Shopping for the best suitcases for air travel in 2023 can be confusing, Because of so many options out there, it can be tough to decide which one is right for you.
That’s why we’ve asked a panel of experts to review some of the top best suitcases for air travel and tell us their thoughts. Here are their top picks and best deals!
✅ lightweight and durable construction
✅ can expand for extra packing space
✅ sturdy wheels that roll smoothly and easily
⭕ the handle is not height adjustable (only able to be extended outwards)
✅ Expands to twice its size
✅ Strong and durable
✅ Waterproof compartment
✅ Lightweight material
⭕ Not the most stylish luggage
✅ Lightweight, durable, and expandable
✅ Compact, yet spacious interior
✅ Wheels that are sturdy and smooth rolling
⭕ Sometimes the zipper gets stuck
⭕ A bit on the pricier side of luggage
Flying is stressful enough without having to worry about your luggage. The good news is that most airlines have policies that allow you to track your bag and avoid lost or damaged luggage.
However, not all airlines are created equal when it comes to these policies, so before you make your next flight reservation, check out these questions and answers about luggage and baggage fees:
What is the largest suitcase you can check at no charge?
The largest suitcase you can check at no charge is 62 inches (157.5cm). You will be charged a fee if your bag exceeds the size limit.
You can also check a bag for free if it is within the size limit and you are traveling with an infant; this applies to all American Airlines flights.
How do I report a lost bag?
If you have lost a bag, you can report it by:
- Asking a flight attendant for help.
- Calling the airline’s baggage claim center. It will be listed on your ticket or found on your check-in receipt.
- Calling the airline’s customer service number (which is usually different than its baggage claim number). This information should also appear on your ticket or receipt. If not, go to the website of the airline and look up how to contact them directly.
- Following instructions on that carrier’s website to file a lost bag report online or by phone/fax/mail/etc. If such instructions are provided, don’t hesitate to search around until you find them!
How do I track a delayed bag?
To track a delayed bag, you’ll need to do the following:
- Log onto the airline’s website and use their baggage tracking tool.
- Call the airline’s customer service line and ask them to search for your bag by its tag or flight number.
- Check with your travel insurance provider to see if they can help you locate your luggage or offer any other assistance in locating it, as well.
Does my bag count as one of my free checked bags if it’s considered oversized or overweight?
If your bag is oversized or overweight, it will be one of your free checked bags. The additional bag will be subject to a fee if you have already reached the maximum number of bags allowed.
To avoid paying excess baggage fees, make sure that all of your bags are within the weight and size limits:
- Maximum weight limit: 50 pounds (23 kg) per bag
- The maximum size limit is 62 linear inches (157 cm) in combined length + width + height (outside measurement). This includes handles and wheels!
If you’re unsure if your bag meets the requirements or want to check before making a purchase, visit our website or stop by one of our stores with your item in hand.
Why does an airline label say my bag is on another flight even though I never checked it in?
The short answer is that baggage services for airlines are not as simple as you think. To understand why your bag might be labeled with a different flight than yours, it’s important to understand how they work.
Every airline has its system of tracking bags and connecting them to deliver them safely to their final destination. To do this, they rely on a complex web of planes and connections between domestic and international airports.
It can take up to 24 hours for an airline’s baggage handlers to deliver your luggage from one flight to another; however, if you’re worried about this happening to your bag, then there are some steps that you can take beforehand:
- Check-in early! If you have checked luggage, it’s best practice because it allows time for security checks and any last-minute changes or delays that may cause problems later down the line.
- Don’t rely on checking in online too much – many airlines require signatures upon receipt of these documents, so if something goes wrong, there will be no evidence!
My bag was damaged. What should I do?
- Report the damage to your airline.
- Take photos of the damaged item and all receipts if you have them.
- If an airline employee damaged your bag, you might be entitled to compensation.
Check with your airline for specific details on how to file a claim and whether or not they require you to use their repair services or can simply reimburse you for any expenses related to repairing or replacing the damaged item.
Some airlines limit the amount they are willing to compensate passengers in these situations: For example, Delta caps reimbursement at $1,500 per bag and will only pay up to $1,800 if two bags are damaged simultaneously.
This is one reason it’s important to check baggage fees and ensure that any excess luggage fee exceeds that amount! Otherwise, there’s no point paying the extra money if it won’t be covered by insurance if something happens during flight time.”
How can I get assistance with my checked bag at the airport or in baggage claim?
If your bag is lost or damaged while traveling, you can get help from the airline or the airport. You can also get assistance from a travel insurance company.
And if the airline cannot resolve an issue that is not covered by travel insurance, such as damage caused by baggage handlers, please contact:
- The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), Aviation Consumer Protection Division at 202-366-2220; TTY: 202-366-0511
- DOT’s Aviation Consumer Protection Division will respond to consumer complaints and inquiries about unfair and deceptive practices in air transportation
What size suitcase will fit in an overhead compartment?
- Most suitcases will fit into an overhead compartment, but some airlines have restrictions.
- Check with your airline before you pack; if your bag is too big, you may need to check it at the gate (which can lead to additional fees). When checking a bag, ensure it fits in your airplane’s overhead compartment.
Learn more about luggage, baggage fees, and lost/damaged luggage.
- Airlines have different policies on baggage fees. Whether you’re traveling with a carry-on or checked bag, it’s important to know your airline’s baggage fee and whether they charge extra for overweight or oversized luggage.
- Airlines have different policies on oversized luggage. Knowing how big your belongings can be is also important before they count as “oversized.” Some airlines will allow you two free bags of 50 lbs each if both are within their maximum size limits (typically 62 linear inches), while others will only let you bring one such bag at no cost and even then, it might be subject to additional fees.
- Airlines have different policies on overweight luggage. Some airlines will allow you two free bags of 50 lbs each if both are within their maximum size limits (typically 62 linear inches), while others will only let you bring one such bag at no cost and even then, it might be subject to additional fees.
- Airlines have different policies on lost/damaged luggage.