. Traveling with items on your lap while riding is definitely not something you should do. Hanging bags over your motorcycle handles is a sure way to lose those items. It could also obstruct other vehicles on the road.
You could always store items in a backpack but how comfortable are you going to be? A backpack makes your back sweat and it obstructs your movement. Backpacks are not always waterproof and they don’t have much storage space.
Panniers add comfort when you’re riding. When you have loose items on you, it can be extremely stressful. You’re most likely concentrating on the items not falling rather than where you’re going. Having a pannier provides you with comfort and a hassle free ride—and you stay focused on what’s most important.
Storing items in your pockets or in a backpack is another way you can travel with luggage; however, you might have limited space. Panniers provide you with the space you need to store much more than most other options.
The weather is unpredictable and backpacks are not always waterproof. Panniers provide cover for items that aren’t weather resistant. Panniers are also capable of protecting breakable items from getting damaged on your journey.
Size and Design
There are many different types of panniers on the market. Panniers come in different designs and shapes & they’re made with different types of material. Selecting a pannier is all about your preference in placement as the different designs require different positioning. You can pick what works for you.
Now, which of these will best suit your requirements?
Top 10 Best Motorcycle Panniers 2020
Gone are the days where you had to struggle with carrying items while riding. You can enjoy your travels a lot more with the A.B Crew two piece saddlebags.
A.B Crew Panniers come in two pieces. They are saddlebags made from a high quality PVC material. The bags are weather resistant and they can withstand temperatures of -10 to 60°C. It’s made with anti-slip material which stops it from sliding around and ensures a secure grip.
The A.B crew saddlebags come with durable straps incorporating clips which hold your bags in place while riding. The bags are black in color with the A.B Crew logo on the front.
A.B Crew saddlebags are designed to be strapped over the back of your motorcycle. The bags rest securely on the sides of your seat.
Capacity and Size
The A.B saddlebags have the dimensions of 16.92” x 6.29” x 19.29″ and can hold up to 55lb each.
A.B Crew saddle bags can keep your items safe from rain and other outside elements. They have large capacity so you can store more items and they’re light enough to travel with without affecting the weight of your bike.
The saddlebags are easy to install and you can remove them quickly with their one-press clip mechanisms. Once you remove them you can turn them into carry bags as they have sling straps for your shoulders.
- Heavy duty
- Easy to remove
- Light in weight
- PVC is not water durable
- Too bulky
This durable pannier provides safety and protection for all of your travel items & comfort for those long journeys on the road. You’re able to store as many items as you like in this nifty pannier.
The Nelson Rigg pannier comes in three different colors. You can select from either black, bright yellow and orange designs. They’re made from a durable tarpaulin PVC fabric which is waterproof and temperature resistant.
The fabric is slip resistant to ensure safety when traveling. They have integrated durable nylon straps with fast clipping mechanisms so you’re able to strap your pannier to your motorcycle easily. It also comes with a sturdy base plate for easy placement.
The Nelson Rigg bags are placed on top of the back seat of a motorcycle. You can either place the pannier sideways or turning it 90° depending on your preference. There are straps and clips that keep the pannier in place when you’re riding.
Capacity and Size
The Nelson Rigg has a weight of 2.1lb and the main compartment measures at 20″x 10″x 12″. This pannier can hold up to 88lb of luggage.
This adventure pannier bag is excellent for those long journeys on the road. You can safely travel at night as the nylon cam straps have reflective properties for visibility.
The pannier is easy to remove and to install as they have user-friendly straps that have quick clipping mechanisms. Nelson Rigg make their items 100% waterproof with airtight seams and closures.
- Easy to install
- Can be turned into a carry bag
- Large storage capacity
- Latching is cheaply made
- PVC material may wither over time
Although the Oxide Deluxe Tek saddlebags are robust they are quite stylish which will suit any motorcycle on the road.
Oxide Deluxe panniers are made with premium Tek black leather fabric which is weather and temperature resistant. The stitching is of the finest quality to ensure the durability of the panniers.
They come with double adjustable chrome buckles for each pannier which secures the lids. Both come with non-slip handles that give it a comfortable easy grip.
The Oxide Deluxe panniers are saddlebags. There is a middle strap connecting the two panniers which you can saddle on the back of your motorcycle seat. The two bags rest on the sides of your motorcycle safely and securely.
Capacity and Size
These saddlebag panniers have dimensions of 13″x 8″x 17″ which can hold up to 66lb of weight. They weigh in at 4.41lb.
The Oxide Deluxe Tek panniers add comfort and stability to your rides. They’re safe and secure & they’re easy to mount. It has a heavy duty YKK zipper which is hidden which makes removal hassle free.
