Who says traveling has to be expensive? As a frequent traveler, I can confidently say that there are tons of tricks for you to have a memorable trip without sacrificing your saving. And if you need to get a piece of new luggage, you’re at the right place. While many options out there are on the pricier side, if you look closely, you’ll find cheap ones, too. Whether it’s affordable carry on luggage or a luggage set you’re after, I’ve got your back. I have a few reliable collections at home that don’t cost arms and legs, and I was also lucky enough to be able to test some of the best-rated budget options on the market. That’s why I was able to make the following list. They’re my personal favorites, and I’m sure you’ll love them as well. So, since you’re here, why not check them out?
Table of contents
- American Tourister Belle Voyage
- LEVEL8 Grace Carry-On Luggage
- Coolife Spinner Trolley
- Kenneth Cole Out of Bounds
- adidas Defender IV Medium Duffel Bag
- Rockland Melbourne Hardside Expandable Luggage Set
- Samsonite Omni PC Hardside Luggage
- Travelpro Maxlite Air Expandable Luggage
- SwissGear Sion Softside Expandable Luggage
- Amazon Basics Hardside Spinner
- Samsonite Winfield 2
- DELSEY Paris Helium Aero Luggage
- Coolife Expandable Luggage
- Our Verdict!
- How to Choose the Best Budget Luggage
- Are cheap suitcases OK?
- How many years do suitcases last?
- Is it cheaper to buy luggage at the airport or online?
American Tourister Belle Voyage
When it comes to luggage, American Tourister is a household name. That’s why I think the best way to kick off this list is by showing you the American Tourister Belle Voyage. This is a high-quality yet affordable American Tourister luggage that’s available in many sizes. The one that I tested was the 20-inch carry-on, and I had a blast experimenting with it. This softside luggage is expandable, and based on my test, it was able to expand up to 1.5 inches. This should be more than enough for most travelers.
The expandable design isn’t its only selling point. The multi-directional spinner wheels are durable and allow you to maneuver the luggage easily on any type of surface. And just 7.8 lbs, I’m sure everyone can lift this luggage without any help. On the inside, you’ll find a huge main compartment, a mesh pocket, as well as straps to help keep your clothes in place. Best of all, it’s backed by a 10-year limited warranty.
- The gold accents make this luggage eye-catching.
- It’s available in multiple sizes and colors.
- The durability of this luggage is among the best.
- The color of the bag is a bit darker than the picture.
LEVEL8 Grace Carry-On Luggage
Who doesn’t love LEVEL8? Specializing in sleek and simple luggage, the brand is loved by countless travelers. Its collections are exceptionally stylish and highly functional, and the LEVEL8 Grace Carry-On Luggage is no exception. Made of a mix of PC and ABS, this luggage is scratch-resistant and has outstanding durability. Though I only had the chance to test it for a day, I could tell that it was something that can last for years the moment I used it.
Among all of its features, one of my favorites is the front laptop compartment. If you often travel for work, you’ll appreciate this feature. However, you should note that the laptop shouldn’t be bigger than 15.6 inches. On top of that, I also love the 360-degree spinner wheels, which offer exceptional mobility. Along with the built-in TSA lock for extra security, I truly think this cheap luggage is an ideal choice for all travelers. For more luggage from this brand, click here!
- The wheels are durable and quiet.
- With a roomy main compartment, this luggage allows you to pack more.
- Weighing 8 lbs, it’s pretty lightweight.
- It’s not expandable.
Coolife Spinner Trolley
Say hello to the Coolife Spinner Trolley. It’s a beautiful suitcase whose durability matches its aesthetics. Available in neutral but sophisticated colors, this luggage is lightweight yet extremely tough. This is because its material is made of a blend of ABS and PC, which allows it to withstand the bumps and impacts from rough handling. During testing, I tried to drop it on multiple surfaces and I found no visible damage. It was truly impressive.
No one wants to lose their belongings. That’s why this luggage also comes with a TSA lock. That way, you don’t have to wonder about the safety of your stuff anymore. I also think the front pocket is another nice addition to the luggage. You can use it to keep your laptop, documents, or other stuff you want to reach easily. And if this luggage impresses you, you may want to check out the 28-inch variant as well!
- All the handles are reinforced and durable.
- Unlike other cookie-cutter options, this luggage has a sturdy telescoping handle.
- The side bumper feet prevent extra damage from the ground.
- Not ideal for long trips.
