Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-Theft Backpack [In-Depth Review]

Orlaigh Magennis
Written By:
Orlaigh Magennis
Last Updated:
January 1, 2024
The Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-Theft Backpack is a great travel backpack with tons of security features. Simple and stylish, here's my honest review of it!
Pacsafe citysafe CX review

When travelling, it’s always recommended to be vigilant of pickpockets and theft.

But what if your backpack can do it for you?

The Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-Theft Backpack is an excellent bag with brilliant security features.

From cut-resistant straps and fabric to hidden pockets and RFID-protected lining, I’ll be reviewing this Pacsafe backpack for you.

Rating: 9.5/10

Let’s go!

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Who is Pacsafe?

For more than 20 years, Pacsafe has been innovating in the field of anti-theft carry solutions.

Its two founders, Rob and Magnus, are travel aficionados and have been globetrotting for decades. I always love travel products that are made by travellers as it ensures every detail is well-thought-out and made.

Pacsafe is all about sustainability too, which is another huge plus!

From sustainable packaging and preventing harmful substances in their supply chain to designs that are meant to last (and therefore less waste), the brand really cares about their impact on the environment.

For me, the most impressive thing is that they use discarded plastic to make their bags. In fact, the Citysafe CX bag is made of 9 recycled bottles!

Oh, and did you know that 1% of Pacsafe’s website sales go toward turtle conservation?

Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack VIDEO REVIEW

Where can you buy the Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack?

So far, the best place to buy the Citysafe CX Backpack would be from the official Pacsafe website.

citysafe cx anti theft backpack review

They ship from their warehouse in the UK and process orders in 1 to 2 working days.

Shipping costs itself is affordable, and free in the UK for orders over £100, whereas those in the US and Canada can enjoy free shipping for orders over $49!

There are region-specific websites too:

There’s also the amazing Pacsafe Warranty, which includes a limited 5-year warranty for their backpacks!

Not to mention their fantastic 30-day return policy, for whatever reason.

If you prefer offline shopping, Pacsafe has literally hundreds of stores in the US, UK, China, Japan, and more. You can use their store locator to find the one closest to you.

Quick overview: Pacsafe Citysafe CX specifications

  • Price: $189.95 USD
  • Weight: 0.71 kg
  • Volume: 17 litres
  • Dimensions: 39x27x16 cm (height x width x depth)
  • Backpack Strap Length (max-min): 82-69 cm


  • Sustainable materials: ECONYL® nylon, Recycled Polyester
  • Main Materials: 320D ECONYL® regenerated nylon Taslon, Water resistant 1000mm, PFC free
  • Lining Materials: 150D Recycled polyester, water resistant 1,000mm. PFC free
  • Color Options: Rose, Gravity Gray, Black, Storm
Get Your Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack Here

Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack Review

This bag is part of their ECONYL collection, which is made from regenerated nylon materials like scrap fabrics, carpets, and discarded fishing nets.

I’ve had this bag for a month or so now and recently took it to Greece as my personal item bag.

Read on to see my thoughts in detail!

How well-made is the Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack?

So, let’s discuss the materials…

I can say that the Citysafe CX feels solid and well-made, both upon first impressions and even after a month of constant use.

The bag uses proprietary 320D Econyl or regenerated nylon and 150D recycled polyester for the lining.

Pacsafe actually offers the bag in non-recycled materials, but I opted for this one because personally, I think that’s what makes them special.

The material is super sturdy too, all thanks to the eXomesh, which is a stainless steel wire mesh that runs between the exterior and lining.

How comfortable is the Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack?

I would say that the bag is decently comfortable.

While it hasn’t got the world’s best padding or softest material, it is intended to be an anti-theft day bag, so this is not an issue at all.

The comfort level is perfect if you don’t overload the bag.

You can also switch it up between the standard shoulder straps to the haul handles.

pacsafe women's citysafe cx anti theft backpack

What makes the Pacsafe Citysafe CX bag a great anti-theft backpack?

