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Best Overall: Away Carry-On at Away "All four wheels rotate a full 360 degrees."
Best Budget: Herschel Supply Co. Carry-On at Amazon "Both stylish and functional, it’s available at a very reasonable price point."
Best Duffel: Filson Medium Rugged Twill Duffle Bag at Amazon "Made of weather-resistant, saddle-grade bridle leather and rugged twill."
Best Hardshell: AmazonBasics Hardside Spinner Luggage at Amazon "Made from sturdy polycarbonate, the bag also has a telescoping handle system."
Best Softshell: Travelpro Platinum Elite 22” Expandable Carry-On at Amazon "Features a tie-down system and built-in accessory pockets."
Most Durable: Samsonite Lamont 20” Expandable Carry-On Spinner at Amazon "A durable polyester exterior effectively prevents wear-and-tear."
Most Versatile: Timbuk2 Quest Rolling Duffel at Amazon "It has a well-disguised pole handle system and wheels so you can easily roll it along."
Best Backpack: Patagonia Refugio Backpack 28L at Backcountry "In addition to being well-fit, the bag boasts plenty of storage."
Best Luxury: Briggs & Riley Baseline Domestic Carry-On at Amazon "Both lightweight and flexible, while still remaining highly durable."
Our Top Picks
Best Overall: Away Carry-On
Sleek, superbly designed, and remarkably lightweight, the Away Carry-On has been featured in several major magazine articles and on countless Instagram feeds for a reason. The spinner is easily one of the best carry-on suitcases available—both in terms of looks and features. Crafted from a hardy polycarbonate shell, the bag is built to withstand all your travel adventures, no matter how rugged things get. It’s also a millennial fave, in particular, for its cutting-edge tech capabilities, like a built-in battery and TSA-approved combination lock. All four wheels rotate a full 360 degrees, so you won’t have any trouble toting it around the airport. Plus, keeping your belongings organized has never been easier; there are two interior compartments (one for clothes and one with an open cavity, for shoes, hats, or larger items) and even a hidden laundry bag. The Away Carry-On is the ideal size, measuring 21.7 x 13.7 x 9 inches and weighing 7.6 pounds. It's also available in 10+ shades, including white, black, sky blue, dark green, and asphalt.
Best Budget: Herschel Supply Co. Carry-On
Proving that budget-friendly doesn’t have to mean ugly or ineffective, the Herschel Supply Co. Carry-On is both stylish and functional, and, best of all, it’s available at a very reasonable price point. Featuring a molded ABS hard shell exterior, a retractable three-stage trolley, comfy neoprene-padded handles at the side and top, and multi-directional muted wheels, this bag is a breeze to maneuver through chaotic airports. The bag’s split design has zippered mesh compartments and adjustable garment straps lined in Herschel’s signature striped, black-and-white fabric. For additional security, there’s a TSA-approved combination zipper lock. The Herschel Supply Co. Carry-On measures 21 x 14 x 9 inches and is available in several vibrant colors that include vermillion orange, ash rose, woodland camo, and olive night.
Best Duffel: Filson Medium Rugged Twill Duffle Bag
Filson’s Medium Rugged Twill Duffle is truly the definition of rugged-chic. The classic bag is made of weather-resistant, saddle-grade bridle leather and rugged twill. Additional touches include a fully rust-proof brass zipper and iconic Filson body tabs to boot. No expense was spared in the creation of this duffle: There’s an adjustable, removable strap with a shoulder pad for extra comfort and ease, the interior pockets are made of dry-finish tin cloth, and there’s even a storm-flap closure for added protection from the elements. The twill duffle is available in four eye-catching colors: cinder, navy, tan, and otter green). The bag measures 20 x 12 x 13 inches and weighs just under four pounds, which makes it ideal for tossing into overhead bins and carrying along on weekend excursions and overnight trips.
Best Hardshell: AmazonBasics Hardside Spinner Luggage
When it comes to hardshell luggage, the AmazonBasics Hardside Spinner is one of the best of its kind. Made from sturdy polycarbonate, the bag also has a telescoping handle system, a securely mounted short handle, and four double-spinner wheels, all of which means you’ll be able to effortlessly roll it through any airport. The top-rated piece of luggage features roomy inner compartments, with an interior divider panel (made of 150D polyester for extra strength) and three zippered pockets for securely storing smaller items. Plus, if you run out of space while packing, it's also expandable, offering 15 percent additional packing capacity. The exterior of this 20-inch hardside spinner boasts a lightweight-yet-strong hardshell with a shiny, modern brushed finish that’s stain- and weather-resistant. The dimensions of the AmazonBasics Hardside Spinner Luggage are 20.3 x 12 x 30.6 inches.
