I'm trying to decide whether expansion capacity or reduced weight is the better virtue on a long trip (5-6 weeks) with many trains, several regional flights, and 3+ flights of stairs for a couple of the hotels.
I need to keep the carryon to 55x35x23 cm and I've narrowed it to this list, with capacities listed in cu in (converted from liters) to make it easy to compare. I picked up the IT luggage spinner at TJMaxx so I actually have that as a default. The RS sale has me wondering if I could do better.
IT luggage hardside spinner @6.4lb=2136-->2746 expanded, $80
RS Rolling @6.5lb=2430-->2970, $128
RS Ravenna @7.25lb=2640-->3200, $160
Travelpro Maxlite Air Compact hardside @6.1lb=???-->2440, $145
Osprey Daylite @4.944lb=2441 (no expansion), $200
Bric B/Y @5.9=2440-->2746, $180
I knocked the Travelpro Maxlite 5 for size (55x40x20) and the Osprey Porter 46L since it's a backpack.
I like the Ravenna and would probably be most torn between that and the Osprey Daylite. But will I regret that extra 2.25 pounds when climbing up 3 flights of stairs? Which will I want more during the trip, capacity or light weight? Did I mention I'm in a walking boot right now and can't test it myself? The doctor is being evasive about how long my foot will take to be better, sigh. It almost makes me wonder if the compromise has shifted to lighter weight just as a point of survival. But if I did that, would I regret the lost capacity the Ravenna would bring? Is 2.25 extra pounds THAT NOTICEABLE going up stairs? Or is the extra capacity (8% base but 30% when expanded) worth it? Fwiw my test packing so far had it under 16 pounds with the 6.5 lb hardside. So the Ravenna would 17.5 and with the Daylite I could get that total down to 15. Is 15 vs. 17.5 insignificant and it's better to have the expansion capacity? Is there another way to think through this?
I can ship a box after a few cities, which means capacity to expand, hold things, and ship them could be nice. I'm actually paying more money for less space if I do the Daylite over the Ravenna. The RS Rolling would be the same weight, higher capacity than what I have, but then that would beg the question of why I didn't just do the Ravenna. I'm not sure I care about the jacket pocket, which seems to be the feature everyone adores on the soft rolling carryon. I don't think I want to do a packable tote, because then I have to repack the thing before every flight.
Do you see anything there? Any hindsight on the capacity vs. weight debate? Where would you compromise? Would I regret the Ravenna weight? Would I regret the Daylite lack of expansion?