I thought I found my dream lightweight, inexpensive carry-on suitcase about a year ago and I bought it for about $35. For the most part, it was fine – but I discovered the hard way, when I almost dropped the suitcase on a fellow passenger’s head when trying to stuff it into an overhead luggage compartment, that it was missing a crucial side handle. (I’d never realized just how crucial that side handle is for hoisting up a suitcase.) Not to worry – I went to my favorite shoe/luggage repair store and they managed to find material that almost matched the bag (which has a bright red floral pattern reminiscent of a 1960’s slumber party tote) to fashion into a handle. But during my last plane trip to DC last month, I suddenly found as I was approaching the check-in security area that I couldn’t get my collapsible metal handle to collapse. After wrestling with it for awhile, one side of the handle broke off – making it barely, just barely, functional. Oh well. I did read the other day about my dream suit case – the Spectra Global carry-on suitcase from Victorinox, one of those deceptively heavy-looking hard-sided numbers made of polycarbonate (vs. soft leather or nylon) that actually weights less than six pounds (notice also in the photo the four wheels vs. the usual two. Apparently this is increasingly popular.) Problem is, it costs about 10 times what my cheapo bag from Target cost.
I do see online that Target is selling some hard-side suitcases for $75 – $100 but can’t tell how much they weigh. May be worth looking into,.