Hardside vs Softside luggage: Detailed comparison

The first thing that comes in mind while planning for the trip or traveling somewhere is what luggage should I get?!

Today, there are just so many luggage options to choose from–and this makes it extremely hard to narrow down on one.

However, if you’re reading this, you’re confused between hard shell vs soft shell luggage. Now, both softside and hardside luggage are different in their own way, and here’s a brief comparison:

Hardside vs Softside Luggage 2019:  A Comparison Review

 Hard vs. Soft Luggage Comparison 2019

Comparison metric HardsideSoftside
FunctionalityProper organization of luggageLuggage organized in many ways
FlexibilityProvides less flexibilityMore flexible in terms of space.
SecurityPrevention of theftCan handle trauma better

 Hardside vs. Softside Luggage: What’s better?

Hard vs soft luggage

So, here I am reviewing the best of the hardside and softside luggage. Now it is up to you what are your priorities and thoughts before buying luggage.

Main benefits of hardside luggage

Hardside luggage cases don’t bend under pressure. The exterior shell protects the contents inside the case. Hardside case provides security from theft. The case offers protection for the contents inside the hard shell.

Main benefits of softside luggage?

Softside luggage is flexible, and you can fill in more stuff than the capacity of the case. Bags can be organized in many ways as soft luggage has many external pockets too for the small handy things to store.

Hard Vs. Soft Luggage: Best Hardside Luggage 2019

1.Samsonite Winfield 2

Hardside vs softside luggage

This extremely lightweight and durable luggage features polycarbonate construction with sharp molded details. This bag is made to absorb impact by flexing while under stress, then popping back to its original shape, eliminating dents while protecting its contents.

2.Coolife Expandable 3

Coolife Luggage Expandable 3 Piece

This case is designed to provide travelers comfort, functionality, reliability, and peace of mind. This suitcase is suitable for carrying onto flights, perfect for business and leisure travelers. This suitcase benefits hugely from its ABS+PC hard plastic shell. This suitcase provides TSA approved lock for peace of mind.

3.Hauptstadtkoffer Luggage Set

Hauptstadtkoffer hardside Luggage Set

This luggage comes with a variety of colors. This suitcase reflects the urban style as well as the personality of the owner. This bag comes with expandable feature with high-quality polypropylene construction, which makes this luggage very durable.

Hard Vs. Soft Luggage: Top Softside Luggage 2019

1.Travelpro Luggage Maxlite 5

Travelpro Luggage Maxlite 3

This suitcase comes with a honeycomb frame system which provides the case durability and makes it lightweight. This expandable luggage comes with very spacious interior and side pockets for handy stuff.

2. Steve Madden Luggage

Steve madden

The lightweight construction of this luggage helps you to avoid airline fees. The 360-degree spinner wheels provide excellent mobility over various surfaces, exceptionally crowded airports. Telescopic push button handle system allows a comfortable grip that won’t hurt your hand.

3.Delsey Luggage Montmartre+

Delsey Luggage Montmartre+

1680d ballistic nylon with Teflon coating is used to make the bags for extra protection against debris and moisture for the frequent traveler. Also, 2 inches of expandable luggage makes this bag very flexible. The main advantage of it is TSA approved number lock, which protects your luggage from theft.

Review of the best Hardside and Softside Luggage

In this section, I will cover the best hardside and softside luggage options in depth with the pros and cons of them, the reasons that will convince you to buy these luggage options. This reviews will help you to make your choice.

Top 4 hardside luggage options:

1.COOLIFE Luggage Expandable

Coolife Luggage Expandable 3 Piece

  • Spacious
  • 3-Dial combination lock for security
  • 360-degree spinner luggage
  • Cannot be expanded
  • Contents are not accessible without opening bag
  • The shell can be easily scratched or dented

Why you should buy COOLIFE Luggage Expandable:

Reason 1: Spacious

From the name of the bag itself, you can guess that this bag is very spacious and expandable. 28 inch variant of this case is expandable for additional packing capacity, 20-inch variant is a perfect carry-on, 24-inch variant is ideal for personal or business trips. Mesh pockets provide convenient organization and easy access to your contents.

