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Carry your belongings in a handy tote bag

What is a tote bag?

Tote bags are a versatile type of handbag with handles for carrying one by hand, over your shoulder, or across your body.

They typically have a large, empty space inside, and possibly small zippered pockets or compartments for additional, small-sized items you want to keep separate.

Made from materials like polyester, nylon, canvas, or even leather, there’s usually cloth material inside. They come in different styles to accommodate different uses, ranging from solid leather tote bags in black, brown, or red, to floral patterns, solid colours, or even fun and quirky patterns. Sizes range from small totes that can hold about 5L, to larger ones that can accommodate up to 19L.

What are tote bags generally used for?

Tote bags can be used to hold items you’d typically put in your purse, for travel, carrying groceries, or even a trip to the beach. Because the interior is spacious, you can throw in fruits, vegetables, and other grocery items, or a beach towel, cover-up, sunscreen, and portable Bluetooth speaker for the beach or picnic in the park.

More fashionable tote bags made of material like finely-crafted genuine or faux leather can be used for the office or school. Some have a dedicated laptop compartment, and zippered pockets on the front or inside to hold things like your smartphone, pens, wallet, and more.

What should you look for in a tote bag?

Consider where you might use a tote bag, and for what purpose. If as a women’s tote bag for the office, or a school tote bag, look for a business/professional style, like leather, with a padded laptop compartment that will keep your computer safe, and enough room to accommodate the rest of your essentials as well.

For groceries, consider one with a separate compartment where you can keep an ice pack and place items like deli meats or other foods that require refrigeration for your short walk home.

Look for adjustable handles, and even a detachable cross-body strap so you can better distribute weight when carrying heavy items. Some have short and long handles so you can carry the tote by hand or over your shoulder. Check that the material suits the items you want to carry. For heavy items, look for a material like heavy-duty polyester, polyurethane, or ripstop nylon.

Extra zippered compartments on the front or inside can come in handy for securing small items like credit cards, key cards, keys, cash, pens, and more. Some have a dedicated pocket for your phone, and some RFID protection which provides safe blocking of your private information while traveling. Speaking of traveling, if you plan to bring a tote bag on vacation, a luggage slide-over on the back to secure it to your rolling luggage would be handy.