Traveler’s Choice is known as a somewhat high-end luggage brand for affordable prices.
But is their durability any good? And aren’t other more-popular brands, like Samsonite or Travelpro better choices?
In this Traveler’s Choice luggage review, we’ll find out. We’ll determine how durable they are, how well they’re reviewed, what’s their warranty like, and compare them with similar alternatives from different brands.
On CleverJourney’s Best Luggage Brands, Traveler’s Choice gained 82 points and scored the 7th place on our leaderboard.
Here you can see how we determined the full score. We’ll go into more detail on each category further down into the review.
- Packed with impressive features. Traveler’s Choice suitcases usually come with TSA-approved locks, expandable zippers, awesome organization features, double spinner wheels, and a few innovations on their premium models.
- A solid warranty. Although their warranty terms are pretty weak (on paper, they only cover manufacturing defects,) in real life, the situation is much better. Many of their customers said that they got brand-new replacements even when the damages weren’t supposed to be covered by the warranty.
- Affordable. We classified Traveler’s Choice as a medium-class brand when, in reality, they’re somewhere between the medium-class and the affordable-class. Also, when you take into account the durability, features, and warranty, we think that their suitcases are a pretty good deal value-wise.
- Not made for frequent travelers. Although their quality is far from being bad, it won’t be enough for frequent travel. That said, they’ll be perfectly fine for semi-frequent and leisure travelers. People reported that their suitcases usually last five to ten years of moderate use.
- The warranty claim process is difficult. To fill the warranty claim, you’ll have to take three pictures, provide the original receipt, write a detailed description, and provide any additional details for future responses. After that, you’ll have to wait for days or weeks to get a reply. But once you do get a hold of them, they’re usually friendly and forthcoming.
If you’re looking for an affordable but durable suitcase, Traveler’s Choice is a rock-solid option.
Although they won’t withstand frequent travel and rough beating, they’ll last for five to ten years of moderate use. They’re priced really affordably and packed with many impressive features that would usually come with a bag that’s 20-50$ more expensive. Although their warranty is bad on paper, in reality, most people reported that it’s pretty good.
If you’re traveling for leisure, we believe that Traveler’s Choice is a pretty good option.
Top-Rated Traveler’s Choice Suitcases
|Best softsife: Birmingham 21-inch||Editors rating: 4.3|
|Best hardside: Tasmania 21-inch||Editors rating: 4.2|
|Best luggage set: Tasmania 3-piece||Editors rating: 4.2|
|Upgraded pick: Barcelona 30-inch||Editors rating: 4.4|
|Best-looking: Bell Weather 20-inch||Editors rating: 4.2|
Key Facts About Traveler’s Choice
Traveler’s Choice Travelware Inc. was established back in 1984, Los Angeles, California. They started out as just a simple private label luggage brand, but now they’ve grown into something bigger.
Although their main offices are located in the U.S., their products are manufactured in China by outsourced suppliers. Nowadays, almost anything is outsourced, and it doesn’t necessarily mean that their products are less durable. In fact, Traveler’s Choice suitcases are actually pretty well-built, they’re made from durable materials, and can even be used for frequent travel.
Under the same company, they also house other brands, like Prokas luggage, U.S. Traveler, Travel Select, Pacific Gear, and Beverly Hills Country Club Luggage. But Traveler’s Choice is by far their most popular brand.
In addition to luggage, Traveler’s Choice also offers duffels, backpacks, and other travel accessories. They’ve also got a pretty wide selection of unique suitcases. For instance, they offer shelf/trunk luggage, which is rectangular and houses customizable shelves inside, smart suitcases, transparent suitcases, and suitcases with personalized prints.
On Average, Traveler’s Choice suitcases get 4.0-4.4 stars out of five between all the online retail stores we looked at – amazon.com, eBags.com, overstock.com, and kohls.com.
Although it’s not the best score we’ve seen, it’s solid. We didn’t find any of their models go below 3.7 stars, which is good. A lot of luggage brands have a few ‘failed’ models, which are just destroyed in the reviews, but that’s not the case with Traveler’s Choice. It means that they’ve got pretty high durability standards for all of their models, not just a few select ones.
