Are you about to head on your first major trip or did you recently decide to replace your aging luggage?
If so, you have the option of either getting your suitcases, duffel bags, and other pieces of luggage one by one, or you can look at some of the luggage sets on the market that include a combination of those for what is oftentimes a better price than if you buy the pieces separately.
Before continuing with my picks for the best luggage sets and discussing their advantages and disadvantages, as well as what the most important things to consider when buying one are, here’s a quick list of the luggage sets that I talk about further in the article in case you’re in a hurry:
- Best starter luggage set: Flieks 5-Piece Deluxe Luggage Set
- Best budget soft shell luggage set: American Tourister AT Pop 3-Piece
- Best budget hard shell luggage set: Coolife Expandable Suitcase 3-Piece Set
- Best Samsonite luggage set: Samsonite Omni PC 3-Piece Set
- Best Delsey luggage set: Delsey Paris Alexis 3-Piece Luggage Set
5 Best Luggage Sets to Get in 2018
Now, let’s take a look at the above five luggage sets. Rather than these being the best luggage sets in a particular order, I decided to pick my favorite luggage set in each of the following categories: starter, budget hardshell, budget softshell, Samsonite and Delsey.
So, let’s dive into the brief reviews, starting with the…
Best Starter Luggage Set: Flieks 5-Piece Deluxe Luggage Set
While the other sets in this list include only three pieces of luggage, the Flieks 5-Piece Deluxe Luggage Set comes with five nesting pieces including three suitcases, a duffel bag, and a flight bag. As such, it’s ideal if you are just starting to travel and need a variety of bags for different purposes.
The suitcases are the following sizes including the wheels:
- Small: 22 x 14 x 9 inches
- Medium: 26 x 17 x 10 inches
- Large: 30 x 19 x 11 inches
The smallest one of those fits carry on restrictions on most airlines and will last you for a couple of days if you are traveling alone. While you will have to check the bigger ones in, they will give you enough space for longer travel or for travel with family. Each of the suitcases has a name tag and two external pockets.
The flight bag that comes as part of the set is an ideal carry on in case you don’t want to (or cannot due to restrictions) take the small suitcase with you onboard. It comfortably fits a laptop as well as an extra layer of clothes and other miscellaneous items. And, while I personally don’t use duffel bags much, you might find the duffel bag useful for shorter trips.
As for material, the Flieks 5-Piece Deluxe Luggage Set is made out of 100% polyester, and besides the pictured grey, it also comes in black, blue, and red – with the latter two being ideal if you want your checked in luggage to stand out.
One of the main downsides (at least for me personally) is the fact that it comes with two wheels rather than four. As such, it is harder to lug around crowded places such as public transportation. If you are going to be driving to and from the airport then it should not be too much of a deal.
Best Budget Softshell Luggage Set: American Tourister Pop 3-Pcs Set
The second set – the American Tourister AT Pop 3-Piece Set – just like all of the remaining sets in this list, includes three pieces, all of them suitcases. It’s made by American Tourister, a subsidiary of Samsonite and one of my favorite suitcase brands (I’ve been using their hardshell medium-sized suitcase for years now).
The suitcases are 21, 25, and 29 inches tall, and their overall size is – for all practical purposes – similar to the three suitcases in the set above. All three pieces are made out of 600 denier polyester, and the set is available not only in black, but also in bright red, orange, purple, and blue – colors that are easy to spot among the sea of black suitcases at an airport.
Besides the main large compartment, each of the suitcases sports three smaller compartments for printed materials and other items. Those can be useful especially on the carry on sized piece as you can use them to hold your boarding passes or other documents. None of the suitcases are equipped with a lock, and so you might want to get an external one.
Unlike the first set on this list, all the suitcases in this set are “spinners,” meaning they have four wheels, and so they are easy to carry around crowded areas. The biggest downside of this set is the fact that several buyers had an issue with the suitcases’ durability – and so, if you tend to travel a lot, you might want to consider one of the sets further down on this list.
