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10 Types of Travel Bags for the Jetsetter

Most of us enjoy traveling. But for you to have an amazing traveling experience, you need to have the right types of travel bags. This is especially if you are a jetsetter.

Travel bags have evolved from the steamer trunks that were used in the 19th and early 20th century, to the more stylish, lightweight, and practical bags that fit the modern air travel.

While most bags can be used for travel, not all of them are travel appropriate, and especially for air travel. This makes choosing the right travel bag a critical exercise. The right bag will give you the freedom of traveling without worrying about convenience or the safety of your items.

Types of Bags for Travel

Below is a list of the different types of travel bags that are appropriate for the jetsetter.

Top 10 Types of Travel Bags for a Jetsetter

1. Backpacks

Modoker vintage travel backpack

Just as the name suggests, a backpack is carried on the back. It usually has two shoulder straps and is big enough to pack enough items for a short trip.

Some backpacks have padded hip belts to help transfer the weight from the shoulders to your hips. This way, your shoulders won’t strain a lot even if you are carrying heavy luggage.

Compared to other types of travel bags, backpacks are more compact. They are ideal for someone who wants to travel light.

Because they are not as big as some other travel bags, you are limited in what you can carry. However, some can carry over 22 pounds of weight.

Backpacks have many compartments that make it easy for you to organize your luggage. There is a main compartment where you can store the majority of your items.

You can also find smaller compartments within the main compartment to keep things such as a laptop, tablet, and notebooks.

They have different closing mechanisms to keep your items safe. For the main compartment, most usually have a zipper or a buckle, while others have a cord lock.

See Related: How to Travel Luggage-Free

2. Rolling Backpacks

Types of travel bags: rolling backpack

Recent innovations in bag technology have led to the manufacture of wheeled backpacks. These are backpacks that are fitted with a frame and wheels for easier portability. They combine the compactness of a backpack with the convenience of wheeled luggage.

This is a welcome addition to backpacks especially for those who tend to carry heavy luggage. Wheeled backpacks can carry more items than a regular backpack because they are bigger in size and are more portable.

Some wheeled backpacks can still be adapted for situations when you have to carry them on your shoulder. For example, when moving around on foot at a large airport, you can drag it by the wheels. And in case you come across an escalator or have to maneuver through thick crowds, you can simply strap it onto your back and keep moving.

Unlike regular backpacks, wheeled backpacks are made from tougher materials like canvas, leather, or even a combination of different materials.

This innovation, however, is not without its downsides. For example, wheeled backpacks are heavier and bigger because of the additional frame, wheels, and pull handle.

Backpacks are usually more reasonably priced compared to other types of bags for travel, and they are available in a wide variety of sizes and designs.

3. Duffel Bags

Types of travel bags: Plambag Canvas Duffle Bag

Duffel bags are usually long tubular-shaped bags that have strong zippers and straps for portability. They have a large middle compartment and can be classified under big travel bags.

Most duffel bags range between 30 and 36 inches in height. The space inside varies also. The smaller ones have about 5000 inches of space while some have over 8000 inches of space.

The inside of some duffel bags is separated into compartments to allow you to organize your items. Some have internal mesh pockets that can fit extra items. These pockets are good for keeping small items that might easily get lost when mixed with others.

Duffel bags also have extra zippered pockets on the outside where you can store other items, especially those you might need to access easily and quickly like keys and tickets.

They are made of different materials with the most common ones being canvas and leather. The material is usually thick enough to protect everything that is inside.

They have sturdy straps or handles, which make it easy to carry or haul them around. The zip closures are not only sturdy but are also durable. Typically, regular duffel bags do not have a pull-frame or wheels.

See Related: Monos Luggage Review: Is it Worth it?

4. Wheeled Duffel Bags

Samsonite Andante 2 Drop Bottom Wheeled Rolling Duffel Bag

Just like backpacks, you can also get a wheeled duffel bag. Although similar in features to a regular duffel bag, a wheeled one has heavy-duty wheels and a strong frame that make it easy for you to pull the bag as you move. This one is ideal for those travelers who prefer duffel bags to suitcases but want the ease of movement.

A wheeled duffel allows you to pack large volumes of items without worrying about how to move. You can easily haul it around no matter how heavy it is. Wheeled duffel bags also have side and front handles and clips where you can even attach other bags.

However, because of the added frame and wheels, most are big and bulky. Therefore, they can’t be accepted as a carry-on and have to be checked.

Also, because of the pull-frame, wheeled duffel bags are not flexible and cannot be squeezed or folded up easily. This might make their storage quite an issue.

