Best Luggage Reviews & Guides 2017

Buying luggage is no easy business! Shuffling through the scores of catalogues online and otherwise, you’d often find yourself facing a torrent of information. Unique in their own light, every brand and every model have a different story.

The reason why we started Luggage Supermarket is precisely because of that. To put all available offers under the lens, comparing and reviewing each and every one separately. Our goal is to separate the hype from the fact, and provide you with detailed and reliable reviews.

Here is what we like to review

Starting from the top down, you can learn about luggage manufacturers and popular luggage brands as well, being able to easily differentiate between one another.

Depending on your intention and budget, buying luggage can easily become a serious investment which pays dividends down the road. Therefore, we would gladly inform you about the different types of luggage, what to expect from each, and set some criteria for different types of purchase.

You’d hear a lot about suitcases, carry-on luggage, travel duffels, luggage sets, backpacks, rucksacks, and travel bags of different size and shape. Browsing through our categories, you’ll find hundreds of products; each carefully selected, and thoroughly reviewed. The navigation is neat and categorized, so you’ll easily find whatever it is that you need.

Best suitcase brands

We’ve reviewed each suitcase brand separately, giving you clear clues on what to expect. Samsonite, Antler, Kipling, Revelation, and many more are included, comparing pros and cons of buying from each. Additionally, you can cross-compare lightweight suitcases, luggage sets of 4, carry-on luggage reviews and hard-shell suitcases against other varieties.

Best Suitcase reviews

Suitcases come in different price ranges and dozens of different varieties. Our reviews don’t discriminate on price, but rather pick the best value from each catalogue, and single out those with a noticeable price/quality ratio.

The suitcase is often one of the most valuable travel investments, so buying the right one for your needs will cut frustration out of your trips, and ease your way around the terminal, packing, and dozens of other travel chores.

Even if you don’t have a clear idea of what you are looking for, and cannot set expectations properly, our best suitcase reviews will guide you in the right direction, so you can chose a model with confidence, knowing exactly what you are paying for.

Best luggage reviews

The traveling experience doesn’t revolve only around the suitcase. In many occasions, buying a suitcase is entirely unnecessary, and other luggage options prove far more practical and useful.

Here at Luggage Supermarket, we have hundreds of separate reviews, covering the best backpack reviews, travel duffel reviews, and anything you can think of.

You’ll find some of the most popular children backpacks that have been singled out from a pool of hundreds of different models. You’ll also find many travel accessory reviews, travel bag reviews, and camera and laptop backpack reviews ranging from super affordable, to top-of-the-line.

The most important thing for you is to have a clear or even vague idea of what you are looking for, and you’ll find every necessary information, here, at Luggage Supermarket. Even if you are clueless when it comes to buying luggage, allow for our detailed reviews to set expectations and guide you towards the right purchase.

Backpacks

Backpacks are the backbone of every travel trip. They are light, easy to maneuver around, and usually cost less when compared with suitcases and duffels of similar size. The backpack, however, can come in dozens, if not hundreds of varieties.

Not a lot of variation in size, but tons of options when it comes to material, shape, usage and style.

Ideal as a carry-on luggage option, the backpack is the perfect solution for moving fast around a terminal and boarding easily without hustle. Given its many compartments, you can organize your stuff so neatly, than reaching out when you need something is fast and doesn’t require herculean effort.

If you often travel to a foreign country, you probably understand the need of a backpack all too intimately. I’ve seen people folding them and packing them in their suitcases, with the plan to use them after they arrive at destination.

Casual Backpacks

A casual backpack outranks other varieties nine ways to Sunday. It is versatile, just like a backpack should be. Easy to store lots of personal items, some clothes, a laptop… A casual backpack, when purchased with enough research and attention, is an investment that pays dividends down the road. You’d be able to use it for many different occasions.

It’s crucial, then, to realize the importance of quality and durable materials.

Laptop Backpacks

Laptop backpacks are still versatile to a degree. You cannot cram enough clothes there, but they still offer some room for packing a simple and over-the-weekend wardrobe.

Laptop backpacks, mostly slim in shape, lack the option of adding a variety of items, including, for example, a DSLR camera which many people use when traveling.

Hiking Backpacks

If you want to pack more clothes for a trip, and bring along a variety of items different in size and shape, then hiking backpacks are a terrific option.

They are especially suitable for camping, and frequent weekend trips that rarely require excessive wardrobe transfer.