So, what exactly sets the Citysafe CX apart from other backpacks? Below are some of its key anti-theft features…

1. TurnNLock security hook 

The TurnNLock hook is for sure the smartest and most innovative part of this bag.

TurnNLock hook Pacsafe backpack

Let’s say you’re sitting somewhere and want to put your bag down but are afraid that someone might take it.

Well, you can easily wrap one of the straps around a chair or table leg and lock it there.

Voila! Instant security.

pacsafe citysafe cx anti theft backpack

2. Lockable zippers

The Pacsafe Citysafe CX backpack has lockable zippers.

Now, truthfully, I didn’t use this anti-theft lock when I was abroad mainly because I didn’t feel the need to, but it definitely gives you peace of mind to know that the option is there!

There’s a secured zip tab with a lockdown point for the zippers. I do feel the front compartment feels a bit more exposed when walking, so hooking down the zipper here makes it much safer.

3. RFID-blocking pocket

As with any travel bag or wallet, RFID-blocking material is necessary and this Pacsafe backpack provides that too.

This is for the main compartment of the bag.

pacsafe citysafe cx anti theft backpack RFID blocking

It’s a great way to protect the information on your credit cards and passport.

4. Carrysafe slashguard strap

The straps actually have wires inside so they’re basically cut-resistant.

So, even when you have the security hook around a fixed object, don’t worry about someone cutting the straps!

In addition to security reasons, this wire-reinforced strap makes it much more durable too.

5. eXomesh® slashguard

The Citysafe CX features built-in stainless steel wire mesh for even more protection.

This means that your bag is almost entirely cut- and slash-resistant.

6. Padded laptop sleeve

This is less of an anti-theft feature and more for your own sake, but I love the thick padded sleeve to ensure your laptop is well-protected.

The compartment can fit laptops up to 16 inches. Mine is 11” and fits cosily enough.

Citysafe CX anti-theft backpack laptop sleeve

Citysafe CX anti-theft backpack laptop sleeve

Other things I love about the Pacsafe Citysafe CX Backpack

1. Aesthetic

The style of this bag is everything to me. It’s sleek and modern without appearing too utilitarian.

I went with the Rose colour, which I absolutely love! The Citysave CX also comes in more neutral tones like Gravity Gray and Black.

Pacsafe citysafe CX anti-theft backpack rose

Pacsafe also markets this as a women’s bag, but I honestly think that anyone could easily rock this model.

2. Luggage slit

There’s a slit on the back for you to place over your luggage, which has come in so handy when travelling in airports and such!

I have to say that other than Matein, this is the first bag I have put over my hand luggage case.

3. Stretchy water bottle pockets

I was also able to bring my reusable water bottle from Super Sparrow. This is 500 ml, and I love how the pockets are stretchy!

Pacsafe citysafe cx backpack water bottle pocket

Yes, some other backpacks have even more stretch to them, but this goes with the vibe of the Citysafe CX being a city backpack.

4. Comfortable side carry

It’s comfortable to carry by your side should you wish as you have this handle to do so.

Pacsafe citysafe cx backpack side carry

This also has an added security that clicks the handles together. 

Pacsafe citysafe cx backpack security

The bag itself doesn’t get too heavy and it’s actually really nice to carry a decent amount of essentials instead of, like me, a million things packed in it.

5. Spacious

However, if you need, you could pack 2-3 days of clothing in here if you were smart about it. 

I had a couple of leggings and tops, as well as a camera, straighteners, a makeup bag, and a liquids bag. They all fit surprisingly well inside!

I don’t like bags with overdone organisational pockets, this bag has just the right amount.

6. Clip purse-style closing

Finally, the closing of this bag reminds me of a clip purse, which is a pretty fun detail!

Cons of the Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack

There honestly isn’t much to complain about this Pacsafe backpack.

