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5 Things to Consider When Choosing the Right Luggage for Your Next Trip

5 Things to Consider When Choosing the Right Luggage for Your Next Trip

Almost all travelers have a Nightmare Luggage story. You spent a lot of money on a fancy brand-name bag that broke on the first leg of the trip. You skimped on the price and got exactly what you paid for. The bag that you thought would be comfortable and versatile turned out to be neither as you dragged it over the cobblestones of Florence or hefted it on aching shoulders through the crowded, narrow streets of Kathmandu.

Choosing the wrong luggage can waste precious travel time and energy, and can cause a lot of aches and pains. Choosing the right luggage will free you up to enjoy your trip without any unnecessary aggravation. To help you pick the best possible bag for your next adventure, here are five simple questions you can ask yourself to help select the bag that is best for you.

What are the baggage restrictions and limits of all the airlines with which I will be traveling?

Some countries have more restrictive guidelines that are more stringently enforced. Smaller airlines in Europe, for example, require smaller and lighter bags than those in the US. Make sure you know what the requirements will be so you don’t get stuck having to pay hefty fines or finding new luggage at the last minute. I am always happy to answer your questions regarding airline baggage restrictions, and will advise you on the requirements of all the airlines with which you will be flying.

Am I an over-packer or a shopper?

If you know that you tend to bring more than you need, and that you usually make several purchases when you get to your destination, opt for an expandable bag as your carry-on, and slip in an empty, durable nylon bag to bring back new things with you. (Note: be prepared to pay fees that might apply for additional bags, or if your bag becomes too large/heavy as a result of over-packing. Again, I am here to advise you on the cost of additional or overweight baggage.)

How much attention do I want my luggage to get?

Yes, sometimes it’s tempting to get the stand-out, fashion-forward luggage set in fuchsia — but if you’re heading to a destination that’s known for theft, sometimes the better option is to pick a suitcase that blends in with the crowd. There are always things you can do to help you easily differentiate your bags from everyone else’s — adding a colorful ribbon, a sticker or a unique tag — but if you don’t want your luggage to be a target for opportunistic thieves, just opt to keep it simple.

How much transferring will I be doing on this trip?

Are you heading to one main location that will be your “home base” of travel operations, or will you be constantly on the move from city to city, hopping trains, getting taxis, taking buses? Will someone be available to help you lift your bags if you need assistance (partner, children, tour assistant), or will you be the one fully responsible for handling your luggage at all times? The more you’ll be moving and hefting, the more you should aim for simple, lightweight, durable, and versatile. Pack only the essentials, and look for bags that offer more than one transport method — for example, a carry-on with hidden pull-out straps can be transformed into a comfy backpack for hands-free movement.

Does my luggage match the type and terrain of the trip I’m taking?

Wheeled suitcases are great — if you have lots of flat floors and smooth sidewalks along which to roll them. But after two days of lugging a heavy suitcase through bumpy streets, broken sidewalks, dirt paths, or up endless flights of stairs in old, gorgeous buildings without elevators, you’ll be praying to the luggage gods for a simple backpack with padded shoulder straps.

The last thing you want to be focused on while you’re on the trip of a lifetime is some annoying, avoidable luggage irritation. With a little investigating and preparation before you pack up and head out, you can make sure your luggage fits seamlessly into your travel plans.

Ready to plan your dream vacation? Want an experienced Travel Advisor to advise you about the best luggage for your upcoming trip? I’ve got the knowledge and passion for great travel to help make this a vacation to remember. You can set up a consultation with me now by clicking here.

Jan Mauer
With professionalism and her consistent ability to curate exceptional travel experiences for her clients, Jan Mauer of Exciting Vacations has built her reputation as a Travel Agent who specializes in luxury. Jan has spent more than three decades as trusted advisor to those who require both opulence and exoticism during their world travels. Her expertise about international culture and 5-star getaways ensures that every travel adventure of which you partake is a bespoke experience fulfilling your unique requirements for both luxury and authenticity. Call Jan at (732) 613-8640 or email her here for one-on-one guidance from one of luxury travel's foremost experts.

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