Kenneth Cole Out of Bounds
Aside from producing fashionable apparel for men and women, Kenneth Cole also has a fantastic collection of luggage. On this list is the Kenneth Cole Out of Bounds, which immediately caught my eye when I first saw it. This is a sleek, modern, and affordable piece of carry-on luggage that’s available in a wide variety of shades. Made of ABS, the shell isn’t just pretty but also durable and lightweight. And if its gorgeous design doesn’t catch your attention, I’m sure its amazing features can.
The 20-inch carry-on is lightweight but still spacious enough to store a few days’ worth of clothes. In addition, I also like the presence of the zipped side panel and the compression straps, which can help you keep your clothes more organized. Apart from that, the retractable push-button handle feels sturdy, and with the smooth spinner wheels, you’ll be able to head to the gate without having to stop every few steps.
- The molded corners offer extra durability.
- It’s backed by a limited lifetime warranty.
- There’s a side handle so you can lift the luggage easily.
- Sadly, it’s not scratch-resistant.
adidas Defender IV Medium Duffel Bag
Best Duffel. Not all carry-on has to be in the form of a suitcase. If you prefer something you can simply throw over your shoulder, I recommend checking out the adidas Defender IV Medium Duffel Bag. It’s available in a few sizes, but the Medium variant is 12 x 24.75 x 13 inches, which is the perfect size for me. It’s small enough to be a carry-on but spacious enough to keep a few days’ worth of clothing items. Plus, since this bag is made by adidas, you don’t have to worry about its durability. During testing, I was impressed by the polyester material. Plus, I was able to clean it easily.
Another thing that impressed me back then was its shoulder strap. I was able to adjust it easily and it didn’t hurt my shoulder even though the bag was full. I’m sure you’ll also love the side pockets. You can use them to store your smaller essentials or even shoes. Not to mention, this bag is extremely cheap. And while it’s available in tons of different shades, I think I like the Royal Blue variant the most. It’s bright and makes it easy to spot the bag. And if you want to make your luggage a standout, check out these travel stickers for luggage!
- It’s a nice choice for short trips.
- The bag is both lightweight and durable.
- The base of the bag is water-resistant.
- You may need more energy to carry the bag as it doesn’t have wheels.
Rockland Melbourne Hardside Expandable Luggage Set
Best Set. Traveling with your loved ones and looking for an affordable set of carry-on luggage? Check out the Rockland Melbourne Hardside Expandable Luggage Set and thank me later! What makes me think this is the budget luggage set is the fact that you can get three different suitcases for the price of one. That’s insane, right? Thankfully, the quality of each luggage doesn’t disappoint. In fact, for the price, all of them are great.
This set includes a 20-inch carry-on as well as two checked luggage of 24-inch and 28-inch. All of the feature an ABS shell, which is pretty durable and pleasing to the eyes. Additionally, they’re expandable and come with dividers to keep your stuff organized. Though not indestructible, they’re pretty durable. When I tested these suitcases, I handled them pretty roughly, but they showed little to no scratches. For other models from this brand, check out these best Rockland luggage!
- Though affordable, the quality of this 3-piece luggage set is still good.
- They come with smooth, spinner wheels.
- They’re available in several color options.
- Unfortunately, they don’t have TSA locks.
Samsonite Omni PC Hardside Luggage
Even though you’re on a budget, it’s still possible to get a durable suitcase. Enter the Samsonite Omni PC Hardside Luggage. So, what’s the deal with this luggage? First of all, its micro-diamond polycarbonate material is among the best. It can take bump after bump and you won’t see a single scratch on the shell. I’ve tested its durability and I was actually shocked by how tough it was. Also, the shell is available in a variety of different colors. Whether you’re into dark or vibrant colors, you’ll find one that suits you well.
Inside this luggage, you’ll find cross straps on one side and a zippered compartment on the other. You don’t have to worry about safety as this luggage also features built-in TSA locks on the side. However, I think the best part of this luggage is the fact that it’s backed by a 10-year limited warranty. So, if you find any defects in the materials, you don’t have to spend your money trying to fix them or get a new suitcase. Also, make sure to watch this review video of the Omni PC!
- At 6.81 lbs, it’s really lightweight and easy to lift into the overhead compartment.
- The push-button handle is easy to use.
- It’s also available in sets and larger models.
- The quality of the wheels isn’t exactly the best.
