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Best Carry-On: Travelers Club Luggage 20" Hardside at Amazon
"A quality carry-on that won’t break the bank."
Best Hardshell: Samsonite Winfield 2 Hardside Luggage at Amazon
"Features 100-percent polycarbonate construction."
Best Softshell: American Tourister Aerospin 21” Carry-On at Amazon
"Highly recommended, thanks to a variety of reliable, no-nonsense features."
Best Backpack: Patagonia Lightweight Travel Tote Pack at Patagonia
"Offers near-limitless mobility and high-grade versatility."
"Can withstand inclement weather and rough baggage handling at the airport."
Best Duffel: The North Face Base Camp Duffel at Backcountry
"Particularly great if you’re a minimalist packer."
Most Spacious: Gothamite 42-inch Rolling Duffel Bag at Amazon
"Provides plenty of space for all your travel needs."
"Its elite-chic style is what makes it a true standout."
Our Top Picks
Best Carry-On: Travelers Club Luggage Chicago 20" Hardside Carry-On
Looking for a quality carry-on that won’t break the bank? Opt for this 20-inch hardside bag from Travelers Club Luggage. The sleek suitcase is textured with a shiny, embossed finish for maximum scratch-resistance, so you can lug it around the airport without having to worry about scuffs and stains. Though it looks small and compact from the outside — its dimensions are 13.4 x 8.6 x 20 inches, and it weighs just 8.8 pounds — the Travelers Club Carry-On fully expands for extra packing capacity. In fact, pack smart and you’ll likely be able to fit an entire week’s worth of clothes in the bag’s fully-lined interior pocket. Double spinner wheels, a push-button recessed locking handle system, and a comfy top and side handle allow for easy mobility and free-weight rolling. The bag is available in seven modern colors, including fuschia, purple, cobalt blue, and rose gold.
Best Hardshell: Samsonite Winfield 2 Hardside Luggage
If you’re on the hunt for a heavy-duty hardshell that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, the Samsonite Winfield 2 is both extremely stylish and practical, with durable details and a lightweight-yet-sturdy frame. The top-rated Samsonite suitcase features 100-percent polycarbonate construction and a brushed pattern custom design on the front and back, which effectively prevents the bag’s exterior from getting scratched or scuffed up during your travels. This spinner also has ample storage space, with a roomy, divided, fully-lined interior with 10 pockets, plus additional security in the form of a side-mounted TSA lock. Need a little more space for that extra pair of shoes you want to bring? The Samsonite Winfield 2 can expand 1.5 inches (it’s already 31 x 20 x 12.75 inches), so you can fit everything you need. The bag also has four multi-directional spinner wheels that allow for effortless mobility, which is always a plus when you’re dashing around a crowded airport terminal.
Best Softshell: American Tourister Aerospin 21” Spinner Carry-On Suitcase
Rather bring a softshell suitcase on your plane journey? The American Tourister Aerospin 21” Spinner comes highly recommended, thanks to a variety of reliable, no-nonsense features. The basic carry-on boasts fantastic mobility due to its lightweight size, spherical spinner wheels, padded top, and ergonomic side carry handles. It’s ideal for a quick weekend trip—the interior has mesh pockets and a wet pack to allow for different packing options, as well as multiple cross straps to keep all your belongings safe and secure. The exterior is crafted from a blended polyester fabric that comes in a variety of eye-popping colors, and the bag’s dimensions are 21 inches x 15 inches x 8 inches. It also comes with a 10-year warranty, so you don’t have to stress about buying a brand-new bag if something goes wrong.
