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Carry-on luggage Reviews and Buyer's Guide (Feb 2019)

Few things feel better than flying with only carry-on luggage. It's easier and faster to board the plane when you don't need to check in luggage - and you also get out of the airport much faster when you don't have to wait for your luggage (or worry about it, if it has disappeared).

Luckily there are lots of models to choose from. It pays to spend some time comparing all these models, so you can make sure you choose a bag that is of great quality and that match your needs in relation to size and features.

The 186 Best Carry-On Luggage


RankCarry-On LuggageRating
1Gabbiano ProvenceGabbiano Provence
Available on Amazon
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4.7010 reviews
2Osprey PorterOsprey Porter
Available on Amazon
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4.681,424 reviews
3Patagonia Black HolePatagonia Black Hole
Available on Amazon
Check Deals
4.591,383 reviews
4American Tourister MarvelAmerican Tourister Marvel4.5197 reviews
5High Sierra BroghanHigh Sierra Broghan4.4839 reviews
6Titan X2Titan X24.4735 reviews
7American Tourister DisneyAmerican Tourister Disney4.451,063 reviews
8Samsonite StrydeSamsonite Stryde4.4463 reviews
9Eagle Creek Pack ItEagle Creek Pack It4.416,496 reviews
10Gonex UltraGonex Ultra4.406,444 reviews
11Osprey MeridianOsprey Meridian4.39103 reviews
12Marc Jacobs CrosbyMarc Jacobs Crosby4.3819 reviews
13Thule CrossoverThule Crossover4.371,165 reviews
14Burton WheelieBurton Wheelie4.36541 reviews
15Manhattan Portage DakotaManhattan Portage Dakota4.3528 reviews
16OGIO RenegadeOGIO Renegade4.331,730 reviews
17Dakine ValiseDakine Valise4.3247 reviews
18Ricardo Beverly Hills Mar VistaRicardo Beverly Hills Mar Vista4.321,070 reviews
19Brics CapriBrics Capri4.3233 reviews
20Briggs & Riley TranscendBriggs & Riley Transcend4.3294 reviews
21Gregory CompassGregory Compass4.3155 reviews
22Stephen Joseph ButterflyStephen Joseph Butterfly4.29573 reviews
23OGIO ClarkOGIO Clark4.2614 reviews
24Thule SubterraThule Subterra4.25331 reviews
25Pacsafe ToursafePacsafe Toursafe4.24137 reviews
26Briggs & Riley BaselineBriggs & Riley Baseline4.241,823 reviews
27Wally Bags GownWally Bags Gown4.231,637 reviews
28Deuter TransitDeuter Transit4.2242 reviews
29Osprey OzoneOsprey Ozone4.21519 reviews
30Eagle Creek Load WarriorEagle Creek Load Warrior4.21437 reviews
31eBags Mother LodeeBags Mother Lode4.2158,527 reviews
32Keokee ClearKeokee Clear4.21107 reviews
33OGIO HamptonsOGIO Hamptons4.202,232 reviews
34Tumi AlphaTumi Alpha4.181,413 reviews
35Samsonite OmniSamsonite Omni4.186,625 reviews
36Incase EOIncase EO4.18198 reviews
37Dakine EQDakine EQ4.173,415 reviews
38High Sierra LoopHigh Sierra Loop4.1713,857 reviews
39Orvis Safe PassageOrvis Safe Passage4.1784 reviews
40Vera Bradley Lighten UpVera Bradley Lighten Up4.16785 reviews
41Brookstone DashBrookstone Dash4.1593 reviews
42Tumi VoyageurTumi Voyageur4.15766 reviews
43High Sierra EmmettHigh Sierra Emmett4.1482 reviews
44Hartmann InnovaireHartmann Innovaire4.1425 reviews
45Heys Travel TotsHeys Travel Tots4.1381 reviews
46OGIO NewtOGIO Newt4.13383 reviews
47Eagle Creek Load HaulerEagle Creek Load Hauler4.09119 reviews
48Eagle Creek No Matter WhatEagle Creek No Matter What4.082,139 reviews
49Poler ClassicPoler Classic4.0768 reviews
50Travelpro MaxliteTravelpro Maxlite4.075,807 reviews
51eBags ProfessionaleBags Professional4.0718,379 reviews
52Patagonia HeadwayPatagonia Headway4.06249 reviews
53CalPak ZorroCalPak Zorro4.06159 reviews
