A good suitcase is a travel essential, but whether you’re headed for a two-day business trip or a two-week road trip, it can be a challenge to find luggage that is both enjoyable to use and enjoyable to look at. We get it—things like high-quality locks, zippers, spinner wheels, pockets, charging ports, and weight are all important aspects to consider when selecting a new inanimate travel companion. But hey, so is how it will look in your travel photos.
The trick is finding the right piece of luggage for you when there are so many options. Do you want a wheeled carry-on suitcase? A weekender? A travel backpack? And what size, shape, and color? Although they may be slightly more difficult to find, Holy Grail luggage brands—those that balance high quality, durability, and design—do exist. You just need to know where to find them.
To help you choose your next suitcase, whether it’s a duffel bag or a spinner, here are the best luggage brands worth investing your money in, whether your budget is $100 or $1,000.
- Arlo Skye
- Baboon to the Moon
- Herschel Supply Co.
- Lo & Sons
- Shop now: arloskye.com
- AFAR’s pick: Arlo Skye the Frame Carry-On, $450, arloskye.com
- Warranty policy: Arlo Skye offers a five-year warranty on any manufacturing defects related to parts and workmanship on its rolling luggage. (Scratches, nicks, and dents due to normal wear and tear are not covered.)
Founded by Tumi and Louis Vuitton alums, Arlo Skye launched in 2016 with its Aluminum Carry-On that quickly racked up design awards for its sleek and stylishly industrial look. Since then, the brand has added check-in sizes, lightweight polycarbonate materials, and zippered and unzippered options to its line of rolling suitcases. We’re partial to the Frame collection, which is constructed from a hybrid polycarbonate shell reinforced with an aluminum frame and corners for maximum durability without the bulk of an all aluminum bag. Given that it also comes with whisper-quiet spinner wheels and an antimicrobial lining infused with natural silver fibers to prevent germ growth and odor-causing bacteria, this bag is a steal for under $500.
- Shop now: awaytravel.com
- AFAR’s pick: Away the Bigger Carry-On, $295, awaytravel.com
- Warranty policy: In addition to a generous trial period, in which you can return your bag for any reason within the first 100 days, Away’s limited lifetime warranty covers any damage to the shell, wheels, handles, zippers, and more.
Away is the picture of simplicity in design-minded luggage. Each bag features a hard polycarbonate shell, four spinner wheels, a removable laundry bag, TSA-approved locks, and a patent-pending compression system on the interior, while certain models also offer a battery pack and USB charger, which are removable, in compliance with TSA requirements. The brand has also expanded its offerings to include weekenders, soft-sided luggage, and packing cubes—all in an ever-changing rainbow of limited edition colors. Affordable yet incredibly functional and well made, Away’s products are ideal for the jet-setter who wants it all: the right price, the right features, and the right look.
Change is here for this fast-growing brand: Following a December 2019 report by the Verge about allegations from former employees of a toxic work environment, cofounder Steph Korey stepped down from her role as CEO in 2020. In 2021, cofounder and president Jen Rubio was named CEO.
>> Read the honest review: Is the Away Bigger Carry-On Worth the Hype?
Baboon to the Moon
- Shop now: baboontothemoon.com
- AFAR’s pick: Baboon Go-Bag Small, $169, baboonthemoon.com
- Warranty policy: Baboon to the Moon’s limited lifetime warranty covers its bags from any material and manufacturing defects.
Any trip that involves one of Baboon to the Moon’s vibrant bags is sure to be a fun one. The company’s flagship Go-Bag, a duffel built for adventures, comes in three sizes and features plenty of pockets, adjustable straps that can turn the bag into a backpack, and a waterproof shell. Baboon also offers smaller items (fanny packs and dopp kits), all in its bright, bold colors and funky pop-art prints.
- Shop now: calpaktravel.com
- AFAR’s pick: Calpak Astyll three-piece luggage set, $429 (was $715), calpaktravel.com
- Warranty policy: Calpak bags come with either a one-year or two-year limited warranty that covers material and manufacturing defects.
