Ask the Editor: Beach Bags for Summer

May 2, 2024

This week has been an absolute bear, so let’s reach into the reader mail bag and answer some questions. And let’s start with a post about affordable summer bags.

Hello Abra:

My kids live at the pool in the summer, and if we’re not at the pool, it’s the beach.  Can you help me find a great bag?  I need something durable and maybe a little stylish.

Help. Kaye

This is my life this summer as well, but I remind myself that going to the pool was one of the most memorable joys of my childhood, and I want that for Sloane too.  Here are some bag recommendations in different styles and price points.

This $10 Target bag is the one I carry.  The mesh keeps the sand and water at bay to some extent, I also like the exterior pockets.  The drop is also long enough that it slings over your shoulder.  It’s a great, affordable bag.

If I were going to spend real money on a beach bag, this Tuckernuck Hat Attack bag is the one I would choose.  I love the built in hat support.  It’s also enormous, so it will hold towels for the whole family.

Many readers recommended this Bogg Bag last summer.  This hard-sided bag is durable, washable, and won’t tip over.  It has a couple of small internal pouches to keep essentials dry.  A friend loves her so much, she just carries it as her daily purse all summer.

The Lo & Sons Catalina bag is the perfect weekender for summer getaways, but it also makes a fantastic beach or pool bag.  The bottom zip pocket holds shoes, water bottles, or wet towels.  The rest of the bag is light and extremely durable.  It also washes up very well.

What’s your go to summer bag?  Leave it in the comments.

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  1. Joanna says:

    Adding that a friend just introduced me to bags from Aloha which are waterproof and packable and have coordinating pouches.

  2. Molly says:

    I am a Bogg bag convert. I resisted because I don’t love the way they look and they are big to store since they don’t fold. But the fact that they stand up on their own and sand doesn’t get in it won me over. I use an XL for the beach/pool and a smaller one as my “sports bag” all spring and fall. It’s great for sitting next to a folding chair on the side of a field. (Again, the non-tip feature is the best.)

  3. Cristina says:

    this is the best beach bag! perfect for shaking sand off things. I have it in neon yellow but thinking of getting a backup color…

    • Cristina says:

      oops my comment was unclear — the $10 target one is the best one! (definitely a great value for cost!!)

  4. Kate says:

    My sister purchased a Bogg bag for me last summer, as a thank you gift. I use it for soccer, etc. for my kids but… I do not love it. It’s very awkward to carry. I’ve been thinking about this similar bag from Simple Modern that looks just as functional but with easier to use straps and a more refined shape.
    https://www.simplemodern.com/products/getaway-bag-large-11

  5. Sam says:

    I have a giant LL Bean canvas tote that my MIL bought me years ago. It holds a ton of stuff and can take a beating.

    • Bev says:

      I agree with Sam and the LL Bean canvas bag. Our XL bag is over 35 years old, holds everything for a day at the beach and looks pretty good. We also have a few smaller LL Bean bags for daily use. I have a Bogg Bag but hardly use it, preferring the LL Bean bag.

    • KateL says:

      Team LL Bean (or Lands End) boat bag here. I have one from HS that hasn’t died.

  6. Anna says:

    I bought the Target bag linked above on a whim right before Spring Break – it was perfect. Folded up small in suitcase for travel and holds an endless supply of books, kindles, tablets, life jackets, pool toys, water bottles, snacks, sunblock, and towels you need for a day at the pool. I like the look of the Bogg bag but couldn’t figure out how I could get it to my destination without using it as a carryon.

  7. Kris says:

    I have last year’s version of the Target bag and its awesome. For the pool though I like the Scout bags because they stand up on their own (but also fold down for storage unlike the Bogg bag). I have the 4 boys which is probably too big but does mean I only carry 1 bag for 4 people including toys and snacks!

  8. Ally says:

    I thought I could stay out of Target this week but it looks like I’m going to get a pink bag today.

  9. Roons10 says:

    I would also highly recommend any bag by Ahola for the beach or pool. Packable, highly versatile. I like hte reversible ones and the coordinating pouches.

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