The 9 Best Multi-Tools of 2020

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The Rundown

Best Overall: Leatherman Charge+ TTi at Amazon

"This multi-tool includes 19 different tools in total, so it can handle just about any task."

Best Budget: Gerber Suspension-NXT at Amazon

"Utilizes a classic multi-tool design and a price point that is equally streamlined."

Best for Everyday Carry: Victorinox SwissTool Spirit X at Amazon

"This Swiss-made device is precision engineered to be both functional and stylish."

Best for Outdoor Activities: Tactica M100.X at Huckberry

"If your outdoor exploits involve bikes, snowboards, or skis, this tool will prove indispensable."

Best for Backpacking: Gerber Devour Multi-Fork at Amazon

"Provides nine functions, all focused around cooking, eating, and cleaning in the backcountry."

Best Mini: SOG Micro Toolclip at Amazon

"With a closed length of only 3.9 inches, this is one of the smallest multi-functional tools on the market."

Most Portable: Leatherman Skeletool at Amazon

"Comes with a removable pocket clip so it's ready to go with you anywhere."

Most TSA-Friendly: Leatherman Style PS at Amazon

"The device doesn’t have a knife blade, an understandable omission that makes it TSA-friendly."

Best All-in-One: Victorinox SwissTool X Plus Ratchet at Victorinox

"Comes with some of the biggest arrays of tools available to enable equipment repair while you're on the go."

The invention of the multi-tool transformed a tool kit’s worth of devices into a pocket-friendly stand-alone device. Pliers, knife blades, saws, screwdrivers, and bottle openers can now be quickly accessible and ingeniously easy to operate. Some multi-tools are suited to accomplish complex tasks like making field repairs to failing equipment or as a backup toolbox on a construction site, while others take a more streamlined approach, providing the utilities you need—scissors, blades, and smaller screwdrivers—without overburdening the traveler or outdoor lover.

Read on to see our list of the best multi-tools.

Our Top Picks

01 of 09

Best Overall: Leatherman Charge+ TTi

Leatherman Charge+ TTi

Courtesy of Amazon

When Tim Leatherman introduced the Pocket Survival Tool in 1983, he revolutionized the world of pocket-friendly tools. Until then, the space was dominated by Swiss Army-style pocket knives, but by building his multi-tool around a pair of fold-out pliers rather than a knife blade, it set the stage for a whole new world of utility. And the brand’s Charge+ TTi is the perfect encapsulation of decades-long innovation.

Constructed around the now-traditional set of fold-out pliers, the Charge+ TTi can handle just about any task. It includes 19 tools in total, including both needlenose and regular pliers, wire cutters, an electrical crimper, wire stripper, both straight and serrated knives, a saw, a cutting hook, and a spring-action pair of scissors. An 8-inch ruler has been etched into the titanium handles, and other tools include an opener for both bottles and cans, two files, a medium-sized screwdriver, and large- and small-bit drivers that work with the included four hexes. It even has an eyeglass screwdriver. All this in a 4-inch-long package (when closed) that weighs a manageable 8.89 ounces.

02 of 09

Best Budget: Gerber Suspension-NXT

Boasting a total of 15 tools, the Suspension-NXT from Gerber provides a stripped-down option that utilizes a classic multi-tool design and a price point that is equally streamlined. You get spring-loaded needlenose pliers and locking tools that include a wire cutter, a 2.25-inch knife blade that’s both serrated and straight, three flathead screwdrivers, scissors, an awl, a file, a wire stripper, and a wire cutter. The 4.25-inch-long tool folds out to display an etched ruler and the whole package weighs a modest 6.7 ounces. It also comes with a lanyard point as well as a pocket clip.

03 of 09

Best for Everyday Carry: Victorinox SwissTool Spirit X

The daily needs of a traveler will dictate the best everyday-carry option when it comes to selecting a multi-tool. For some, a pair of spring-loaded scissors, a small knife, and maybe a few screwdrivers will suffice. But if you opt for a tool with a more comprehensive array of utilities, you’ll be able to handle any circumstance. With an impressive total of 24 functions, the SwissTool Spirit X from venerable tool-makers Victorinox is one of the most versatile multitools available. The Swiss-made device is precision engineered to be both functional and stylish, from the slight bends in its ergonomic handles to the leather tool pouch. The functions read like a spilled tool box, and includes regular and needlenose pliers; two wire cutters; a large, lockable knife blade; a reamer/puncher; four screwdrivers; can, crate, and bottle openers; a wire bender; two saws; scissors; a 7-millimeter chisel; cable cover cutters; a wire stripper; a metal file; and a multi-purpose hook. The SwissTool Spirit measures 4 inches so it will easily fit into your pocket, and weighs only 7.4 ounces.