Out of all the reviews that we read, here are the most common points that people pointed out:
- Usually, their carry-on’s are within the 22 x 14 x 9 carry-on limits, which makes them a good choice for international flights.
- Their warranty claims are challenging to fill out and often take a while to get a reply.
- Once you do get a reply from the warranty, there’s a high chance that you’ll get a new suitcase shipped to you free of charge, not just a few replacement parts.
- After a year or two, some people started experiencing defects with wheels, handles, and zippers.
- Some people said that the main compartment on some of their models could be better-organized.
- Sometimes, their models have outdated pictures, and you might receive a slightly different case.
Here’s a short review from one of their customers:
As you could expect from a private label brand which manufactures their suitcases in China, their durability isn’t as good as on products that are manufactured inland. The suppliers are interested in cutting costs as much as possible, so they might use slightly worse materials and slack on quality control.
That said, Traveler’s Choice suitcases aren’t actually that bad. A lot of people said that the previous models lasted five to ten years, and some even said that they didn’t experience any problems when traveling frequently (10+ times per year.)
Most of them are also built from pretty durable materials. Although the cheapest models are made from polyester or ABS (less-durable materials often used in affordable luggage,) their slightly more expensive models are usually made from polycarbonate or ballistic polyester, which are much more durable and often used in premium suitcases.
However, we noticed that a lot of people complained that a few durability issues start to pop up after a while. For instance, sometimes, the zippers will start to get stuck, or a side handle may come off, or a spinner wheel gets stuck or breaks off completely.
Often these issues will get fixed by the warranty, but you do have to understand, that Traveler’s Choice isn’t the most durable brand out there, and some issues are to be expected.
We wouldn’t recommend them to business travelers, or people who travel a few months at a time. They’ll be durable enough for semi-frequent travelers and people who travel for leisure. When traveling 5-10 times per year, you can expect their bags to last 3-5 years. But you could stretch that out to ten years if you’d travel one or two times per year.
Even though Traveler’s Choice suitcases are priced really affordable, they’re packed with quite impressive features.
On some of their more-pricier models, they’ve also implemented a few innovations, like transparent frames, spherical wheels, T-shaped handles for maximized packing space, USB chargers, personalized prints, and more.
Double Spinner Wheels on Most Models
Most of Traveler’s Choice suitcases come with double spinner wheels, instead of regular ones. Eight wheels are better than four, because they roll smoother, get over little bumps more smoothly, and are more durable, so it’s nice to see these in almost every bag that Traveler’s Choice offers.
They’ve also made a few improvements on the concept, making them in a spherical shape. Samsonite has done something similar on their newer models, and supposedly this system is more durable, and better for rough surfaces because the wheels are ball-shaped.
Here’s a quick video that explains the concept:
Expandable Zippers and TSA-Approved Locks Even for Affordable Models
Usually, TSA-approved locks aren’t offered in suitcases that cost below 80$. Traveler’s Choice includes them even in their 60$ models, which is nice.
The TSA-approved combination locks essentially allow you to lock your luggage while making sure that TSA security agents will still be able to get inside.
Smart Charging on Premium Models
Some of their newer models, like the Silverwood 2, or the Millenial, come with USB ports for charging your electronics. Although a battery pack isn’t included, they do sell a 10 000 mAh power bank for 30$, which fits perfectly in the dedicated pocket.
Their newest addition, the Millenial carry-on is made from a transparent polycarbonate frame.
Although other brands have tried something similar, the Traveler’s Choice option also comes with charging ports, and overall looks fairly minimalistic. In fact, the Millenial carry-on was one of the winners in 2019 RedDot design awards, which is the most prestigious award for product design.
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Suitcases With Built-in Shelves
Traveler’s Choice also offers a few models of “Trunk luggage,” which essentially are rectangular-shaped, have more space, and are quite a solid choice for checked luggage. They’re usually used by athletes because of the increased space and protection.
Their “trunk luggage” models have separators that look like shelves and are moveable. For instance, you can set up one compartment in the ideal size for a few pairs of shoes, another for your clothes, and the third one for your camera gear.
Suitcases With Personalized Prints
If you check out their website, you’ll find quite a few options for customizable bags.