Being designed for a different purpose in mind though, hiking backpacks are way more comfortable, and can be worn for hours to an end- which is perfect for long trips, especially when you have to switch planes and move around with your luggage.

According to the model, or how you decide to pack, these can still enter the cabin luggage, making your trip much easier.

Backpacks for Traveling

These backpacks are designed with traveling in mind, so you can expect something like a backpack on wheels, or a backpack with handle etc.

The best traveling backpack has a lot more options to offer, than say, a traditional single strap backpack. Much sturdier and way more durable, these are your preferred option if you plan to use the backpack for traveling only.

Chose what you are going to use the backpack for

If you are not certain why you need a backpack, the safest bet is to buy a casual backpack. Otherwise, you have a model for every occasion, which expectedly offers a variety of features.

Take for example a bike backpack, or children backpacks, and even camera backpacks. The key is to know what you are going to use the backpack for.

Suitcases

Depending on how often you travel, buying the right suitcase can be a rather important business. And even for those of you who pack the bags every now and then, choosing a good suitcase can make the difference between a pleasant, friction-free journey, and one that is an exercise in frustration.

A good suitcase can mean faster packing, moving between terminals with more ease, and add to your overall travel style. It can last you a summer, or decades more. So much depends on what you chose, of course according to your travel needs.

It’s better, however, to make the calculus early on, and invest good money into buying a hard suitcase set, cabin size suitcase, or large lightweight suitcase…

Buy a Hard Suitcase Set

Is the hard suitcase set a necessity? Well, somewhat unsatisfyingly, the answer is a strong maybe… It depends much on whether we are talking about a single person traveling, a couple, or a family. It also depends on your travel arrangements, how often, and in what capacity they occur.

If you are a person who travels a lot for work related trips, and spend a holiday or two per year with your family as well, then a hard suitcase set is probably the smart solution for your luggage inventory.

Hard shell suitcases usually do better in many criteria. Lightweight, slightly more expensive and therefore with better wheels, handles with more options, and a myriad of different advantages.

The cabin size suitcase is probably your first and most important investment if you plan to gradually build your set.

Look for Large lightweight suitcases

Large suitcases are probably the main travel inventory item you’ll own. And this is especially true if you have a family, or want to go on prolonged holidays bringing your whole wardrobe along.

Depending on your budget, you’d want to check a large suitcase sale, browse through categories here in order to get a feeling on price/quality ratio, and see what cheap large suitcases lack when compared to other, say better alternatives, such as Samsonite suitcases for example.

The goal is, however, to find a lightweight large suitcase; one that can pack a lot of stuff, but is fairly easy to maneuver around. That’s why I always recommend hard shell suitcases, which can be bit pricey but over deliver on your expectations.

Cheap lightweight suitcases on the other hand, though easy to find, will usually last you several trips- especially if you have a habit of packing up so many clothes, that you have to sit on top of the suitcase in order to close the zip.

What to look for in small suitcases and medium suitcases?

The inside of the suitcase is as important as the outside shell. So look at the material used, how likely it is to suffer under the casual wear and tear… Also look at the wheel and handle mechanisms. These will make the difference between a pleasant and frustrating experience.

The zip is fairly important too, so see that you don’t have to apply herculean effort there.

Look for style too. Small suitcases offer a lot of options to choose from. A rose gold suitcase can be much more distinguishable and easy to spot when picking up your luggage.

Travel Duffels

Travel duffels are probably the most versatile traveling item in any traveling inventory. They weight next to nothing, and depending on how you prefer to pack for a trip, can change size as well as shape. This makes them super convenient as hand luggage and cabin luggage, and besides the backpack, the only travel item that you can strap on your shoulder.

But unlike suitcases, travel duffels, or also known as travel bags, can come in so many different sizes, shapes and features, so we cannot really generalize.

Large Travel Bags

These are the economy option for packing all your stuff. Compared to a large suitcase, they weight around four to five times less. The shape is heavily depended on how much, what and how you prefer to pack. The size, therefore, can be subject to change.

But for large travel bags, or travel duffels, size shouldn’t worry you at all. It’s the weight reduction when compared to a suitcase, which makes the large travel duffle a preferred solution.

The large and medium travel bags can sometimes come with a wheel mechanism, which is definitely a bridge between the functionality of large travel duffel, and that of a suitcase.