04 of 09

Best for Outdoor Activities: Tactica M100.X

Tactica M100.X

Courtesy of Huckberry 

If your outdoor exploits involve bikes, snowboards, or skis, the Tactica M100.X will prove indispensable. The tool pack comes with 12 hex bits carried in a holder that nests in the tool’s interior. Made with a hardened stainless steel core, it’ll deliver heavy-duty torque, with an ergonomic handle and an outer surface that won’t scratch the screen of your smartphone. You also get flat- and Phillips-head hex bits, a bottle opener, and a ruler with both metric and imperial markings. Swapping out hex heads is a breeze thanks to magnetic bit retention, and the device is TSA-compliant—so it doesn't include a knife blade or the traditional fold-out pliers typical to other multi-tools, either.

Continue to 5 of 9 below.
05 of 09

Best for Backpacking: Gerber Devour Multi-Fork

At first glance, the Devour from Gerber looks less like a multi-tool and more like a utensil—which is probably why the brand markets it as a “multi-fork.” But this unassuming tool provides nine functions, all focused around cooking, eating, and cleaning in the backcountry. Snap off the multi-tool from the main fork, and you get large and small flathead screwdrivers, a pry bar, bottle and can openers, and a serrated opener ideal to conquer stubborn meal packaging. The fork, meanwhile, comes with long, off-set tines to make it easy to pick up food, along with a deep basin spoon, a flat cut surface that you can also use to scrape food off your cooking pot, and a textured 7075 T6 aluminum handle for a confident grip. The handle also features a kickstand design that lets the fork sit on pots and pans. You may want a stand-alone knife if you consider yourself gourmet backcountry chef, but for backpackers who want to keep their packs lightweight, it’s a far cry better than plastic utensils.

06 of 09

Best Mini: SOG Micro Toolclip

With a closed length of only 3.9 inches, SOG’s Micro Toolclip is one of the smallest multi-functional tools on the market. It accomplishes this feat by having one of the handles fold out of the device's main body, rather than the more conventional design of unfolding two handles. This device also features integrated spring-loaded pliers and a locking mechanism to keep the tools secure when they're not in use.

In addition to the narrow pliers, the Micro Toolclip comes with a straight knife blade, a bolt/nut gripper, a bottle opener, flathead and Phillips screwdrivers, and a soft wire cutter nestled at the base of the pliers. The bead-blasted finish provides a sure grip, and a clip lets you latch it to your pocket, belt, or backpack strap. There's also a small loop to attach the tool to a keychain or a lanyard—though that loop does overlap with the knife when the blade is extended, so cut with caution or remove the tool from the keychain before filling out the blade.

07 of 09

Most Portable: Leatherman Skeletool

Take the classic Leatherman multi-tool, strip it to its bare essentials, streamline the design and you’ve got the Skeletool, a high-performance multi-tool that only weighs 5 ounces. Rather than providing a full toolkit’s worth of utility, the company has only included the most useful tools in this model: a spring-loaded plier/needlenose plier combo with a wire cutter at its base, a lockable 420HC 2.6-inch knife with a serrated lower section, a carabiner/bottle opener, and a bit driver that holds two square drives and two Phillips heads. Every tool can be opened with one hand and the device comes with a removable pocket clip so it's ready to go with you anywhere. The Skeletool is available in four different colors including blue, green, and tan.

08 of 09

Most TSA-Friendly: Leatherman Style PS

The Style PS from Letherman will help people avoid saying goodbye to their trusted multi-tool when they hit the TSA security gate. The device doesn’t have a knife blade, an understandable omission that makes it TSA-friendly. But in all other ways, the keychain-sized tool delivers. It comes with a pair of fold-out spring-loaded mix of both needlenose and regular pliers that provide enough grip and torque for a host of applications. It also has flat-head and Phillips screwdrivers, a pair of pull-out tweezers, a nail file, spring-action scissors, and a combination carabiner/bottle opener. All that, and it measures a pocket-friendly 2.9 inches and weighs only 1.58 ounces.

Continue to 9 of 9 below.
09 of 09

Best All-in-One: Victorinox SwissTool X Plus Ratchet

Victorinox SwissTool X Plus Ratchet

Courtesy of Victorinox

With a total of 38 functions, the SwissTool X Plus Ratchet multi-tool from Victorinox comes with some of the biggest arrays of tools available, all encased in one lightweight package. It accomplishes this feat with an arsenal of add-ons that attach to the main body of the tool, including a corkscrew, an extension bar, a ratchet, two hex bits, two torx bits, and two Phillips bits to enable serious equipment repair while you're on the go. The main tool includes needlenose and regular pliers, a large blade, scissors, two saws, a 7-millimeter chisel, five screwdrivers, and tools to strip, scrape, and cut wire. You can also quickly open cans, bottles, and crates thanks to dedicated tools—the only thing they couldn’t integrate, it seems, are power tools or a hammer. Everything nestles together in the high-end leather pouch, and the whole package weighs in at a perfectly reasonable 10.2 ounces.

Why Trust TripSavvy

Nathan Borchelt has worked in the outdoor and travel industries for decades, with a special focus on testing, rating, and reviewing gear. He has amassed an impressive collection of multi-tools and used them at home and in the field for tasks large and small, including repairs to ski boots and mountain bikes. He's also used TSA-friendly and lightweight mini-tools to complete the 1,001 tasks associated with hiking, backpacking, and camping.

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