54Ricardo Beverly Hills Malibu BayRicardo Beverly Hills Malibu Bay4.05251 reviews
55Brics LifeBrics Life4.05135 reviews
56Delsey QuiltedDelsey Quilted4.0412,453 reviews
57Andiamo PanteraAndiamo Pantera4.0422 reviews
58Pacsafe VenturesafePacsafe Venturesafe4.03721 reviews
59OGIO SohoOGIO Soho4.031,668 reviews
60Timbuk2 WingmanTimbuk2 Wingman4.02295 reviews
61High Sierra CurveHigh Sierra Curve4.013,251 reviews
62High Sierra Fat BoyHigh Sierra Fat Boy4.014,739 reviews
63Lowepro RunnerLowepro Runner4.001,495 reviews
64High Sierra SwerveHigh Sierra Swerve3.9919,671 reviews
65The North Face OverheadThe North Face Overhead3.9820 reviews
66High Sierra TacticHigh Sierra Tactic3.98730 reviews
67Eagle Creek MorphusEagle Creek Morphus3.9831 reviews
68Ricardo Beverly Hills SausalitoRicardo Beverly Hills Sausalito3.98224 reviews
69Victorinox LexiconVictorinox Lexicon3.97110 reviews
70American Flyer PerfectAmerican Flyer Perfect3.9656 reviews
71Delsey EmblemeDelsey Embleme3.9699 reviews
72Ogio CovertOgio Covert3.9683 reviews
73Samsonite MightlightSamsonite Mightlight3.951,175 reviews
74Rockland RioRockland Rio3.959,757 reviews
75Hynes EagleHynes Eagle3.954,381 reviews
76CalPak DavisCalPak Davis3.9419 reviews
77Timbuk2 CopilotTimbuk2 Copilot3.9385 reviews
78Pacsafe VibePacsafe Vibe3.93338 reviews
79Delsey ChateletDelsey Chatelet3.92647 reviews
80Skyway MirageSkyway Mirage3.921,457 reviews
81ClaireChase ExecutiveClaireChase Executive3.921,671 reviews
82Obersee KidsObersee Kids3.911,575 reviews
83Briggs & Riley ExploreBriggs & Riley Explore3.8980 reviews
84Ben Sherman NottinghamBen Sherman Nottingham3.87114 reviews
85High Sierra WarrenHigh Sierra Warren3.8572 reviews
86Enkloze X1Enkloze X13.8547 reviews
87Goplus GlobalwayGoplus Globalway3.843,302 reviews
88Kenneth Cole Reaction Out of BoundsKenneth Cole Reaction Out of Bounds3.8411,366 reviews
89Samsonite InovaSamsonite Inova3.84465 reviews
90Delsey HeliumDelsey Helium3.829,013 reviews
91Arcteryx CovertArcteryx Covert3.8012 reviews
92Pacsafe DuffelsafePacsafe Duffelsafe3.7950 reviews
93IT Luggage MegaliteIT Luggage Megalite3.796,205 reviews
94Herschel SupplyHerschel Supply3.7920,692 reviews
95IT Luggage AmsterdamIT Luggage Amsterdam3.78595 reviews
96Delsey ChatillonDelsey Chatillon3.77429 reviews
97OGIO BanditOGIO Bandit3.771,160 reviews
98Werks TravelerWerks Traveler3.75222 reviews
99Briggs & Riley SympaticoBriggs & Riley Sympatico3.73249 reviews
100CalPak Silver LakeCalPak Silver Lake3.722,162 reviews
101OGIO TribuneOGIO Tribune3.71895 reviews
102High Sierra AccessHigh Sierra Access3.7011,074 reviews
103Travelers Choice MercedTravelers Choice Merced3.7074 reviews
104Biaggi ContempoBiaggi Contempo3.68202 reviews
105TrendyKid Travel KoolTrendyKid Travel Kool3.6857 reviews
106The North Face Rolling ThunderThe North Face Rolling Thunder3.67434 reviews
107Eagle Creek TarmacEagle Creek Tarmac3.67385 reviews
108Delsey MontmartreDelsey Montmartre3.6781 reviews
109Tumi TahoeTumi Tahoe3.6737 reviews
110Cabin Max MetzCabin Max Metz3.663,350 reviews
111Samsonite LeverageSamsonite Leverage3.6548 reviews
112Samsonite AspireSamsonite Aspire3.651,569 reviews
113CalPak ChaletCalPak Chalet3.65207 reviews
114Perry Ellis TractionPerry Ellis Traction3.6544 reviews
115Eagle Creek Gear WarriorEagle Creek Gear Warrior3.64449 reviews
116American Tourister iLiteAmerican Tourister iLite3.642,119 reviews
117eBags EXOeBags EXO3.643,020 reviews
118Briggs & Riley Kinzie StreetBriggs & Riley Kinzie Street3.63102 reviews
119Eagle Creek Lync SystemEagle Creek Lync System3.62188 reviews
120Travelpro Platinum MagnaTravelpro Platinum Magna3.621,369 reviews