For instance, on this hardside carry-on, you’ll be able to print just about anything – company logo’s, group or team initials, or something personal to present as a gift.
Aside from a few of Traveler’s Choice most basic affordable models, pretty much all of their suitcases look good. They have enough models for business people as well as someone who’s looking for more color.
For the business class, we believe that the Traveler’s Choice Silverwood hardside is the best-looking choice. It’s professional, sleek, and modern, which, really, is everything that a business suitcase needs to look like.
Another good-looking suitcase is the Traveler’s Choice Bell Weather in rose gold, navy, or silver metallic colors. In fact, there are only a few other rose gold suitcases out there, and this is one of the best-looking ones.
Usually, their models are available in 3-6 color options, not just one or two, so their selection is quite good.
Although on paper Traveler’s Choice warranty isn’t that good, in reality, it is. Their warranty terms are quite weak and subjective, but people have said that their experiences were the opposite – usually, they’ll offer to send a new suitcase free of charge.
On their website, there isn’t a warranty policy, so we don’t really know what damages are covered. That said, we did find a summary of their warranty from one of their retail partners, luggagepros.com.
Traveler’s Choice Warranty Terms
- Their bags come with a five or a ten-year warranty, depending on which one you get.
- Only manufacturing defects are covered.
- A receipt or an invoice is needed.
- The warranty doesn’t cover normal wear an tear, accidents, and transportation damages, especially on zippers and wheels.
- For a warranty claim, you’ll need to submit three photos.
- Usually, replacement parts aren’t provided. Instead, they’ll send you a new suitcase.
- Their staff is slow to respond but usually helpful and friendly.
- We didn’t find any people who said there are additional fees for handling or shipping. So it’s pretty safe to assume that shipping costs are covered.
Usually, we wouldn’t give more than five points for a warranty with these terms. But in reviews, we found countless people who said that often they’d replace suitcases, even if the damages were made from airline use. For instance, if you’d have a broken handle, wheel, or a crack in the hard shell, the chances are that you would get a free replacement.
Although we categorized Traveler’s Choice as a moderately priced brand, they’re definitely on the affordable end. The features and durability that they offer usually come with pricier bags, so we believe that Traveler’s Choice is a valuable purchase.
Here’s what prices you can expect:
- Softside carry-ons: 70-110$.
- Hardside carry-ons: 55-160$.
- Checked suitcases: 70-200$.
- Luggage sets: 90-250$.
By the way, we notice that a lot of times their prices are manually jacked up. For instance, often you can see carry-ons that ‘normally’ cost 300$, but now are available only for 80$. Don’t fall for this trick, because they’re on these sale prices 95% of the time.
When taking into consideration the durability, warranty, and features, not only price, Traveler’s Choice suitcases are actually a really good deal. From other brands, you’d find a similar suitcase priced 20-50$ more.
Individual Traveler’s Choice Suitcase Reviews
|21 x 14 x 8.5 inches|
|7.9 lbs (3.58 kg)|
|Material: 1680D Polyester|
|Editors rating: 4.3 / 5|
If you’re looking for an affordable fabric suitcase, the Traveler’s Choice Birmingham carry-on is a pretty good choice.
It’s pretty rare to see a suitcase below 100$ that’s made from anything else than 600D or 800D polyester. The Birmingham is made from 1680D polyester, which is much more durable, but also more heavier. 1680D nylon would be even better, but these are usually seen in 200$ suitcases. So, essentially, you shouldn’t worry about tears in the fabric, because this material can take a beating.
Because this bag comes with two skate wheels instead of four spinner wheels, it has a slightly larger capacity than a spinner carry-on. It’s also made just slightly below the most common 22 x 14 x 9 carry-on size limit, which makes it perfect for international flights.
This bag is neatly organized with quite a few pockets inside in addition to two exterior compartments. It’s also expandable, which is nice for those return flights where you’ve bought too many souvenirs and snacks.
The only issues people had with this bag is that the retractable handle sometimes gets stuck, and the side handle isn’t properly attached, so it may come off after a while. Also, it looks like on Amazon they’ve got outdated pictures. The real ones are further down in the product description or on their official website.
|21 x 14.5 x 9 inches|
|7.9 lbs (3.58 kg)|
|Editors rating: 4.2 / 5|
The Traveler’s Choice Tasmania is probably their best-selling hardside and is frequently mentioned on other sites as one of the best choices for hardside suitcases.
