Altura Thunderstorm City 30 backpack review

The Altura Thunderstorm City 30 backpack is a large-volume bag that is comfortable to wear and practical if you travel heavy, although it isn't refined as many internally

Altura Thunderstorm City 30
Cycling Weekly Verdict

A great commuting backpack or for those who like travelling heavy. It really does swallow a lot of kit without feeling too awkward on your back. Down side is internals and lack of compartments and the roll top isn't effective if it isn't stuffed full.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Large capacity

  • +

    Doesn't feel large on your back

  • +


  • +

    Light attachment

  • +


Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Simple internals isn't great for storying different bits of kit

  • -

    Roll top unravels if you don't fill the back to capacity

  • -

    No external pockets

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Altura is the go-to brand when it comes to commuter clothing, It's classically bright and beautiful, whilst being practical and robust. The Altura Thunderstorm City 30 is more the latter but is bright for those dim commutes with good reflectives.

Buy now: Altura Thunderstorm City 30 from Tweek Cycles for £53.99

Before I start, the Altura Thunderstorm City 30 isn't for the light travellers. It has a rather large 30-litre capacity but it isn't refined enough to separate your kit.  The roll-up top, if not filled a certain amount, doesn't hold its fold despite the metal clip being in its tightest setting, and items tend to rattle around as there is nothing to hold things down inside the bag.

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Yes, it does have a laptop section, one large zip pocket and two smaller open pockets but the main compartment, things to tend to get lost easily. The Altura Thunderstorm City 30 doesn't have any external pockets either. So no place to stick a bottle or items you want to access quickly if you travel without the bike or ride a city bike that doesn't have bottle cage mounts (which I do often).

Altura Thunderstorm City 30

With my niggles out of the way, the Altura Thunderstorm City 30 is a rather good commuter rucksack if you travel heavy, in wet weather, or you're just after a comfortable bag. It is one of the most comfortable rucksacks I've ever used, both on and off the bike.

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The ergonomics of the rear of the bag and straps helps to keep the bulk of the backpack away from you, meaning despite its large capacity you don't feel like a Deliveroo rider. It deals with its weight and size nicely. I didn't even feel the need to use chest or waist straps for extra bag security.

Buy now: Altura Thunderstorm City 30 from Tweek Cycles for £53.99

The Altura Thunderstorm City 30 is available in two colours – yellow and black or grey and black – both of which are fully reflective doing a great job at lighting you up when caught in the headlights. It's fully waterproof too, so you have no need to worry about your change of clothes or laptop getting wet.

Shoulder visibility is good also, with only the edge of the bag obstructing a shoulder check, but this didn't annoy me.

Overall, a very good commuting bag from Altura. A little internal refinement and you'll be onto a perfect rucksack here.

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Symon Lewis joined Cycling Weekly as an Editorial Assistant in 2010, he went on to become a Tech Writer in 2014 before being promoted to Tech Editor in 2015 before taking on a role managing Video and Tech in 2019. Lewis discovered cycling via Herne Hill Velodrome, where he was renowned for his prolific performances, and spent two years as a coach at the South London velodrome.