To carry on, or not to carry on, that is the question….
Carry on luggage is a great way to bring more on your next trip, or to pack more minimalist and save on luggage fees. Either way, deciding to bring carry on luggage is a great idea. Duffel bags, hard case/soft case rollers and backpacks are three great options for carry on luggage.
Personally, I prefer duffel bags over the alternatives as they are extremely functional, lightweight, malleable for overhead storage and they look great! But what are the best carry on duffel bags for your next plane trip? But before I get stuck in….
What Makes A Duffel Bag Better Than Other Carry On Luggage?
- Versatility: Duffel bags can be used for a wide range of applications, not just for carry on luggage.
- Lightweight: When compared to other carry on luggage, duffel bags are usually half the weight if not more while still retaining the same volume. They can also be collapsed down which makes them a lot more compact.
- Robustness: Duffel bags have very simple designs which when paired up with high quality materials, make them almost indestructible.
- Style: This one is more subjective, but in my opinion, duffel bags look a lot better and are more stylish. There is also many different styles too choose from.
- Longevity: A good quality duffel bag made of high quality materials will give you years of great use.
Here is a helpful chart that you can reference to ensure that your new carry on duffel bag is within the allowed sizes for some of the major airlines. As a rule of thumb, carry on luggage should not exceed the following size restrictions: 45 linear inches (22 x 14 x 9 in) or 115 centimeters (56 x 36 x 23 cm) including handles and wheels. Lets jump in!
Top 5 Best Carry On Duffel Bags For Your Next Trip
1. Kemy Canvas/Leather Duffel Bag (Editors Pick)
Coming in at my number one spot for this list is the vintage style Kemy canvas duffel bag. If you are after a stylish bag, but still want the functionality, this might be the one for you.
It has the main packing area, 2 storage compartments on either end plus 2 leather pouches on the front. This gives plenty of room for clothing, shoes, computers, toiletry kits and more.
The high quality build of this Kemy duffel bag is thanks to the durable canvas which is what boat sails are made of. As it is canvas, you can expect some fading over time which seems to add to the overall style of the bag. On the inside, it has a 100% cotton lining which was a nice touch as they could have stayed with straight canvas.
2. Herschel Supply Co. Novel Duffel Bag
Next up on the list of the best carry on duffel bags is the more modern Hershal Supply Novel duffel bag. If you are a fan of classic and high quality products, then you will know that Hershal Supply has been making great products for the last few decades, this duffel bag is also no exception.
As with almost everything Hersahl Supply, the design is minimal with its trade mark classic woven label that’s instantly recognisable. The material of this duffel bag is a striped cotton fabric which looks great and is also quite durable. As for the dimensions of this bag, it is 11.5 inch (H) x 20.5 inch (W) x 11 inch (D) and has a volume of 42.5 litres.
On the outside of this duffel bag, there isn’t much going on as far as storage in concerned. But it’s once you open up the bag where the internal storage and shoe compartments are hidden. This bag is also sporting a 22″ padded shoulder strap which makes carrying the bag over longer distances more comfortable. A true travel companion!
3. Carhartt Legacy Gear Bag/Duffel Bag
Moving onto the third duffel bag on my list is the uber durable and ultra tough Carhartt Legacy duffel bag. Just like all Carhartt products, this bag is made to withstand almost any environment. This is thanks to the heavy-duty synthetic fabric coated with with a Rain Defender repellent that keeps dirt and water away.
While this duffle bag is on the smaller size (23″ x 11″ x 11.5″) when compared to the above 2 products, it still holds a surprisingly amount of clothes and accessories.
There are also some checky pockets inside to keep your valuables safe. While this duffel bag is great for travelling, it would also make an ideal day bag, gym bag or equipment bag. A true all-rounder.
4. Polare Genuine Leather Duffel Bag
Coming in next on this list of the best carry on duffel bags is the suave and robust Polare duffel bag. What captured my eye for this one was the thick Italian genuine leather which made it look both professional while providing a good level of robustness to the elements. Another bonus of the leather is that you get the nice ageing effect the more you use it.
When it comes to the size on the duffel bag, it is sitting pretty close to the maximum dimensions allowed for carry on luggage (23.2″ x 9″ x 11.8″) but it would still fit easy in an over head compartment.
Polare has been in the market for over 15 years and is notorious for creating fantastic and long-lasting leather products. This one is definitely one of their best.
5. Cobra Grips Back Pack/Duffel Bag
Wrapping up this list is the Cobra Grips hybrid backpack and duffel bag combo. I decided to add this one as it serves a purpose outside of travelling for other uses like going to the gym, hiking, camping or just a normal day pack. The back straps alone don’t make this a great all-rounder, it’s also the wet/dry compartment that allows this bag to be used for many applications.
As for the dimensions of this bag, it comes in at 26″ wide x 12″ tall x 12″ deep. Technically this bag is over the allowed carry on size allowance, but that is when it is only packed to the brim, otherwise you should be ok with this one.
Overall this is a great product that serves many purposes while also looking great. A great travel and adventure companion.
This is another amazing product that we love but is still waiting to be released. If you think we have missed something in the list, please let us know as we plan on updating as time goes on. Thanks for reading!