Are you ready to travel but not sure what travel bag best suits your needs? It’s normal to get confused with so many terms used interchangeably and so many product options. We’re going to breakdown the best travel bags and provide more information on how to pick one.
Table Of Contents
- Best Travel Bags at a Glance
- Best Travel Bags
- 1. Editor’s Choice: HYC00 Store Travel Duffel Bag
- 2. Runner Up: Canway 65L Travel Duffel Bag
- 3. Best Gym Bag: Gonex Canvas Duffle Bag
- 4. Best for Light Travel: Oflamn Travel Bag
- 5. Customer Choice: NEWHEY Store Travel Bag
- 6. Best travel backpack: Matein Backpack
- 7. Best small suitcase: London FOG Bag
- 8. Best bag for electronics: Brinch Backpack
- What Is a Travel Bag?
- Is a Travel Bag the Same as a Suitcase?
- What to Look for in a New Travel Bag
- How Big Should a Travel Bag Be?
- What Is the Best Material for a Travel Bag?
- — Best Soft Luggage Materials
- — Best Hard Luggage Materials
- Tips for Packing a Travel Bag
- Final Words
Best Travel Bags at a Glance
|HYC00 Store Travel Duffel Bag||Best Gym Bag:
||“In need of a travel bag you can take to the gym? Then how about this one, which features many pockets, resistance to wear and tear, and 8 stylish designs to choose from.”
|Canway 65L Travel Duffel Bag||Best Duffel Bag:
||“Whenever you need a duffel bag that can be used for traveling, the Canway comes in with its durable construction and odor-resistant front pocket.”
|Gonex Canvas Duffle Bag
||“With tons of zippered pockets, a cotton and nylon construction, and a comfortable padded shoulder strap, this has to be the best that offers the best value for the money.”
|Oflamn Travel Bag||Best for Light Travels:
||“When you’re traveling light and want a quality product, Oflamn swoops in to offer a great travel bag with a bonus toiletries bag included.
NEWHEY Store Travel Bag
||“This is a travel bag that doesn’t get enough credit, despite the design options and variety of pockets for accessories.”
|Best Travel Backpack:
||“If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to have a backpack that can be converted into a travel bag, it’s time to give the Matein a chance.”
London FOG Bag
|Best Small Suitcase:
||“Great for airplane travels, this compact suitcase offers plenty of space, internal and external pockets, and construction that feels durable.”
|Brinch Backpack||Best Bag for Electronics:
||“This bag is perfect for everyone who has ever traveled and found their phone battery dead before reaching the destination.”
Best Travel Bags
1. Editor’s Choice: HYC00 Store Travel Duffel Bag
- Price Range: $20 – $30
- Material: nylon
- Size: 10.63 x 21.65 x 7.09 inches
This bag is ideal for taking to the gym or performing other sports-related activities. It offers enough space for shoes, swimsuits, floats, and pumps. It is designed with various pockets to fit both small and large belongings.
This bag is made from nylon fabric and is clearly more resistant to wear and tear than similar fabric bags. You can choose between 8 different stylish colors, all of which look amazing.
2. Runner Up: Canway 65L Travel Duffel Bag
- Price Range: $20 – $30
- Material: 600D polyester nylon
- Size: 10.6 x 9.4 x 3.9 inches
This one is a pretty solid choice when it comes to quality duffel bags. It is constructed using 600D fibers, which make it pretty strong. The zippers are made from metal, so they’re more resistant to wear and tear compared to the zipper on the previous bag we looked at.
It features two straps on the side for better grip and balance. You can choose between multiple bag sizes, depending on how much stuff you plan to take with you when traveling. You have plenty of side pockets for storing all kinds of things, with the front pocket being odor-resistant.
3. Best Gym Bag: Gonex Canvas Duffle Bag
- Price Range: $50 – $60
- Material: cotton, nylon lining
- Size: 23.6 x 11 x 12.2 inches for XL size
If you’d like an expandable travel bag, I’d love it if you gave this one a chance. You can choose between three different sizes, with the XL version of this bag measuring 23.6 x 11 x 12.2 inches. It is constructed using high-density cotton and uses nylon fibers for the lining.
