Where to begin? We evaluated over 75 models and purchased the top 12 suitcases so you can focus on what to take and where to go on your next adventure. With so many experiences to have and plan, we sometimes forget about the details of getting there. And when that entails packing all your gear into one piece of luggage for a flight, sometimes a carry-on doesn’t provide the storage capacity you need.
For those adventure seekers for which a duffel bag or 65-liter backpack filled to the gills just won’t do — this review is for you. We are confident that our one-stop shop will help you assess top-performing models side-by-side, complete with a range of metrics that are key to choosing the best of the best.
Best Overall Suitcase
Timbuk2 Copilot 28
The largest the Timbuk 2 luggage line, the Copilot brings you thoughtful and sensible design in an affordable package. This durable bag has a clam-shell design with a hardened back and a clean nylon front.
With dual clamshell compartments on in the inside, the Copilot lets you pack to your heart’s desire, whether for a multi-day trip across the country or a multi-week trip around the globe.
We particularly love this feature for its ability to separate his from hers, or one set of gear from the rest. The go-anywhere smooth rolling skateboard wheels laugh at rough surfaces en route to the airport, and the unique exterior access flap to get inside your bag without rummaging around was another perk of our favorite suitcase of this review — not to mention a price point that will blow your mind.
Best Bang for the Buck
Travelpro Maxlite 4 25
The TravelPro MaxLite 4 reminded us that for a product to be functional and worth purchasing, it didn’t have to have all the bells and whistles of the top-tier.
Sometimes the standard fare is plenty, especially if your excursions requiring checked luggage are few and far between. Sharing some design cues of the TravelPro Platinum Magna 2 — it’s better looking, and feature-rich sibling — the Maxlite impressed us with easy gliding spinner wheels for smoother surfaces and smart refinements to standard features.
Coming close to the middle of the pack with its bargain basement pricing, it’s plain to see how the Maxlite earned the Best Bang for the Buck award in this competition. If you are looking for a bag for the one-off trip, no need to buy a throwaway bag with the Maxlite around.
Top Pick for Business Travel
Travelpro Platinum Magna 2 26
With both the TravelPro Platinum Magna 2 and its little brother, the Maxlite 4, receiving accolades in our performance review, TravelPro is doing something right.
The smart and sleek classic styling with a modern take, the Magna blends fashion and function in an all-around package. Durable build, sleek looks, great transportability — and not to mention storage options. The Magna is an all-around performer who would have stolen the show had it not been for the Timbuk2 Copilot.
Aside from the styling, the reason we believe this bag to excel with business travelers is the suit folder feature. The Briggs and Riley Baseline, which scored a point and a half higher, also has a suit-folder. However, the Baseline costs nearly twice as much like the Magna.
Top Pick for Backpacking Urban Adventurers
Osprey Sojourn 28 Convertible
When it came to the context of this review, the Osprey Sojourn certainly was not a top contender. But we believe that was more a function of the review than the bag.
The Sojourn attempts a feat unique to any bag currently available: on-the-fly conversion of roller luggage to a full suspension backpack. In most cases, this is entirely unnecessary.
However, if you’ve made a habit of traveling abroad with a backpack, you understand that sometimes you simply don’t want to carry a backpack. You wish you could pull it behind you and give your back a break from the miles of urban hiking.
And for that reason, we think it’s obvious that the Sojourn is our Top Pick for Backpacking Urban Adventurers.
I hope you’ve found this article helpful in narrowing down your choice and saving you time doing your own research?