Best Luggage Brands – Buying Guides and Reviews
Last updated: February 16th, 2018
The 10 Best Luggage Brands for 2018 – Travel Buying Guides and Reviews
Looking for the Best Luggage Brands? Nothing puts you in the traveling mood like the smell of new luggage. And saying that there are a hundred choices is an understatement. There are too many choices from both good and generic brands, so we’ve devised a list of the top 10 luggage brands to get you started. Before diving into the list, ask yourself: what do you want from a brand and the product? Are you a globetrotter, weekend, or occasional traveler? Do you want luggage that will stand the test of time, the constant battery of being dragged, pulled, and unceremoniously thrown into and out of planes, ships, buses or cars?
Here are a few basics to keep in mind when shopping for luggage:
- How are you going to use your luggage? If it is for flying and cruising oceans, acquaint yourself with airline and cruise regulations on luggage. In both circumstances, expect your bags to be stacked and thrown around, making flat and rigid luggage more advisable. On the road often? Road trips require bags that work to maximize the space in your car’s trunk.
- What luggage sizes are optimal for you? The size depends on the duration of the trip and your personal habits, but also keep in mind airline rules on luggage. Some people need a bigger size for a 2-week trip,while others just need a carry-on and personal item bag to tuck under their seat.
- Storage is an often-overlooked consideration when shopping for luggage. Once traveling is over, where will you put the luggage until next year’s vacation, or the next business travel opportunity comes up? Hard covered bags are troublesome in storage since they can’t be squeezed into your closet. Soft covered are bit more pliable but the structure is still fixed. If you have limited storage space at home, opt for duffleor collapsible bags.
Hard or Soft Covered?
If you are a frequent traveler and have no issue with storage, you’d want a more structured luggage as they’ve been proven durable and sturdy overtime. You have a choice between soft and hard cover.
- Soft covered luggage is made with pliable and yielding fabrics such as Cordura and Ballistic nylon. Ballistic nylon is strong but abrades over time. Abrasion does not compromise the strength, just the look of the luggage. Cordura, on the other hand, is softer and resists abrasion. Soft covered luggage has the advantage of being lightweight and more forgiving in storage as front and back can be folded.
- Hard covered luggage has come a long way from aluminum material to today’s sturdy metal and hard plastic such as ABS and polycarbonate. Both prove to be more lightweight and heavy duty. ABS is lighter, but polycarbonate is tougher and dent resistant. Hard covered luggage has the disadvantage of no storage spaces in the front or back. But the look and durability proves them to be popular to constant travelers. Most hard covered luggage has a 50/50 split opening that lets you pack on two sides with straps to keep items in place.
The following are our selections for the best Luggage Brands in 2018, our list contains some of the best luggage companies available as well as a few surprises.back to menu ↑
Best Luggage Brands 2018back to menu ↑
Delsey Luggage – Best luggage Brand in 2018
Delsey luggage is great both in quality and price. Delsey is a Paris bag and luggage manufacturer that started out making high quality leather camera cases and bags in 1946. They have since expanded to suitcases and luggage. They are known for innovative designs that break rules and convention with style. All their products are 100% made in France. A notable innovation is their trolley system launched in 1972. Since then, they’ve been on top of the luggage industry and are trusted by world travelers. They offer a full line of high quality luggage at reasonable price. It’s a constant favorite of avid travelers that do not want to compromise on style and strength. Their popular line, and a personal favorite, is the Helium Shadow series – a stylish design, made from hardcover polycarbonate that marries strength and lightness with a scratch resistant finish. They also offer different types of traveling bags and accessories, such as vanity/toiletry bags, duffel bags with or without trolley, backpacks, and suitcases. The Delsey accessory line includes travel pillows, light wet packs, computer cases, and luggage straps with 3-digit combination. Their best sellers are their soft and hard covered luggage with Parisian designs. Delsey is one of the Best Luggage brands available and you can view their range of luggage and bags online at Amazonback to menu ↑ back to menu ↑
Tumi – Best American Luggage Brand
Tumi is an American brand based in South Plainfield, New Jersey. Charlie Clifford founded the brand in 1975 after his tour in Peru, South America with the Peace Corps, and named it after the ceremonial knife used in sacrifices. Tumi is known for their travel bags and suitcases. Acquired by Doughty Hanson & Company in 2004, they went public in 2012. The company launched a Powerpack Backpack in 2006, teaming with Anish Kapoor, a well-known designer and sculptor. The Powerpack is the first to integrate solar technology in a bag to charge phones and other mobile devices. They also teamed up with Ducati –a world class Italian motorcycle – for an 8-piece collection. They are known for their black on black ballistic nylon soft covered luggage. Recommended by frequent travelers for durability and warranty, the Tumi warranty includes wheel replacement under the 1-year warranty, and a complimentary 2-year warranty for other deterioration issues from usage over time. Another feature of Tumi luggage is the metal plate with a distinct 20-digit registration code that registers the customer to the Tumi Tracer program that traces the bag when lost. The Tumi Alpha 2 carry-on is the best luggage for frequent travel. Tumi offer a wide range of quality affordable luggage making them one of the Best Luggage Brands available, View the Tumi range online at Amazon
