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How to Choose Best Carry-On Luggage for Frequent Flyers

Choosing the right carry-on luggage can enhance your airport experience, save you money on baggage fees, and ensure your belongings are always within reach when needed. As a frequent flyer, you need a bag that meets airline requirements, is durable, and offers convenient features. Here’s a guide to help you select the best carry-on luggage for your needs.

How to Ensure Your Carry-On Meets Airline Requirements

  • Check Dimensions: Verify that your carry-on bag fits within the standard size limits of 22 x 14 x 9 inches, including wheels and handles, to avoid any issues at the gate. Common Carry-On sizes are 20, 21, and 22 inch by height.
  • Know the Weight Limits: Some airlines have weight restrictions for carry-ons. Make sure your bag is lightweight and that you can lift it into the overhead bin.

      Choose Between Hard-Sided or Soft-Sided Carry-On Suitcases

      • Hard-Sided Luggage: Ideal for protecting fragile items and offering better security with integrated locks. Look for materials like polycarbonate for durability.
      • Soft-Sided Luggage: Offers flexibility, exterior pockets, and is generally lighter. Perfect for fitting into tight spaces and expanding slightly when you need extra space..

      Best Materials for Durable and Lightweight Carry-On Bags

      • Polycarbonate: Lightweight and durable, making it a popular choice for hard-sided luggage.
      • Ballistic or Jacquard Nylon: Known for its strength and resistance to wear and tear, ideal for soft-sided bags.
      • Cordura: Offers excellent abrasion resistance and durability.

      Find the Best Carry-On Luggage for Your Budget

      • Set a Budget: Determine how much you’re willing to spend. There are quality options available in various price ranges. Keep an eye on promotions and sales/offers.
      • Compare Brands: Look for brands known for durability and customer satisfaction. Most Direct-To-Consumer brands like Loomis Travel will offer the best value for your money because their retail markups are low to none.

      Ensure Your Carry-On Has Smooth Rolling Spinner Wheels

      • Four-Wheel Spinners: Provide easy maneuverability through airport security lines. Ensure the wheels are sturdy and can handle rough surfaces.
      • Two-Wheel Rollers: Often have more interior space and are better for pulling over long distances.

      Select a Carry-On with a Sturdy Telescoping Handle

      • Read the Handle Details: Make sure the telescoping handle is robust and doesn’t wobble. It should lock at multiple heights for comfort.
      • Durability: Look for handles made from high-quality materials such as aluminum that can withstand frequent use.
      Lightweight Softside Expandable Carry-On and Checkin Luggage with 360-Degree Spinner Wheels

      From the Author: The carry-ons we manufacture at Loomis Travel feature strong military-grade jacquard fabric, smooth wheels, and expandable capacity for ultimate convenience. See our catalog below.

      Maximize Packing Space with Expandable Carry-On Luggage

      • Expandable Features: Choose a carry-on that can expand to provide extra packing space as needed. This is especially useful for longer trips.
      • Compression Straps: Help to keep your belongings compact and organized, maximizing the available space.

      Organize Your Belongings with Multiple Carry-On Compartments

      • Interior Pockets: Look for bags with multiple compartments to separate your items and keep them organized.
      • Exterior Pockets: Useful for quick access to travel documents, electronics, and other essentials. Make it easy to remove items when going through the security checkpoints.

      Invest in a Carry-On with Lockable Zippers or TSA-Approved Locks

      • Lockable Zippers: Provide an additional layer of security for your belongings.
      • TSA-Approved Locks: Ensure your luggage has built-in locks that can be opened by TSA agents without damaging your bag.

      Loomis Travel

      • Consider supporting our Direct-To-Customer brand. We strive to eliminate retail markups while offering top-quality, stylish, and functional luggage designed to meet the needs of frequent travelers.
      • Other well-known brands include Travelpro, Samsonite: and Briggs & Riley.

      Top Carry-On Luggage Brands for Frequent Flyers

      • Loomis Travel - Consider supporting our Direct-To-Customer brand. We do our best to eliminate retail markups while offering top-quality, stylish and functional luggage.

      Other brands

      • Travelpro: 
      • Samsonite: 
      • Briggs & Riley

      Support Our Mission

      Support our Atlanta-based writing team and get premium luggage at affordable prices. When you buy Loomis Travel bags directly from us, you avoid retail markups while helping fund Dr. Dickson's team to keep sharing fresh travel tips and stories.

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      About the Author

      Dr. Dickson W., is an Atlanta-based research scientist, passionate traveler and CEO of Loomis Travel, the direct to customer luggage company you can trust featured below.