Best Softshell: Travelpro Platinum Elite 22” Expandable Carry-On
Soft-sided luggage tends to be more versatile and durable in the long run, so if you’re on the lookout for a classic piece, the Travelpro Platinum Elite 22-Inch is a great pick. The basic carry-on boasts fantastic mobility thanks to its high-performance ball-bearing wheels and patented PowerScope airline-grade aluminum handle that can accommodate users of different heights. The interior has a deluxe tie-down system, built-in accessory pockets, a removable quart-sized pocket, and a built-in fold-out suiter that effectively keeps clothing wrinkle-free. Basically, it's ideal for weekend trips. The exterior is crafted from ballistic nylon that comes in a variety of colors — including vintage grey, bordeaux, shadow black, and rich espresso. The bag’s dimensions are 9 x 14 x 21 inches.
Most Durable: Samsonite Lamont 20” Expandable Carry-On Spinner
Frequent jetsetters will love the Samsonite Lamont 20” Expandable Carry-On; rubberized, texturized corner protectors and a durable polyester exterior effectively prevent wear-and-tear and help this bag last for a lifetime. Mobility is easy since the Lamont Spinner has four multi-directional spinner wheels as well as padded top and side carry handles that offer true comfort and ease of motion. The bag’s self-mending coil zippers provide security and closure, and the interior has enough space to appease even the worst over-packers. There’s a removable zippered pouch, a wetpack to hold accessories and smaller items, and multiple mesh pockets, plus a full-size front pocket to hold books, magazines, and other items you need to stash away quickly. The bag measures 9.6 x 23.6 x 14.6 inches. When it comes to durable, reliable luggage, Samsonite is one of the most trusted brands available — and the Lamont Spinner suitcase proves this.
Most Versatile: Timbuk2 Quest Rolling Duffel
The Timbuk2 Quest Rolling Duffel is sturdy, streamlined, and ultra-functional with an array of practical features. Whether you’re prepping for a lengthy, cross-country flight or a just a quick weekend trip, this high-quality duffel is an excellent carry-on pick. It has a well-disguised pole handle system and wheels so you can easily roll it along if you don’t feel like carrying it, and the interior is roomy, with a mesh wall pocket and a large floating pocket for bigger items. There are several external pockets that are perfect for holding smaller travel accessories as well. The Timbuk2 duffel is made of water-resistant 42D ripstop nylon, so it’s easy to care for and clean as needed, while the reinforced bottom helps to extend durability. The Timbuk2 Quest Rolling Duffel measures 26.6 x 13.8 x 11.8 inches, and, for your peace of mind, it comes with a lifetime warranty.
Best Backpack: Patagonia Refugio Backpack 28L
The sleek Patagonia Refugio is custom-designed for an ultra-comfy fit, with its soft, lightweight shoulder straps crafted from breathable mesh that taper to the male form. In addition to being well-fit, the bag boasts plenty of storage. There’s a spacious main compartment with a padded laptop sleeve big enough to fit most 15-inch models, a front organization compartment that’s great for managing cords and small items, a front stash pocket, and stretchy side pockets that fit water bottles of all shapes and sizes. The Refugio is made from 630-denier nylon, sturdy polyurethane, and recycled polyester lining, and finished with a durable water repellent coating that keeps it from getting stained or dirty on the road. It comes in several attractive colors and its dimensions are 19 x 12 x 8 inches. Patagonia is a trusted name in the world of superior travel accessories, and the Refugio 28L Pack is certainly no exception.
Best Luxury: Briggs & Riley Baseline Domestic Carry-On
As far as cutting-edge expansion technology and sleek add-ons go, the Briggs & Riley Baseline Domestic Carry-On is one of the most luxe pieces of luggage money can buy. With its hybrid fiberglass frame and ballistic nylon exterior, this carry-on is both lightweight and flexible, while still remaining highly durable. You can expand the bag while packing (so feel free to cram in that extra pair of shoes) and then compress everything down again to allow for easy overhead storage. In addition, the interior is lined with mesh garment panels so you don’t have to worry about your clothes shifting or getting wrinkled. The bag uses an outsider handling system, which means no uneven ridges at the bottom of the bag — everything packs in neatly and efficiently. It comes in three classic shades (black, olive, and navy) and its dimensions are a roomy 19.5 x 14 x 8 inches. If you have the dough to spend, you won't find better than this bag.