Best Budget Hardshell Luggage Set: Coolife Suitcase 3-Piece Set
If you are looking for a cool-looking and affordable luggage set for your travels, then the Coolife Expandable Suitcase 3-Piece Set is one to consider. It’s three hardshell suitcases are made out of durable ABS+PC material and feature a finish that not only looks great but also prevents scratches.
The suitcases come in the following sizes:
- Small: 22 x 9 x 15 inches
- Medium: 27 x 11 x 17 inches
- Large: 30.5 x 12 x 19.5 inches
What makes the largest suitcase unique, though, is the fact that if you have too much things to take with you, it can be expanded by two inches to be 14 inches wide. Also, unlike the two previous sets, the Coolife suitcases are equipped with a TSA-approved three-digit combination lock.
On the interior, the suitcases feature two roughly equal compartments – one closed off with a zippered mesh and the other one open with elastic cross straps. The mesh covering one of the compartments on each of the suitcases is also equipped with a zippered pockets.
The suitcase set comes in six different colors and all of the suitcases are “spinners.”
Best Samsonite Luggage Set: Samsonite Omni PC 3-Piece Set
Samsonite is one of the most popular brands of suitcases and luggage in general, and it offers a variety of luggage sets. While they are all worth looking at, the one I picked for this list is the Samsonite Omni PC 3-Piece Set as it includes the traditional three sizes of suitcase and features a simple yet elegant design.
This set is made out of 100% polycarbonate which is lightweight and its micro-diamond texture is scratch-resistant allowing the suitcases not only to last long, but also to look good even after heavy use.
Besides a quality retractable handle, each of the suitcases in this set is also equipped with a TSA-approved keyed lock and spinner wheels. Besides the pictured black, the set also comes in orange, blue, silver, and teal colors.
The two downsides of this set are its slightly steep price (it’s a Samsonite after all), and the fact that sometimes the luggage shell can get bent if dropped from a high place or after a strong impact. In that case, some users suggest using a hair dryer to warm the dent up and fix it.
Best Delsey Luggage Set: Delsey Paris Alexis 3-Piece Luggage Set
Delsey is the world’s second largest luggage brand. While I haven’t used its recent suitcases, every now and then I use my mom’s Delsey suitcase that she bought more than two decades ago and still looks quite good. Here, I’ll talk about the Delsey Paris Alexis 3-Piece Luggage Set which includes three amazingly elegant hardshell suitcases.
The unique shell is made out of durable ABS material and comes in two colors: the pictured navy and burgundy. The three pieces are 21, 25, and 29 inches, can be nested, and all of them are expandable to provide maximum possible storage space when needed. The suitcases four-wheel spinners.
As far as the interior is concerned, they’re in the typical hardshell configuration having one cross strap equipped compartment and one zippered compartment. There are no small pockets in any of the three pieces.
The two downsides of this set are the lack of locks (you can always buy a separate one) and the sets price. But then again, given that Delsey is one of the higher end brands and the suitcases are of great quality, the high price is a justifiable investment in your travels.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Luggage Sets
If you are unsure whether you should even be getting a luggage set, keep on reading as below, I will discuss what their advantages and disadvantages are.
First of all, as the name suggests – and as you know by this point – there are more than one piece of luggage in a set. As such, they are not ideal if you already have suitcases or bags that you like to use and just need a specific additional piece of luggage. At the same time, though, if you are just getting started with travel and are building your or your family’s luggage collection from scratch, they are an excellent thing as they can save you money and (as you will learn further down) space.
As for the advantages, besides the fact that they are sometimes cheaper to get than if you were to assemble the whole set piece-by-piece, they will also all be in the same color or style (if that is something that you care about). And, depending on the set you go with, they might even save space when not in use if they are nesting – if the second largest piece fits into the largest one, the third largest into the second largest one, and so on.
As far as disadvantages are concerned, the biggest one of them is the fact that you might be buying a three or four-piece set, but actually only be using two of the suitcases with the third one staying in your storage room the whole time.
