There are so many components to a trip: from booking your flight to booking your hotel, creating your itinerary, and then, of course, packing. While soft-sided luggage has its advantages (if you have ever had to sit on your suitcase to get it to zip, you know what I mean), hardside luggage will have you breathing easier, knowing your items have the added protection a hard outer shell brings. We have found the best hardside luggage, both checked and carry-on, for all of your travel needs.
|Best Overall Hardside Luggage||Samsonite Freeform Carry-on Spinner||6.5 lbs||Yes||$$$|
|Best Expandable Hardside Carry-On||Travelpro Platinum Elite Carry-on Expandable Hardside Spinner.||8.1 lbs||Yes||$$$$|
|Best Hardside Suitcase with Outside Laptop Sleeve||LEVEL8 Grace EXT Carry-On Luggage||10.34 lbs||Yes||$$|
|Best Hardside Suitcase with Flat Top and Side Handles||Samsonite NeoPulse||4.9 lbs||Yes||$$$|
|Most Durable Hardside Suitcase||Pelican 1535TRVL Air Travel Case||10.35 lbs||Yes||$$$$|
|Best Hardside Suitcase with Fun Patterns||American Tourister Moonlight 21” Hard Suitcase With Wheels||7.83 lbs||No||$|
|Best Budget Hardside Luggage||Kenneth Cole Reaction Out of Bounds 20” Hardside Carry On Luggage||6.25 lbs||No||$|
|Best Smart Hardside Suitcase||Away the Carry-On||8.1 lbs||Yes||$$$$|
Best Hardside Luggage for Families
|Amazon Basics 30-Inch Hardside Spinner||12.2 lbs||No||$$|
|Best Hardside Checked Luggage||Open Story Hardside Checked Spinner Suitcase||12 lbs||Yes||$$|
|Best Hardside Suitcase Set||Calpak Ambeur 3-Piece Luggage Set||6 lbs
|Best Lightweight Hardside Checked Luggage||Victorinox Airox Large Hardside Case||9 lbs||Yes||$$$$|
|Best Hardside Luggage for Business Travel||Arlo Skye The Zipper Carry-On Max with Front Pocket||8.1 lbs||Yes||$$$$|
|Best Hardside Suitcase for Sports Fans||Heys Sports Sets||5.9 lbs
|Most Unique Design Hardside Suitcase||Ricardo Beverly Hills Indio Carry-On||7 lbs||No||$$$|
|Best Trunk Style Hardside Suitcase||July Checked Trunk||13.2 lbs||Yes||$$$|
|Best Hardside Luggage for Weekend Trips||Tumi Continental Expandable 4 Wheeled Carry-On||8.2 lbs||Yes||$$$$|
|Hardside Luggage With Best Color Options||Delsey Paris Helium Aero 21” Hardshell Luggage||8.4 lbs||Yes||$$|
Best Overall Hardside Luggage: Samsonite Freeform Carry-on Spinner
Samsonite has been a luggage giant for over one hundred years, and going with a reliable brand is always a good idea. The Freeform Spinner is expandable,
Best Expandable Hardside Carry-On: Travelpro Platinum Elite Carry-on Expandable Hardside Spinner
Not only is this suitcase from Travelpro super maneuverable, but it expands to give you extra room when you buy too much while you are away. The PrecisionGlilde System ensures a smooth roll, and its ability to expand makes it perfect for trips where you know you will leave with more than you came with.
Best Hardside Suitcase with Outside Laptop Sleeve: LEVEL8 Grace EXT Carry-On Luggage
Not is this carry-on suitcase expandable, but you won’t have to worry about using a laptop bag as your personal item. The outside laptop sleeve will protect your computer without the added bulk. Made with a 3-layer micro-diamond textured surface providing anti-scratch technology and durability.
Best Hardside Suitcase with Flat Top and Side Handles: Samsonite NeoPulse
When handles stick out, it adds to the bulk and can make getting your suitcase into the overhead compartment difficult, but with the Samsonite NeoPulse, the handles lay flat, ensuring everything will fit nicely on the plane. This 20-inch suitcase has 360-degree spinner wheels, a fully lined interior, and an integrated lock.
Most Durable Hardside Suitcase: Pelican 1535TRVL Air Travel Case
This large carry-on suitcase is ideal for those heading out on an adventure vacation. Its Waterproof O-ring seal and Automatic Pressure Equalization Valve that balances the interior pressure and keeps water out make it waterproof, and its Super-light proprietary HPX²™ Polymer exterior make it durable and lightweight.
Best Hardside Suitcase with Fun Patterns: American Tourister Moonlight 21” Hard Suitcase With Wheels
Stand out from the rest with the American Tourister Hard Suitcase. Lightweight with four wheels, an interior mesh divider, and a ten-year limited warranty, this suitcase is the perfect basic suitcase for your travel needs. It is also available in checked luggage sizes, as well as available as a set.
