Best Luggage

Christen da Costa Avatar
Updated Nov 14, 2023 9:49 PM
best luggage featured image that shows the top three best travel gear models

We found 75% of tech reviews are untrustworthy and decided to make a correction with our new True Score system, but the guide below is pending. Please support our mission by using our affiliate links.

Table of Contents

After conducting extensive research, we nominated the CoolLife Luggage 3 Piece Spinner Set as our Top Pick and the best luggage. We liked that it was a three-piece set that included 20-, 24-, and 28-inch luggage to cover you from carry-on to long-haul travel. This set was made from durable ABS plastic, featured 17 different colors and patterns, and TSA-approved locks.

To determine the best luggage, we focused on the following key features: size, soft-sided versus hard shell (also known as hardside), additional storage, wheels, handles, and accessories. Depending on your needs, you may want a complete set or an individual piece of luggage. But we added carry-ons and checked bags, as well as prioritized picks with 360-degree spinning wheels. We also wanted to highlight options with expanding storage for chronic over-packing travelers. Keep reading to learn more about our criteria and to shop from our recommendations.

Top 10 Best Luggage

#1 CoolLife Luggage 3 Piece Spinner Set


WHY WE LIKE IT: A convenient 3-piece set of spinner luggage that’s available in 17 shades that can be nested for easy storage — making it one of the best luggage sets.

  • Available in 17 bold colors
  • 3-piece set includes a carry-on size
  • Hardsided model made of durable ABS plastic
  • Suitcases aren’t expandable

Picking luggage can feel like a serious struggle but this smart three-piece set from CoolLife makes things easier. With this pick, you get 20, 24, and 28-inches tall luggage, making it perfect for the person who needs a carry-on or even a range of checked bags for long or short trips. We think these are some of the best luggage sets because along with the sturdy ABS plastic hardside that can withstand wear and tear, these suitcases can be nested when not in use to save space.

You’ll like that you can choose from 17 bold hues so that you’re not stuck with generic black which can get confusing at baggage claim. Each piece of luggage comes with 360-degree spinner wheels for easier maneuverability. Plus, each piece has TSA-approved locks and comes with two additional fixed handles on the top and side for easier handling. And, along the fold, you also get durable feet so you can set the luggage on the side. With the interior, you’ll get one side with a zip cover and the other side with straps to hold belongings securely in place. These are the best carry-on luggage for your trips.

#2 AmazonBasics Hardside Spinner Carry On Luggage


WHY WE LIKE IT: The best carry-on luggage that’s a 21-inch scratch-resistant hardside with expandable storage to accommodate those vacation souvenirs.

  • 2 additional fixed handles
  • ABS scratch-resistant exterior
  • Expandable for 15% more space
  • Not sold as part of a luggage set

Sometimes you just need to find a carry-on so you can take that quick trip you just planned. The AmazonBasics Hardside Spinner Luggage is — in our opinion — one of the best carry-on luggage picks. It measures 21.6 inches tall and 14.9 inches wide. So, it complies with most domestic carry-on restrictions. Plus the high quality ABS plastic exterior is scratch-resistant for improved durability.

We also like that this pick features an expandable gusset. When unzipped, the storage space increases by 15 percent. While it’s not sold as part of a luggage set, we do like that you get two roomy compartments. While one side has an interior divider with an additional three zippered pockets, the other side features the traditional straps to keep clothing in place. You’ll also like the telescoping handle along with two fixed side handles, and the 360-degree spinner wheels for better maneuverability.

#3 Travelpro Maxlite 5-Softside Expandable Spinner Carry On Luggage


WHY WE LIKE IT: A featherlight 5.4-pound carry-on with two inches of expandable storage and a stain-resistant and waterproof soft-sided exterior for enhanced protection.

  • Waterproof & stain resistant exterior
  • Universal 21” carry-on height
  • 2” expandable storage exterior compartments
  • Fabric exterior isn’t tear-resistant
  • Isn’t sold as part of a luggage set

If you prefer a soft-sided carry-on, then we recommend this pick from TravelPro. While this isn’t sold as part of a set, it’s a great add-on piece to someone who already has larger luggage or simply needs to replace an existing carry-on that’s out of commission. One of the biggest features of this soft-sided pick is that the fabric is treated with a coating that makes it waterproof and stain-resistant.

