On a recent flight from Los Angeles to Charlotte, I was surrounded by a group of guys, obviously musicians, on their way to a music festival. I didn’t chat with them but most of them were in the First-Class line so I figured they were established musicians, not just newbies. While I waited to check my bag, I noticed the luggage of the guy directly in front of me. It. Was. Awful. It was an old, beat up duffle bag, which had clearly seen better days, it even had some taped-up edges.
I had to chuckle at the fact that he could afford a First-Class seat but not a bag that wasn’t left over from his Junior High gym class, then it got me thinking; What does our luggage say about us?
Now, I wasn’t around when travel was glamorous; steamer trunks, porters, cruise liners, first class train cars and so on, but I will say that I DO notice what type of luggage people have and I’m always pretty impressed when I see someone that’s well put together and has the luggage to back it up.
There are a lot of up and coming luxury luggage companies out there these days: Brics, Away, Steamline Luggage to name a few and more. “The thing about travel now is that it’s so unglamorous,” says Sara Banks, founder of Steamline Luggage. “Every single thing about it is a slog. A really gorgeous suitcase can add just a smidge of glamour and elegance back into the experience. When you’re stuck in that god-awful security line, it can put a little spring back into your step, the way a really beautiful fashion accessory can.”
Not everyone wants a bag that communicates their unique identity to the world, but for those who do want to make a statement and hate boring bags there are some great choices out there. My suggestion for a splurge would be to choose a nice carry-on bag, that way you can protect it from being roughed up at check in.
Here are a few important things to remember when choosing a carry-on bag.
- SIZE: Don’t forget proper dimensions for the airline. According to American Airlines, the carry-on bag must be 22 x 14 x 9 inches or 23 x 36 x 56 cm. BUT some international airlines have a smaller limit so MAKE SURE YOU CHECK IN ADVANCE, you don’t want to have to check your beautiful new piece if you don’t have too!
- TSA Basics: You’ll be allowed one bag and one personal item, such as a purse, case, or laptop bag, that must fit under you seat. It’s is important to remember that you only have your overhead compartment and under your seat for storage. The types of bags that are welcomed as carry-on luggage are as follows: backpack, shoulder bag, roller bag.
- Bag Choice: As a retired athlete, I have some shoulder issues so I stay away from anything that is a duffle. I’ve have found that the spinner wheels work well for me; they roll easily and I can put my purse on top of it as I wheel through and airport.
- Check the discount stores: I’ve seen some great luggage scores of high-end brands at some of the discounts stores in town-nothing feels as good as looking sharp within your budget!
The bottom line is, choose what fits your style and budget and Happy Traveling!