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Travel can certainly be chaotic, but with the right type of luggage, it doesn’t have to be. Best of all, investing in a decent, durable piece doesn’t have to break the bank, either. There are plenty of trusted brands that make great suitcases — from lightweight carry-ons to heavy-duty, hardside checked bags —all for less than $50. Read below for the best budget luggage picks.
Our Top Picks
Best Carry-On: Rockland Luggage Melbourne Carry-On Luggage
Durable and lightweight, Rockland Luggage's Melbourne Carry-On is the ideal bag for your next trip. It’s crafted from high-quality ABS material, and thus will readily hold up to wear and tear — a crucial test for any suitcase. The carry-on also boasts a sturdy ergonomic handle and four multi-directional spinner wheels (they rotate a full 360 degrees) so you’re able to easily maneuver it through tight spaces in crowded airports and tiny aisles on airplanes. A spacious interior compartment features tie-down straps for keeping your clothes neat, plus multiple mesh elasticized pockets for keeping toiletries and other belongings separate. The Rockland Melbourne measures 20 x 13 x 9 inches, and weighs just 7.5 pounds; it also comes in over 20 colors, so you’re bound to find one that best fits your aesthetic.
Best Hardshell: AmazonBasics Hardside Spinner Luggage
Looking for a sturdy, heavy-duty piece of luggage at a super reasonable price? AmazonBasics' Hardside Spinner features spacious inner compartments, with an interior divider panel (made of 150D polyester for extra strength), and three zippered pockets for securely storing smaller items. It's also expandable, allowing up to 15 percent additional packing capacity. The exterior of the 28-inch spinner boasts a lightweight-yet-strong hardshell with a shiny brushed finish that’s scuff- and weather-resistant. Made from hardy polycarbonate, the suitcase 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 tote it around any airport terminal.
Most Durable: Samsonite Omni PC Hardside Spinner
If you want to invest in a highly durable suitcase that’s half the cost of other bags of its caliber, go for the Samsonite Omni PC Hardside Spinner. Thanks to its sturdy polycarbonate construction and scratch-resistant micro-diamond texture, you never have to worry about it getting ripped or torn. Considering the bag’s re-engineered lightweight wheels and sleek 30.5 x 21.5 x 13.5-inch build, mobility is easy with the Samsonite Omni. You’ll have plenty of packing room, too: There’s a full-zip interior, divider, and cross-straps, plus a TSA-approved lock for extra security. The Samsonite Omni PC Hardside Spinner comes in stunning shades that include radiant pink, Caribbean blue, bronze, and burnt orange, so it’s both a functional and stylish luggage choice.
Most Versatile: Travelers Club 32-Inch Compactable Rolling Duffel
Versatility is the name of the game with the Travelers Club 32-Inch Compactable Rolling Duffel. Since you can use it as a small duffel backpack or as a wheeled carry-on bag, it’s just as well-suited for urban travel as it is for wheeling through an airport. It features in-line blade wheels, a side-webbing handle, and a detachable, adjustable shoulder strap, all of which allows for swift, easy maneuverability. The bag’s main compartment is spacious and it can also fold into itself so you can stow it in your closet when not in use. The Travelers Club Duffel is crafted from durable, 1200-denier polyester (so you can rest assured it’ll last) and the bag comes with a two-year manufacturer's warranty.
Best Duffel: Samsonite Luggage Andante Wheeled Duffel
Light and durable, the Samsonite Luggage Andante Wheeled Duffel features a compact, versatile design that’s perfect for long-haul travels. The duffel has a lightweight frame, rolling wheels, ultra-comfy carry handles, and a locking upright handle, all of which render mobility simple and effortless. The SoftSpin wheel system even has specialized shock suspension technology, so the bag glides easily on most surfaces. Thanks to its multiple organization pockets and large U-shaped opening, packing is a cinch and you’ll have easy access to all your belongings. The Samsonite Andante Wheeled Duffel comes in three colors — black/grey, black, and grey/lime — and weighs just 6.4 pounds. It measures 22 x 12 x 12.5 inches.
Best Backpack: Eagle Creek Packable Daypack
Convenience and security are what you get with Eagle Creek's Packable Daypack. The functional and stylish bag keeps your belongings safe and sound with the aid of two-way lockable zippers and two central lock points. You can’t beat this bag’s convenience, either: It has pack-in pockets that allow the bag to fold in on itself, so you can stash it virtually anywhere when not in use. Its breathable mesh shoulder straps are extremely comfortable and allow for all-day wear — they promote optimal airflow, so you don’t have to worry about staining your shirt with sweat marks, either. The Eagle Creek Packable Daypack comes in three eye-catching shades that include blue sea, black, and tan, and the bag’s dimensions are a roomy 11 x 17.5 x 4.75 inches.
Best Tote: L.L. Bean Boat and Tote
The L.L. Bean Boat and Tote is a classic bag that’s big enough to hold a weekend's worth of clothes, yet still small enough to use as a carry-on. Handcrafted in Maine and built to last, the beloved bag boasts a slim, compact design that’s deceivingly hardy. The handles are tested to hold up to 500 pounds, so you can pack virtually anything you may need. Built from 24-ounce cotton canvas, the bag also has a reinforced flat canvas bottom which helps it withstand any rough handling at the airport or other potential wear-and-tear during your travels. The zip-top tote comes in four different sizes and color combos to best fit your preferences; you can also order it with a custom monogram.