Additionally, we liked that there were plenty of exterior pockets for you to quickly store last-minute items. And for the person who needs a bit more space, this bag can expand to provide two extra inches of storage. Through our research we also found that this was one of the lightest options, coming in at only 5.4 pounds when empty. As is common, you get interior pockets, a zipped interior lid flap, a telescopic adjustable handle, two fixed handles, and 360-degree spinner wheels.

#4 American Tourister Moonlight Hardside Expandable Carry On Luggage


WHY WE LIKE IT: A bag that’s ready to go wherever you need it from one of the best luggage brands, with a lightweight design, expanding storage and a height that is compatible with most airline guidelines.

  • Available in 13 hues and patterns
  • Measures 21” tall
  • 1.5” expandable storage
  • Telescopic handle design impacts storage capacity
  • Not sold as part of a set

It doesn’t always make sense to use a large checked luggage size for last-minute quick trips. Whether you’re driving or taking a quick weekend flight this American Tourister Moonlight Hardside Expandable Luggage is a great option because it fits in overhead storage bins, in your trunk, or even on the back or front seat of your car. And if you’re concerned about durability, you’ll love that this luggage from American Tourister comes with a 10-year warranty, which is why we think it’s one of the best luggage brands.

This hardside carry-on is available in 13 hues, including six bold prints. It also measures 21 inches tall, making it compliant for even the most stringent airline’s carry-on policies. The suitcase has a book-style opening with a zippered divider with see-through mesh pockets. It also expands for an additional 1.5 inches of storage and has the popular 360-degree spinner wheels.

#5 Samsonite Omni PC Hardside Expandable Spinner Luggage Set


WHY WE LIKE IT: A leading brand in luggage with TSA-approved locks, a rugged hardside exterior, expanding capacity, and a 10-year warranty makes this the best luggage for international travel.

  • Side-mounted TSA approved 3-dial locks
  • Includes 20” & 24” luggage
  • Storage expands an additional 2”
  • Heavier option when empty

Luggage is an investment. Anyone who’s opted for a cheaper piece of luggage only to have it fall apart after a few uses know the value of investing in quality pieces. We’ve nominated Samsonite luggage as our Best Quality pick because of its durability. We think this is the best luggage for international travel because it’s made from scratch-resistant micro-diamond polycarbonate for a seriously rugged exterior that can stand up to whatever a baggage handler throws its way. We also like that this is a two-piece set that includes a 20-inch carry-on and a 24-inch checked bag.

If you’re concerned about security, you’ll like that this pick also comes with TSA-compliant combination locks. We like that you can also expand each bag for an additional two-inches of space. Other popular standard features for both bags include a zippered interior divider, 360-degree spinner wheels, a telescopic collapsible handle, and two additional fixed handles. These are one of the best bags in terms of durability.

#6 Rockland Melbourne Hardside Expandable 3-Piece Luggage Set


WHY WE LIKE IT: A hard-sided luggage set with two inches of expanding storage, 360-degree spinner wheels, and 36 unique color options, prints, and designs for luggage that you’ll always recognize.

  • Constructed from sturdy ABS plastic
  • 36 color designs
  • 2” of expandable storage
  • Doesn’t come with TSA-approved locks

Even if you’re a minimalist, there’s nothing wrong with choosing expandable storage just to be on the safe side. We like the Rockland Melbourne Hardside Expandable Spinner Wheel Luggage because each bag in this three-piece set can expand for an extra two inches of storage. Another big feature here is that they offer a large selection of color and design choices so that you can pick something you can recognize.

With this pick, you’ll get bags in 20, 24, and 28 inches to cover you from carry-ons to long vacations where you need to bring a lot of clothes. In addition to expanding storage and a wide array of colors, this set of hardsided luggage comes with 360-degree spinner wheels and a telescoping handle with two fixed handles.