Another disadvantage – which I also mentioned in advantages – is the fact that all the suitcases will be in the same style. While that can be good in some cases, in other cases you might find that limiting. For example when you would prefer to have a hardshell checked in luggage and a softshell carry on, or if you would like a large suitcase that stands out (is red, orange, and so on) when on a luggage belt but a more subtle carry on suitcase.
Things to Consider When Buying a Luggage Set
Finally, here’s a quick look at some of the most important criteria to look at before making the final decision as to which luggage set to buy. While some of them apply whether you are buying a single piece or a whole set, some of them are unique to buying sets.
Contents of the set: The very first thing you have to consider is the number and type of luggage you want to get. There is a wide variety of sets with sizes ranging from mostly two to four, but sometimes even seven or eight pieces. Depending on the set, they may all be suitcases or they might also include duffel bags, garment bags, and so on. As such, to begin with, you will need to know what kind of luggage you are looking for – and you will want to be careful about not buying way too much luggage that you will end up not using.
Size: The second thing to consider are the sizes of the luggage included in the set. Of course, you will not want to lug a half-empty suitcase around. At the same time, depending on how much gifts you want to bring back and so on, you might want to look for a larger suitcase than you originally thought. Most importantly, though, if you plan to take on of the suitcases onboard as a carry on, you will need to make sure it fits your airline’s allowance.
Weight: If you plan to use as much of your luggage allowance to bring home gifts or your favorite food, then you will also want to make sure the bags are as light as possible as that way there will be the maximum amount of not only space but also weight available for your cargo.
Color: While black is the most common – and most subtle – color of a suitcase, you might also want to look at colors like red or green if you are looking for something that will be easy to spot on the luggage belt at your destination.
Material: In general, suitcases are made out of two kinds of material resulting in either a softshell or a hardshell suitcase. While hardshell suitcases are sometimes more durable and oftentimes look better than softshell ones, they also tend to be slightly heavier and are also less flexible when it comes to packing them completely full or stowing them into tight places.
Interior: Some suitcases have large interior compartments and nothing else while others also have side pockets and so on. Some have nets covering the compartments while others only have straps. Those are some of the things you will need to consider when choosing the right suitcases for you as well.
Features: When it comes to the features of the luggage included in the set, there are a couple of things to look at including whether the suitcase has a built in lock or you will have to get a separate one, and whether the suitcase has two or four wheel (personally I prefer four for easy maneuverability). And, you should also consider if the suitcases nest into each other in case you have limited space to store them in.
Brand: Depending on your preferences, you could either get an entry-level brand like American Tourister or even AmazonBasics, or you could go for one of the more higher-end brands such as Samsonite or Delsey. Brands on the top end of the spectrum like Rimowa or Louis Vuitton don’t usually sell their luggage in sets.
Price: Finally, as with buying anything else, you will have to decide about your budget. Depending on the brand, quality, number of pieces in the set and so on, they can run for anywhere between under a hundred dollars all the way to several hundred dollars.
Overall, luggage sets are great if you are just starting out with your travels and have no luggage at all or if you need to replace more than one suitcase in your collection. The only thing to be aware of when getting one is to be sure that you will need all the pieces since otherwise the unused ones will just sit in your home.
That said, I believe that if you travel at least a couple of times a year on trips of various lengths and purposes, you will find a standard three-piece luggage set useful.
While you can read about the five luggage sets I suggest as a starting point in your hunt for the perfect one for you as well as about some of the things to keep in mind when choosing one above, I’ll remind you of two of my most favorite ones of them: the affordable Coolife Expandable Suitcase 3-Piece Set and the more upscale and very cool looking Delsey Paris Alexis 3-Piece Luggage Set.
Finally, to end with, you might also want to consider types of luggage other than suitcases – for example duffel bags – and if you decide to go with a luggage not equipped with a lock, you should consider buying an external TSA-approved lock.