And it’s there for a reason – it’s got decent durability, features, and is priced really cheaply. Essentially, you’d expect to pay at least 100$ for a good-looking polycarbonate suitcase with double spinner wheels, expandable width, and TSA-approved locks. But this one costs way less, which is one of the reasons why it’s so popular.
Although it’s slightly wider than 14 inches in width, many people said that they managed to pass the “box test” at airports, which makes it a good choice for international travel.
From the inside, the Tasmania carry-on is neatly organized, with two x-shaped tie-down straps, and several zippered compartments for storage. If you tend to overpack, it’s also good to know that this carry-on is expandable by an additional two inches, which results in around 25% more packing space.
For those who are looking for a durable and affordable hardside suitcase with all the essential features, the Traveler’s Choice Tasmania is one of the first choices that we would recommend.
|21, 25, and 29 inches|
|28 lbs (12.7 kg)|
|Editors rating: 4.2 / 5|
Now if you’d rather get a full luggage set, we’d suggest checking out the Traveler’s Choice Tasmania 3-piece luggage set. Although we think that it should be priced at around 50$ less, this one is still a good deal.
This luggage set comes with three pieces: A carry on (21 x 14.5 x 9 inches,) a medium checked suitcase (25 x 17 x 10 inches,) and a large checked suitcase (29 x 19.5 x 11 inches.) All three pieces neatly stack inside each other, so there’s no need to worry about the storage. Also, all three bags gave tie-together straps hidden beneath the top handle, so you can attach all three pieces together when strolling through the airport.
Features-wise, this set has everything you’d need. From outside, it’s fitted with double spinner wheels, TSA-approved locks, and expandable zippers fo expanding the main compartment by an additional two inches. The main compartments are well-organized and come with several inner pockets and tie-down straps.
That said, some people complained about quality issues. While some used this set for several years with no issues whatsoever, others experienced broken handles, plastic parts, and wheels. This is the main reason why we think that this luggage set should be priced slightly lower. For only slightly more, you can get the Samsonite Winfield 2 hardside luggage set, which is more durable, and just overall better.
|20 x 19.5 x 12.5 inches|
|12.5 lbs (5.66 kg)|
|Editors rating: 4.4 / 5|
The Traveler’s Choice Barcelona is essentially the best option that Traveler’s Choice has to offer. It’s offered in 22-inch and 30-inch options, and although it’s way more expensive than their other options, it’s still fairly affordable.
This suitcase is packed with almost everything that you’d want.
In addition to the bag, you’ll also get three packing cubes which are designed in the exact size to maximize the packing space. There are actually two compartments attached to the same TSA-approved lock.
The main compartment is pretty spacious, and inside you’ll find a few pockets for organization, and tie-down straps to keep your belongings in place. And the front compartment is actually meant for organization. Inside, you’ll find a sleeve for a laptop, two smaller sleeves for tablets/e-readers, and several smaller pockets for smaller items, like chargers, documents, e.t.c.
You’d expect this bag to cost at least 250$, but in reality, it’s priced much more affordable, which is why we believe it’s a solid choice.
|20.5 x 14.5 x 10 inches|
|7.6 lbs (3.44 kg)|
|Editors rating: 4.2 / 5|
We believe that the best-looking suitcase that Traveler’s Choice has to offer is the Bell Weather carry-on.
It’s available in four metallic colors – black, navy, rose gold, and silver. And we think that all of them look pretty amazing, especially the rose gold one.
In addition to the good looks, this carry-on is also fairly functional and affordable, which is nice. It’s got double spinner wheels, TSA-approved locks, and an expandable zipper for additional 25% packing space.
The hard shell is made from polycarbonate, and the corners are reinforced with aluminum, which makes the bag pretty durable. Also, it’s made in the perfect dimensions to be used as an international carry-on. That said, it could be an inch longer, which would maximize the space used.
So overall, the Bell Weather is not only pretty, but also functional, durable, and affordable, which makes it a rock-solid choice.