Oxide Deluxe panniers have added internal pockets to store smaller items such as accessories and documents. Both bags have soft linings designed not to scratch or damage any items you place inside.
The Oxide Deluxe Tek panniers are also fire resistant giving added protection to your belongings.
- Large storage spacel
- Clips aren’t durable
- Doesn’t fit all motorcycle models
OGIO holds a large amount of luggage which is perfect for road trips. It’s quality designed to withstand the harshest of weather conditions.
The OGIO is made from durable material with a heat resistant bottom panel of silicone. It comes with an integrated rain hood to protect your belongings from moisture in the air. The pannier is made with a special neoprene pad. This helps protects your motorcycle paint from getting scratched.
The OGIO pannier also comes with a 2″ expansion zipper for extra storage space. There’s a webbing mount to secure the pannier safely to your motorcycle.
The saddlebags are held securely by robust straps that help you saddle the panniers on your back seat. OGIO panniers rest on the sides of your motorcycle. There is also a Velcro strap that holds the two bags together when they’re not saddled.
You can turn these panniers into normal carry bags when you dismount them.
Capacity and Size
The OGIO panniers have a capacity of 10.5″x 16″x 8″ and their depth can be expanded to an additional 11″. The saddlebags weigh 2.6lb and can hold up to 66lb of weight.
Are you looking for extra space? The OGIO is expandable assisting you with all the space you need to store your belongings. Long trips have never been this easy, especially in erratic weather. With the integrated rain hood, your luggage is guaranteed to be safe from water.
OGIO has an integrated silicone plate which helps protect the bags from your motorcycle’s exhaust pipe. It’s easy to mount and you can turn the panniers into normal carry bags after your road trip. This means you don’t have to remove the contents if you’re going on holiday and reach your destination—Simply carry them in.
- Comes with rain hood
- Heat resistant
- Expandable depth
- Material color fades in the sun
- The material isn’t waterproof
Tusk panniers have excellent airtight seals to ensure no rain, water or contaminents can get inside to damage any of your belongings
Tusk panniers are made from 0.85″ thick aluminum material which is sturdy and has excellent durability. They come with strong lock pads for each pannier for security and to ensure that the lids stay closed at all times even if you’re driving fast.
The two panniers come in different sizes of large and medium.
Tusk panniers have four sturdy loops on the top of each lid, for additional storage items or for different mounting styles.
The aluminum panniers are mountable which means you will have to purchase racks to install these units. Tusk makes durable and sturdy racks to secure your panniers to your motorcycle.
They are both separate panniers so you can either install both of them on the sides of your motorbike or you can mount one at a time on the back of your seat.
Capacity and Size
The large panniers can hold up to 82lb of weight with the dimensions of 15.05″ x 9.25 x 18″. Tusk medium panniers can hold up to 60lb and has the dimensions of 14.25″ x 7.05″ x 16.25″.
Tusk aluminum panniers come in two sizes you can select from. Each pannier has a large storage space that can hold a large number of items.
Because these panniers are made from aluminum you don’t have to worry about them getting damaged as they’re able to withstand the harshest conditions. They are weather resistant with a tight close to ensure no water gets inside.
Tusk panniers are treated with special coatings to prevent black residue from forming on your stored items.
- Comes in two different sizes
- Can be mounted to any type racks
- Racks come separately
- Not easy to install for beginners
If you want to go on a picnic or a day trip, these panniers will hold all your items securely and safely. From outdoor accessories to food items, you can’t go wrong with these versatile containers.
The Dowco Willie & Max panniers are made with a durable UV water resistant vinyl which can withstand the harshest of climates and weather conditions. Snow, rain or shine these panniers are the ultimate storage compartments for your motorcycle.
The interior is made with a sturdy plastic which helps keep their shape. They come with double chrome buckles for that added classic look and the sides have stylish braided designs.
Dowco Willie & Max panniers are designed so you can sling them underneath your seat at the back of your motorcycle. The bags rest securely on the sides of your motorbike with a secure middle bridge holding the two bags in place as you ride.
Capacity and Size
Each pannier weighs 6lb with the dimensions of 12″ x 9.5″ x 5.5″. These panniers can hold up to 22lb of weight each.
Not only do these panniers add style to your motorcycle, but they have a large capacity capable of carrying a sufficient amount of weight for most trips associated with motorcycling. They’re even perfect for those outings where your load is a bit more than usual.
Dowco Willie & Max panniers are extremely economical as they can withstand all weather conditions. These panniers are also secure which means your items will be safe at all times. They’re user-friendly and very easy to install.
- Large capacity
- Easy installation
- No instruction manual
- Slight movement when riding
The bags are designed to always stay in upright positions. This helps secure the contents of the panniers.