Edward and Judy Kwon founded Calpak in 1989 in Los Angeles with a collection of wallets and handbags. In 2013, their children Jennifer and Roy joined the company and rebranded the family business as a line of modern luggage ideal for the savvy 21st-century traveler and suited for weight restrictions and notorious TSA wear and tear. The brand’s signature products are its lines of hardside spinner sets, many in fun colors and patterns. (How gorgeous is this marble design?!) And each suitcase is remarkably lightweight yet impressively tough—the perfect combination for those who travel frequently.
- Shop now: delsey.com; amazon.com
- AFAR’s pick: Delsey Paris Chatelet 21-inch carry-on, $320, amazon.com
- Warranty policy: Depending on the bag, Delsey offers a 2-, 5-, or 10-year warranty, or a lifetime warranty against material or manufacturing defects.
French luggage and travel accessory brand Delsey truly does it all—carry-ons, garment bags, sets, duffel bags, and much, much more. It offers a number of separate collections categorized by style and material, ranging from hard polycarbonate to expandable cloth, and from subdued neutrals to shiny pinks and blues.
- Shop now: fjallraven.com; rei.com; backcountry.com
- AFAR’s pick: Fjällräven Splitpack backpack, $175, fjallraven.com; backcountry.com
- Warranty policy: Fjällräven offers a limited lifetime warranty that covers manufacturing defects including split seams, broken snaps, buttons, zippers, or buckles.
Swedish company Fjällräven embodies the spirit that makes the Scandinavian country one of the happiest on Earth. Seriously, look at these products with their cute little fox logo and try not to smile. But the brand’s merit doesn’t end with its whimsical colors and lightweight material—each bag is also designed for outdoor and active use, with strong fabric made from recycled materials, hefty straps and carry handles, and a variety of clever pockets.
Herschel Supply Co.
- Shop now: herschel.com
- AFAR’s pick: Herschel Supply Co. Novel duffel bag, $90, herschel.com
- Warranty policy: If your bag has any material or manufacturing defects, Herschel will replace or repair the item under its limited lifetime warranty.
In a lot of ways, we can thank Herschel Supply Co. for making functional bags cool again. With its hip designs and various patterns, the company has become a favorite with millennials—and has proved that backpacks aren’t only for students and fanny packs aren’t just for tourists, among other things. But Herschel’s duffel bags are undeniably among its best. For experiential travelers who are constantly on the go, these travel bags are made of durable materials and come with smart features like separate shoe compartments.
- Shop now: july.com
- AFAR’s pick: July Carry On, $295, july.com
- Warranty policy: In addition to a 100-day trial with free returns, July luggage is backed by a lifetime warranty that covers any defect on wheels, zippers, handles, nylon compression straps, and specific cracks or breaks in the polycarbonate shell or aluminum bumpers.
July is essentially Australia’s version of Away. The Melbourne-based brand started selling its bags online in the United States in 2021. Made with a crush-proof German polycarbonate shell, the standard July Carry On offers lots of space for your belongings (42 liters) while only weighing 7.4 pounds and still meeting domestic carrier size requirements. Available in more than a dozen matte colors, these bags are made with a multilevel telescoping handle for people of various heights, proprietary SilentMove 360° spinner wheels, and aluminum bumpers to prevent the corners from being crushed. In addition to its rolling luggage, July also sells a full line of travel bags and accessories, including weekenders, backpacks, packing cubes, and more.
Lo & Sons
- Shop now: loandsons.com
- AFAR’s pick: Lo & Sons Catalina Deluxe small organic canvas weekender, $215, loandsons.com
- Warranty policy: Lo & Sons products come with a one-year warranty that covers product damages and defects.
After struggling to find a travel bag that wasn’t too frumpy, overpriced, or tech-y, Helen Lo founded her own luggage brand in her mid-6os with the help of her two sons. The result is a line of lightweight, yet durable weekend bags, laptop totes, and backpacks with pockets in all the right places to keep your belongings organized so you’re never digging for your iPad in the same compartment as your shoes. Currently, Lo & Sons makes 50 percent of its products with ecofriendly materials like organic cotton canvas and recycled polyester and aims to increase that amount to 75 percent by 2023.