Best Budget Hardside Luggage: Kenneth Cole Reaction Out of Bounds 20” Carry-On Luggage
This suitcase is all you need in a simple carry-on: lightweight, with the required dimensions, durable, and easy to handle. It has four wheels and a flexible, impact-resistant shell, so your items will be protected no matter how much the suitcase gets juggled around. The best part is it is under $100 and is available in over fifteen colors.
Best Smart Hardside Suitcase: Away The Carry On
Away luggage has quickly become a favorite among travelers, and for good reason. The interior compression allows you to pack efficiently, the included laundry bag makes it easy to separate dirty and clean clothes, and the ejectable power source with 2 USB ports makes charging your accessories a breeze while on the go.
Best Hardside Luggage for Families: Amazon Basics 30-Inch Hardside Spinner
This 30-inch expandable suitcase is perfect for family trips. It has three zippered pockets for accessories and smaller clothing, a telescoping handle for easy handling, four spinner wheels, and a lined interior with a divider. It expands to give you 15% more space, perfect for any shopping that gets done while away.
Best Checked Hardside Luggage: Open Story Hardside Checked Spinner Suitcase
The Open Story Checked Spinner Suitcase is durable, affordable, expandable, and will quickly become your go-to checked bag when traveling. Its light polycarbonate shell makes it durable, and the zip-to-expand sides make for easy packing. It has TSA-approved integrated locks so you know your items will stay secure even after you check it.
Best Hardside Suitcase Set: Calpak Ambeur 3-Piece Luggage Set
This set from Calpak includes a carry-on, medium checked suitcase (25 inches) and a large checked suitcase (29.5 inches), so you will have a suitcase for whatever length or type of trip you are taking. They are all lightweight, and durable, and have TSA-integrated locks, four spinner wheels, and compression straps inside for efficient packing.
Best Lightweight Hardside Checked Luggage: Victorinox Airox Large Hardside Case
Coming in under 10 pounds, the Victorinox Airox Large Hardside Case is the perfect lightweight option for your hardside checked luggage choice. Not only is it lightweight, but the 100% pure virgin polycarbonate it is made with also makes it heavy-duty as well.
Best Hardside Luggage for Business Travel: Arlo Skye The Zipper Carry-On Max with Front Pocket
If you are traveling for business, you probably have a lot of other things to think about on top of packing. The Arlo Sky Zipper Carry-On Max with Front Pocket will not only make packing a breeze, but it has a padded front pocket that will eliminate the need for a laptop bag and it has USB C and A removable charging ports, so you don’t have to worry about packing your charger. It has a TSA-approved lock, four spinner wheels, and is lightweight.
Best Hardside Suitcase for Sports Fans: Heys Sports Sets
Hockey and baseball fans will love these suitcases from Heys. Not only do they feature logos from favorite MLB and NHL teams, but they are durable, have four 360-degree spinner wheels, and are expandable. MLB teams available include Toronto, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York; NHL teams include Toronto, Montreal, Boston, Chicago, and Pittsburgh.
Most Unique Design Hardside Suitcase: Ricardo Beverly Hills Indio Carry-On
Stay organized without sacrificing style with this suitcase from Ricardo Beverly Hills. It has a textured outer shell, giving it a unique geometric look. It has a USB port for charging your phone and other accessories, as well as a toiletries pocket that easily snaps out.
Best Trunk Style Hardside Suitcase: July Checked Trunk
Sometimes a more modern suitcase just isn’t enough, and for those times, the July Checked Trunk comes in handy. It’s ultra-durable, has two TSA-approved integrated locks, a telescoping handle, has an 80/20 opening, and is made with a Crush-proof glazed German polycarbonate shell.
Best Hardside Luggage for Weekend Trips: Tumi Continental Expandable 4-Wheeled Carry-On
Look fashionable on your next weekend trip with this suitcase from Tumi. Made with a recycled polycarbonate shell, it has an integrated TSA lock, and a USB port, and includes the Tumi Tracer—Tumi’s own tracking program in case of lost luggage.
Hardside Luggage With Best Color Options: Delsey Paris Helium Aero 21” Hardshell Luggage
Choose from over ten color options with the Delsey Paris Helium Aero suitcase. With the bright colors offered, you’ll be able to easily spot your suitcase at luggage claim. Lightweight, and expandable, with a recessed “one-button” locking handle system, you’ll love wheeling this around the airport on your next trip.
All of the products featured in this story were hand-selected by our travel editors. Some of the links featured in this story are affiliate links, and SmarterTravel may collect a commission (at no cost to you) if you shop through them.
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