Travelpro Maxlite Air Expandable Luggage
Another luggage that I highly recommend especially if you don’t want to spend too much is the Travelpro Maxlite Air Expandable Luggage. The spinner wheels are a joy to use. They roll easily on almost any type of surface. During testing, this affordable piece of carry-on luggage was able to glide smoothly on smooth floors and bumpy surfaces. And for something that doesn’t cost a fortune, I can confidently tell you that the wheels are exceptionally durable.
What’s more, both halves of this Travelpro luggage are zippered compartments. They’re big and can keep your valuables safe. As if that’s not enough, you’ll also find an additional pocket for those smaller items that can easily get buried. I tried the 20-inch carry-on and it’s super lightweight. For its size, I think it’s a great choice for a weekend getaway or a three-day trip. Also, there are so many beautiful different colors to choose from!
- The polycarbonate shell can withstand the abuse from traveling.
- There are built-in TSA locks.
- It’s backed by a limited lifetime warranty.
- The side handle is a little bit too tight.
SwissGear Sion Softside Expandable Luggage
Best Softside. Yes; everyone knows hardside luggage is more durable most of the time. However, they’re not for everyone. If you’re one of those travelers who want to squeeze their luggage into small, tight spaces, I recommend checking out the SwissGear Sion Softside Expandable Luggage. At 21 inches, this carry-on certainly fits most airline carry-on regulations. And though compact, this Swiss Gear luggage comes with multiple pockets to help you keep your smaller essentials secure.
Some luggage doesn’t have side handles, which can make it a bit challenging to lift the luggage and put it into the overhead compartment. Thankfully, this luggage comes with one. Additionally, during testing, I found the handle to be super sturdy. Plus, weighing 7.96 lbs, it’s pretty lightweight. What’s more, it’s available in a wide variety of colorways. However, my favorite is the Dark Gray variant. I think it’s the most timeless and handsome option. Take a look at what people have to say about this luggage on its official product page!
- The locking push/pull handle is easy to use.
- The polyester shell is scuff-resistant.
- All of the handles are well-padded.
- Some people may think the design looks boring.
Amazon Basics Hardside Spinner
This list won’t be the same without the Amazon Basics Hardside Spinner. As the name suggests, this is pretty much a basic piece of luggage. However, this doesn’t mean it’s bad as not everyone needs a fancy one. Though simple and basic, it has everything you need for a drama-free trip. One of the things I love the most is its expandable zip gusset, allowing you to pack more. During testing, I was also impressed by the sturdy and smooth zippers. All of them worked exceptionally well.
I also had the chance to test the 360-degree spinner wheels. I think they’re one of the biggest reasons why this item is so popular. They perform well on smooth surfaces, offering an easy maneuvering experience. Additionally, the ABS shell is thick and can withstand abuse from traveling. To summarize, I think this affordable piece of carry-on luggage is one of the most reliable and practical options you can get.
- Despite being cheap, this expandable carry-on has a very durable construction.
- There’s an internal organizer to keep your things tidy.
- The shell is scratch-resistant.
- There’s no TSA lock.
Samsonite Winfield 2
Best Hardside. If what you’re looking for is durable hardside luggage, look no further than the Samsonite Winfield 2. This has to be one of the toughest luggage I’ve ever seen, and the affordable price tag is the perfect cherry on top. While a bit heavy, the shell is super duper strong. According to my test, it doesn’t scratch easily and can protect the things inside really well. And when it comes to safety, you have nothing to worry about as it comes with a TSA-friendly lock, too.
Furthermore, this Samsonite luggage is available in a variety of sizes. Those searching for cheap luggage carry on can get the 20-inch variant. But if you need something bigger, go for the 24-inch or 28-inch model. Additionally, I think everyone will love the addition of the dividers and zippered pouches, which make packing a bit more convenient. Though it’s been around for quite some time, it still remains a popular model from Samsonite.
- The zippers are comfortable to hold and smooth.
- The retractable top handle feels sturdy.
- Maneuvering the luggage is easy thanks to the spinner wheels.
- It’s not as lightweight as some of its competitors.
DELSEY Paris Helium Aero Luggage
Best Spinner. I’ve used and tried countless pieces of luggage before, and I always prefer spinner luggage. They’re just easier to roll and make less friction. And for a reliable option just a little over 100 USD, nothing can beat DELSEY Paris Helium Aero Luggage. Aside from its awesome wheels, this luggage also features a spacious main compartment. I have the 19-inch model and I usually use it for a short trip. It can carry enough clothing that I don’t have to look for laundry.