The Nomad USA saddlebags are made from durable synthetic leather that’s temperature and water resistant. They have metal frames for sturdiness and hard bodies to keep the shape of the panniers.
They’re black in color for style and to add camouflage to the bags for security purposes.
The Nomad USA saddlebags also have double chrome adjustable buckles that hold the U-shaped flaps closed at all times. These panniers have stitching along the sides and seams for added durability and style.
The Nomad panniers are of a saddle design. They come with a strong middle bridge to hold the two panniers in place as you ride. The bags sling underneath your seat at the back of your motorcycle and rest securely on the sides of your bike.
Capacity and Size
The dimensions of the Nomad Panniers are 16″ x 11″ x 6.5″ each. They can easily hold up to 10lb of weight.
The Nomad USA saddle bags are 100% waterproof for those long rides in the rain. They have lockable straps perfectly designed as extra security measures. The bags come with internal pockets to hold accessories or small items.
These panniers hold their shape well as they’re reinforced with sturdy metal frames. This ensures that your belongings won’t get squashed or damaged. The Nomad panniers also have quick release buckles for simplicity of use.
- Easy to install
- Stylish design
- Might sag a bit when placed
The Stansport saddlebags are designed for any motorcycle model and come in a cool khaki color to suit old school design preferences.
These heavy duty saddlebags are made with weaved duck cotton and integrated vinyl linings. The latter is for added waterproofing. Both bags have double strapping with adjustable loops to hold the flaps of the bags closed. They also have integrated drawstrings for extra closure.
The saddlebags are made with a canvas fabric which repels water. They also have brown PVC panels on top of the bags for added style.
There is a large bridge attaching the two bags together so it can sit securely in place while you ride. It’s placed on top of your seat at the back. The two bags rest on the sides of your motorcycle.
Capacity and Size
The Stansport saddlebags have the dimensions of 8.5″ x 5.5″ x 8.5″ each. They also weigh 1.8lb each and can hold a large amount of weight considering the size.
The Stansport saddlebags are perfect for those short trips to the store or even for those picnic days out. If you spend most of your life on the road, they can hold your toiletry items as well as clothing. They are made with durable material which won’t tear easily. The stitching also ensures durability.
They’re light but can hold a large amount of weight. The Stansport bags are easy to place and won’t obstruct your riding. It’s well made and gets many excellent reviews from consumers who have tried them out.
- Old school design
- Can be used for bicycles
- It’s not 100% waterproof
- Doesn’t hold its shape well
All motorcyclists pride themselves in purchasing only the finest made brands. VUZ caters to your needs when it comes to style and quality.
The VUZ pannier saddlebags are made with a 100% waterproof PVC tarpaulin fabric with neoprene shield. With its unique design it’s able to keep luggage safe and dry at all times.
Each pannier comes with four strong adjustable compression straps for security. This also ensures that your panniers won’t slip and slide around as you ride. Each bag has two nylon straps with quick one-push clip mechanisms. This is to keep the flaps closed at all times.
These panniers come with strong nylon straps with clips and buckles to help secure the bags to the side of your bike. You can strap both of the panniers to the sides of your bike or you can use one at a time as they’re not attached to each other.
Capacity and Size
Each pannier can carry up to 53lb of weight. They both have dimensions of 16.6″ x 12.9″ x 3.2″ and they weigh 5.05lb each.
With the VUZ Velcro straps, you can attach the two bags together to form a saddle or you can use the bags one at a time. The Velcro ensures a quick release for simplicity. The straps have reflective properties for added visibility. This means you’re able to safely travel with your luggage at night.
VUZ panniers come with extra straps so you can mount an extra medium sized VUZ bag on top of your bike. They’re weather resistant and temperature resistant so you can travel in any conditions.
- Interchangeable placement
- PVC may crack over time
- Droops a little when weight is added
They have hard shells that keep their shapes well. This keeps your luggage safe and secure at all times.
The Saddlemen sport panniers are made with 600-denier saddletuff with foam shells that hold their shape. They each come with a water resistant zipper that won’t rust or break easily. The panniers come with easy to use adjustment straps for easy installation
Saddlemen panniers have straps that allow you to harness them together under your seat or over your seat. You can install both panniers to your motorbike or only one, as they’re not stitched together. Customizable gear is always a smart investment as we all have different preferences and habits.
The Saddlemen sport panniers rest securely on the side of your motorcycle.
Capacity and Size
Each Pannier has the dimensions of 17″x 10″ x 6″. They each weigh about 3.75lb and can hold up to 22lb of weight.
These stylish panniers are not bulky and have no extra bits & pieces sticking out of it which is great if you prefer a more sleek design that won’t give any wind resistance. Despite their slim style, they have a sufficient amount of space so you can store all kinds of items.
