What I consider to be the best carry on luggage changes depending upon my family’s needs. As my kids grow, our luggage needs are changing so I have began updating some of our cabin baggage. As with most purchases I make, I have been checking out a few carry on luggage reviews to see what everyone is currently recommending for the top carry on luggage.
If you are also on the lookout for the best carry on luggage bag, then you have come to the right place! Based on my own research I have put together this guide which contains information on all the best buy travel suitcase brands to help you choose the best cabin luggage that meets your family’s current needs.
Whether you are after the best luggage for international travel, good cheap carry on luggage or even the best lightweight carry on luggage, in the best luggage reviews below, I will provide you everything you need to know to make the right choice for you.
What makes the best travel bags for you will depend on a few things.
Firstly, is the carry on bag going to be your only piece of luggage? Does it need to carry all your items or is it simply to supplement your checked in luggage? If it is your only bag you may want the largest possible bag which still meets the airline’s carry on requirements.
Is the bag intended to carry items for multiple people onboard, like your children, or simply for your own personal items? If the bag is intended to store items for various people you may like separate compartments, so items are easily accessible. If the bag is just for yourself a smaller bag may do the trick.
It is always important to check the airline’s carry on requirements as many have become stricter and it does differ from airline to airline. Unfortunately, there is no standard carry on size.
With many customers saving money by making the most out of carry on only luggage deals, airlines are becoming increasingly strict with the size of cabin baggage. For this reason, it is really important to check the size of the luggage you are purchasing. You don’t want to be made to check in your bag because it is a few centimeters over their requirements.
Most airlines in Australia have carry on baggage restrictions anywhere from 48cm to 56cm.
Also consider what you are likely to carry in your bag. If your cabin bag is supplementing checked baggage don’t go and buy the biggest bag that meets the airline’s restrictions. Ideally, you want a bag that is just the right size for what you intend to carry in it.
With so many people looking for the best buy luggage brands online chances are you won’t physically see your bag before you purchase it. When purchasing online, it is important to do your homework before making your purchase so you are not disappointed when your bag is delivered.
With airlines being strict on the weight of carry on baggage, it is super important to choose luggage which is lightweight. Some bags can be heavy, eating into your precious baggage allowance. If your bag is over the limit you may be asked to check your luggage in which can add an unexpected expense.
In the below reviews, I have included the best lightweight luggage brands for international travel and the table above includes the weight of all luggage reviewed below.
When wheeling a bag around a busy airport you want luggage that is easy to manoeuvre. Believe me, if you are going to buy carry on luggage it is worth investing a little extra for this, particularly if you are travelling with children. Luggage that doesn’t easily go where you want it to will leave you frustrated and stressed before you even board your plane.
Once upon a time the standard carry on suitcases just came with two wheels, now only cheap luggage bags have two wheels, with the standard for quality cabin luggage being four wheels.
A two wheel suitcase, also known as rollers, require you to tilt it to wheel it and it doesn’t easily go around corners or through narrow spaces. They also have a tendency to fall over when left unaided and are impossible to pull more than one.
However there still are some advantages of using a two wheeled suitcase over a four or more wheeled one. Two wheel suitcases are usually easier to pull behind you and quite often once you leave the airport you will tend to want to pull your case rather than push it. Two wheel cases tend to be able to handle cobblestones and uneven surfaces much better than other cases.
Four-wheel suitcases, also known as spinners, are now becoming the standard and are far easier to manoeuvre around busy airports. Having four wheels means the suitcase can easily move in any direction, including going around corners with ease.
A light push on the handle is all that is usually required to move the suitcase around the airport. This is super practical particularly when travelling with small children as you are not required to hold any of the weight. Four wheeled suitcases are also far easier wheeling through a narrow plan aisle than two wheeled suitcases.
Some suitcases even come with eight wheels, these are referred to as double spinners.
