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Luggage recommendations

My husband and I want to purchase the Rick Steves luggage. We are trying to decide between the spinner carry on or the rolling carryon. The spinner one is $199 and the rolling one is $159.

Posted by
44 posts

I've used the rolling carryon for years and have found it to be durable and the larger wheels make it easier to drag along uneven pavement. I actually have both the soft sided bag and the Ravenna, but most often use the soft sided version. I'm not a fan of spinners, so can't comment on that bag, but wonder how well the smaller wheels on spinners do on European walkways.

Posted by
868 posts

If you're going to Europe, don't get spinners, they are a disaster on cobblestone for us. Get luggage with 2 large wheels like EagleCreek, TravelPro, RS, or anything with 2 large durable wheels. I find the Eagle Creek and TravelPro (on Amazon or TravelPro site -- they have a 2 wheel and a spinner -- get the 2 wheel) are more sturdy than RS.

Posted by
6177 posts

Spinners vs. rollers is one of the perennial topics here. Spinners are easy to move on flat smooth surfaces like airports and aircraft aisles and hotel lobbies and corridors, but not so easy on irregular sidewalks or (especially) cobblestones. They are also generally not as durable as two-wheeled rollers, more likely to break. I'm a roller fan, I like the big sturdy wheels and I don't mind the effort it takes to pull them. Rollers' wheels generally nest into the body better so the bag is likelier to fit overhead on a flight, vs. a spinner with the same capacity. But if I had back issues or wanted to minimize the physical effort of moving a bag a long way I might go for a spinner.

One spinner advantage is that it stays closer to your body, while a roller drags behind you and possibly into the way of someone else. Same problem for others as wearing a big backpack, you turn around and you might whack someone or something.

Posted by
10519 posts

Was in the RS office a few weeks back and took a casual look at the bags. The handle on the 2 wheeler seemed a bit sturdier than the one on the spinner.
The Travel-pro bags ( 2 wheel) we have, have a much sturdier handle than either of the RS bags.( Subjective opinion based on observation, not scientifically tested)

Posted by
6177 posts

Mine is a TravelPro 22" and I like it fine. Wish it were lighter (but I also wish I were younger and stronger and spoke five languages and had more hair and all the rest).

Posted by
4429 posts

I don't have the RS versions, but do have both spinners and rolling suitcases. As said, pros and cons for both. As soon as there is resistance, even carpet, it strains my shoulder from pushing ot guiding thr spinner so I revert to 2 wheels pulling it like a roller.....the wheels won't last long in that case.
As a Canadian who's country airline luggage rewuirement is slightly smaller than US, of you are considering international carry on travel, double check that Rick's suitcases actually is compliant to most airlines. Here is a chart to review airlines you may ve considering to fly with. Also factor in any weight restrictions. A 6 pound suitcase is a lot of any allowed 15.5 pound packed suitcase.

Posted by
5156 posts

If you're going to Europe, don't get spinners, they are a disaster on cobblestone

I don’t know why people keep saying this. I’ve been using spinners for years and I’ve taken them over many a cobblestone street in Europe, and have never had a disaster or even a bad experience. They’re perfectly fine. I love my spinner and there is nothing like using a spinner to get you through the airport quickly. It’s also easier on my arms and I can keep it close to my body as opposed to the rolling bags that are jutting far out behind me.

Posted by
89 posts

Four thumbs up for the RS Ravenna, especially when it goes on sale. My wife and I each have one. It's very durable and the expandability comes in handy. I really like the hard-shell protection feature, as well. We'll be taking ours to the UK in June and Italy in October.

Posted by
155 posts

I agree, spinners are murder on cobblestones, but easier at airports. I am thinking of ditching the wheeled bag altogether and going with lighter knapsack instead. Less stuff = more fun. At least for me. However, it is slightly more awkward on trains, and the tube. You say tomato and I say tomato.

Posted by
14150 posts

You're going to hear pros and cons on all types of luggage: wheels/no wheels, 2 wheels, 4 wheels, etc. It really come down to personal preference.

If you have a discount store near you like TJ Maxx, Ross, etc., they usually have a good selection of luggage. Why not go and try a few out. Of course, it won't feel that same as a packed bag but you can get an idea of what you like and don't like. And you may even find one you want to take home.

Posted by
1027 posts

Mine is a TravelPro 22" and I like it fine. Wish it were lighter (but
I also wish I were younger and stronger and spoke five languages and
had more hair and all the rest).

Brilliant! I have also had several 22" TravelPros through the decades and they have served me well around the globe. And I have seen otherwise healthy travelers struggle with the 4-wheel spinny things on cobblestone streets and elsewhere. As far as trying out luggage in the store, I disagree. Unless you can try it out on sidewalks with curbs, cobblestones, escalators and long staircases, and put it in and out of overhead compartments, the store trial will tell you very little.

Posted by
49 posts

I'll just add that I bought the rolling carry on in 2009 and have been using it for almost 14 years now. It is extremely durable and has suited my changing needs over all of that time very well. I am very happy with it and would buy the same thing again in a heartbeat.

Whether you chose that or the spinner, you won't go wrong.

Posted by
4070 posts

If you have a discount store near you like TJ Maxx, Ross, etc., they usually have a good selection of luggage. Why not go and try a few out.

This, luggage is basically just luggage. I would say it comes in 3 grades, figure out which one you want. Also note that Macys has sales all the time, that is where I roadtested and got the one I wanted. If for some reason I want to replace it in a year or 3, no big deal.