What Size Dry Bag Do I Need?

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Whether you’re heading out to sea on your surfboard or climbing up a mountain to see the sunrise, dry bags are an essential part of your travels. But when you search online to buy one for your adventures you might be left wondering “what size dry bag do I need?”

Having a dry bag helps to protect what matters most: valuables, such as cameras, cell phones, and money, or essentials, like clothes and towels, are kept safe so that your time spent outdoors can be stress-free. However, the dry bag size availability can be overwhelming, especially when you want to spend less time online and more time outdoors. 

In order to identify which size dry bag you will need for your outdoor adventures, first answer an important question:

What Kind of Adventurer Are You?

Day Hikers, Consider a 2-liter Dry Bag

If you are a frequent hiker, then you might be carrying only the essentials in your rucksack: water, snacks, your cell phone, and a wallet.

It’s a good idea to protect your belongings regardless of how light you’re packing, that’s why a 2-liter dry bag would be perfect for you. 

Though small, these bags are essential in protecting your phone, keys, and money from any potential water damage. Even on days you’re not expecting rain, a small but useful dry bag is perfect for keeping your personal items safe and secure. 

A 2-liter dry bag is great for: 

  • Protecting the essentials
  • Organization
  • Easy access to your phone, water, and snacks

Photographers Can Find Value in the 5-liter Dry Bag

You might love day trips as much as the next person, but your personal items go beyond a phone. If you’re someone who loves to take high-quality photographs in nature and you’re asking yourself “what size dry bag do I need?”, your answer could be a 5-liter dry bag.

A 5-liter dry bag is not only big enough to fit your small personal belongings, it is also big enough to house a DSLR camera. An expensive piece of equipment should be protected from water damage and the waterproof coating of a 5-liter dry bag can do just that.

Alternatively, if you’re someone who loves water sports, then you could use this size dry bag to store your wet gear. That way you don’t have to worry about your wet clothes or equipment soaking your other belongings.

A 5-liter dry bag is great for: 

  • Keeping valuable equipment dry and protected 
  • Its waterproof coating
  • Housing a DSLR camera 
  • Storing wet clothes 

Weekend Trip? Try a 10-liter Dry Bag

Whether you’re heading to a surf retreat, taking boat trips, or going camping, you will want to make sure you keep your gear and essential items safe.

A 10-liter dry bag is big enough to fit your personal items and any change of clothes you might need for a multiple-day trip. This is especially helpful since the bag will be your primary source of luggage.

With its waterproof material, anything you put inside will be protected and your items will remain dry. Additionally, you will have somewhere to store your wet clothes while protecting other items in your backpack. 

What Size Dry Bag Do I Need1

If your weekend trip involves pitching a tent, a 10-liter dry sack is also ideal for storing your camping gear. 

A 10-liter dry sack is great for: 

  • Holding small electronics 
  • Housing personal items
  • Storing spare clothing
  • Fitting camping gear  

Parents Will Benefit From the 20-liter Dry Bag

Whether you’re traveling as a family, as a couple, or solo, and wondering “what size dry bag do I need?”, a 20-liter dry bag is a great choice for extra protection

A 20-liter dry bag has enough room to store clothes, a sleeping bag, food, and even some small personal items. Since it can be bought with carrying straps, it can easily replace a regular backpack. 

20-liter dry bags are good for:

  • Protecting the whole family’s belongings 
  • Providing an alternative to backpacks 
  • Storing sleeping bags  

Outdoor and Water Enthusiasts Might Enjoy a 30-liter Dry Bag

If you’re someone who enjoys going out on the water, you’ve most likely searched for a waterproof backpack before. These backpacks can be hard to come across and are often expensive. In addition, most backpacks are only water-resistant, meaning they are not waterproof and do not provide adequate protection.

If you’re serious about protecting your belongings from water, you should consider a 30-liter dry bag, or even larger. This spacious dry bag allows you to store a range of different items, even bulky ones. 

Similar to 20-liter dry bags, larger sizes can be carried easily thanks to their back­pack-style straps. Although this size bag can be good solution, it’s important to be mindful when packing a bag of this size as it can become a challenge to carry. 

30-liter (or more) dry bags are good for: 

  • Its waterproof protection
  • Providing an alternative to backpacks 
  • Submerging in water 
  • Storing sports equipment


This guide has been curated to aid you in choosing the right size dry bag for your needs. Some people may find value in having many different sizes of dry bags. After all, they are useful in keeping your belongings safe and secure. 

While a 2-liter dry bag is ideal for small personal items and organizing your backpack, a 5-liter dry bag offers more room for larger items like a camera and more versatility in the long run.

If you’re not looking for a dry bag to be your main backpack, then a 10-liter is a great option but if you want to use it as your main storage solution, a 20-liter is ideal for families and weekend trips.

Still not enough room? If you’re serious about water protection, you should definitely invest in a 30+ liter dry bag. 

Now that we’ve answered your question “what size bag do I need?”, you might be thinking about which color you want and what style is the best. To save time, why not head to our guide for buying a dry bag?

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