Guide to Suitcases

Suitcase : What is it?


A suitcase is a rectangular bag used for packing clothes and other possessions for short or long trips. It can be made of leather, vinyl, cloth, or other synthetic material that retains its shape. It has a convenient carry handle on the upper side. It opens in half in hinges like a clam shell. It is made with a key lock or combination lock for securing the items inside. It can have built-in rolling wheels, allowing it to be pulled along. It can be made with a short strap or a retractable handle that can be adjusted to a comfortable height.

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Types of Suitcases


Kinds of Suitcases include the following:

Soft-sided suitcase

  • A soft-sided suitcase is made with a soft shell.
  • It provides the least resistance to crushing.
  • It is mainly used for packing non-breakable things such as clothes.
  • It is the lightest and easiest to carry hand carry luggage.
  • It is also the easiest to stow in a trunk of a car or an overhead compartment of a plane.
  • It has to be packed full to prevent clothes from shifting around and being wrinkled.

Hard-sided suitcase

  • A hard-sided suitcase is made with a hard shell and a rectangular frame.
  • It is the most durable type of suitcase.
  • It protects the contents from being crushed, making it ideal for packing breakables.
  • However, it is heavy even when empty.

Semi-soft suitcase

  • A semi-soft suitcase is made with a durable fabric body placed over a frame.
  • It protects the contents effectively while remaining lightweight.
  • It combines the features of a soft-sided and a hard-sided case.
  • It is the best choice for travel excursions.

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Choosing Suitcases (Buying tips)

Construction: Choose a suitcase with taped seams between the zipper and the bag for reinforcement and less fraying. The seams should be lock-stitched for better durability. Also look for welts and piping on the outside joints for withstanding wear and tear.

Fabric:  Choose a suitcase made with a higher fabric denier. Remember that the higher the denier, the stronger the fabric is.  

Frame:  Choose a suitcase with a fiberglass frame for durability and a lighter weight.

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