121Samsonite WinfieldSamsonite Winfield3.626,048 reviews
122Delsey CometeDelsey Comete3.61175 reviews
123High Sierra PowerglideHigh Sierra Powerglide3.605,285 reviews
124High Sierra FreewheelHigh Sierra Freewheel3.593,582 reviews
125Calpak PlatoCalpak Plato3.57177 reviews
126World Traveler PaisleyWorld Traveler Paisley3.578,402 reviews
127Granite Gear Cross TrekGranite Gear Cross Trek3.56672 reviews
128Samsonite TectonicSamsonite Tectonic3.561,626 reviews
129Rockland MelbourneRockland Melbourne3.5526,325 reviews
130World Traveler LeopardWorld Traveler Leopard3.546,231 reviews
131Eagle Creek AdventureEagle Creek Adventure3.52472 reviews
132World Traveler DamaskWorld Traveler Damask3.527,597 reviews
133High Sierra OpieHigh Sierra Opie3.51315 reviews
134Travelpro CrewTravelpro Crew3.512,804 reviews
135Filson PullmanFilson Pullman3.5012 reviews
136Travelers Choice RioTravelers Choice Rio3.506,937 reviews
137World Traveler ChevronWorld Traveler Chevron3.5010,714 reviews
138Brics BellagioBrics Bellagio3.5093 reviews
139Tumi TegraTumi Tegra3.50121 reviews
140Lojel LucidLojel Lucid3.50156 reviews
141Nicole Miller KristinaNicole Miller Kristina3.49259 reviews
142World Traveler ZebraWorld Traveler Zebra3.487,891 reviews
143Delsey Sky MaxDelsey Sky Max3.4869 reviews
144Tumi V3Tumi V33.4817 reviews
145Samsonite XenonSamsonite Xenon3.451,464 reviews
146Hartmann VigorHartmann Vigor3.4437 reviews
147CalPak HollywoodCalPak Hollywood3.42501 reviews
148Rockland MelroseRockland Melrose3.40176 reviews
149Travel Select AmsterdamTravel Select Amsterdam3.40205 reviews
150Victorinox SpectraVictorinox Spectra3.39708 reviews
151Travelers Choice CambridgeTravelers Choice Cambridge3.392,196 reviews
152Delsey CruiseDelsey Cruise3.38286 reviews
153Travelers Club ChicagoTravelers Club Chicago3.381,249 reviews
154Skyway NimbusSkyway Nimbus3.36507 reviews
155American Tourister PopAmerican Tourister Pop3.364,191 reviews
156Cabin Max OxfordCabin Max Oxford3.3520 reviews
157CalPak RoverCalPak Rover3.34776 reviews
158Heritage Lincoln ParkHeritage Lincoln Park3.33361 reviews
159Zero Halliburton AirZero Halliburton Air3.3317 reviews
160Lojel StreamlineLojel Streamline3.32115 reviews
161Delsey BastilleDelsey Bastille3.30186 reviews
162Travelers Choice RomeTravelers Choice Rome3.306,999 reviews
163Eagle Creek ExpanseEagle Creek Expanse3.30165 reviews
164Bugatti VailBugatti Vail3.2918 reviews
165Pathfinder RevolutionPathfinder Revolution3.28120 reviews
166Victorinox AvolveVictorinox Avolve3.28198 reviews
167High Sierra AT8High Sierra AT83.2761 reviews
168Merax TravelhouseMerax Travelhouse3.276,321 reviews
169Cabin Max BearCabin Max Bear3.27363 reviews
170Samsonite LIFTwoSamsonite LIFTwo3.27400 reviews
171Travelers Choice TorontoTravelers Choice Toronto3.26978 reviews
172Marc Jacobs ElizababyMarc Jacobs Elizababy3.2542 reviews
173High Sierra SportourHigh Sierra Sportour3.24315 reviews
174Briggs & Riley TorqBriggs & Riley Torq3.22372 reviews
175Kelty AscenderKelty Ascender3.2119 reviews
176IT Luggage ValiantIT Luggage Valiant3.2081 reviews
177Lucas TroyLucas Troy3.1977 reviews
178High Sierra ChaserHigh Sierra Chaser3.163,839 reviews
179High Sierra XBTHigh Sierra XBT3.161,330 reviews
180Travelers Choice FreedomTravelers Choice Freedom3.161,615 reviews
181Biaggi ZipSakBiaggi ZipSak3.10844 reviews
182Tumi 19 DegreeTumi 19 Degree2.9459 reviews
183Heys XcaseHeys Xcase2.9254 reviews
184Perry Ellis FortePerry Ellis Forte2.8956 reviews
185Travelpro WalkaboutTravelpro Walkabout2.8663 reviews
186Raden A22Raden A222.4551 reviews
How we rate the bags