There are some models that offer a telescopic handle as well, making the trip much easier.

Small Travel Bags

Small travel bags are ideal not only for traveling, but other activities as well. If you are into sports or visit the gym, these can make things a lot easier. But it’s hard to generalize between small travel bags, because while some can come with a shoulder strap only, others include a wheel mechanism and a telescopic handle as well- some, though, don’t offer any of these features aside from two normal handles and a zip.

But when it comes to small travel duffels, the style and quality between each item can be miles apart.

Travel bags for women can cost up to several hundred pounds, and match the price with stunning attention to quality and detail.

So it’s important to know what you’ll be using the bag for, and how often.

What are you buying a travel bag for?

If you want to use the travel bag for going back and forth to the gym, forget about wheeled travel bags, or pricy and stylish items. Instead, look at those that are easy to wash, or include a water resistant surface, and definitely look for a shoulder strap.

For travel, unless you are on a budget and want to cram as much stuff without having to pay the extra price in weight, you’d want to use the bag as a carry-on luggage.

Therefore, you can find one that is smaller, easier to carry around, and doesn’t necessarily include a shoulder strap. Shop for style, unless buy yourself a carry-on suitcase.

Travel bags are great for kids as well, having in mind that the shoulder strap makes it feel closer to a backpack than a suitcase, which kids often lose or dread carrying around.

Hand Luggage / Carry Ons

For a frequent traveler, one who often has to hit the road, a good investment into carry-on luggage pays huge dividends down the road. If you chose a solid hand luggage suitcase right from the beginning, a large part of the chores associated with traveling can go away.

The carry-on luggage is too important of an item to buy at a cabin luggage sale. The fact that you are buying a small size suitcase usually means that even for top quality, you don’t always have to pay a fortune. Listen to this advice, and treat yourself with a quality hand luggage.

The point of the carry-on luggage

People often preoccupy with the measurements, overseeing other important criteria. A carry-on luggage, apart from being easy to fit over your head, should fulfill some other criteria suitable for the name. You should be able to maneuver this small container with ease, whether we are talking about wheel mechanism, handle mechanism, or weight when you have to carry the suitcase in hand.

Though being shielded from the usual wear and tear a large suitcase goes through, it is still important to pay attention to shell quality. Many times, as it happens, carry-on luggage items can fall on the floor, or be damaged as you walk them from one terminal to the other. Hard shell is what I always personally recommend.

Cabin Size Luggage

You should always check with your carrier company in order to be on the safe side on what is accepted as a carry-on luggage. There shouldn’t be huge variations in measurements from one Airplane Company to another, but it doesn’t hurt to always double check.

Otherwise, buying the standard cabin size will save you from headaches.

The maximum dimensions for a carry-on bag, and this is pretty much a worldwide stat, are 9 inches x14 inches x 22 inches (translated in centimeters this is exactly 22 cm x 35 cm x 56 cm), of course including the handles and wheels.

But once again, measurements are not exactly the determining factor here. In an age of infinite choice, you can easily find suitcases that fulfill the size criteria.

What you also need is low weight, and of course the ease of maneuvering.

The Cabin Size Suitcase

Out of all the variations that you can find, the cabin size suitcase is probably your best bet. Especially if you are travelling alone every now and then, the cabin size suitcase allows for ease of packing, ease of maneuvering, and much better organization of your stuff.

It’s not a coincidence that we see tons of vloggers on YouTube, who travel so often, like for example Casey Neistat, who always use a cabin size suitcase. These make traveling between terminals and boarding to be super easy.

Invest in something with a good set of wheels, and a solid reliable handle. You’ll be dragging this suitcase with you quite a lot, so it makes sense to buy one that stands the test of time. Pay attention on weight too. It can be the difference between a tiresome trip and one that goes extra smooth.

Luggage Sets

Luggage sets are probably the ultimate investment when it comes to luggage and travel. However, buying a luggage set doesn’t have to mean that you have a large family, or particularly enjoy emptying your wardrobe before taking a trip. No- buying a luggage set means that you actually understand the nuances of travel. That no two trips are alike, and that some of them require a different approach to packing, or moving around terminals and crowded airports.

And luggage sets can vary both in quality and size, as well as number of items per set and millions of other things in between.

2 Piece Luggage Sets

These are the bare minimum, and most functional pair of suitcases that you will need- the medium-to-large suitcase, accompanied by a matching carry-on suitcase – both of which essential for covering a variety of trips.