- Shop now: tourparavel.com
- AFAR’s pick: Paravel Aviator Grand checked luggage, $425, tourparavel.com
- Warranty policy: Paravel’s line of Aviator wheeled suitcases comes with a five-year limited warranty that covers manufacturing defects, wear and tear, and structural damage.
Paravel launched in 2016 with the goal of creating stylish bags that were timeless, long-lasting, affordable, and above all, gentle on the Earth. Since then, the sustainable luggage brand has upcycled 4.7 million plastic bottles into materials for everything from its Negative Nylon foldable bags to its Ecocraft Canvas duffels and weekenders. Its line of Aviator hard-shell spinner suitcases comes in three different sizes and about half a dozen colors. Plus, Paravel offsets all of the carbon emissions generated from manufacturing and shipping these suitcases.
- Shop now: patagonia.com; backcountry.com; rei.com
- AFAR’s pick: Patagonia Black Hole 55L duffel bag, $169, patagonia.com; backcountry.com
- Warranty policy: Patagonia guarantees everything it makes under its Ironclad Guarantee, which includes replacements and refunds at no charge. Damage due to wear and tear can be repaired at a reasonable price.
Patagonia is so much more than a luggage brand. This environmentally conscious outdoor gear company makes everything from fleece vests to snow pants and wetsuits. But its collection of Black Hole duffel bags are iconic for a reason. A durable water-repellent finish protects your equipment, padded shoulder straps make it comfortable to carry, and plenty of pockets keeps everything organized no matter how much you stuff in there. Available in a carry-on friendly 26-liter size up to a massive 100-liter version with wheels, each Black Hole bag is now made with 100 percent recycled polyester body fabric and nylon webbing crafted from repurposed water bottles.
- Shop now: piquadro.com
- AFAR’s pick: Piquadro Blue Square cabin-size computer and iPad spinner, $1,135, piquadro.com
- Warranty policy: Piquadro offers a 24-month warranty on all of its bags that covers any manufacturing or material defects. If you register your bag with the Piquadro Club online or by mail, the warranty is extended to 36 months.
You know what they say: If you’re going to buy leather, make it Italian leather. OK, we’re not sure if “they” say that, but it’s true—the buttery leathers from the boot are excellent. Piquadro puts these high-quality materials into its various travel items, including rolling backpacks, spinners, and duffels, each especially designed for functionality and perfect for the stylish business traveler. The company is aware of our technological needs (thank goodness) and offers a variety of bags with specialized computer or tablet compartments.
- Shop now: rimowa.com
- AFAR’s pick: Rimowa Original Cabin suitcase, $1,400, rimowa.com
- Warranty policy: If you register it online, your Rimowa bag is guaranteed against material or manufacturing defects for five years (otherwise a two-year guarantee applies).
With the motto “handmade meets high tech” leading the way, Rimowa has effectively helped to revolutionize the way high-quality luggage is designed since the company was founded in 1898 in Cologne, Germany. Suitcases come in aluminum or polycarbonate hard shells; aluminum lines are reminiscent of futuristic flights, while the polycarbonate models have an additional flair of color and style. In 2018, the brand updated the engineering of its classic cases, making them even more durable and resilient than before.
- Shop now: roamluggage.com
- AFAR’s pick: Roam “The Jaunt” carry-on suitcase, $550, roamluggage.com
- Warranty policy: In addition to a lifetime limited warranty that covers cracks, broken zippers, wheels, handles, and more, all Roam bags include a 100-day trial period in which you can make returns, no questions asked.
The world’s first fully customizable premium luggage brand, Roam makes bags for those of us who can’t ever seem to find a suitcase that, well, suits our style. The company offers four sizes of polycarbonate-shell bags—all of which have fully integrated TSA-approved locks and are made in the United States—and travelers can browse suggested color combinations or design their own. If you really go all out with the customization, your bag could have different colors for the front shell, back shell, zipper, binding, stitching, wheels—even the handle.