The zippers are conveniently large and easy to open, rarely ever getting stuck. The bag is designed with a large interior pocket, as well as two side pockets with zippers, another 2 pockets in the front, and one more in the back.
4. Best for Light Travel: Oflamn Travel Bag
- Price Range: $40 – $50
- Material: canvas, artificial leather
- Size: 21 x 12 x 7 inches
Available in 2 sizes, this is yet another travel bag that made it to the top of today’s list because of the price-to-quality ratio it provides. It has a large main compartment that’s typically used for storing clothes.
I love that this bag comes with a smaller bag for toiletries which is always a bonus and helps keep your stuff more organized in the luggage. The bag is made using artificial leather and canvas fabric.
5. Customer Choice: NEWHEY Store Travel Bag
- Price Range: $40 – $50
- Material: canvas
- Size: 22.83 x 11.8 x 11.8 inches
Here’s another duffel bag that seems to check off all the right boxes. The bottom rivets on this duffel bag are made of excellent grade genuine wild horse leather and waterproof, sturdy canvas.
The superior quality ensures long-term durability. When you stuff the duffel tote with a lot of stuff, the high-density canvas won’t rip or tear. Furthermore, the high-quality solid zinc-alloy hardware will not corrode easily.
6. Best travel backpack: Matein Backpack
- Price Range: $40 – $50
- Material: polyester
- Size: 19.5 x 13.5 x 6 inches
Travel or not, this has to be one of the best backpacks I’ve ever seen, particularly because of all the features it brings. I love the hideaway shoulder straps that can be concealed to turn the backpack into a duffel bag.
The expandable compartment increases the carrying apathy. You get a bunch of pockets in the front to organize your belongings. The main compartment feels pretty roomy, offering plenty of organizing space that could easily make this backpack compete with other travel bags.
7. Best small suitcase: London FOG Bag
- Price Range: $400 – $500
- Material: polyester
- Size: 22 x 23 x 4 inches
You can travel in style if you’re ready to spend money on something just a tad more expensive than the usual. This garment bag might be just what you need.
It features a hidden locking handle to make it easy to lift the suitcase when you travel. The metal bracket can be used to hang clothes that can’t be wrinkled during the trip.
8. Best bag for electronics: Brinch Backpack
- Price Range: $20 – $30
- Material: nylon
- Size: 11 x 15.7 x 7.8 inches
Whenever you have to travel with your electronics, such as laptops, tablets, or smartphones, having a backpack like this one might hit that sweet spot. Made from durable and water-repellent nylon, this bag promises to keep your laptop safe and is available in 3 size options.
You have 15 models to choose from, covering a wide range of personal tastes. What makes this backpack special is the integrated US charging port. That means your mobile devices will never run out of battery whenever you need them most.
What Is a Travel Bag?
By definition, a travel bag is a tiny bag, such as a valise or suitcase, that is typically made of leather, has an oblong shape, and is mostly used to transport clothing.
However, people refer to travel bags to describe pretty much any bag used for traveling. Today, when people talk about travel bags, they could also mean larger backpacks that could fit a clean set of clothes and some cosmetics.
Travel bags have evolved to a very generic term that describes a variety of different-sized bags, so let’s dive deeper into the topic.
Is a Travel Bag the Same as a Suitcase?
Speaking strictly in terms of definitions, a suitcase is usually a larger travel bag that’s has a tougher exterior shell and can transport multiple clothing items and accessories.
A travel bag is usually smaller than a suitcase and is typically made from fabric. That means that fewer items fit into a travel bag and that the softer fabric construction makes it more flexible.
What to Look for in a New Travel Bag
When shopping for a fabric travel bag, always look at the denier rating. This will indicate the fiber thickness of the fabric. A high denier rating number means thicker fabric.
If you need a travel bag for plenty of traveling, the denier rate should be between 500 and 1,200. However, a higher denier rating does not always imply better luggage material. This is also dependent on the fabric.
Pockets, which are typically found on the outside of soft-sided cases, provide extra space but are not suitable for valuables because they are not lockable.
Some travel bags have multiple compartments, which is useful for staying organized but adds weight. Vented sections are especially useful for distinguishing between clean and dirty clothes. Compression straps might also help because they keep clothes neatly packed in.
