How to Choose Luggage, Packs and Bags
Having the right type of luggage, pack or bag for your travels can make packing up and hopping on a plane or hitting the road easier and less stressful. But with so many styles to choose from, deciding which one is right for you can be a challenge. This article breaks down the different types of luggage and offers advice on choosing the right size, weight and level of durability. It also goes over features like wheels, laptop compartments and carry-on compatibility.
Types of Luggage, Bags and Packs
There are three broad categories of luggage: wheeled luggage, travel packs and travel duffels. When deciding which one is right for you, it can be helpful to think about things like where you’re going, how you’re getting there and what you plan to do when you get there.
The obvious advantage of luggage, packs and bags with wheels is how easy they are to transport through the airport and down smooth streets and sidewalks. There are three types of wheeled luggage: rolling luggage, wheeled duffels and wheeled backpacks.
Rolling luggage: Designed for traditional travelers, rolling luggage is what you see most people pulling behind them at an airport. They come in a range of sizes and typically feature sturdy construction made to handle the rigors of luggage transport systems. They are generally best for business travel, family visits, road trips and travel to urban areas.
Wheeled duffels: Nothing swallows up gear like a duffel bag, and one with wheels is a good choice for multisport travelers. If your adventures frequently require gear of widely varying sizes and shapes, a rolling duffel is a smart way to corral it all. For light packers, a carry-on wheeled duffel offers less space but allows you to forgo the time and expense of checking a luggage bags and cases. Wheeled duffels are a good choice for adventure travel requiring bulky or odd-shaped gear, family trips and road trips. To learn more about duffel options, read about travel duffels below.
Wheeled backpacks: Popular with adventure travelers, these combine the convenience of wheeled luggage with the mobility of a backpack. You can transport lots of gear with a simple pull of the extendable handle. Facing heavy foot traffic or a long flight of stairs? Strap on the shoulder straps and hip belt for hands-free carrying convenience. Wheeled backpacks are typically best for adventure travel and road trips. To learn more about backpacks, see the travel packs section below.