Travel Bags For Every Traveler: A Buying Guide

No matter the purpose of your trip, a dependable travel bag is a must-have. A good travel bag allows you to carry your belongings easily and comfortably. However, some bags can create issues while traveling. For example, heavy luggage might result in problems at the airport if it exceeds the weight limit, and a bag without wheels can be difficult to move around. It’s important to choose your travel bag carefully to avoid such incidents.

Types And Materials Of Travel Bags: Find Your Perfect Match 

Finding the perfect travel bag means getting to know the different types and materials out there. Exploring these options makes it easier to choose the best bag to suit any travel situation. 

Full Grain Leather Travel Bags

Full grain leather bags are manufactured from the outer part of an animal’s skin, which protects them from extreme weather conditions like sunshine, rain, and wind. For this reason, full grain leather bags are long-lasting and can withstand strong elements. Von Baer recommends you choose full grain leather travel bags, as they will last far longer than cheaper materials, and they can become a bag that lasts for many years.

Ballistic Nylon Bags

Ballistic nylon is a top choice for soft-sided luggage, as it’s known for its durability and resistance to abrasion and tears. This material is often used in high-quality bags, making it perfect for frequent travelers. Keep in mind that ballistic nylon bags can be a bit heavier and more expensive, so consider your budget and needs when choosing this option.

Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) Traveling Bags

ABS luggage has gained popularity as a hard-sided travel bag option, known for its affordability and sturdiness. These bags are budget-friendly because the production process for ABS is relatively more straightforward, less resource-intensive, and uses widely available materials, making it less expensive compared to other materials like polycarbonate or polypropylene.

ABS luggage is lightweight, hard, and has a slightly less flexible exterior, often with a shiny appearance and textured surface. Additionally, the price point is typically more affordable than alternatives.

Although ABS is considered one of the strongest plastic materials for travel bags, it still provides an excellent balance of durability and value for those seeking a reliable hard-sided luggage option.

Polycarbonate Traveling Bags

Polycarbonate traveling bags stand out as a top option for those seeking hard-sided luggage that offers both exceptional durability and style. This material is known for its outstanding impact resistance and ability to withstand extreme temperatures.

These bags are lightweight yet incredibly strong, providing excellent protection for your belongings during travel. The polycarbonate shell also has a sleek, glossy finish, giving the bags a modern and sophisticated look. 

Compared to ABS luggage, polycarbonate bags provide even greater impact resistance and are lighter in weight. Although they can be pricier, the long-lasting quality and sleek appearance make them a worthwhile investment for frequent travelers seeking reliable and aesthetically pleasing luggage. 

Polypropylene Traveling Bags

Polypropylene traveling bags offer a unique combination of flexibility and strength, making them a top choice for travelers seeking a soft-sided luggage option. The material is known for its excellent resistance to impact and high tensile strength, ensuring the bag can withstand rigorous handling during travel. Polypropylene bags are also lightweight, making them easy to pack and maneuver.

These bags often come in bright colors, which makes them easy to spot on luggage carousels. While polypropylene bags can be pricier than other soft-sided luggage options, they provide an excellent balance of durability and adaptability for those looking for reliable and stylish travel bags.

Factors To Consider In Choosing Your Travel Bag

When choosing a travel bag, several factors are critical in finding the right fit for every traveler’s needs. Evaluating these elements ensures a comfortable, functional, and secure bag that enhances the travel experience.

Frame And Structure

When selecting a travel bag, it’s important to consider the frame and structure of the bag to ensure the right support.

Soft-sided bags, such as ballistic nylon and polypropylene, often have a flexible frame or no frame at all, allowing for easy compression. Hard-sided bags like ABS, polycarbonate, and full grain leather bags typically have a more rigid frame, providing sturdy protection for their contents. Metal frames are commonly used in hard-sided luggage and offer greater durability compared to plastic frames.

Ultimately, finding the proper support through the frame and structure of the travel bag ensures a comfortable and secure travel experience.

Handles And Wheels

Most travel bags come with two types of wheels, recessed and spinning wheels. Recessed wheels are back in the bag, and spinning reels are outside the luggage. Traveling bags with spinning wheels can easily move sideways and are ideal for narrow paths. However, they require more space in the bin. It might also be suitable if you settle for four wheels to enhance your luggage’s stability.

Regarding the handles, ensure your hands can fit in. Settle for two bars for handles if the bag is large and one bar for smaller bags.

Weight And Size

Consider the weight and size of your luggage before purchasing. Opt for a lighter bag to avoid airport issues and pack fewer items for shorter business trips. Choose larger luggage for longer vacations, ensuring it accommodates your needs.


Some trending security features in travel bags include RFID-blocking technology to protect your personal information from electronic theft. Slash-resistant fabric and reinforced straps can deter thieves from cutting your bag open. Additionally, built-in combination locks and retractable cable locks provide extra layers of security, while luggage tracking devices help locate lost or stolen bags. These modern features contribute to a safer travel experience.


Understanding what features you need in a traveling bag makes choosing effortless. If you’re looking forward to investing in a new travel bag, consider the tips above for quick, easy travel bag shopping.

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