Now some companies will offer 2 piece luggage sets that also pair the separate suitcases by firmly attaching them to one another. This is the perfect combo if you want to have a carry-on suitcase, but also need to bring more clothes for a prolonged stay.

3 piece luggage sets usually offer the same from the 2 piece set, while adding a smaller, in-between suitcase, which in turn becomes the medium size one, while the largest is comfortably extended.

Lightweight Suitcase Set

Suitcase sets, though more convenient for maneuvering around, can still change the pleasantness of a trip according to their variations in weight. It’s important to stress the difficulty of moving around a 3 piece luggage set, when all separate items weight above 6 kilograms each on average.

Combine the extra weight with a poor wheel mechanism, or handles and attach mechanisms, and you have a traveling nightmare.

Therefore, it is rather important to choose a lightweight suitcase set, and move your luggage with ease.

Pay attention to wheels, how fast and smooth is their turnaround time, and of course handles. Aim for sturdy and strong handles that are going to endure the weight over a decade of traveling arrangements.

Hard Suitcase Set

4 piece luggage sets are usually bought when you travel frequently, and have a lot of wardrobe to move around. This is true for couples going on a week plus holiday, and moreover for families of 3 and 4.

The ultimate luggage set however – the Lamborghini of suitcases – is the hard suitcase set. Hard shell suitcases, despite offering extra protection, are usually lighter, and given the price, offer other improved features as well.

You can expect hard suitcase sets to have more reliable wheels, better wheel mechanism, more responsive and stronger handles that open up smoothly and lock well. Also don’t expect to have problems with the zip, like you’d inevitably face with other sets.

But you don’t have to spend so much money if you don’t travel that often, or fail to see the importance and beauty of stylish and premium quality sets.

There are other luggage sets that don’t offer the hard shell, but still match the quality you’d expect from a premium suitcase set.

Travel Accessories

Travel accessories can definitely define the quality of your trip. From small headaches, to big frustrations, travel accessories can be an easy duck-tape solution that makes your journey more pleasant and fun as an experience.

These can include dozens of items that you’d never think of, but honestly, even a dozen or so can suffice.

For starters, you have to consider your traveling preferences. Do you travel alone? What is the purpose of the trip? How much luggage are you bringing along? Do you travel by train, buss, airplane, and if so how many terminals you’d have to switch?

Answering these questions helps you hone in to the most necessary of travel accessories, and determine what to bring along and what to leave behind.

The essential travel accessories

You’d want to bring along a sleeping pillow, especially if you have problem with neck pain or otherwise have a long trip to endure.

Then – and many people fail to think of this – you’ll need a duct tape. Traveling can be tiresome as it is, yet alone if things go south. A backpack can easily tear apart; a handle from your suitcase can become loose etc. You’d want to be able to fix this, and fix it fast.

A tablet is the preferred option between a smartphone and a laptop, and can really help you get things done if you need to finish something fast and with accuracy.

Noise-cancelling headphones can make the difference between a tiresome trip and one when you actually arrive rested. If you can find a good deal on traveling headphones, don’t hesitate to buy. The experience of a trip without notice, and good music whenever you choose is not something you’d want to underestimate.

Living in a digital world, you’d never want to rely on airport electrical sockets alone. Therefore, one of the most important items and travel accessories to carry around is a portable USB charger. This can power your smartphone for days, and even help you with your tablet. Additionally – and this is a true story – you’ll meet new people easily, and start lots of conversations only because most travel newbies forget about the need to charge their phones.

A well-organized backpack is welcomed for storing your travel accessories, but not crucial if you ask me. Make sure, however, to have your much needed accessories within hand’s reach.

Always protect your skin

Sunglasses are probably one of the most important travel accessories. You’ll be surprised how tiresome it is to strain your eyes on a sunny day versus wearing a pair of quality sunglasses.

In addition, a sun cream is a must if you plan to travel to a warmer climate. Oh, and always bring along a mosquito repelled. It makes the difference between focusing on the trip and focusing on your rash.

When traveling with an airplane, over long distance flights, you’d want to bring along a sleeping mask too. Depending on your fly schedule, as well as time zones, you can easily find yourself stuck in a 20+ hour’s day. And by day, I mean sunny and bright throughout the duration of your flight. A sleeping mask, then, will make the difference, helping you preserve the settings on your biological clock.

From the blog