We have checked 425,582 Carry-on luggage reviews, so we can show you the weighted average rating of all the bags.

Using the average ratings, you can check what all the reviewers think instead of just viewing the subjective opinion of one specific reviewer.

It's much simplier to find the best bags that way.


Buyers Guide to Carry-On Luggage


There are certain items that you simply can entrust to checked luggage. If you want to keep important things close to you (or are just going on a short trip) then carry on luggage is the way to go. The thing with this type of bag, though, is that there are lots of rules and restrictions surrounding it. All of this can make it quite confusing when it comes time to choose one.

Well, we understand your frustration completely which is why we decided to clarify this selection process for you. You will be able to find all of the information that you require to choose a high quality and long lasting piece of carry on luggage:

What You Need to Know About Selecting Carry On Luggage

When it comes to choosing carry on luggage, you quickly realize just how many details and features that you need to be aware of. With most other types of bags, it is typically down to personal preference as well as identifying which one is the best. With carry on luggage, though, there is a lot more to think about since you also have to take airline guidelines into consideration as well. Of course, you don’t need to worry about any of this as the following article has you covered:

Types of Carry On Luggage

There are various styles and designs of carry on luggage to select from:

Carry On Backpack

You will see most people walking around with a carry on backpack strapped to their shoulder. The main draw of this type of luggage is that it is comfortable to carry, has numerous compartments, and isn’t as rigid as some of the other styles of hand luggage. Not to mention, most people now travel with their laptops and laptop backpacks are one of the easiest ways to pack your digital devices.

Carry On Duffel

Carry on duffel bags are also rather common among flyers. These are sturdy bags that are able to contain a larger quantity of items. This makes them ideal for people headed out on short trips and who want to carry all of their baggage as hand luggage. Duffel bags have a versatile design which fits in with a number of environments.

Carry On Suitcase

The great thing about taking a carry on suitcase with you is that you get to neatly organize all of your belongings. They are also good for protecting any delicate items as they tend to be a little bit more structured than other types of bags. Suitcases are available either as soft shell cases or hard shell cases.

Carry On Briefcases

A carry on briefcase is just what you need for business travel. These bags look professional and have just enough space for a laptop, other digital devices, and documents. There is also plenty of organization features as well.

Things to Consider

Now, there are some commonalities among the types of bags that you will need to think about:

Wheels or No Wheels?

All carry on backpacks, duffel bags, briefcases, and suitcases can either be without wheels or have wheels. So, this is something that you will have to factor in when making your decision. Now, the upside of having a wheeled bag is that it is easier to take around with you. This way, you will not have to feel the strain of the weight that you have packed.

Of course, the wheel system and the wheels themselves add both weight as well as bulk to the bag in question. This can prove to be a bit of a problem as these are factors that you need to minimize with carry on luggage. In the end, the decision will need to suit your preferred way to travel.

If you do decide to go with wheels, then you will need to pick between bags with two wheels and those with four. The bags with two wheels are great for practically all kinds of flooring, including pavement and uneven ground. They are also durable and the wheels are recessed in the bag so that they don’t take up too much space.

Four wheeled bags are also known as spinners. The great thing about four wheels is that you can simply push them along without making much of an effort. They also work well when traveling through small spaces. The only issue is that the wheels are fixed to the outside of the suitcase making them vulnerable. The wheels also take up additional space.

