Written By Car Bibles Staff
Published Mar. 2, 2020
Most motorcycles come with seriously limited onboard storage. They don’t have a trunk or back seat, or even a floor to store items or bags. Other than the occasional small glove box, storage solutions are really up to riders to figure out for themselves. Motorcycle handlebar bags solve some of this issue. By keeping the most frequently used items at an easy reach, riders don’t have to worry about digging through their pockets to find their gear while straddling their motorcycle. Our list of the best motorcycle handlebar bags will help you figure out which bag will work the best for you.

The Best Motorcycle Handlebar Bag

This fine leather bag will have all your friends asking about it at the next poker run. Hide & Drink’s leather handlebar bag is handmade by Guatemalan artisans, using the best leather hides and finishing processes available. Each piece is hand-cut and stitched for the best end product.

Hide & Drink is so confident in their offerings that each product comes with a 101-year satisfaction warranty. When you’re covering some ground, you’ll appreciate knowing that this bag is built for the long haul. It’s ideal for carrying your toll cash, camera, or cell phone.

Key Features
  • Hand-cut and stitched 
  • Weather-resistant leather
  • Reinforced rivets at stress point
  • Retaining straps inside bag for holding gear in place
Specification
  • Brand Hide & Drink
  • Model model-h-117
  • Weight 14.4 ounces
PROS

Made of full-grain leather

Finished with natural products like beeswax

101-year warranty

CONS

Cheap buckles

May have quality control issues

Leather straps are thin

This versatile bag can be mounted on your handlebars, fork, or the rear of your motorcycle. It has two quick-release buckles on the front of the bag to retain your gear and keep the weather out. It’s good for storing small personal items that you’ll need quick access to.

The Kemimoto is a nice bag for the money you’ll spend on it. We like the versatility in how you can mount it. Kemimoto even provides extra straps if you need to get creative with your installation. There’s an interior zippered pocket as well, so you’ll be able to keep small items secure while on the road.

Key Features
  • Quick-release buckles
  • Zippered inner pocket
  • Easily installed in several positions
  • Weather-resistant materials
Specification
  • Brand Kemimoto
  • Weight 14.4 ounces
PROS

Zipper pocket keeps small items in place

Great option on a budget

Style matches most motorcycles

CONS

Plastic buckles seem cheap

Construction materials are low-quality

Large logo on front detracts from simple design

This streamlined handlebar bag from Giant Loop will be right at home on your adventure, dirt, or street bike. The nylon material and large zipper make it water-resistant and dust-proof, keeping your wallet, phone, and paperwork clean and in good working order. 

We like the heavy-duty material that this bag is built from. It’s very lightweight, weighing less than half of a pound. While it’s not big, its beauty is in its simplicity. It’ll fit across any motorcycle’s handlebars, but it’s most at home on a dirt bike or an adventure, dual-sport motorcycle.

Key Features
  • Easy-to-use Velcro straps
  • Zippered interior pocket
  • Compression straps keep bag streamlined when empty
  • Weather-resistant zipper and material
Specification
  • Brand Giant Loop
  • Model ZHB-BLACK
  • Weight 6.4 ounces
PROS

Super lightweight

Adaptable to several types of motorcycles

Heavy-duty construction

CONS

Too small for more than just a few items

Off-road styling isn’t for everyone

Overloading can lead to tearing

If you’ve got a classic motorcycle or just prefer the old school look, you’ll probably like The Vintage Stuff’s Genuine Leather Handlebar Bag. This brown, goat leather handlebar bag has a two-buckle closure and would look great on a motorcycle with a vintage aesthetic.

There are some great features about this bag from The Vintage Stuff. They state that their bags are eco-friendly and chemical-free, which is rare for leather items at this price point. Also, though this bag is leather, it’s also weather-resistant. It should keep your gear dry when the weather turns.

Key Features
  • Weather-resistant
  • Eco-friendly and chemical-free
  • Goat leather construction
  • Rivet-reinforced stress points
Specification
  • Brand The Vintage Stuff
  • Weight 11.2 ounces
PROS

Great classic styling

Large enough to hold the essentials

Durable metal buckles resist the elements

CONS

No inner pockets

Quality control may be lacking

Leather straps don’t look sturdy and may be attached too low

The BraveHawkOutdoors Handlebar Bag is worth considering if you’re looking for a cheap bag with lots of storage. If you need pockets, the BraveHawkOutdoors bag has lots of them. This bag also features the modular MOLLE webbing system, so it can be customized to meet your needs.

We like that the BraveHawkOutdoors bag is constructed from heavy-duty 900D nylon fabric. Also, there are several pockets, which can be helpful when you’re trying to keep things organized on longer rides. The extra storage will pay off when you’re on the road.