4. Other Features
It’s important that your carry on luggage has an easy to use handle. Some handles can be difficult to use in that they don’t retract quickly and easily which is not ideal when you are walking through a busy airport or trying to load your bag quickly onto an airplane.
Also if you are a particularly tall person, you want to ensure the handle extends long enough for you.
Internal and External Pockets
Some of the best luggage comes with various compartments and pockets for your smaller belongings. A common feature these days is a dedicated compartment for your laptop which is designed to keep your laptop safe and secure as well as easily accessible whilst travelling.
If you are purchasing laptop carry on luggage, be sure that the laptop compartment is not hidden right at the back of the suitcase as this will make it difficult to remove whilst going through security checkpoints at airports.
Hard Shell vs Soft Shell Carry Ons
Soft shell bags are more common and are much easier to squeeze into overhead compartments than the hard shell bags. Soft shells can also often come with expandable pockets, as can hard shell bags.
However the best hard case luggage will provide better protection for your belongings. The disadvantage with a hard shell suitcase is that it is likely to weigh more than a soft shell case. If you prefer a hard shell suitcase be sure to look for a lightweight one, as you don’t want to use too many of those precious kilograms for your suitcase in lieu of your items.
Of course another great advantage for hard shell suitcases is having your own portable seat when waiting in unexpected lines or anywhere that doesn’t have seats – perfect for families travelling with young children.
Suitcases with expandable compartments are great. Expandable compartments provide you with a place to store your various purchases during your travels. No need to buy an additional bag – you simply unzip the expandable compartment for more space.
Another trick we use when travelling is ensuring everyone’s bag, including the children’s, are evenly weighted for air travel in order to meet the airlines weight restrictions. Once we arrive at our destination we expand the adult bags and remove some of the heavier items from the children’s bags, so the kids are able to carry their own packs with ease.
A water-resistant bag gives you extra protection when travelling in wet weather. While water resistant bags aren’t designed to be waterproof, they do give you that extra bit of time to seek shelter or pull out a rain cover without having your personal belongings get wet.
The Samsonite B-Lite is a soft case perfect for travellers wanting all the features but at a low price.
Made from the same 100% polyester and nylon material, the Samsonite offers quality at a budget price. This is perfect for travellers looking for the best discount travel luggage but still wanting quality.
Inside the bag is a fully lined interior with cross straps designed to protect your belonging from moving about as well as zippered pockets to help keep your smaller belongings organised.
Other great features of this bag include the TSA approved combination lock for peace of mind and the 4 multi directional wheels for getting around with ease.
According to various Samsonite carry on luggage reviews, this is a great bag and would suit a range of travellers such as those looking for the best carry on luggage for business travel as well as family travel.
The Delsey Paris Grenelle is a fantastic hard case bag which is TSA approved.
This is a great sized bag and is lightweight and durable. Made from 100% polycarbonate which is super resilient to cracking. For security conscious travellers, there is a side mounted TSA lock which is designed for airport personal to open your bag without damaging it.
You will love how easily this carry on is to manoeuvre around the airport. The double spinner wheels, as well as the two-position handle system, make getting around a breeze. This is a perfect choice as the best carry on luggage for women and men travelling with children or for regular business travellers wanting to get around the airport quickly.
Other great features include the expandable pocket perfect for storing those souvenirs you purchase whilst travelling as well as the two extra-large fully lined pockets inside the case perfect for organising all your belongings. There are two side handles perfect for carrying the case when required such as lifting it into overhead bins or in and out of the car.
This is a great mid-range bag which also comes with a ten year warranty for peace of mind.
The Samsonite Guardit Rolling Tote is one of the lightest bags in these reviews and is perfect for travellers looking a weekend travel bag or a carry on to supplement their checked baggage.
This bag has various compartments to store all your belongings. Compartments include a laptop/tablet pocket and severa, organiser pouches.