Wheeled luggage used to have two wheels. Modern travel bags now come with as many as four wheels. They allow you to easily push and pull your bag in multiple directions.
The two-wheeled bag can stay still and not roll away once tilted to upright. This is not a deal-breaker but could be useful when standing on a slope. In addition, two-wheeled bags may perform better on rougher terrain.
The most common type is telescopic handles, which fold away when not in use. However, the handle system consumes some bag capacity, so a larger system requires less packing space.
Single-pole handles are more durable, while double-pole handles provide better balance. Check that the handles are made of sturdy materials and that the handle length is appropriate for you, so you don’t have to stoop to use it.
How Big Should a Travel Bag Be?
A travel bag should be large enough to fit all the essentials you want to pack but small enough to fit in the compartment of whatever transportation means you’re using.
If you often travel by plane, you should know that the bags you take on board need to have very specific dimensions. That way, they can fit into the overhead compartments of your seat.
You want a travel bag that measures 22″ x 9″ x 14″ or less. Any bag that fits these dimensions will fit into the overhead compartments of most airlines.
What Is the Best Material for a Travel Bag?
Each material has advantages and disadvantages. However, the first thing to consider is whether you want soft or hard external luggage material.
— Best Soft Luggage Materials
• Ballistic Nylon
A high-quality synthetic nylon fabric. It is extremely durable and simple to clean. Ballistic nylon is a popular travel bag material that can withstand abrasion and tearing due to its resistance to abrasion and tearing.
Since ballistic nylon is difficult to dye, there are fewer color options. Ballistic nylon baggage is typically available in a variety of darker colors.
• Cordura Nylon
A great soft luggage fabric as well. Cordura is well-known for its toughness and resistance to scuffs, tears, and abrasion.
Cordura is a bit lighter than ballistic nylon and dyes easily, giving you a much wider range of color options. Cordura has high abrasion resistance, but ballistic nylon has greater tear strength.
This is the least expensive soft material option. The majority of low-cost luggage is made of polyester fabric. Polyester bags vary in quality. However, some products offer really great value for the money.
— Best Hard Luggage Materials
Suitcases made from aluminum have been around for a long time and are a popular choice. However, they aren’t always the top choice for people who want a more affordable option because they are expensive.
A thermoplastic polymer that is molded and is often used to make hard suitcases. Polycarbonate is lighter in weight compared to aluminum but still very durable, and it provides more styling options.
Another significant advantage of polycarbonate when making hard luggage is its impact resistance. When hit, the material is flexible enough for impact absorption and then returns to its original shape. This particular feature makes polycarbonate bags extremely resistant to rough handling.
Also known as polypropene, is a thermoplastic polymer that is the lightest of all thermoplastic products. Making it a great lightweight travel bag option.
Polypropylene is very tough, making it an excellent choice for travelers who want adequate protection in the lightest possible package.
This is a thermoplastic that is widely used. ABS is less dense than polycarbonate but less durable. It is also the least expensive hard material, so it is popular in lower-priced hard-sided baggage lines.
ABS is usually mixed with other, more robust luggage materials, such as polycarbonate. The resulting material is more durable than ABS alone, but it is also lighter and less expensive than polycarbonate alone.
Tips for Packing a Travel Bag
I’m pretty sure you ended up overpacking at least once in your life. Here are some tips that might help:
- Use bags with compression straps, they will make your clothing more compact.
- Check the tags on your clothes and pack things that are wrinkle-resistant.
- Rolling your smaller clothing items helps you save space.
- When possible, don’t pack books. Go with e-readers instead; they are excellent space-savers.
- Use all the space you have available. That includes any external pockets.
- Put some of your cosmetics in smaller containers. You don’t need that entire bottle of shampoo if you’re going away for just a few days.
Choosing the best travel bags is a personal matter. While it’s true that some products are constructed to be better and more durable than others, choosing a bag is comes down to personal taste.
For short-term travels, you want something that’s lightweight and easy to carry. For airplane travel, you have to pick a bag that fits the airline’s requirements. Next, check out our top picks for the best travel neck pillow!