Key Features
  • 900D nylon
  • MOLLE webbing system
  • Multiple ways to wear or use
  • Tons of individual pockets
Specification
  • Brand BraveHawkOutdoors
  • Weight 1.1 pounds
PROS

Excellent storage capacity

Can be mounted to several areas on the bike

MOLLE system makes adding even more storage easy

CONS

Heaviest bag on the list

Riders may prefer a more streamlined bag

Tactical styling may be a bit much for casual riders

This motorcycle storage bag from The Nekid Cow is a synthetic leather bag featuring quick-release buckle closure and weather-resistant construction. Nekid Cow’s bag is a good choice for holding phones, wallets, and other small items while protecting them from wet weather.

The Nekid Cow’s Motorcycle Storage Bag is made from synthetic PVC leather. While that may not sound like a good thing, it does make this bag extra weather-resistant. Also, the flexibility of having some choice in mounting locations is a nice feature to have. It also comes in a few different designs so you should be able to find one that suits you.

Key Features
  • PVC leather-like material is weather-resistant
  • Flexible in terms of mounting locations
  • Several designs available
  • Universal fitment for use on most motorcycles
Specification
  • Brand The Nekid Cow
  • Weight 14.4 ounces
PROS

Gear stays dry and safe

Side flaps fold in for better retention

Decent amount of storage for a compact bag

CONS

Straps installed too low

Plastic buckles are cheap

Several complaints of straps breaking prematurely

Motorcycle Handlebar Bags Buying Guide & FAQ

Whether you’re commuting to work or hitting the open road for a weekend rally, a handlebar bag on your motorcycle can provide some organization for your most important items. If you’ve ever been digging through a saddlebag or jacket pocket at a toll booth or parking lot gate, you’d appreciate the convenience of having your gear at hand.

Motorcycle handlebar bags come in several shapes and styles. Some have a lot of storage, while others are meant to be streamlined so they stay out of the way when you’re buzzing through the trails. Our guide will help you figure out which type of bag is best for you and your riding style.

Why You Need a Motorcycle Handlebar Bag

Keeping your gear organized while you’re on the road helps to make sure you’re prepared for the ride. Handlebar bags provide the rider with the ability to quickly check and confirm that they have all the essentials. Wallets, phones, motorcycle registration, and other small items can get lost in a saddlebag, tank bag, or other motorcycle luggage. Handlebar bags solve that issue.

If yours is the type of motorcycle that benefits from an aesthetic touch, handlebar bags are a great way to dress it up. Whether you’ve got a vintage Indian or BMW, fitting a cool bag to the bars is a great way to draw some attention. Newer motorcycles can benefit from the look as well, particularly cruisers where black leather is usually king.

There are other reasons why you might want to consider a motorcycle handlebar bag. Not only can they hold your personal items, but you can also outfit them with first aid kits, maps, and gadgets that you may need on adventure rides. Everything will be close at hand when you need it in a sticky situation.

  • Handlebar bags keep your on-road necessities organized.
  • Accessories like handlebar bags can increase your motorcycle’s style points.
  • They’re excellent for keeping first aid kits, maps, and gadgets close at hand.

Types of Motorcycle Handlebar Bags

  • Tool Bags

Leather tool bags are the quintessential motorcycle handlebar bags. You’ve seen them on Harley-Davidson, Honda, and Kawasaki cruisers alike. These are the bags that you’ve noticed on the handlebars or forks of street cruisers donning loud, chrome pipes. Tool pouches come in many colors, but black leather is the typical style.

Motorcycle tool bags were originally designed to hold tools for long rides. Motorcycles weren’t always as reliable as they are now. The soldiers and messengers that rode the older, less reliable motorcycles had to carry the tools they needed to complete a roadside repair. 

These bags have now become a popular option for street cruisers to hold personal effects like cell phones, house keys, and other items that you don’t want to keep in your pocket on a ride.

  • Off-Road Bags

Anyone who spends enough time taking their dual-sport or dirt bike off-road knows that on long rides, you can’t have too much storage. Off-road handlebar bags are great for keeping tools, snacks, and important gadgets safe and accessible.

While the idea is the same, these handlebar bags look much different than tool pouches or other options. They’re often made of heavy-duty, man-made materials like nylon or Cordura. They usually feature flashy colors and large logos. As far as size, they can be large with a ton of storage or small to stay out the way.

If you’re looking to take your rig off-road or on an adventure, consider outfitting your bike with a handlebar bag so you can bring the important stuff along for the ride. 

  • Multi-Positional Bags

While these bags are meant to be mounted on handlebars, most of them can be adapted to call other parts of a motorcycle home. Multi-positional bags give you some options for figuring out what works best for you and the gear that you normally carry.

