Finding the right carry-on luggage can be a challenging process. There are so many airline guidelines to follow and features to decide on that you may hesitate to buy because you’re afraid you’ll pick the wrong thing. Having the right carry-on luggage can make all the difference in the world when it comes to a smooth business trip. Here are my top three things to look for when deciding on carry-on luggage.
Size. One of the most important things I look for in carry-on luggage is the size of the luggage. Many airlines say that your carry-on must be less than 45” if the height, width, and depth are added together, but the luggage also needs to be no bigger than 22x14x9. If you find a bag with 22x9x14 or less dimensions then you should be set. Airfarewatchdog has a great list of airline carry-on bag policies if you want more specific airline information.
Another thing I look for is the weight of the luggage. My bag, which is the Victorinox Luggage Werks Traveler 4.0 Wt 20 Bag, weighs about 7 pounds. The light weight along with dimensions (15 x 20.1 x 9.1 inches) falling within airline guidelines make this bag a great choice.
Quality construction. Make sure the luggage is well made. Nylon fabric is known to be durable enough for the pounding luggage gets on the road. If you’re lucky enough to get to see the suitcase in person before you purchase be sure to tug at the handle and zip and unzip the pockets for quality testing. If you are buying online make sure you know the return policy, and of course read reviews to see how well it has held up for users. I usually skip the highest and lowest ratings when looking at reviews and focus more on the middle of the road ratings. I seem to have the most success learning from those reviews.
Interior. Once you know the luggage is of an allowable size, look to see how much room is inside the main compartment. The more, the better! Also, check to see if the interior pockets match your needs. If you are a person that likes lots of pockets or internal dividers, look for a suitcase that has them. If you prefer fewer, that’s okay too. I like two inside pockets (one for my undergarments, one for my toiletries) and two outside pockets (one for chargers, one for other miscellaneous items).
If you use these three guidelines when looking for carry-on luggage you’ll do just fine in your shopping. If you are torn between a couple of bags make your final decision based on looks. I like to look for a solid, fairly conservative color. Dark colors will show less dirt, and my favorites are navy, plum, brown, and of course, black. Add a colorful, unique luggage tag (such as this one where you can choose your initial) so your luggage is easy to identify.
Readers, what are the most important things to you when choosing carry-on luggage?
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