Reason 2: Security

This case comes with a significant 2-year warranty period. The main advantage of the suitcase is built-in TSA lock which comes with a 3-dial combination lock, so you can make sure that your valuables are secure and safe inside the bag. Also, it is effortless to reset the lock in-case you forget it.

Reason 3: Comfortable and smooth handling

This case has a 3-step pure aluminum telescopic handle for more comfortable handle length adjustment. Also, the four wheel spinner wheels allow the suitcase to move seamlessly through 360 degrees of motion. Both the handle and the four spinner wheels will enable you to walk or travel with luggage very comfortably.

2.Hauptstadtkoffer Luggage

Hauptstadtkoffer hardside Luggage Set

  • Spacious
  • TSA Lock
  • 4-multidimensional and smooth wheels for 360-degree motion
  • Cannot handle much pressure
  • Quite heavy
  • Scuffs are slightly light

Best reasons to buy hauptstadtkoffer luggage:

Reason 1: Expandable

The volume of the suitcase can be extended using its 4cm expansion fold, which makes it flexible. Depending on the contents you want to carry with you while traveling the bag can be expanded. The suitcases can be nested into another.

Reason 2: Easy to carry

A single step adjustable telescopic rod made of aluminum allows comfortable pulling of the case. On the other hand, the bag has four plastic feet for storage purpose and carrying handles on the upper and the longer side.

Reason 3: Theft security

The case features a TSA friendly lock with reset capability. A TSA lock with the adjustable code is particularly crucial for traveling worldwide for the security of your luggage from being theft.

3. Samsonite Winfield 2

Samsonite Winfield 2 hard sided luggage

  • Expandable
  • 360 spinner wheels
  • Ten-year warranty
  • Violates American carry on standards for travel
  • Some variants have dual wheel spinner only
  • Gets scratched easily

Top reasons to buy Samsonite Winfield 2 :

Reason 1: Suitcase handles

New and broader pull handle combine to provide an exceptionally comfortable grip. The push button in the middle helps you to push and pull handle accordingly with ease. Besides this, you have two extra handles, one at the top and other at the side of the bag.

Reason 2: TSA approved lock

The Winfield 2 is provided a TSA approved lock, and it is a number combination lock so you won’t get bothered about keys that you can lose quickly. You do not need to carry a separate lock for the bag. The side-mounted clamp holds the zippers firmly.

Reason 3: Lightweight and  water resistant

This suitcase weighs hugely less. You won’t feel its weight when you will carry it along. Also, the Samsonite Winfield is water resistant too plus it lasts very long, and it looks very fancy and cool to carry.

4.Travelpro Crew 11 Hardside

Travelpro Crew 11 Hardside

  • Magna-Trac spinner wheels
  • External USB port
  • Power Bank pocket
  • Good hardside luggage model
  • Less Durable
  • Low-quality zipper latches
  • Smaller interior

Why you should buy Travelpro Crew 11 Hardside:

Reason 1: Lighter

Crew 11 Hardside are built to go the distance. Innovatively lighter than ever, this premium collection of spinner and rollaboard luggage is very significant. This case is so light that you will never feel the weight on your arm.

Reason 2: Patented spinner wheels and Contour grip

MagnaTrac ises the innovative Spinner technology. It features self-aligning magnetic wheels that roll straight in any direction that work great for ease-of-use. Plus, the contour Grip comes with cushioned touch points for more comfort.

Reason 3: External USB port with Power bank pocket

External USB Port on the side of the bag allows you to connect any USB device to a Power Bank (battery) stored in a separate pocket. Dedicated interior zippered pocket holds a Power Bank that links to external USB Port. (Power Bank not included)

Top 4 softside luggage options:

1.Steve Madden luggage

Steve madden

  • Organized interior space
  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable handling
  • Quality of wheels is slightly poor
  • Can get dirty fast
  • Color can be fade soon

Why you should buy Steve Madden luggage:

Reason 1:  Flexibility

Steve Madden luggage is excellent for packing more than what you had planned for because it has a soft and flexible material. It’s easier to stuff more things inside the case. This case has small packets to stuff your handy stuff into it.

Reason 2: Organization options

Another massive plus for steve madden is the availability of external pockets. You can store things that will come in handy like jackets and wallets by quickly stuffing them in the bag. It’s also easier to dump stuff you only remembered to bring the last minute.

