The most important things at a glance:
- Suitcases in the test environment: Even cheap ones in the grade ranking high up
- Most common reasons for devaluation: moderate rain protection, too loud rolling, cumbersome handling and damage during the fall test
- Hard shell cases better protect the contents; Textile cases are more flexible when packing and often have practical compartments
- U.S. travel: Suitcases with TSA lock can be opened by security personnel with a general key if necessary
Suitcase in the test: How much does a good make have to cost?
Forty euros if it goes after the last comparison check of the Stiftung Warentest and a simple hand luggage case made of fabric is required (. In general, the bottom line is that you get away with the fabric models at a lower price. If it is to be a hardshell case, a little more money has to be put into the hands for good quality. Surprisingly, the most expensive suitcase, the Topaz of Rimowa (hard shell), ended up among the last. The top score was not for any in the test field. Even the highest-ranked players were able to bring a “good” to the goods testers at best.
What separates the good suitcases in the comparison tests from the bad ones?
Pollutants in the handles are found in all price ranges, but increased concentrations are now the exception. Devaluations are hailed by the bank when used – many suitcases are only moderate in practice, according to the Stiftung Warentest. Too loud rolls here, a windy telescopic rod there, and even rain have little to counteract most suitcases. Tip: House & Garden Review is the only test magazine that also checks the handling for seniors.
Zippers, seams and suitcase surfaces withstood all suitcases tested by the goods testers, whether soft or hard shell. The leaf turns from a height of one metre during the crash test: In some of the crashes, the rollers and suspension were literally blown away on impact. In the worst case, they left a gaping hole on the bottom of the suitcase.
How large can the suitcase be to the hand luggage rack of an aircraft?
The requirements of the airlines are different. Comparison: Many set the limit at 55 x 40 x 20 cm. Not all suppliers take the measures exactly as the Stiftung Warentest judges. Sometimes people cheat rigorously. Original: At the U-Lite Classic Delsey can remove the rollers if necessary.
Fabric or hard shell: What is better?
Hardshell cases are usually made of polycarbonate or polypropylene and better protect the contents from sprains. In the 100 kg print test on the test bench of the Stiftung Warentest, cheap suitcases such as the models from Real Or Primark, provided that only the suitcase surfaces are loaded. In the case test, they, in turn, draw the shorter, especially very cheap specimens. Even when fully packed, they react more stubbornly with their hard shell. Textile cases always offer a few millimetres more room for manoeuvre. If it is still to be a hardshell case, we advise you to Expandable Models.
Wetness has to counteract the hard shells a little more, but the suitcase types in this test chapter are not far apart. When it gets inside, it is via the zipper or the telescopic linkage. Tip: Hardshell cases with external rods like Stratic are better in the rain.
In the weight comparison, both are practically at the same level, the hard shells are no longer heavier than soft shell cases. Manufacturers such as Samsonite sometimes push the weight of their carry-on trolleys below the 2 kg threshold, but they can also pay expensively for such models – additional expenses that can be worthwhile for frequent travellers given the restrictive weight requirements of some airlines. On a purely practical side, there is an extra point for the soft shell cases: outer pockets offer storage options for magazines and small pieces.
USA trips: Only with TSA lock?
If you are travelling long-distance and have chosen the United States of America as your destination, you should pay attention to the correct baggage. Only a suitcase with a so-called TSA lock protects against unpleasant surprises at the security checkpoint. If the officers at the airport notice suspicious or unidentifiable material during X-ray, they can use a universal key to open the suitcase non-violently and close it again.
This means that the correct digit code or a specific key is not necessary for opening the case, the security authorities always have free access. This is important for travel to the USA, as it does not last long for the owner of the trolley to be torched in case of supposed threats. Instead, it can happen that a simple number lock is broken up in the event of a necessary search of the bag.
However, travel trolleys with TSA locks have a major drawback: If you have the universal key, you can easily get to the contents. And since it’s not some high-secret specification, some criminals are likely to be out there with the right key. Therefore, it is best to store only luggage in a TSA case that does not have much value – the rest is better placed in the hand luggage, which can be opened and displayed in person if desired.