Best Backpack: Patagonia Lightweight Travel Tote Pack
Are you the type of traveler who would prefer to have an easy-to-carry backpack instead of a clunky suitcase? Patagonia is one of the most trusted brands in the travel apparel industry, so it’s no wonder that their Lightweight Travel Tote Pack is such a popular item. This stylish, lightweight tote offers near-limitless mobility and high-grade versatility — it can be carried by hand, over the shoulder, or as a backpack, and you can easily stash it underneath your seat once on the plane. Crafted from tear- and weather-resistant nylon, this Patagonia backpack also boasts plenty of storage options, from a sizeable main compartment to a large zippered stash pocket (ideal for your travel documents) and stretch-mesh water bottle pockets. Plus, the bag’s lightweight frame and adjustable, breathable mesh straps make it easy to tote around. The bag measures 16.5 x 10 x 6 inches and is available in an array of neutral solids and color-blocked combinations.
Best Set: Sierra Mint 3-Piece Expandable Hardside Spinner Luggage
Durable to the hilt, this Sierra Mint 3-Piece set — built from a textured ABX material that’s made to last — can withstand inclement weather, rough baggage handling at the airport, and other suboptimal travel occurrences. Featuring a double set of spinner wheels, a retractable multi-stage handle with push-button locking adjustments, and two soft-gel top and side carry handles, this highly-touted Sierra suitcase moves effortlessly and is ultra-simple to maneuver. At 30 x 20.3 x 13 inches, it’s an ideal size, and it has plenty of storage for all your clothing and other belongings. There’s a fully-lined interior with a divider and large zippered mesh pocket, in addition to compression straps and a zipper divider to keep the contents organized; plus, the expandable zipper adds up to 20 percent extra packing space. For your peace of mind, the bag comes with an integrated TSA combo lock, as well.
Best Duffel: The North Face Base Camp Duffel
For the rugged, adventurous traveler, the North Face Base Camp Duffel is more portable and versatile than your typical carry-on, and it’s particularly great if you’re a minimalist packer. The bag offers 95 liters of volume and measures 15.75 x 27.5 inches, so it’s spacious enough to fit all your belongings for a weekend getaway. Plus, there are several organizational options, including the main compartment with a zippered mesh pocket, an end-cap mesh sleeve pocket, and a water-resistant ID pocket on top. Expect a seriously comfy fit: This duffel has detachable, fully adjustable, alpine-cut shoulder straps and padded side handles which mean that toting this bag through the airport is a total breeze. The North Face Base Camp Duffel comes in a variety of attractive color combos, from crystal teal/urban navy to beech green/burnt olive green, making it a fashionable and functional choice.
Most Spacious: Gothamite 42-inch Rolling Duffel Bag with Wheels
Prepping for a weeks-long trip or just want to bring home a whole lot of souvenirs? The Gothamite 42-inch Rolling Duffel Bag is spacious without being cumbersome. The large-capacity bag, which measures 42 x 18 x 18 inches, provides plenty of space for all your travel needs; plus, it’s weatherproof and made of highly durable 1200D polyester that prevents rips and tears. Use it for virtually anything and tote it anywhere —the bag’s telescopic pull-out handle and three inline skate wheels promise easy maneuverability. Best of all, this Gothamite duffel may be large in size, but you can easily collapse it down to the level of its base if you need to stow it under your seat or in your closet. Just in case anything goes wrong, the brand does offer a handy one-year warranty.
Best Luxury: Kenneth Cole Reaction Out of Bounds Hardside 20” Carry-On
Travelers who crave a luxe look and feel would do well to invest in the Kenneth Cole Reaction Out of Bounds Hardside 20” Carry-On. Featuring multi-directional four-wheel spinners, self-repairing coil zippers, and a fully retractable handle system, this luggage is certainly functional, although its elite-chic style is what makes it a true standout. From the bag’s lightweight material to its expandable storage to its glossy, pretty exterior (durable ABS hardshell), there’s seemingly no end to this bag’s luxe features. Molded corner guard reinforcements aid in maximum impact resistance, while the fully-lined interior has a sizeable accessory pocket and garment-restraint straps to hold all your belongings in place. The Out of Bounds Hardside Carry-On measures 14.5 x 8.5 x 21.8 inches and comes in several attractive colors that include kelly green, navy, rose gold, and others.