First, look at the handle. If the handle isn’t fastened properly to the bag—and by properly, I mean not just stitched but bolted outside the bag—then the handle will bend, break ,and finally completely fall apart.
Also, make sure the handle is not built inside the bag, which takes up space and offsets the balance—meaning it could just topple over.
Speaking of falling over, there are a few engineering basics all good luggage needs. A bag should be able to stand up straight, on its own, with the wheels. It should also have a low center of gravity, so you won’t trip over it while wheeling through the airport.
Material matters too. Leather may look sleek, but it’s usually quite heavy. And hard suitcase may appear sturdy but, in product testing, these are usually the first bags to crack and break.
When investing in new luggage—trust me it’s an investment—warranty matters. Read the fine print and look for a warranty that actually covers more than just wear and tear.
For more information, visit the Luggage & Packing section.
Click here to read more travel tips.