#7 AmazonBasics Softside Spinner Luggage


WHY WE LIKE IT: A sturdy oversized soft-sided luggage with three fixed handles that can expand by 25% for more storage with 360-degree spinner wheels to help you zip through the airport after you land.

  • Expands for 25% more space
  • 30.9” for maximum storage
  • 360-degree spinner wheels
  • Lacks moisture protection because of soft-sided exterior

We’re including this single-item large soft-sided luggage pick from AmazonBasics because again, some people already have carry-ons or may be taking an international trip and need to find a larger bag for longer travel. While this isn’t part of a set, we do like that it measures just under 31-inches tall, giving you plenty of space to take everything you could need for a long trip.

Another nice feature of this AmazonBasics option is that it expands to give you 25% more space. Since it’s soft-sided, you also get the benefit of external storage pockets on the lid. And while you get the popular 360-degree spinner wheels and telescopic handle, something we liked is that there are three fixed handles on this bag — one each on the top and bottom, and another on the side. So, no matter how your bag is positioned on the baggage carousel, you should be able to grab it.

#8 Rockland Fashion Softside Upright Luggage Set


WHY WE LIKE IT: A simple and budget-friendly carry-on luggage set with an expanding 21-inch upright and a matching tote bag for quick weekend trips and getaways.

  • Available in dozens of colors and prints
  • Soft-sided expandable carry-on
  • Comes with matching tote bag
  • Carry-on only has 2 wheels

If you’re genuinely on a budget, some of the more popular luggage brands might be beyond your reach. For this reason, we’re including Rockland for our Best on a Budget recommendation. As a set, it’s best when used as a carry-on or for quick road trips because of the size limitations. With this pick, you’ll get a 21-inch upright bag with a matching tote bag.

Additionally, keep in mind that this best carry-on luggage option only has two wheels, and those wheels don’t offer 360-degree movement. But you do get a stability bar, so this bag can stand upright. For some, this may be a dealbreaker. Still, you’ll get the telescoping handle along with two fixed handles, and plenty of interior and exterior pockets to keep your belongings organized.

#9 Kenneth Cole Reaction Out Of Bounds 3-Piece Spinner Luggage Set


WHY WE LIKE IT: A designer-approved luggage set, that comes with 20-, 24-, and 28-inch luggage with 360-degree spinner wheels and a durable ABS plastic exterior.

  • Water-resistant durable casing
  • Includes 20”, 24”, & 28” luggage
  • 360-degree spinner wheels
  • Lacks expanding storage

If you’re all about designers, we recommend giving the Kenneth Cole Reaction Out of Bounds three-piece set a look. While it’s not expandable, we do like that you get a 20-, 24-, and 28-inch piece of luggage. And that means that you’re covered from carry-ons to more long-haul trips where you need more space.

Another nice aspect is that this model is a hardshell pick made from durable ABS plastic and comes in 14 different colors. You’ll also get the standard popular features such as 360-degree spinner wheels, the book-style opening with the zippered divider, and a large U-shaped zipper pocket. Plus there’s also a retractable telescoping handle and fixed side handles on each bag in this set.

#10 Delsey Paris Helium Aero Hardside Expandable Luggage


WHY WE LIKE IT: A large 29-inch tall luggage that comes with a TSA-approved three-dial lock with plenty of storage thanks to the expandable two-inch gusset and a choice from 12 colors.

  • Features TSA-approved 3 dial lock
  • Available in 12 colors
  • 29” high with 360-degree spinner wheels
  • May be too large for international travel depending on airline

While away luggage sets are all the rage, not everyone needs to buy a complete set. With this pick from Delsey, we’re focused on extended travel where you’ll be away from home for a week or more and need plenty of storage space to bring plenty of those “what if” outfits. In that case, this large 29-inch piece of luggage from Delsey Paris is a great option. It comes with a built-in TSA approved three-dial lock, and is available in 12 colors.

