The Getaway
The Best Carry-On Luggage for Every Situation

A great carry-on bag can save you both time and money. And when you only have two days for a quick jaunt, you want to have as much time at your destination as possible. Any of the pieces of luggage below should more than satisfy your needs as a savvy traveler.

As a budget traveler with strong legs, I like the flexibility, size, durability, and light weight of a hiking/camping backpack. Unfortunately, not every situation calls for the use of a backpack, especially one with lots of use. Since every journey requires different gear, The Getaway recommends the following bags for the following situations.

All of these bags are smaller than the Maximum Carry On size that the TSA allows: 22x14x9

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01 Best overall bag and the ultimate champion

The TravelPro Platinum Elite

As recommended by the New York Times, this bag can do it all. It’s not cheap, and it comes with a lifetime warranty. It’s fantastic for weddings, or it’s fantastic for business, or other fancy occasions, as there’s a separate component that ensures your clothes will arrive wrinkle-free.

If you invest in this bag, you may want to bring a separate laptop bag as a personal item to ensure it remains protected.

The Travelpro Platinum Elite Travelpro

02 Best budget bag

SwissGear Carry-Ons (various)

I’ve had a SwissGear carry-on for over ten years. It gets the job done. The zipper hasn’t broken. The soft case has some worn seams, and the handle goes up and down whenever necessary. I've also had a TravelPro bag for nearly as long, and it has held up much better. If you have the funds, the TravelPro is worth the extra money. If you’re on a budget, SwissGear has a good enough bag for you, though feels like a budget bag. You feel like a million bucks with a TravelPro.

SwissGear carry-on SwissGear

03 Best hard bag

Monos Carry-On

Durability and style in one package. The Monos isn’t your grandfather’s carry-on — this is one to take around the world and show off how stylish and smart you are. And its reliability won’t let you down. Hard Cases like this protect your stuff in style. And with Monos'

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04 Best bag for a quick business trip

TravelPro Maxlite 5 Rolling Underseat Bag

My wife travels frequently for work and often needs to travel on small planes as she flies to remote locations. This TravelPro bag, complete with a padded laptop compartment, has been a great companion for all of her work-related adventures.

TravelPro

05 Best bag for a winter getaway

Thule Aion Carry-On Spinner Wheeled Luggage

TravelPro Manufactures its bags for general use — it’s made for rolling down airport corridors, not bouncing on recently plowed paths. Thule builds equipment for the outdoors, and this bag is no exception. For your weekend at the slopes (or just the hot tub), this is a bag that will ensure you arrive in comfort and your clothing stays dry.

Thule

06 Best bag for a summer trip

DELSEY Paris Clavel

In the summertime, less weight is much appreciated, and DELSEY has delivered with their Clavel series. This isn’t heavy-duty stuff, and you don’t need anything too heavy-duty for a summer getaway. Compliment your Bermuda Shorts or Sundress with this stylish bag.

DELSEY

07 Best bag for a wedding

Briggs and Riley 22” Rolling Garment Bag

You’re already spending an arm and a leg to look perfect at your friend’s wedding, whether it’s a destination or not. Since you’re spending a ridiculous amount of money for a single day, how about investing in this combo Garment/Rolling Bag? The Briggs and Riley website indicates that this bag will keep your clothing in “impeccably dapper” condition while traveling. And when you need to look absolutely perfect for one day - it’s hard to go wrong here. And if you’re 26 and likely to head to 100 weddings in the next 5 years, it’s a great investment.

Briggs and Riley

08 Best budget bag if you have a Costco membership

Ricardo Front Opening Carry On

Game show luggage staple “Ricardo Beverly Hills” has sold reasonably-priced luggage at Costco for years. Show off your frugality and sensibility with this bag. It has pretty much everything you need at a decent price. And it even contains a laptop compartment!

Ricardo

09 Best duffel bag and why should you use it

LL Bean Adventure Bag

Sometimes you want the flexibility and light weight of a duffel bag. As long as you don’t overstuff this one, you can carry it on. And since this is made by LLBean, you know it’s made to last. This is a great solution if you’re packing lightweight clothing and don’t need everything to look flawless once you arrive at your destination. After all, you’re on vacation!

LL Bean

10 Best laptop bag/carry-on hybrid

TravelPro Maxlite 5

Yes, I may sound like a broken record, but we’ll go for the TravelPro again. This bag and this company is just that good!

TravelPro

11 Best bag that fits under the seat in front of you

Calpak Travel Hue Mini-Carry On

Travel and Leisure Tested this one and said it was great. The hard case has some give if it’s a tight fit for fitting under the seat, and it also ensures that you don’t pack too much for it to fully fit. It’s great to have both the convenience and legroom.

HUE

12 Best backpack

Peak Design Travel Backpack - 45L

Backpacks are great because of their functionality. Not only will this fit in an overhead bin it also has a greater capacity than any other bag that can do so. And this one won’t fall apart after months or years of wear and tear.

Peak Design

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