Though roomy, closing the luggage and zipping it is never a problem. That’s because just like some of the best affordable carry on luggage, it’s expandable. Apart from that, I also have to mention the handle system, which I find very comfortable. It locks into two different positions and feels sturdy. And if the 19-inch variant is too small, you can upgrade the size to the 21-inch variant. It’s still considered a carry-on but offers a little bit more space.
- This luggage has an attractive price tag with equally attractive features.
- It looks chic and modern.
- Built-in TSA locks for extra safety.
- There are no outer compartments or pockets.
Coolife Expandable Luggage
Best Overall. When it comes to affordable carry on luggage, I can’t think of anything better than this Coolife Expandable Luggage. Available at under 100 USD, this luggage checks all the right boxes. For one, I’m a huge fan of its material. It’s made with a mix of PC and ABS plastic, which gives it that extra durability. I have one at home and I’ve been using it for over a year. Until today, it still works perfectly and doesn’t look old at all.
“This affordable luggage is the best all-rounder. From its removable divider to its zipped pocket and hard shell, it makes every trip less of a hassle.”WOW Travel
In addition to that, I also appreciate the presence of the built-in TSA lock, which gives you that much-needed security. And if you want to track your luggage in case something bad happens, you should take a look at these best luggage tags with GPS. Weighing under 7 lbs, this luggage is lightweight. Maneuvering it is even easier thanks to the 360-degree spinner wheels. If you’re in a hurry and want to dash to the gate, you can rest assured that it won’t slow you down. As of this writing, it has gained over 12,000 amazing reviews on Amazon, and I’m sure it’ll gain a lot more in the future.
- There are two zipped pockets for your smaller essentials.
- With a removable fabric divider, you can keep your stuff organized.
- It’s also available in 24-inch and 28-inch variants.
- There’s a chance the luggage can bend if you overstuff it.
Affordable, durable, and functional, the Coolife Expandable Luggage is my favorite option on this list. It’s the best all-rounder that everyone can rely on. However, I understand that it may not be what everyone is looking for. That’s why I’ve categorized some of my picks according to the following criteria:
- Best Spinner: DELSEY Paris Helium Aero Luggage
- Best Hardside: Samsonite Winfield 2
- Best Softside: SwissGear Sion Softside Expandable Luggage
- Best Set: Rockland Melbourne Hardside Expandable Luggage Set
- Best Duffel: adidas Defender IV Medium Duffel Bag
How to Choose the Best Budget Luggage
Whether you’re looking for luggage for traveling in Europe or other continents, the number of available options out there can be overwhelming. And to make sure you don’t end up with something you don’t like, make sure to consider the following things!
If you’re looking for suitcases, they’re available in hardside and softside variants. Hardside luggage is generally more durable against impacts, although some may be a bit heavier. On the other hand, softside luggage allows you to pack more as it’s more flexible and expandable. However, you should note that it may not be as durable.
In addition to the material, you should also pay attention to the wheels. To have a hassle-free trip, I recommend getting luggage with four multi-directional spinner wheels. That way, the luggage can stay upright even when you’re moving it. But if you’re going somewhere with tons of uneven streets, two-wheel luggage may also be a good choice.
Luggage is available in a variety of sizes. There’s carry-on luggage and checked luggage. If you’re going for a short trip and need something you can put inside the overhead bin, you should choose a carry-on not bigger than 22 inches. But for long trips, you should go with bigger luggage.
Of course, you should also consider the weight of the luggage. For your convenience, I recommend choosing luggage under 15 lbs. Anything above that will most likely be too heavy, and that’s without your stuff. Also, the weight limitations of your carry-on luggage depend on the airline, so make sure to double-check everything.
Are cheap suitcases OK?
It depends. First, you should know that not all cheap luggage is built the same. Some may be more durable and overall better than the rest. Also, it depends on you. If you don’t take care of your luggage properly and handle it roughly, chances are it won’t last long.
How many years do suitcases last?
Again, this depends on many factors. The durability of your suitcase may depend on how often you travel, its overall quality, and how you maintain it. However, a nice suitcase should be able to last for around a decade.
Is it cheaper to buy luggage at the airport or online?
Most of the time, everything sold at the airport is significantly more expensive. So, if you want to save money, you should buy luggage online or outside of the airport.