It can be hard to know where to start when shopping for a suitcase, so here’s some advice on what to look for in your next piece of luggage.
Make sure it’s lightweight
There’s no point having a suitcase that’s heavy before you’ve even started packing. And weight can be deceiving. It’s easy to think a lightweight suitcase means that it’s not good quality but that’s not the case (pun not intended). Some of the best materials, like polypropylene and polycarbonate, are designed to be strong and lightweight at the same time, like our Portobello and our Clifton hard shell suitcases. Soft sided luggage is lightweight too - often a bit more so than hard sided, so try our Stirling soft sided luggage.
Decide if you want a hard or soft suitcase
Hard shell suitcases look super stylish, and are made with built in flex to both help house your packing but also bounce back when they get knocked about. A soft shell suitcase often has more pockets, particularly on the outside, which are useful for easy access to your passport and other travel essentials.
Check how easy it is to wheel
The best suitcase wheels are 360 double spinner wheels - these feature on our Stirling business suitcases, as well as our Portobello and Clifton hard sided suitcases. They’re super strong, wheel like a dream and move in every direction, making it very easy to get around.
Think about size and cabin bag allowances
If you’re buying a cabin suitcase and fly regularly, check airline cabin size bag allowances as of course, they vary by airline. If you fly Ryanair, the free hand luggage allowance is a very small (40 x 20 x 25 cm) and must fit under the seat in front of you. If you pay between £6 and £12 for priority boarding and two cabin bags, you can take the same small bag, plus a 10kg bag that's 55 x 40 x 20cm. Our Clifton cabin suitcase is perfect for this.
We've got some useful collections of hand luggage so that you can shop our luggage according to which airline you're flying with, for example, you can see our collection of hand luggage for Ryanair here, and for easyJet here.
Make sure it will last the distance
You don’t want a suitcase to break the first time you use it; you need to know it will withstand the rigours of travel and is strong enough to carry everything that you’ll pack in it. There are few things you’ll own that get battered about as much as your luggage does. We’ve been around for 100 years so we know a thing or two about how to make a suitcase that is super strong and durable - all our suitcases are built to stand the test of time and they come with a 10 year warranty.
Consider capacity and whether it's expandable
Shape can have an impact on how much can fit inside - it’s why our Clifton suitcase is designed to be the shape and size it is. An expander zip is also really useful. Our Clifton and Stirling medium and large suitcases that you can see in our collection of hold luggage both come with one, and you’ll be surprised at how often you'll use it - so you can pack more in and bring more home.
Look for extra features
There are plenty of things that a suitcase can do that you might not have thought of. A few examples:
Our Stirling lie-flat cabin suitcase has a built in garment carrier
Our Clifton cabin suitcase features a twist-grip handle, making it even easier to manoeuvre
All our hard-sided suitcases and soft-sided Stirling suitcases are designed to nest inside each other for easy storage.
Think about coordinating travel accessories
Create a travel look inside and out with a wide variety of travel accessories so consider getting a full set so that everything works together. We designed our packing cubes to be the perfect size to fit in our suitcases; our Chelsea bags have a back strap to slot over a suitcase handle and our smart shirt packer fits perfectly in our Stirling business suitcase.
There’s a lot to consider but whatever you decide, we've got a suitcase that will work for you.