13 Best Carry-On Luggage Bags of 2024 For Smoother Travels

The only ding against the TravelPro is its humdrum looks, which evoke the dated carpeting of one of the airports it’ll be dragged through. But that hasn’t kept it from becoming a favorite of frequent flyers. If the TravelPro logo looks familiar, it’s probably because you’ve spotted it on the luggage of the flight attendants and pilots that spend most of their lives in the sky.

The Best Hard-Shell Luggage: Away The Bigger Carry-On

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Away The Bigger Carry-on, tested and reviewed by Brittany Loggins

Brittany Loggins

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Away The Bigger Carry-on, tested and reviewed by Brittany Loggins

Brittany Loggins

Away really took the luggage industry by storm when it launched in 2015. And while the brand has launched a lot of colorways and collabs since its early days, the streamlined hardshell design has stayed basically the same. We’ve had the Bigger Carry-On size since 2017, and it’s traveled with us on more than 50 flights in that time. While the light blue color makes scratches and marks somewhat inevitable, the structure, wheels and inside lining are truly as good as new. We also think the outside doesn’t look nearly as bad as it could given the amount of times it’s been used, and we suspect that it could be shined up a bit if I ever decide to take on such a task.

Now for the specifics: the bags have smooth Hinomoto spinner wheels, top and side handles, clothes straps, a mesh zip pocket, a laundry bag, and sturdy YKK zippers. They also have a built-in USB charger, which was a little more exciting before airlines started requiring them to be removed from the luggage itself before takeoff. While our tester took out the mesh insert long ago to maximize the amount of items they could cram in the bag, that’s also an option to use as a clothing compressor if you need it.

Another Solid Hardside Carry-On Suitcase: Monos Carry-On

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Monos carry-on, tested and reviewed by Tyler Chin

Tyler Chin

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Monos carry-on, tested and reviewed by Tyler Chin

Tyler Chin

In the war between direct-to-consumer suitcases, Away is the clear winner by sheer popularity. But for anyone trying hard to not cave into peer pressure, Monos makes a comparable hardside suitcase that doesn’t scream Instagram-obsessive-millennial. It’s built with nearly the same specs as Away’s carry-on and features nearly all the same design details from the interior compression, included laundry bag, 360-degree spinner wheels, and ribbed exterior. It’s a whole Andrew Jackson less than the Away if that’s enough to sway you to shop a suitcase from a lesser-known brand. And there’s less of a chance of someone else grabbing your bag from the overhead bin, which—joking or not—should be enough to get someone on the no-fly list for at least a year.

The Ultimate Travel Flex: Rimowa Classic Carry-On


Classic Cabin Suitcase

Rimowa, the storied German luggage company founded in the late 1800s, has been a powerhouse in the luggage space for over a century, with a litany of perks to its name: A single-stage telescoping handle, a hinged double latch lock by the main compartment, elastic compression straps with magnetic pull-release fastenings, its signature ridged exteriors, the works. Couple that with some choice collabs with the likes of Dior, Off-White, Moncler, and beyond, and you’ll see why Rimowa’s become a status symbol among elite travelers and celebs like Rihanna and LeBron James. Each bag will set you back at least a grand, but if you’ve ever been stuck traveling with a lackluster piece of luggage and thought, Man, I wish my suitcase could do that, chances are Rimowa’s can, and masterfully. We fully love the aluminum model, but if you’re balling on a budget (but still can afford to drop a few hundo), Rimowa makes this exact shaped suitcase in a polycarbonate option, which makes it more comparable to your typical DTC-style suitcase (ahem, like Away). We went deep on the legacy brand’s signature bag here in case you want to hear more about the intricacies of how it maneuvers and exactly how it compares to something more pedestrian like the Away.

The Best Customizable Carry-On Suitcase: Roam Carry On

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Roam carry-on, tested and reviewed by Brittany Loggins

Brittany Loggins

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Roam carry-on, tested and reviewed by Brittany Loggins

Brittany Loggins

For Roam luggage, customization really is key. Our tester opted for a model that featured different shades of pink, and that’s because Roam’s level customization is truly impressive, from the outside shell to the zipper lining and handles. If you want to keep it subtle, these cases look amazing with basic colors but a fun pop for the zipper lining and wheels. You can truly make it as loud and bright or as subdued as you want. No matter what colors you choose, the glossy or matte options for the hardshell, as well as the overall design and silhouette, are brought to you by the same team that built the iconic Tumi luggage, so it’s gonna look great.

Our tester had their carry-on for five years, lauding its small-but-mighty design. The brand recently added an expandable option, too, which offers 37% more space when activated. But even without the expansion, our tester has been able to fit a on of stuff, including bulky jackets and snow pants for a five-day ski trip and a tuxedo, suit, two pairs of shoes, and regular daily wear for an even longer Europe excursion.

The Best Luxury Duffle Bag: Lotuff No.12 Weekender

Lotuff’s handsome, all-American No. 12 duffle bag is our favorite of the genre, with all the details that matter (or matter enough to justify this $1,200 price tag). Take the zipper closure for one, which runs from end to end for extra security, and a wide opening that allows you to shove in a glut of your equally fancy sweaters and toiletries without breaking a sweat. Unlike other cheaply-made and poorly-designed duffles, the vegetable-tanned leather also gives it a first-class patina that only gets better with every trip. But should the leather break or that zipper snag, Lotuff will repair it for a fee, so this bag will stay in your family for many, many flights to come. The interior of the bag features a zip pocket for corralling your loose miscellanea, and the bottom of the bag is also reinforced with double leather for durability. With this bag, you’re looking at an investment piece that, if you’re treating it right, won’t ever need to be replaced.

The Best Travel Backpack: Topo Designs Global Travel Bag

Topo Designs

Global Travel Bag 40L

Topo Design has built up a loyal following of rugged adventurers over its 16 years of business. The Colorado-based brand is making some of the best mountaineering, hiking, and travel packs and gear in the Mountain Standard Time zone, and we’ve found its Global Travel bag to be an excellent pack for doing exactly as the name implies. The bag actually offers three ways to carry it—whether you use it as a backpack, briefcase, or shoulder bag—but what it really has going for it is its plethora of pockets and U-shape entry, which means the bag unzips to fold in half.

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