Car roof bags are a great alternative to the somewhat expensive and hard to store roof boxes. Roof boxes are probably classed as longer-lasting and more reliable, however, if budget and storage are a concern to you, then there are some excellent roof bags out there to help hold everything for your journey.
If you have a holiday or camping trip coming up and you’re taking your car, all your stuff might not fit in and taking a second vehicle may not be an option. Roof bags can be easily tied to the top of your motor and if the right purchase is made, keep everything safe, secure and dry when carrying it on your car roof. We’ve selected our 5 top rooftop cargo carriers for reliable transportation of your stuff in all driving conditions.
Best Car Roof Bags in the UK Reviews
425 litres, 15 cubic feet
580L, 20 cubic feet
250 – 325 litres
#1. AUPERTO Car Roof Storage Bag
This car roof storage bag is one of the best car roof bags you can find, with an impressive number of highly favorable reviews. It has heavy-duty straps that are easy to attach to a rack system or can be used to strap the bag directly to the roof. This bag will give you up to 15 cubic feet of additional storage space, meaning you can take everything you need on your next trip.
This storage bag is waterproof and is made to have a long, useful life. Made of 550D folder grid material, it will endure rain, road grit, snow, intense sunlight, and more unfavorable conditions. It will fit well on virtually any vehicle and is incredibly easy to install.
- Made of extra durable material and waterproof
- Protects your luggage from rain, grit, snow, wind, and sun
- Easy to install to racks, side rails, or crossbars and can also be used without rails
- Offers 15 cubic feet of space
- Metal buckles on the straps offer increased luggage security
- You can sometimes get problems with the straps letting rain in through the car windows
#2. AmazonBasics Rooftop Cargo Carrier
AmazonBasics has its own cargo bags for the roof of your vehicle, and there are actually two that we’ll be reviewing in our list here. This rooftop cargo carrier bag has a sleek, black exterior that is fade-resistant and waterproof, so it can fully protect your belongings for years to come. This car roof bag can hold up to 425 litres worth of stuff.
It is durable, constructed with waterproof material and sporting ultra-strong seams. Your belongings will be protected from dirt, rain, sleet, and snow. It has an oversized zipper with protective flaps, ensuring that it is easy for you to open but nearly impossible for inclement weather to penetrate. Additionally, it’s backed by AmazonBasic’s one-year limited warranty.
- Can store up to 425 litres
- Has 8 cinch straps with buckles for easy installation
- Waterproof and fade-resistant
- Folds for simple compact storage
- Backed by Amazonbasics one-year limited warranty
- The straps are not as secure as they could be at high speeds
#3. Sailnovo Cargo
The Salinovo Roof Cargo Bags come in four sizes and material grades, so you can choose the one that will fit your needs and your car perfectly without worrying about losing quality, as their options come in both 600D and 1000D material grades. These bags are waterproof and designed to endure all kinds of inclement and intense weather conditions.
With six primary straps and eight additional straps, you’re guaranteed to have all the security you need for all of your belongings. When it’s not in use, this bag is easy to store, as it folds up conveniently and can fit in a storage bag all its own.
- Has 6 built-in tie straps and 8 extra straps for optimal security
- Carries up to 20 cubic feet worth of luggage
- Easily folded for compact, convenient storage
- Waterproof material will protect your possessions from rain, grit, snow, wind, and sun
- Will work with or without a rack system installed on your vehicle
- Water will sometimes follow the straps into the car and will drip into your vehicle if it’s raining
#4. AmazonBasics Expandable Hitch Rack Cargo Carrier Bag
This is another AmaonBasics item that is anything but basic. It’s expandable, so you can store anywhere from 250 to 325 litres worth of supplies and luggage in the bag. It also features two internal compartments for easy organization, and folds for compact storage that won’t take up much space at all. It comes with an included storage bag that doubles as a carrying case.
This bag is fade-resistant and waterproof and features oversized zipper closures and stay-dry flaps to ensure that water won’t be able to sneak into the storage compartment.
- Expands to hold between 250 and 325 litres
- Has 6 cinch straps for secure attachment to a hitch rack
- Waterproof and fade resistant
- Features two internal compartments for organizing and includes a storage carrying case
- Backed by AmazonBasics one-year limited warranty
- This cargo bag does not come with instructions
- Is much larger than some customers anticipated
Winningo specializes in travel and outdoor accessories, and this car roof bag makes it easy to see why. It can hold up to 15 cubic feet of luggage and supplies and can be used with or without a car rack system in place.
This bag is guaranteed to be 100 percent waterproof and will protect your belongings from rain, snow, sun, wind, and road grit. It features Dual Seam Technology and an advanced zipper flap to make sure that your items stay dry and undamaged during travel.
- Waterproof material with dual seam technology and protective zipper flap
- Has 12 seat belt-style straps for secure installation on your vehicle
- Load capacity is about 200 pounds for short trips
- The straps are wide and durable
- The bag protects from road grit, sun, wind, rain, and snow
- Not great in heavy rain
Bag for a Car Roof Buying Considerations
When you’re trying to buy the best car roof bag, there are many things you should keep in mind during the process. We’ve listed the three most important ones below, but you should also consider things like pricing, warranties, form and more.
Security and Mounting
Mounting the car roof bag involves accounting for a combination of both the bag’s dimensions when full and the applicable security measures that are needed to make sure the bag stays on the roof of your car. You should consider not only the loaded dimensions of the bag but also the number of fastening straps and the method of fastening they use. More straps usually increase security for your luggage, but also tend to take longer to fasten and secure the bag to the vehicle in the first place. Additionally, most bags secure better to a roof rack system than without.
Security and stability tie right in with mounting. If you get a large, waterproof car roof bag that you cannot fasten to your roof or otherwise secure at all, then there’s simply no point in having it because you won’t be able to use it. You can find car roof bags that don’t require a car rack to be used, but generally having a roof rack increases security regardless. Additionally, you can get a non-slip roof cover.
While there are several important factors to consider when buying a car roof bag, the carrying capacity or storage capacity is arguably one of, if not the, most important factors. The entire point of buying a roof bag, to begin with, is to provide you with extra cargo space, so you need to buy a cargo bag that is big enough for your additional belongings, but is also manageable enough to fit on the roof of your vehicle.
Generally speaking, you will mostly find the carrying capacity of your bag measured in cubic feet, which can be misleading because that’s a measurement of area, not weight, and doesn’t always give you an accurate estimate of the shape or dimensions of a fully stocked bag. If you can read the reviews to find carrying weights, you should, as it will give you a better idea of what you can and can’t expect out of the bag.
Materials and Waterproofing
The quality of the materials used to construct your car roof bag is incredibly important, as they have to be durable and capable of enduring a variety of weather conditions to protect your belongings. Many brands will claim that their bag material is waterproof, or will use the term waterproof in their advertisements of the product.
This is not always true, and a more accurate phrase would be to say that the bags are water-resistant. The difference between the two can be found in particularly heavy rains, where a waterproof bag will reject the water continuously, and a water-resistant bag tends to give in under the pressure.
Keep in mind that artificial materials tend to endure better over longer periods in any weather conditions than natural fabrics. Also, look for products that are coated with PVC either inside or out, if not both where available, as this will aid in waterproofing your bag.
The Final Word
Although roof bags may be viewed as not as sturdy and robust as their roof box counterparts, there’s still lots of great options out there that won’t let you down on your trips. We’ve selected 5 of the best car roof bags that are guaranteed to protect all your belongings for long car journeys. If you’re still unsure and don’t believe us that there are some cheaper, just as reliable cargo carriers out there, then have a browse around online, checking out other user reviews.