In terms of support, they feel flimsy but that’s expected because it’s a city break bag and not meant to carry extreme loads.

I’ve had some issues with adjusting them as they wouldn’t adjust further to what I needed. I needed it pulled tighter but there was not enough material or ability to do this (see where it stops). 

Pacsafe backpack adjustable straps

There was also no support for my back especially when it was fully packed.

Moreover, I think it’s safe to note that security is prioritised over comfort with this bag. And while it’s relatively comfortable, it would’ve been nice to have more padding and support, particularly if you want to use them daily.

The bag itself feels like it would be easy to wash, and yet I have this black mark that hasn’t gone away easily. 

I’ve tried wiping it down with a cloth and it felt like I was wiping away the material and after a while, it would wither. That’s just how it feels though!

Who should get the Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack?

Overall, I think the Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack is great for travellers who want to ensure top-notch security for their belongings, but in style.

However, if you’re backpacking and can’t afford to bring a single-purpose day bag, I wouldn’t recommend this.

You might prefer one of Pacsafe’s convertible models instead!

The Citysafe CX is also not the best bag in terms of capacity and comfort, although for daytime sightseeing and carrying essentials, it’s utterly perfect.

Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack: Performance over time

After initial and a month’s use, I’ve listed my impressions of the backpack in bullet points below…

First use:

  • Stylish without being flashy
  • I love that both sides have a water bottle compartment, and the luggage strap
  • Laptop compartment and additional pockets inside are handy
  • Took me a minute to figure out how to unlock the front lock on the bag, but this could actually be a good thing in terms of anti-theft

After 1 month:

  • Travels really well
  • Front smaller compartment is more accessible and exposed than I would like
  • The straps are comfortable but not adjustable enough
  • Main laptop compartment fits my 11-inch laptop easily, but bigger sizes might be a struggle
  • Overall a stylish, non-flashy backpack that makes for the perfect city break bag

Final verdict: Are Pacsafe bags worth buying?

If you need a quick answer to this question, you’re at the right part.

Should you buy the Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack?

My answer is yes!

pacsafe citysafe cx backpack

This Pacsafe Backpack is a fantastic city-break bag that’s simple and chic.

With a lot of thoughtful anti-theft features, this backpack will allow you to travel in peace without having to constantly worry about your belongings.

Its modern but timeless design also means it will go well with whatever you’re wearing!

Get Your Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-theft Backpack Here
From Europe? Get yours here!

Are Pacsafe Backpacks waterproof?

This Pacsafe backpack is not technically waterproof, but it is water resistant.

The main materials of regenerated nylon, or 320D ECONYL, as well as the lining are water resistant 1000mm.

So while it may not hold up well against heavy spills and rains, it should protect well enough against light splashes and drizzles.

What else does Pacsafe sell?

Allbirds also have a variety of other shoe and clothing products…

Citysafe CX Anti-Theft Convertible Backpack

The perfect, more stylish alternative for you! This convertible backpack/handbag transforms easily to suit your travel needs, and it still comes with all the anti-theft features you love. From RFID-blocking pockets to a cut-resistant anchor strap, you name it!

Pacsafe Go Anti-Theft Sling Pack

If you prefer a cross-body or sling pack, then this Pacsafe model is for you. It’s roomy enough to fit all your essentials on a day trip, a long walk, or even a bike ride. Of course, it still has cut-resistant materials and straps, securable zippers, and more.

Coversafe S75 Secret Travel Neck Pouch

This unique and discreet neck pouch allows you to hide your passport, cards, and IDs under your clothes. The strap itself is super thin and delicate, so it won’t be noticeable from the outside.

Alright, that wraps up my review of the Pacsafe Citysafe CX Anti-Theft Backpack!

I hope this can help you make a decision.

Have you ever tried it, or other Pacsafe products?

Let me know in the comments below!

Meanwhile, you might love these other reviews:

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Some images courtesy of Deposit Photos.
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