Being one of the smaller cabin bags in this review and as the name of the product suggests, you can easily store this bag under the seat in front of you, which is perfect if you want to access your belongings during a flight. Great for families with young children who find themselves needing things throughout a flight.
This bag is made from durable polyester blend, with other great features including in-line skate wheels designed for smooth rolling and straps for organisation.
This Samsonite bag is a great choice for best carry on luggage for men and women travelling with children or those going away for the weekend.
For those travellers wanting a super light, high quality suitcase, the American Tourister Curio is a fantastic choice.
This case is made from high quality polypropylene material providing extra protection for your belongings. The case also comes in some funky colours to ensure it standouts if you do choose to check it in.
The special base structure, combined with the 4 multi-directional spinner wheels, gives you excellent control of your carry on case while moving through airports and making it easy to get to your departure gate on time.
Other features include a push button retractable telescopic handle, side carry handles, interior tie down straps, zippered mesh pocket and a TSA approved lock. The case is super light so you will have heaps of room your for belongings while remaining within baggage weight restrictions.
If you check out any of the American Tourister reviews, it is clear this bag is well suited to people wanting a high-quality case that is super easy to manoeuvre.
The Victorinox Avolve is a fantastic super lightweight case for someone on the search for a high quality case built to last.
With an extremely scratch resistant texture on the exterior of the case, it is sure to withstand all the usual wear and tear inflicted by harsh airport elements. Not only is this case super durable, it also looks elegant and stylish.
This bag is also great for keeping your things organised with a full zip interior, divider and cross-straps to ensure everything stays where it is supposed to. Your belongings will fit comfortably in the case while you are still able to separate items for extra protection or to make them easily accessible during flights.
Other features include a retractable handle, a laptop pocket and a side mounted TSA lock for extra security while travelling. All this as well as the 360 spinner wheels makes this a great and easy option for carry on luggage.
This carry on bag would suit people wanting to look professional and stylish while keeping all their belongings organized and well protected.
The Antler Juno is the perfect bag for frequent travellers, made of strong material and space maximising features.
The bag features an internal compression system to ensure you get the absolute maximum space out of your carry on luggage. A separate expandable zip also means you won’t ever need to leave anything behind.
Made from a durable material and super strong luggage zips, you will feel relieved to know that your belongings are as protected as they can be.
This bag is perfect for frequent travellers who want high quality budget luggage and peace of mind knowing that their bag and everything inside will last the distance.
The IT Luggage The Lite is the perfect ultra-lightweight carry on bag that boasts many convenient features.
The four wheels, for easy 360 maneuverability, along with the telescopic top handle make getting through airports with your carry on luggage a breeze. You won’t feel weighed down by your belongings at all while this bag glides along beside you as you make your way to the departure gate.
This bag is also a fantastic way to make sure you stay super organised with an interior and exterior zip pocket for your travel documents. A great way to keep all the important information handy, safe and easily accessible.
Other features of this bag include a fully lined interior with tie down straps and a large zip mesh pocket to hold everything in place securely. It also has easy grab top and side handles to make getting it in and out of cars and overhead lockers as smooth as possible.
If you are someone who likes to be super organised while travelling and also wants an affordable and reliable bag to manoeuvre around airports, then this is the bag for you!
The Desley Paris Montmartre Carry-On is a super affordable, lightweight yet tough bag with great features.
With lots of pockets and comparments, included a padded laptop pocket, and internal mesh and wet lid pocket there is room for everything in your carry on luggage. All the compartments will keep everything separated and very well organised making it easy to find and pull things out mid-flight.
The interior lining is both removable and machine washable making it great for mishaps. This bag features four spinner wheels, side handles and an easy to grab bottom handle which will make getting through customs at airports as painless as possible.
Other great features of this bag is the option to expand it to allow for extra luggage, self repairing interlocking zippers, a TSA approved lock and a 5 year warranty.
Perfect for travellers looking for all the must have features in the best carry on bags for a reasonable price tag.
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