Regardless of the length of the trip, packing can be a daunting business. But knowing what type of luggage to pack your belongings in can make your job that much easier.
It all comes down to hard or soft luggage; thus, if you take along precious or delicate items, you will need a hardside case, whereas if you are intend to bring back home lots of souvenirs, then an expandable softside luggage is what you need. But you may be in neither category, so read on and decide for yourself which type is more suitable to your traveling style.
Softside luggage is made from Nylon and other soft materials that enable it to flex rather than crack under pressure. The flexibility of this type of baggage also means that it will fit into tight spaces quite easily, but you can also use that extra space to pack more in the same bag, if need be.
Furthermore, softer luggage can be wiped off whenever something spills on them, without leaving a mark. Unlike hard cases, they won’t scratch, either.
This type of baggage can be classified as hardsides and hard cases. Hardside luggage features an exterior shell that is not entirely solid and may flex a little under pressure. Hard cases, on the other hand, are made of polycarbonate which makes them considerably more rigid and solid; they also offer the greatest protection against hits and bangs.
This rigidity means that you are stuck with the size you purchased. Unlike softside luggage, a hard case does not have any extra space hidden away. Moreover, the bags tend to show any scratches, smudges and other mishaps they have withstood throughout time, so they won’t look as good after some use as they did brand new. And more often than not, hardsides will show all dents caused by direct contact with a wall or another hard object.
Hard cases don’t usually come with any external pockets, though. This means you are left with two options: either hold your boarding pass and wallet in your hand, or stop and open the whole case to place them inside. The latter is not only inconvenient, but also impractical, especially when you are late and your flight about to take off.
Soft and hard at the same time
If you would like to have features from both types of luggage, then you will need a case with a soft exterior fabric, but a hard, reinforced shell underneath.
Weigh carefully the features of your new luggage, and decide whether you need more the flexibility of softsides, or the safety provided by hardsides. Either way, make sure to purchase from a reputable brand if you want sturdiness.