Women or Men Specific?

When it comes to carry on luggage, there aren’t really pieces specifically for men or for women. There may be colors and designs that are targeted towards certain genders but that really, is where the differences lie. With backpacks, however, you may come across women specific packs. These are made for the smaller frames of women and can be useful for those who are a bit petite.

Size

There is no denying that getting the size right with your carry on luggage is of the utmost importance. If it is too large, then it will not be allowed onboard with you. The tricky part is actually figuring out what size that you should get. One thing you should not do is believe stores or sites that claim to have ‘official carry on sizes’. This is because there is no official size. Each airline determines what size your hand luggage should be and you will need to adhere to these rules. So, while some airlines will insist that you only bring small carry on bags with you, others may have more relaxed rules.

In most cases, domestic airlines and flights will allow a carry on bag that is no longer than 22 inches. The bag should also have a width less than 14 inches and the depth should not be greater than 9 inches. It is important to remember that these dimensions are including the handles, wheels, and any other external features of your bag as well.

There aren’t fixed size rules for international travel either and these, too, are dependent on the airline that you are traveling on. The dimensions are quite similar to the domestic measurements and only differ by a couple of inches. Some airlines quote linear inches rather than individual dimensions. Linear inches refers to the total calculation of the length, width, and depth of the bag.

In the end, it is best to simply check with the airline that you will be using. They will be the only ones equipped to answer this question accurately. It is actually a good idea to do so every time that you book a flight. Lots of airlines change their size requirements quite regularly.

Underseat Luggage

While carry on luggage can seem like an all-encompassing term, you should stop and think about where is that you want to store your bag. The two main options are in the overhead compartment or under the seat in front of you. Now, if you want to keep your bag beneath the seat, then there are entirely different dimensions to think about.

Here too, the size is dependent on the airline. This, of course, is because the bag must be slightly smaller than the space that is available under the seat. Since seat measurements differ with each airline, you will need to do your homework ahead of time. Usually, though, if the bag is less than 42 linear inches, it should fit well under here.

Weight

Once you have dealt with the size of the bag, the next thing that you will have to figure out is the weight. Carry on luggage has weight restrictions as well. Once again, it all depends on which airline that you are flying on. Typically, though the allowed weight ranges from about 10 to 18 pounds.

The reason that you need to think about this is because most carry on bags weigh upwards of a pound. The bigger and more durable the bag, the heavier it will be. So, if you want to maximize on how much you can take with you in your bag, you will need to keep an eye on the weight of the empty bag as well.

Materials

The material of your carry on luggage can be important for two purposes – weight and durability. With backpacks, duffel bags, and soft shell suitcases, your biggest choice will be between polyester and nylon. If you want to keep the weight as low as possible, then polyester will probably be a better option as it tends to be lighter. It is also good for anyone looking for cheap carry on luggage as these bags tend to cost less.

For durability, though nylon is the clear winner. If you want a bag that will not tear or wear away easily, then you may want to opt for a model that uses either ripstop nylon or ballistic nylon. These are abrasion resistant and can be used for a long time without showing signs of damage.

If you are looking for hard shell suitcases then some form of plastic is typically commonly available. PVC plastic quite light but also gets dented relatively easily so it isn’t a great idea if you do a lot of heavy duty traveling. The ABS plastic is a great deal stronger but predictably weighs more as well. You may also find hard shell suitcases that are made from aluminum. While they are the strongest of all the options, they also weigh the most.

If you want a bag that is more for form rather than function, canvas and leather are other options you can turn to. Of course, you will need to be aware that these don’t stand up well to heavy use and may begin to look worn out after a few trips. With proper maintenance, though, they could last for some years.

This is the extent of what you need to know about selecting carry on luggage for your next trip.

8 More Carry-On Luggage


Classic carry-on luggage and models that haven't yet got enough reviews to be ranked.

RankCarry-On LuggageRating
Lowe Alpine ATLowe Alpine AT
Lowe Alpine LightfliteLowe Alpine Lightflite
High Sierra SymmetryHigh Sierra Symmetry
High Sierra WinslowHigh Sierra Winslow
Rimowa TopasRimowa Topas
Antler LiquisAntler Liquis
Gucci SupremeGucci Supreme
Rimowa SalsaRimowa Salsa

Last updated on February 09, 2019

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