Victorinox started out as the maker of world renowned Swiss Army knives. The company was founded in 1884 by Karl Elsener. He named the company in honor of his late mother Victoria and adding inox – an abbreviation for acierinoxydable, French for stainless steel. Victorinox is branded with an emblem of a cross in a shield. The company had branched out to other products including luggage, watches, and clothes. Two noteworthy luggage lines from Victorinox are Lexicon Professional and Spectra. The Lexicon Professional series is made with 100% ballistic nylon, strong and abrasion-resistant. The carry-on passes most airline carry-on standards. Spectra 2.0 is consistently in “Top 10 Best Carry-on” lists for both its design and function. It is made with 100% polycarbonate and has a quick access door for documents and gadgets. The design is fully expandable for extra items on the flight back. Spectra 2.0 is fully lined with lockable coil zippers and custom pulls. It also meets carry-on regulations and carries a 10-year warranty. View the Victorinox range online at Amazon
Samsonite was established in 1910 by a luggage salesman from Colorado, Jesse Shwayder. The company was first named Shwayder Trunk Manufacturing Company. One of their initial products was a case named Samson, after the man of strength from the Bible. Their trademark name, Samsonite, came later in 1941 when the tapered vulcanized fiber suitcase became popular. After the Samsonite suitcase became the top-selling product, they decided to change the company name. Since then the company and brand has become bespeak of luxury travel bags, luggage, backpacks, and accessories. It is noteworthy to mention that in 2016 Samsonite acquired Tumi in one of the largest acquisition on record. If you want to invest in a really durable carry-on, Samsonite’s Black Label Cosmolite 20” is the one for you. The hard-cover carry-on uses Curv technology, which is a new thing in thermoplastics making it extremely durable and impact-resistant. It is extremely lightweight, with an average weight of 4.08lbs with a fixed combination lock for extra protection of your belongings. Another good buy from Samsonite is their Winfield 2 Fashion Hardside 3 piece set. This is a great buy at a reasonable price given the quality of the set. The set comes in 5 beautiful colors and is made with a 100% polycarbonate hard-cover. View the Samsonite range online at Amazonback to menu ↑ back to menu ↑
Briggs and Riley
Briggs and Riley (B&R) is the brand of jet-setters and avid travelers both for leisure and business. Established in 1993 by Richard Costa in Hauppauge, New York, B&R was the first to manufacture the Expandable System that adds more space to luggage. It was also the first to put the Outsider handle on the exterior of their luggage to enable a flat packing surface area for wrinkle-free packing. B&Ris best known for their products’ lifetime-guarantee, “Simple as that”, covering all dents and damages, even those caused by an airline. U.S. Luggage LLC acquired the company in 2000. They create bags and luggage that cater to a variety of sizes to meet traveler needs. It is very popular for frequent business travelers. It also offers a unique registration code that’s useful for lost luggage. One of B&R’s bestsellers is the BRX Exchange Duffle Bag. The BRX Exchange Duffle is recommended for storage-challenged travelers. It is made from lightweight but durable nylon/polyester tarpaulin, and is water, dirt, and abrasion resistant. The bag converts to a backpack with a zip-away back panel. The folded down panel provides comfort and lumbar support. Aerated mesh back padding enables air to circulate keeping the back cool. View the Briggs and Riley range of luggage online at Amazonback to menu ↑ back to menu ↑
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Rimowa was derived from the founder’s name Richard MorszeckWarenzeichen. The luggage company was established in Cologne, Germany in 1898. A tragic fire in 1937 forced Morszeck and his father Paul to think innovatively as their luggage materials disintegrated into ash, and all that was left was aluminum stock. Richard created the first suitcase made of 100% aluminum that provided sturdiness at a lighter weight. They are also the first to produce polycarbonate luggage. Both materials have revolutionized the luggage industry. Their design has the distinctive ribbed contour design that’s been the signature design of the brand since 1950. The lightweight and waterproof metal luggage, first launched in 1976, is the favorite line of reporters and filmmakers. Rimowa is now part of the LVMH family, the French luxury goods conglomerate. The Rimowa Salsa line is made from 100% polycarbonate with a 5-year warranty. The series’ ranges from a beauty case to a 32.1”x 21.7” piece, and also includes a sports series with electronic tag feature. Rimowa is an investment for the frequent flyer and has the highest quality standard. View the Rimowa range online at Amazon.