These bags can be adapted to fit a few different locations. In addition to handlebars, these bags can be fitted to a front fork, frame, or sissy bar. The straps that hold these types of bags in place are easily manipulated, so if you can wrap them around something, chances are the bag will work there.

On most rides, you’ll probably find that the handlebars are the best place for your bag. However, you might also find that being able to move the bag to fit your needs at the time is a great feature to have in a bag.

Features to Look for in Motorcycle Handlebar Bags

Now that you’re aware of what types of motorcycle handlebar bags are available for your ride, let’s go over the important features you should look for when picking one out. We’ll go over materials, use, weather resistance, and other features that will help you make the most of your handlebar bag for years to come.

  • Weather Resistance

No one likes being caught out in the rain, but there are times when it’s just unavoidable, like when it comes out of nowhere. Having a water-resistant handlebar bag to keep your gear dry and safe is a feature you should definitely be looking for.

There are many materials that can make it through some rough weather. Full-grain latigo leather is a great option for leather bags that might see some rain. Nylon bags will shed most of the water that they come in contact with, but will also dry quickly when the rain stops.

You may also want to look for a good-quality nylon zipper or closure flap to best keep the elements from calling the inside of your bag home.

  • Warranties and Guarantees

When you’re driving down the highway at a good rate of speed, the last thing you want to worry about is the quality of the bag holding your expensive cell phone and house keys. Look for motorcycle handlebar bags that come with warranties or guarantees against faulty craftsmanship or material.

When a company guarantees or warranties their product for a long time, they’re telling you that they believe in their product and they’re willing to put their money on the table to prove it. Companies like this craft high-quality goods that you can trust while sending it down a dirt trail. 

  • Reinforcement at Main Stress Points

Motorcycles and riders experience a lot of vibration while riding for long periods of time. All the parts and accessories on the motorcycle also experience these vibrations. This often leads to premature failure from products that just weren’t designed for that type of use.

One way to avoid your handlebar bag from failing you is to purchase a bag with extra reinforcement at the main stress points. For leather bags, this can simply be a metal rivet, meant to strengthen a corner or a strap’s attachment to a bag. For nylon bags, this often means an extra few passes through the sewing machine at the major stress points.

Tips for Buying and Using Motorcycle Handlebar Bags

Make sure that the bag you choose fits your motorcycle’s style. A Yamaha R1 rider’s taste may differ from a Harley Davidson Sportster rider’s. If the bag doesn’t fit your style, you’ll probably stop using it eventually. You want a bag that will complement your bike’s look. Better yet, look for a bag that matches your typical riding gear as well.

The bags on our list are water-resistant, not waterproof. Unless you purchase a bag that is specifically marketed as waterproof, any bag you buy will probably be only water-resistant. It’s a good idea to keep a few sandwich bags in your handlebar bag for safeguarding your phone or important papers from the weather.

None of the bags on the list will protect your valuables from theft, either. If you’re leaving the immediate area of your motorcycle, it’s always a good idea to take whatever you keep in your bag with you. These bags can be an easy target in busy parking lots, so consider that before you leave your stuff unattended.

  • Choose a bag that will complement your motorcycle’s look.
  • Keep plastic bags on hand for rough weather.
  • Take your items with you when leaving your motorcycle unattended.

Best Motorcycle Handlebar Bags FAQ:

As far as the best motorcycle handlebar bags go, we’ve covered a lot of ground. You now know what types of bags are available and what features you should be looking for when purchasing one. You may still have questions, though, and we’ll try to sort it all out for you here. These are some of the most commonly-asked questions about motorcycle handlebar bags.

Q: Do these bags fit different styles of handlebars?

Yes, most handlebar bags have enough flexibility and adjustability to fit any style of handlebar. They’ll fit street cruisers, dirtbikes, sport bikes, scooters, and even bicycles.

Q: Can you access the bag’s contents while it’s attached to the motorcycle?

Handlebar bags are designed to be accessed, many times one-handed, while they’re still attached to the motorcycle. You don’t have to remove them to get something out.

Q: Do these bags come with the straps to attach them to the motorcycle?

Yes, all of these bags have the necessary straps to attach them to a motorcycle. You can also buy additional straps if you find yours are beginning to wear out.

Our Top Pick

The Hide & Drink Motorcycle Handlebar Bag is our top pick for the Best Motorcycle Handlebar Bag. We like the styling, thick leather body, and eco-friendly beeswax finish. Not only can you be sure that your belongings will be secure, but you can also feel confident that this handlebar bag will be the last one you ever buy. That is, unless you outlive its 101-year warranty.

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