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Posted by CJean
Ontario, Canada
1480 posts

Any bag you can comfortably carry for short (ish) distances, and up the stairs if your hotel doesn't have an elevator. Some on the forum will say it has to be carry on size - others have contests to see who can pack the least). But if you're like DH, who just can't be happy with less than a 24 ", as long as you can manage it on your own, then go for it.

Posted by Laurel
Lincoln City, OR
7454 posts

"Best" is subjective but I have found a favorite after several years of traveling. It is the 22" Osprey Ozone. the case itself is far lighter than any other I have ever used, in fact half the weight of my prior Rick Steves bag, so it is not as heavy when packed. Very durable and easy to organize with the Eagle Creek packing cubes, which are also very lightweight. To me, weight is very important.

Posted by Frank II
Freedonia
6959 posts

Asking what is the best bag is like asking what is the best song ever written. You could get dozens of answers.

The best bag is the one that works best for your style of travels. Wheels or no wheels, roller or spinner, soft or hard shell, carry on size or bigger.......

Since you are responsible for your own bag the only generic suggestion I would give is to make sure you can handle it yourself.

Posted by Pam
Troy, Idaho, USA
5328 posts

Not sure which Germany tour you’re considering but if it’s GAS/Germany, Austria, Switzerland know that in Switzerland you’ll need to manage your bag from the bus parking lot at the gondola station, up stairs, onto the gondola, then from the gondola station thru Mürren (small village) to the hotel which may involve some uphill if your tour stays where mine did.

Also on and off the boat in Hallstatt and back thru town the next AM.

This is why there is a recommendation for a smaller size bag. If you can walk 1/4 -1/3 of a mile with some uphill plus bump it up stairs take whatever size works for you. I’ve got the RS 21” and I know I can’t get a bigger bag up a couple of flights of stairs or uphill.

As indicated there is no best bag but whatever you get choose the lightest weight one for that size that is at a comfortable price point.

Posted by stan
The Heartland USA
3192 posts

kathienajdek, I'll cut to the chase. On our three RS tours, about half the people had the Rick Steves Rolling Carryon, maybe because you can use your $100 tour credit to help buy it. Not saying it was the best since that is pretty subjective, but you can use that as a reference point. If you already have something similar or something you're comfortable with, there's no need to buy something special for the tour. Some people brought all sorts of luggage from duffle bags to old hard-sided things.