American Tourister Luggage
American Tourister is the American brand that combines quality and a low price, compared to the other luggage brands in the review. It strikes the perfect balance of durable products and is perfect for the occasional traveler. It was founded in Providence, Rhode Island in 1933 by Sol Koffler. First known as American Luggage Works, it was acquired by Astrum International – aka Samsonite Corporation -in 1993. It is well known to break away from the traditional luggage color scheme of black and navy and to go wild with bright colored and unique design features, including prints. It carries Walt Disney World and Disneyland designs. This gives travelers a choice of fun designs with their favorite Disney characters. It is also the choice of young travelers with their modern design and unique colors. Although it is a good choice for the occasional traveler, it’s sturdy enough to stand the test of time. Their new Curio 20” spinner is worth checking out. It is made with Polypropylene, with a recessed TSA lock, apron, and mesh pockets. It weighs about 5.73 lbs. It comes in cool colors of black, hot pink, purple, and white. American Tourister is the budget friendly option for regular and occasional travelers. Their distinctively creative designs really pop-out in airports, especially on the baggage carousel. View the entire range of American Tourister Luggage online at Amazon.back to menu ↑ back to menu ↑
Ricardo Beverly Hills
Ricardo Beverly Hills is a California based luggage manufacturer founded by Richard “Ricardo” Gibbs in 1978. It celebrates the California relaxed lifestyle with modern designs that are both clever and functional. It strives to bring effortless travel experiences with their luggage and bags. The company is a leader in environmental awareness and conservation by minimizing its operational impact on the environment. Their Paisley fabric designs are perfect for the lightweight carry-on. One of their product lines worth checking out for those who want to minimize storage,is their duffle with wheels, specifically the Mar Vista 2.0 20” Rolling City Duffle. It is easy to carry, access, and the distinctive Paisley fabric is easy to spot just about anywhere. It is made from water and abrasion resistant nylon with rugged zippers. Mar Vista Rolling City Duffle also has comfortable, padded handles with sliding snap closure that holds the handle together for easy transport. Other features include large zip pockets for small items and elastic slip pockets for shoes and items that need to be segregated. Other lines worth looking into are the Malibu Bay and Imperial. Ricardo Beverly Hills offers a fantastic range of Luggage making them one of the Best Luggage Brands in 2018. View their range online at Amazon.back to menu ↑ back to menu ↑
High Sierra is a newer player in the luggage industry and it caters more to adventure travelers. It first catered to outdoor enthusiasts with its ultra durable backpacks. The company was founded in 1978 in Vernon, Illinois. They offer high quality backpacks, duffel with wheels, and a business luggage line that combines the outdoors with the boardroom. High Sierra is quality and practical performance, offering products made from durable materials that can withstand the outdoor elements as well as the wear and tear of traveling by land, air, or sea. Unique details provide extra functionality in each pack. Each product line is designed for specific outdoor and indoor needs, whether it be high up in the cliffs of snowy mountains or the busy office meeting room. The best choice is their expandable and compartmentalized AT7 Wheeled Carry-On Duffle. It is 3-bags-in-1 which can be wheeled upright; turned to a backpack or a duffle bag. The main compartment has a book-style opening and straps to hold clothes in place. As with all High Sierra bags, it is made from strong fabric that can withstand any environment or travel situation. The drop bottom compartment is perfect for bulky items such as shoes and active gear. We love the High Sierra range and their high quality luggage makes them one of the best luggage brands in 2018. You can view more of the High Sierra range online at Amazon.back to menu ↑ back to menu ↑
Globe-Trotter Best Luxury Luggage Brand
Globe Trotter is a German brand of luxury luggage that offers travelers old world sophistication and a class of its own. Queen Elizabeth II used the luggage for her honeymoon trip in 1947. Established by David Nelken in 1897 in Saxony, Germany, in 1932, the company moved to Hertfordshire, England. The patented vulcanized fiberboard suitcases are still handmade with equipment that dates back to the early 20th century. It is the luggage preferred by discerning, royalty, adventurers, and statesmen alike. If you don’t mind the price tag and want an heirloom luggage that you can pass down to the next generation, Globe Trotter is the choice for you, with their handmade craftsmanship and distinctively old school class and sophistication. The Centenary 18” Trolley is eye-candy, launched in 1997 to mark the 100-year anniversary of the company. It has hallmark leather details around the corners, straps, and handles. It is made with patented vulcanized fiberboard and is a great investment for the discerning traveler. As with old style suitcases, the interiors comprise of only one compartment with straps to hold clothes in place. It comes in red and tan colors. The Centenary line includes a vanity case, 9” mini utility, 26” trolley, and 30” deep suitcase. We love the Globe-Trotter range that can be found on Amazon.
It is also worth mentioning some brands that didn’t make the top 10 best luggage brands list, but still offer great buys for various types of travelers. European brands, IT luggage, and the newest luggage company, Luggage X. Both were proven durable from luggage endurance tests. American luggage brands Eagle Creek and The North Face are adventure-oriented brands with innovative features that cater to business travelers, merging business with an active outdoor lifestyle.
Quality, strength, and style are the main components of the Best Luggage Brands. Most companies in the list withstood the test of time with their patented features and innovative designs. New brands in the luggage market cater to the younger generation of travelers that merge outdoor activities with business. All brands in the list offer great value for money in different categories, from price, quality, craftsmanship, innovation, stylish designs, and other practical features. Now you decide which luggage brand is best for you.