Because of their sturdy structures, they won’t droop when you strap them to your motorcycle. They hold their shape well as they have hard shells that help keep belongings securely in place. Saddlemen panniers are waterproof and temperature resistant so you can travel in all kinds of conditions without worrying about your luggage.
These panniers are not attached to each other so you have a choice of using either mount double bags or a single bag.
- Sleek design
- Large storage space
- Single or double mounting options
- Straps are not high quality
- Mounting is difficult
Guide to Buying the Best Motorcycle Panniers
Now that you have a significant amount of information on the best panniers on the market, you can select the type to suit you. There are panniers for any kind of weather and even ones particularly appropriate for the distance you travel every day based on your lifestyle.
It’s also a wise thing to check which panniers will suit your model of motorcycle as some of these products tend to droop over exhaust pipes. The type of pannier you should purchase also determines if you need to install racking.
In this section we will explain the different types of panniers based on material and installation.
Racking vs. Straps
Different types of panniers require different types of mounting. Depending on your preference you can either get a pannier that straps directly to your motorbike, or you can purchase one that needs racking installed.
If you’re big into installing new features onto your motorcycle then you wouldn’t mind adding racks to your exterior. They all come in different shapes and sizes & are usually welded or clipped onto the top or sides of your motorbike.
The reason for racking is so that you can securely mount a pannier using durable straps. You can also weld a pannier onto the racking for added stability. This is considered the safest way to have a pannier on your bike.
These panniers usually have hard shells and they’re designed with lock pads to keep them closed. The panniers that require racking can hold a lot of weight and are extremely durable as they’re made with metal, hard plastic or aluminum.
- More security as they’re more difficult to steal
- The materials used are more durable
- They’re more stable when mounted
- You can mount bigger panniers
- You have to alter your motorcycle with racking
- Racking is not always removable
- They can weigh your bike down
- Panniers are sometimes not removable
- They may scratch the paint off your bike
Panniers with Straps
This option is for those bikers who don’t like altering the exterior of their motorcycles. They prefer to use panniers that are easily removable and easy to mount.
Sometimes these panniers can come in pairs or as a single bag. They have integrated durable straps with either buckles or clipping mechanisms. You can tie these panniers directly to your seat or to the bike itself.
These items come in soft fabrics that are usually waterproof. Adjustable buckles are used to keep them closed and they’re often temperature resistant. Sometimes these panniers are known to drop when they hold a lot of luggage if not strapped tightly enough.
You’ll find models made of fabrics such as PVC, canvas, leather, synthetic leather and nylon.
- Bags can be removed easily
- Weightless designs
- Panniers can be used for different placements
- They come in less bulky designs
- They’re user-friendly
- You can change between single or double panniers
- They can be installed permanently
- They tend to droop or sag
- Sometimes they’re not fully waterproof
- Some materials may tear
- There is little security as the straps can be cut easily
Types of Panniers
There are different types of panniers to pick from based on the design, size and the material used to make them. You can also select the type you prefer based on where you’d like to place it.
These bags are made with a soft material that’s usually not waterproof. The material used to make soft panniers are still durable and of high quality but they’re not to be installed on a motorbike permanently. This is for security reasons as well as preventing wear and tear.
Soft bags can easily be ripped or cut open by anyone who wants to steal the contents of your bag. Soft panniers are usually used to travel short distances.
Types of Material Used
- Synthetic leather
These panniers are made with hard durable materials. They are a lot harder to install but they offer more security. It’s not easy to break into these panniers, as they usually come with lock pads.
These panniers require racking or extensive strapping mechanisms to keep them in place. They’re a lot heavier but have a large storage capacity. Hard exterior panniers are extremely waterproof and usually come with airtight lids so your luggage can’t be spoiled by moisture.
You can mount these panniers permanently or you can use straps so you can remove them easily. They’re designed for more extensive travel over long distances. You can store many sensitive and breakable items in these panniers as they hold their shape well.
They’re extremely economical. The only disadvantage is they can be quite heavy which may add weight to your motorcycle.
You can install two of these panniers in a saddle like position, or you can mount one of them on your back seat. These types of panniers are usually used for delivery services.
Types of Material Used
- Stainless steel
- Hard plastic
There are many other excellent panniers on the market to pick from. Your best option depends on the size you’re looking for. The key is to find balance between different elements. If you’re not keen on adding extra weight to your motorcycle you can purchase a pannier that’s light in weight but still has a big enough storage capacity.
Select a pannier that has the correct dimensions and shape for your motorcycle model while ensuring comfort & stability when you ride. You don’t want something too bulky that might obstruct your riding.
Also remember: Your safety and security come first especially for motorcyclists who may have to react quickly to cars that don’t notice them.
Based on all these facts, go out and get a pannier of your choice and enjoy your hobby even more.