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Targus CityLite Pro Secure Review: Excellent Commuter Backpack



The Targus CityLite Pro Secure backpack is a great commuter backpack.

The Targus CityLite Pro Secure backpack is a great commuter backpack.

The Targus CityLite Pro Secure, or Security backpack, is a great backpack for commuters and for travelers looking to carry up to a 15.6-inch laptop and other essentials. This backpack only uses zippers that are close to your back, so someone cannot open it while you are wearing it. This keeps your items safe, and it also makes for a really cool look.

I like that the Targus CityLite Pro Secure backpack has a good amount of internal storage and organizational pockets, plus an RFID blocking pocket. There’s a lot of structure to the bag, so it keeps its shape and it can stand up when you set it down.

I’ve tested the CityLite Pro as a commuter around town and around the midwest over the last month and a half as well as taking it on a quick trip to Burlington, Vermont to test the Nissan Leaf.

There’s a lot of room inside this backpack. I like the back pocket that is big enough to hold my 15-inch MacBook Pro. This pocket is lightly padded and it is suspended so it keeps your laptop off the ground. This is an area where many bags skimp, so it is nice to see the suspended edesign combined with padding. An elastic strap keeps your laptop securely in place. I can put a tablet in the bigger pouch, but I wish there was a tablet slot right on the front edge of the laptop holder.

Inside there are three open storage compartments. I use one of the side ones to hold a portable battery, the other side one holds gum and a snack, and the bigger compartment can hold a tablet or I use it to hold my Sony a6500, Go Pro or a gimbal. it’s a nice multi-use pocket and it can hold a decent amount. When I use it for cords, I can still fit a shirt or sweatshirt in the bag. This bag isn’t big enough to carry a full change of clothes and all your gear, but if you want that much capacity, you’ll need to jump up to a much bigger bag.


There is an internal RFID pocket that you can safely stow your Passport or other items in. This includes a zipper while the other pockets don’t close. A final pocket on the top edge is perfect for sunglasses or for small items like in ear headphones. It’s also a handy pouch if you need to stash your wallet. Like the main zipper, this one is against your back, so someone cannot reach into these while you are wearing the backpack.

There is one more pocket on the back, which is in the padding at your lower back. This works out nicely for cords and other small items. I originally put my MacBook Pro charger in here. That works out for short periods of carrying the bag, but ultimately was too much pressure on my back when I had to carry the bag for more than 10 minutes at a time.

I love the design of this bag. The resilient material keeps light rain from getting to my gear and I love the shade of gray with a little pattern to it that Targus uses for this bag. It simultaneously looks modern and upscale, and the structure of the bag gives it a little extra edginess that really completes the look. There are two pockets on the outside that are handy for storing items you need access to frequently, and that can hold a bottle of water. A small clip on one side lets you attach a carabiner if you need to hold something in place.

There are lots of pockets and a very nice laptop sleeve in the backpack.

There are lots of pockets and a very nice laptop sleeve in the backpack.

A reflective stripe helps keep you easily visible in low light or at night, and the front clip that holds the shoulder straps together doubles as a safety whistle. The straps are comfortable, even with a heavy load and the back padding is substantial. I love the included handle that is attached to the shoulder straps instead of directly to the bag. It makes grabbing the bag to carry down the small opening between seats on a plane very easy, and it’s perfect for carrying short distances to the car.

You can open the CityLite Pro Secure backpack completely to easily reach everything inside. I like the buttons that snap to keep the backpack from defaulting to opening all the way, since I only need that much of an opening when packing and unpacking everything.

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