- Shop now: steamlineluggage.com; nordstrom.com
- AFAR’s pick: Steamline “The Architect” cream stowaway suitcase, $895, steamlineluggage.com
- Warranty policy: Steamline offers a two-year warranty for any manufacturing defects, and a 30-day return policy if the bag is returned in its original condition.
Reminiscent of vintage trunks, Steamline Luggage products make us want to wear a fancy hat and jump on the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express. The brand offers more than a dozen different sets, ranging from two pieces to nine pieces each, available together or individually. Products include hat boxes, stowaways, carry-ons, vanity cases, and spinners in a variety of styles and classic colors.
- Shop now: tortugabackpacks.com
- AFAR’s pick: Tortuga Outbreaker Backpack 35L, $299, tortugabackpacks.com
- Warranty policy: The Tortuga warranty guarantees against defects in materials and craftsmanship. If your product fails due to a defect, the company will repair it, replace it, or refund your money, depending on product availability.
For travelers who eschew wheels but don’t want to look like they’re about to hike the Inca trail, Tortuga Backpacks combine the portability of a backpack with the practicality of a suitcase. Unlike traditional top-loaders, Tortuga’s travel backpacks—available in 35L and 45L sizes—unzip on three sides to allow for easy access and come with lots (and lots) of pockets. Inside, you’ll find three separate storage areas: a central compartment for clothes, an outer section for electronics and miscellaneous essentials, and a laptop compartment located closest to the shoulder straps. Even the hip belt offers organization in addition to load support. Its two zippered pockets are perfect for stashing a passport, phone, and wallet—things travelers typically want within immediate reach. Instead of standard nylon, the Outbreaker uses a waterproof sailcloth that is extremely durable and flexible, keeping the bag as supple as a grocery tote.
- Shop now: travelpro.com; amazon.com
- AFAR’s pick: Travelpro Platinum Elite 21-inch expandable carry-on spinner, $370, travelpro.com; amazon.com
- Warranty policy: In addition to a 100-day trial period in which you can make returns, no questions asked, all Travelpro bags come with a limited warranty that covers things like broken zippers, wheels, handles, and more.
Travelpro excels in the realm of usability and is clearly designed for travelers, by travelers. It’s no wonder you see these bags rolling alongside flight attendants and pilots at airports around the world. The suitcases feature expandable zippers, removable dividers, and resilient soft-shell fabric. The brand offers a huge selection of products and product lines and its bags range in weight, wheels, color, and size, so it’s easy to find the perfect bag for your next trip.
- Shop now: tumi.com; amazon.com
- AFAR’s pick: Tumi Alpha 3 compact four-wheeled duffel bag, $385 (was $750), saksoff5th.com
- Warranty policy: Tumi’s limited warranty covers all repairs and replacements due to manufacturing and material defects like broken handles and zippers for five years, plus any damage sustained from airline handling in the first 12 months you own your bag.
The words “reliable,” “universal,” and “beloved” sum up Tumi, a company that offers a wide range of luggage, backpacks, and bags in a variety of designs and durable materials like polycarbonate and ballistic nylon. While it is always releasing new colors, patterns, and materials, Tumi really sets itself apart with the classics—the soft duffel, garment bag, and wheeled carry-on. Ideal for business travelers, Tumi bags are made with both convenience and longevity in mind.
- Shop now: yeti.com
- AFAR’s pick: Yeti Crossroads 35L Backpack, $250, yeti.com
- Warranty policy: Yeti’s Crossroads collection is covered by a three-year warranty, in which any products that have defects in workmanship and materials will be repaired or replaced.
You may know Yeti for its coolers and insulated mugs. But it also became a luggage company in 2021, when it launched a full line of backpacks, duffels, and soft-sided wheeled suitcases. Each piece in the Crossroads Collection is made with lightweight, yet abrasion resistant and water-repellent material Yeti calls “Tuffskin Nylon” inspired by motorcycle apparel. On top of being virtually indestructible, these bags also include thoughtful design elements like multiple access points, laptop pockets, and optional dividers that make keeping your stuff organized super easy.
Jessie Beck and Kelly Bastone contributed reporting to this article. This article originally appeared online in 2016; it was most recently updated on March 30, 2022, to include current information.