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Hardside Suitcase Checklist: Choose the Right One

You need a suitcase to bring all your things with you when you travel. Lots of people are buying hardside suitcases now. How can you choose a good one?

Suitcase Sizes

Suitcases come in so many sizes, and size requirements vary by country. In the United States carry-on requirements are not as strict. For example American Airlines says that your carry-on shouldn’t exceed 22 x 14 x 9 inches / 56 x 36 x 23 centimeters (including handles and wheels).

However in other places the limits are more strict. KLM (Netherlands airline) sets the maximum dimensions at 21.5 x 13.5 x 10 inch / 55 x 35 x 25 cm. For a carry-on, if your suitcase is 21 inches and below you are pretty safe using any airline in any country. The suitcase below is 20 inches.


A light-weight suitcase is also a good option. It makes toting it around easier, and it helps you with the weight limits most airlines have. A lot of times this is 50 lbs / 22.67 kg for checked luggage.

Side Handle

I didn’t think this was that important until I accidentally bought a carry-on suitcase (orange one above) without a side handle. You can do without it, but it’s really helpful when trying to lift the suitcase into the overhead compartment. It gives you that little extra leverage.

My 25 inch suitcase (below) has a side handle and it really comes in handy. Not so much for lifting, since it’s too big for a carry-on. But the handle is great for getting it off the baggage claim conveyor belt with ease.


Interior Compartments

This is important. You don’t want your items falling all over the place and getting wrinkled. My 25 inch hardside has little clips that hold everything back on one side. However, the clips open once you try to stuff too much on that side.

The hardside I just bought uses a zipper instead of clips. It’s the best way to make sure that everything stays on the side it’s supposed to.


Make your luggage stand out. Why does everyone want to buy a black suitcase? Pick something that will stand out and brighten your day.

Choose your hardside suitcase well. It just make you actually want to pack for your next trip. Well you never know…

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