Carry on luggage in overhead bin

Best Carry-On Luggage for Business Travel

For the seasoned road warrior, finding the right business carry-on suitcase can be as elusive as tracking down Big Foot. Between ever changing carry-on limitations and the need for suitcases with garment bags and laptop cases, the task can be nearly impossible. Here are the best carry-on suitcases that should fit the needs of the most adventurous business travelers as well as the most stringent airlines.

Chart Comparing Carry-On Luggage for Business Travel
Chart comparing carry-on luggage for business travel. All bags fit within smallest carry-on dimensions of aircraft carriers (22″x14″x9″).

Victorinox WT 22 Dual Caster: $370

Dimensions: 22x14x9 | Weight 6.7 lbs | Capacity 45 L | Material: Soft | Wheels: 4

The Victorinox WT 22 Dual Caster is simultaneously the lightest carry-on bag on this list and the bag with the largest capacity. At only 6.7 pounds, it can carry a whopping 45 liters! 45 liters will comfortably accommodate a week’s worth of clothing ranging from business suits to bathing suits. For longer trips, the suitcase can be expanded an additional 2.5 inches to a total depth of 11.5 inches (note: this will prevent the bag from fitting in the overhead compartment of all carriers). The front pocket is padded and can hold a laptop up to 17” in size. Inside the bag there is a removable suit holder that will help keep dress clothes fresh and free of wrinkles. Furthermore, the “Pack More” divider provides an additional flat packing surface, which can be used to pack dress shirts. An attachable bag strap that can carry up to 30 pounds will make transporting additional bags or briefcases a breeze. With this bag, business travelers can pack everything they need without breaking a sweat, or their back.

Pros:
– Super light
– Large capacity
– 17″ Laptop case
– Removable suit holder
– Attach a bag strap
– Expandable depth

Cons:
-None

Victorinox: Lexicon 20 Dual Caster: $345
Dimensions: 20x14x9 | Weight 8.8 lbs | Capacity 41 L | Material: Soft | Wheels: 8

The Lexicon Dual Caster is very similar to the WT Dual Caster with a couple slight changes. With 8 wheels, the Lexicon is a spinner rather than an upright suitcase. While this bag sacrifices 2 inches to fit international carry-on standards, it doesn’t sacrifice much else. At 41 liters, the Lexicon Dual Caster suitcase is still larger than most business suitcases made by competitors. Furthermore, the bag can expand up to an additional 2” of packing space. There is an easy access front pocket for a laptop or tablet up to 15.6” as well as an attach a bag strap which can carry up to 30 pounds. Unfortunately, this bag lacks the removable suit holder from the WT Dual Caster, but this can always be compensated with a cheap garment bag (often free with the purchase of your clothes from any major department store).

Pros:
– Attach a bag strap
– Laptop/tablet protection (up to 15”)
– Fits in international carry-on bins
– Expandable depth

Cons:
– No removable suit holder

Warranty:
Victorinox has a 5-year guaranteed warranty that covers not just manufacturing defects, but also any destruction caused by any major mode of transportation (eg: trains). After 5 years, there is a lifetime wear and tear warranty, which continues to cover any manufacturing breakdowns.

Briggs and Riley Pilot Carry On: $399
Dimensions: 21.5x14x9 | Weight 8.1lbs | Capacity: N/A | Material: Soft| Wheels: 2

Briggs and Riley describe this carry-on as a “suitcase meets laptop bag” and for all intents and purposes it appears to be the perfect mix of the two. The front of the bag serves as a “laptop bag” which can hold a 17” laptop, a tablet, your smartphone, files, and contains additional compartments for your passport, pens, and even a bungee section which can hold your headphones. Briggs and Riley has maximized the packing experience on the inside by placing this handle on the outside, allowing for a flat bottom to back and fold on. The suitcase portion includes a suit holder, which can hold either 1 suit or garment or 1-3 shirts.

Pros:
– Outside handle
– 17” Laptop
– Tablet
– Garment bag

Cons:
– According to reviews, can be front-heavy

Warranty:
All Briggs and Riley products come with their ‘simple as that® guarantee” which covers any damage, even if it was caused by an airline.

Eagle Creek Tarmac Carry-On: $299
Dimensions: 22x14x9 | Weight: 7.25lbs | Capacity: 40 L | Material: Soft | Wheels: 4

The Eagle Creek Tarmac bag was designed to make travel as easy as possible, especially in the airport. This lightweight carry-on has a capacity of 40 liters and can expand to up to 44 liters of packing space. The top compartment comes with a bungee, which can be used to tie down loose coats, an add a bag strap, and a bottle opener. Below this compartment there is a 22” padded pocket which can be used to store a laptop or ipad. The last pocket on the outside is a handy water bottle holder. While there is no built in garment bag, there is an upper compartment which was built to fit Eagle Creek’s garment sleeve. There is also a detachable cargo net which can be used to either compress clothing items, or taken out to strap items to the outside of the suitcase. This bag is also available in an international carry-on size for international business travelers. The Eagle Creek Tarmac series make business travel easy for both domestic and international travelers.

Pros:
– Laptop/Ipad case: 22” pocket
– Coat keeper
– Add a bag strap
– Detachable cargo net
– Water bottle holder
– Expandable depth

Cons:
– No garment bag

Warranty:
Eagle Creek products come with their “No Matter What” warranty which covers repair or replacement costs for any damage to bags, regardless of the cause.

