I am a suitcase person. I’ve got more suitcases than I need and I am very picky about what kind of suitcase I’ll use.
These days, suitcases usually have 2 or 4 wheels and are either a soft or a hard case. Although there are expectations, I will be focusing on these standard suitcases.
2 Wheeled Suitcases
These are the wheeled suitcases pretty much everybody has use. They have 2 wheels on the same side as the trolley system and you tilt your suitcase to move them. These wheels can often be slotted into the bottom of the suitcase to an extent because they don’t require 360-degree movement. These days, 2 wheels often seem to be on cheaper suitcases, but are sometimes offered on more premium brands. Often these wheels are considered to be in line skate wheels.
4 Wheeled Suitcases
These are all the range today. These suitcases have a wheel on each corner and allow your suitcase to move in any direction. Often the wheels on these suitcases are considered to be spinner wheels or 360 degree wheels. They are essentially the same thing; wheels that can move at any angle. These wheels are more convenient as they allow a full range of motion and stand upright, rather than requiring you to drag the suitcase behind you. In general, you will be able to move faster with a loaded 4-wheel suitcase that you will with a loaded 2-wheel suitcase.
A soft case is often made of nylon or polyester and is usually lighter than a hard case. A soft case is also more likely to include an expander than a hard case. A soft case is also unusually rain resistant (this means your stuff won’t get wet in showers but it will in full on rain). A soft case is ultimately for someone who is not expecting a lot of rain and likes to pack as much as they can into their suitcase. The expander allows for that extra purchase to be shoved in, while the lighter weight means you can include slightly more in your suitcase before you hit the airlines weight allowance.
A hard case can be made from several materials, but the best are made from materials such as polycarbonate or Polypropylene. Cheaper suitcases will use ABS or ABS mixed with stronger thermoplastics such as polycarbonate. A hard case is usually water proof and materials such as polycarbonate are also quite flexible and resistant to impact, making them more difficult to break. Hard cases are also often heavier, with polycarbonate being one of the heaviest and polypropylene one of the lightest.
What You Should Look For In A Suitcase
- TSA Lock & cable locking system
- 4 wheels
- Flexible handle & handle that adjusts to multiple heights
- Less outside compartments
- A colour that easy to identify (so not black or grey)