We also like that this option features expanding storage, giving you an extra two inches of storage depth when the gusset is unzipped. While we like that you get the telescoping handle along with two fixed handles, one issue we did notice was that depending on the airline, this bag can sometimes be just slightly larger than the maximum allowance for international travel. So, if you’re thinking of selecting this bag, check with your airline first to confirm dimension compatibility before you buy it. But for daily commute, the best messenger bags for men will do just fine.

How We Decided

Luggage is essential if you’re traveling, but everyone’s priorities are different. While some people only want carry-ons or a single checked bag, others may prefer to buy a set so that they have the right piece of luggage for every occasion. To create our luggage buying guide, we prioritized the following features — size, soft-sided versus hard shell (also known as hardside), additional storage, wheels, handles, and accessories.

Sizes can vary widely even when you’re comparing carry-on bags or sets. With carry-ons, it’s best to focus on options that are no larger than 22 inches so that they meet most domestic airline overhead bin restrictions. So, we prioritized selections that included a 20 to 22-inch bag whether it was an individual carry-on or as part of a set. With sets, we tried to focus on options that didn’t exceed 30 inches since anything larger than this could disqualify as a free checked bag for international travel. Only one of our recommendations was slightly larger than 30 inches.

Additional storage is a standard option regardless of whether you pick a hard or soft-sided bag thanks to the internal zippered divider with built-in pockets. But soft-sided bags offer additional external pockets. Another important feature you should consider is expandability. Not every luggage brand offers this, but the majority of our recommendations include an expanding gusset that usually provides anywhere from an extra 1.5 to two inches of storage depth.

All of our recommendations include telescopic handles with additional fixed handles located on the top and sides of the bag. Likewise, all of our picks are also wheeled. However, our Best on a Budget was the only one that lacked 360-degree spinner wheels. Instead, it featured two fixed inline skate wheels and a stability bar. Other nice to have features included TSA-approved locks or a matching tote bag as seen with the Best on a Budget pick.

Best Luggage Buyer’s Guide

The Most Important Factors to Consider

  1. Size
    Consider whether you want a carry-on or larger luggage that can store more items. For short trips, or if you prefer not to pay to check luggage on flights, a carry-on is your best bet. Make sure that it meets airline guidelines for size allowances. Size allowances vary between airlines, even the domestic ones. But in general, try not to exceed 22 by 14 by 9 inches to ensure that your bag is cleared to fly on any domestic carrier. For larger luggage, you have a lot more freedom and you’ll need to select a bag that fits for the length of your trip. Checked luggage is usually considered anything that’s between 24 to 30 inches high.
  2. Soft-sided vs. Hardshell
    Whether you opt for soft-sided or hardshell luggage is going to depend on your preferences. There are pros and cons to each option. If you’re concerned about your bag falling victim to careless baggage handlers or bad weather, hardshell luggage (also known as hardside) is your best bet. But soft-sided luggage often features additional exterior pockets that can come in handy for those last-minute items before you head off on your trip. Materials such as ballistic nylon should also be considered.
  3. Additional Storage
    Soft-sided luggage tends to offer more additional storage as opposed to hardside luggage. In addition to the main compartment, the zipped lid usually comes with extra interior and exterior pockets. Also, consider luggage with optional expanding storage. Often these types of bags will enlarge anywhere from 1.5 to two inches to give you up to 25% more storage space.
  4. Wheels
    Wheels are fairly standard these days, but they can come in a few configurations. The most popular option is to have four wheels with 360-degree rotation (also known as spinner wheels) so that you can quickly maneuver without fighting your luggage. But you can find single-direction four-wheel models and even some that only have two rear wheels. The choice is entirely up to you, but most travel experts agree that spinner wheels are the best option.
  5. Handles
    It’s also pretty common to find luggage with an adjustable main handle. But another key feature is to find an extra fixed handle on the side and top of your bag. These handles make lifting your luggage much easier — especially if you’re in a hurry.
  6. Accessories
    While not required, additional user-friendly accessories help to make luggage easier to use. Features like garment bags, TSA-approved locks, travel cubes, or even removable battery packs.

Best Luggage Questions (FAQ)

Christen da Costa Avatar

Learn More About Home Appliances