Reason 3: Better at taking trauma

This bag by steve madden can handle some external pressure on it. As it is softside luggage, it can bear some shock while at crowded airport luggage or while traveling in rough conditions, this bag is excellent.

2.Delsey luggage montmartre+

Delsey Luggage Montmartre+

  • Made of durable 1680d ballistic nylon
  • Expandable up to 2 inches
  • Deluxe interior with multiple pockets
  • Internal straps have a latching problem
  • Quite heavy
  • Design of the bag is not much impressive

Top 3 reasons to buy Delsey luggage:

Reason 1: Durable

Delsey’s montmartre+ is a durable bag. It is such a sophisticated craft from 1608d ballistic nylon material with Teflon treatment for the extra protection against dust, dirt, moisture, scratches for the frequent traveler who loves to travel.

Reason 2: Deluxe Interior

This case has a very roomy expandable interior with soft-touch lining includes two zippered pockets. It also has a water-resistant pocket and a bi-fold suiter in medium and large uprights. It also has separate compartment available on all sides allows us quick access to our handy stuff while traveling.

Reason 3: Superior Mobility

This expandable bag has four silent double spinner wheels and dual locking telescopic handle that assure very smooth adjustment of the handle. The wheels are very quiet and smooth that you will not feel any pressure on your arm.

3.Travelpro Luggage Maxlite3

Travelpro Luggage Maxlite 3

  • High-performance wheels
  • Efficient interior for flexible packing
  • Durable crash protection
  • Zipper quality is quite low
  • Heavy front side
  • Color fades soon

Reasons to get the Travelpro Maxlite 3:

Reason 1: Durability

This bag has protective crash-guard wheel housings, skid proof and molded corner edges provide very long time protection which makes the bag more durable for the long haul. The honeycomb frame system of the Travelpro Maxlite delivers long time durability without any excessive weight.

Reason 2: Comfort and Mobility

Specially built for high-mileage travel, this has durable ball-bearing inline wheels which are tested to ensure the smoothness of rolling the bag. Also, support stabilizers which extend at precisely calculated angles which are designed to prevent tipping in any direction.

Reason 3: Style and look

This bag comes in various vibrant colors to go like black, blue, purple, navy, or grey. The Travelpro Maxlite 3 seems very sophisticated and looks more stylish and expensive than it is. It also does not show any signs of wear and tear that easily.

4.Travelpro Platinum Elite Expandable 21”

Travelpro platinum elite

  • Magnatrac wheels
  • Supra Zipper Heads
  • Genuine leather details
  • Less Durable
  • Quite expensive
  • Doesn’t fit in the sizer

Why you should go for Travelpro Platinum Elite Expandable:

Reason 1: Magnatrac wheels

MagnaTrac is a revolution in Spinner technology. Self-aligning magnetic wheels roll straight in any direction you want to move instead of drifting or pulling to one side or the other like most Spinner luggage.

Reason 2: Comfort and Control

Cushioned touchpoints help relieve the stress for more comfort and greater control of your luggage. The lightweight and sturdy design adjust to various heights while minimizing wobbles. This luggage comes with a precision glide system which allows more comfort to the handler.

Reason 3: Attractive extra features

The bag comes with an external USB port and specially dedicated Power bank pocket. The luggage has supra zipper heads, Powerscope handles for comfortable handling and genuine leather details for a fantastic look and style.

Wrapping up on the Hardside vs Softside Luggage

Now you got a clear idea from the detailed analysis of the various hardside and softside luggage available in the market from different luggage manufacturers. Every other manufacturer has their product specialty.

Now, it is up to your personal opinion that which luggage suits you either hardside luggage or softside luggage. You can go for the best attractive colors and styles, or some of you may give priority to the build of the bag. Make your choice now!

I hope this article helps to find your perfect luggage. There are many other product reviews and materials that you might be interested in. Do check out my blogs for honest reviews of different products. Thanks!

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Mark Quadros is a Content Marketer for SaaS and Online-business. He also runs 'The Real Mark', a blog about travel, remote work, and online marketing.Affiliate Disclosure.

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