Travelpro Platinum Magna 2 20″ Business Plus Spinner: $272
Dimensions: 20x14x9 | Weight: 8.5lbs | Capacity: N/A | Material: Soft | Wheels: 4

This Travelpro suitcase is yet another great business carry-on which provides business travelers with some of the bare necessities, with a couple extra benefits. At only 20” in height, it has also the perfect size for most international flight providers. The inside lacks a built-in garment bag, but has a zipper where a removable garment bag could be placed. The outside pocket has room for a 15” laptop and tablet with some additional pockets to help travelers keep their passport and boarding pass organized. The laptop compartment is checkpoint friendly, meaning laptops can remain in this suitcase at security. The Travelpro Platinum Magna 2 20” is a simple international carry-on that is both affordable and convenient.

Pros:
– 15″ Laptop
– Tablet
– Wet pack for toiletries
– Expandable depth

Cons:
– No garment bag

Warranty:
The Travelpro Platinum Magna 2 series comes with the Worry Free Warranty which covers damage caused by defects or workmanship or damage caused by airline or other carrier.

Honorable Mentions

The following suitcases lack some of the functions from the earlier carry-on suitcases. They, however, offer features that are distinctly unique and may serve business travelers with varying needs.

The Away Carry On: $225
Dimensions: 22x14x9 | Weight: 7.5lbs | Capacity: 38 L | Material: Hard | Wheels: 4

The Away Carry On is the suitcase created by previous Warby Parker execs. This suitcase is perfect for business travelers who are just joining the workforce. A high tech suitcase that offers usb ports and a 10,000 mAh battery to charge electronics makes sure business travelers are able to stay charged on the go. Furthermore, this bag is only $225, making it the most affordable bag on this list. At only 7.5 pounds, the Away Carry-On is very light and still offers 38 liters giving travelers ample space to pack about a week’s worth of clothing. Inside the bag, there is a removable laundry bag which provides an additional layer of organization when travelers are on the road. The bag comes with a TSA approved lock making security for all a breeze. Probably the coolest part of this bag is the 100 day free trial. In true Warby Parker fashion, travelers can trial the Away Carry On for 100 days and if at any point during this period decide it isn’t the bag for them, return it for a full refund. This bag does, however, lack a garment bag and laptop compartment. But, as mentioned before, there are ways around this and the Away Carry On is still a solid, affordable, and high tech suitcase for business travelers.

Pros:
– Price
– Removable laundry bag
– Built-in battery to charge smartphones/tablets
– TSA approved lock
– 100 day free trial with full refund

Cons:
– No garment bag
– No laptop/tablet case

Warranty
The Away Carry On is protected by a lifetime warranty, with the exception of the electronic components which are covered by a two year warranty.

Victorinox Lexicon 20 Ultra Light Carry On: $240
Dimensions: 20x14x8 | Weight: 5.5lbs | Capacity: 37 L | Material: Soft | Wheels: 2

This is a great alternative to the Dual Casters above for the lean traveler who either travels with a tablet instead of a computer or prefers to keep his computer in a briefcase or backpack. At only 5.5 pounds, this bag is the lightest carry on in the list. Despite it’s weight, it isn’t sacrificing any space as exhibited by its impressive carrying capacity of 37 liters. However, it lacks a garment bag which may make travelling wrinkle free tougher. This can be compensated for by purchasing a garment sleeve. The Lexicon 20 Ultra Light Carry On is a great bag for the minimalist business traveler who prioritizes weight over fancy features.

Pros:
– Super light (only 5.5 pounds!)
– High carrying capacity (37 L)
– Tablet/Ereader pouch

Cons:
– No built in garment bag/suit holder
– No laptop case

Bluesmart 22″ Smart Carry-On Spinner: $399
Dimensions: 22x14x9 | Weight: 9.4lbs | Capacity: 34 L | Material: Hard | Wheels: 4

This last suitcase is the pinnacle of high-tech suitcases. It falls in the honorable mentions category because both the suitcase and the company are so new and relatively untested, the jury is still out on whether or not it is worth the money. However, this bag does come with all the bells and whistles a business traveler could ever want. The Bluesmart comes equipped with features that Similar to the Away Carry On, the Bluesmart comes equipped with a 10,000 mAh battery that can charge a smartphone up to 6 times, or any other smart device. But the theatrics don’t stop there. Business travelers can now track their suitcase through a combination of 3G and gps technology, making sure they never lose their bags again. There is also an automatic lock that will activate through an app, or anytime the bag is too far from its owner. The bag also comes with a built in scale which will help business travelers easily determine if their bag will fall within baggage limits. Lastly, the Bluesmart app claims to be a travel assistant, helping to plan itineraries and check flight statuses. While reviews have been mostly positive, they have all said that while it was cool, it had a lot of room for growth and improvement. The Bluesmart bag may be the dream come true for business travelers one day, but for today, stick to one of the safer bags above.

Pros:
– 15” Laptop
– Tablet pocket
– Built in battery to charge smartphones/tablets
– GPS bag location system
– Built in scale
– TSA approved lock

Cons:
– No garment bag
– Untested

Warranty:
The Bluesmart has a stringent warranty program. The bag is fully covered for one year, after the first year it has another year of warranty which covers workmanship flaws. The second year, however, does not cover the electronics of the bag.

 

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5 thoughts on “Best Carry-On Luggage for Business Travel”

  1. Hi, nice list of carry-ons, but I miss the Hartmann 7R, a beautiful, very lightweight and durable piece of luggage.
    And I have one question: the dimensions of the bags, are they of the body only or including wheels?

    1. Hey Katrin! Thanks for suggestion the Hartmann 7R! The dimensions of the bags include the wheels and most include the handle as well.

  2. Thanks a lot for sharing this awesome info! if you able to keep going your awesome job i will follow your weblog!

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