Bag Week Reviews: Timbuk2 Extra Credit Messenger

Short version: The Timbuk2 Extra Credit Messenger is a simple bag — simply awesome, that is! (You see what I did there? I know, I’m clever)


  • Convertible to a backpack
  • Waterproof fabric
  • “Hot to hack” customizable kit
  • $65
  • Product page


  • Durable and well made
  • Lot of style
  • Lots of room


  • No internal organizational pockets


Do you need a bag with tons of storage for a low price? Timbuk2 has you covered with the Extra Credit Messenger, which is a slightly-modified version of the company’s classic Messenger 101. This pack is vertically identical internally, but the “extra credit” part is that it can be converted into a backpack. Fancy, eh?

All the necessary straps and such are hidden behind a false back and while the pack works fine in backpack mode, it isn’t the most comfortable thing in the world. Think of it as an emergency mode for bike riding or or when your shoulders can’t take it anymore.

Internally, the bag is really two pockets with one smaller one located just behind the front flap. This is your gadget compartment as the big partition doesn’t have any sort of organizational tools. Timbuk2 cleverly advertises this section as being able to hold 24 packs of Ramen noddles. Serisouly, the “feature” is listed on the bag’s retail tags. There is one small section on the back of the bag that’s designed to hold documents, and I suppose it could hold a notebook, but it’s not padded.

So really, my only gripe is lack of internal compartments, but the bag never once claimed to be anything different. It’s a classic messenger bag that’s perfect for books, binders, and all your other crap. The high-quality materials and construction makes it worth your time as long as you know going into it that there isn’t a pocket for every little gizmo and gadget. Besides, it’s only $65.

Check out the complete Bag Week Review Blitz: Back To School Edition coverage here.