14 Best Luggage Brands for Every Budget and Every Trip
No matter how often or why you’re traveling, you’ll need a suitcase that suits your needs. It has to be spacious enough to hold all your stuff, light enough to carry around, and durable enough to last year after year.
The Good Housekeeping Institute’s Textile Lab tests luggage of all kinds, from carry-ons, to checked bags, and more. We evaluate in them in the Lab by measuring things like abrasion and scratch resistance, water resistance, weight and size, ease of use, and durability in our drop tests. We also perform packing tests to compare compartments and see how much each can hold. Then we bring in consumer testers to use the luggage in an obstacle course and give feedback on aspects like handle comfort, wheel performance, and maneuverability. In our most recent evaluation, we tested 25 of the hottest new styles and logged over 4,000 data points to find the best cases you can buy.
After combing through the past 10 years of test data with thousands of additional scores, we’ve selected the best luggage brands based on top-performing cases from our review, our expert favorites that we use when we travel, and newer styles with unique features. Read on to learn more about our top picks, but in summary the best luggage brands to shop in 2020 are:
- Best Overall Luggage: Away
- Best Value Luggage: Open Story
- Best Under-$100 Luggage: AmazonBasics
- Best Luggage for Families: Thule
- Best Luggage for Long Trips: L.L.Bean
- Best Luggage for Frequent Flyers: Hartmann
- Best Luggage for Infrequent Flyers: American Tourister
- Best Luggage for Business Travel: Samsonite
- Best Luggage for Adventure Travel: Eagle Creek
- Best Luggage for Flight Crews: TravelPro
- Best Luxury Luggage: Bric’s
- Best Classic Hardside Luggage: Rimowa
- Best Printed Luggage: Heys
- Best Luggage Customer Service: OMASKA
Is soft or hardside luggage better?
The answer: It’s a personal preference.
- For hard shell luggage, we recommend going with polycarbonate because it’s both durable and lightweight. Aluminum is heavier and ABS plastic is less durable.
- For soft fabric luggage that’s more flexible to stuff into tight spaces (e.g. car trunks or overhead bins), nylon’s your best bet because it’s strong and water resistant.