A soft hard-shell pannier, honest! Made of EVA foam, the Hobo easily attaches/detaches from your rack and will keep everything you travel with safe and dry. You can completely remove the lid if you’re hauling something bulky, and there’s a removable shoulder strap. Great for trips to the market!
Ortlieb bags are perennial favorites, and for (several) good reasons: they work as a pannier or backpack; feature a helmet flap, 2 neoprene outer pockets, internal pocket, carry handle, reflectors, and chest strap; and offer comfort and excellent quality of construction.
Timbuk2 bags are a great choice too – we especially like the Especial Tres! This durable roll-top has compression and expansion, ventilated back panel, a welded laptop pocket (fits laptops up to 15″) and waterproof zip to keep all your gear in good shape. And like all Timbuk2 products, it comes with a lifetime guarantee.
The folks at Mission Workshop also make mighty fine bags, including this expandable roll-top backpack with its weatherproof main compartment (which can double in size) and multiple extra compartments. There’s space for a 15-inch laptop in the front zippered pocket; you can stow a 17-inch laptop in the rear roll-top space. Mission Workshop offers a lifetime warranty on their products, which are made in the USA.