In the market for new luggage? The sky is the limit when it comes to choice. You’ll find a variety of options available, including a multitude of colors, features, styles, sizes, materials, and even purchase options.
Before you buy, consider all of your packing needs. It may make more sense to buy a matching luggage set rather than buying luggage a single piece at a time.
Important Factors to Consider When Buying Luggage
Choosing luggage–whether a single piece or a set– is like choosing a car. It’s a matter of form and function. While you want styles and colors that capture your personality, you also need certain features and the right capacity to support your travel needs, length of trip, and packing style.
Take a minute to consider some of the most important details that can make or break your next trip, including whether you are better off with one piece of luggage or a set of two or more bags.
Size and Weight
If you’re taking a quick overnight flight for business, a lightweight carry on can help keep you moving and prevent waiting at the checked baggage carousel. On the other hand, if you’re planning an extended getaway or a family road trip in the minivan, larger pieces of luggage like check-in luggage and trunks can accommodate additional weight and hold enough for long trips or multiple people.
When flying, to avoid the carousel and still carry more, pair a carry-on with a personal item, like a multi-function backpack or computer tote. Read more here about finding the right size bag for your trip.
Hard shell suitcases have gained popularity in recent years, but soft-sided bags are still the most widely carried luggage today. Each type of luggage has its own benefits, which we compare here to help you choose between hard and soft sided luggage. Some luggage sets even come with both a hardshell suitcase and a softsided companion bag.
The world of travel was transformed when Travelpro® founder Robert Plath put wheels on an upright suitcase and started selling it as the original Rollaboard®. Spinner luggage followed many years later, giving travelers even more choice on how they want to roll. When deciding between 2 wheels or 4 wheels, consider whether you will be carrying more than one bag and need your luggage to stack.
The typical matching luggage set includes a combination of individual luggage pieces, including smaller carry-on options used for shorter trips or as companion luggage, paired with larger, check-in suitcases for longer trips or multiple people. From a style standpoint, nothing looks sharper than a matching luggage set that coordinates perfectly while neatly packing everything you need.
Pros of Luggage Sets
- Often priced for savings off individual pieces
- Designed to offer variety and work together
- Consistent style and quality
Cons of Luggage Sets
- May include pieces you won’t use
- Larger upfront cost than a single item
Individual Luggage Piece
While buying a luggage set results in having an instant luggage collection, choosing individual pieces allows you to build your personalized luggage collection over time.
If you aren’t ready to commit to a set or have wide-ranging travel habits, shop for a single piece of luggage that answers most - if not all - of your needs.
Pros of Individual Luggage Pieces
- Mix and match any bags
- Build your collection over time
- Only buy the pieces you want
Cons of Individual Luggage Pieces
- Mismatched colors and styles
- Single purpose
Other Needs and Features
Other items worth considering include accessories like packing cubes, passport covers, toiletry kits, and more. Travelpro® offers endless essentials like these to complement your luggage of choice.
Keep in mind: Luggage sets are designed to seamlessly match in trim, finish and some features. USB ports, interior dividers, TSA-compliant locks, water-resistant pockets and other unique details will be found in different sizes throughout the same set, but not necessarily in all bags in the set.
Choosing Between a Luggage Set or Individual Luggage Piece
If you’re looking for a coordinated, multi-purpose packing solution, choose a luggage set. You’ll typically get more for less money and be ready to go at a moment’s notice. If, on the other hand, you’re in the market for a specific bag to fulfill a specific need (like a lightweight duffel for a short getaway) buy the single piece that best suits your needs now.