So if you do not have many items to carry, you can carry one that is small or middle-sized, which can easily fit into an overhead compartment. It will also be more convenient to carry and maneuver with, around the airport. 

See Related: Best Snowboard Bags for Travel

5. Rolling Suitcases

Coolife Luggage Expandable suitcase

These are bags with hard sides, wheels on the base, and a retractable handle that allows you to roll the bag along with ease. This makes them pretty convenient as you don’t need to carry the weight yourself.

Rolling suitcases have been a popular choice for many travelers since their invention in the 70s. They can be carried onto the plane without checking.

Most rolling suitcases have hard sides that are made from very hard tarpaulin, ABS plastic, or a combination of polyester and nylon.  This makes them sturdier and more weather-resistant compared to other types of travel bags. They are also harder to break or damage.

Rolling suitcases come in different sizes. They have a big main compartment that can accommodate different types and quantities of items. There are also other compartments made of mesh on the inside, for you to keep your smaller items.

Rolling suitcases usually come in two categories; two-wheelers and four-wheelers. The four-wheelers are also referred to as ‘spinner’ luggage because they can spin. 

However, one of the shortcomings of rolling suitcases is that they aren’t as flexible as other bags. Therefore, it is not easy to squeeze them to fit into small spaces like airplane compartments.

6. Messenger Bags

Leather Messenger Bag for Men

Messenger bags are also called courier bags. This is because they were originally designed for messengers who used them to carry documents for delivery. They are also called shoulder bags since they are carried by strapping them across the shoulder.

They come in different designs. But, the basic design consists of a large main compartment to keep your things, with external pockets for extra items.

Some are expandable and can be adjusted to create more space in the bag. Others even have extra compartments for things like laptops, notebooks, and cellphones.

They have very secure locking mechanisms, including buckles, clasps, or zippers. And besides securing the contents, these locking mechanisms also add style to the bag.

Messenger bags are some of the most compact types of travel bags. Therefore, they are ideal for anyone who wants to carry a smaller load. Remember, you also need to keep the luggage weight at a manageable level because you will be the one carrying it around.

Messenger bags provide on-body access to your items. If you want something, you simply swing it round to your front and access your items. They are considered more formal than backpacks and are more acceptable in professional environments.

7. Travel Tote

KROSER travel Tote bag

A tote is an unfastened bag with protruding parallel handles on the sides. Tote bags are mostly used by women although some are unisex.

In recent times, totes have been added to the list of travel bags. They fall under the small travel bags mentioned making them the perfect carry-on for the jetsetter.

A travel tote usually has one big compartment for keeping your travel essentials. Some may have smaller compartments for your additional items such as your mobile phone, wallet, passport, and other electronics.

However, some travel totes do not have internal organization. They consist of just one single compartment meaning you might find yourself doing a lot of digging when looking for something.

Although not very big, a travel tote bag is spacious enough to fit all your essentials but nothing more. It is, therefore, ideal for short travels, usually single or two-day trips. You can take it with you wherever you are going, whether onto the plane or when walking around the airport.

Some travel totes have shoulder straps for added convenience when moving around. Totes are made from different materials with the most common ones being leather, cloth, canvas, and nylon.

See related: Best Travel Purses [Stylish And Affordable Options]

8. Doctor’s Style Travel Bag

Time Resistance Leather Doctor Bag with Key Lock

The doctor’s travel bag is an adaptation of the traditional practical bag, which doctors used to carry their essentials. They are often large and can hold many things. Some are even comparable to duffel bags in terms of their carrying capacity.

You can also find many small and medium-sized ones that are accepted as hand luggage by most airlines. 

Traditionally, since the bags were made for doctors, they were made from traditional materials such as high-quality leather. But today, they are made from a wide array of materials including canvas, nylon, and even polyester.

One of the features that makes doctor’s bags ideal for travel is the large number of pockets and pouches. This makes it very easy to organize your essentials for neatness and accessibility. There is a big main compartment to keep things like clothes and shoes and even gadgets and documents.

You can use the smaller pockets and even secret pouches on the inside, to keep other precious things. A doctor’s bag will also have zippered pockets on the outside that offer more space to store items.

It mostly comes with short grab handles but you can also get cross-body designs that have adjustable shoulder straps for convenience.

See Related: Most Beautiful Places in the World

9. Bucket Bag

AFKOMST Bucket Bag for Women

A bucket bag is aptly named so because it usually takes the shape of a bucket. It is roomy on the inside, with an open top and a wide, flat, and round or oval bottom. Because of its shape, a bucket bag can sit upright without support and not topple over.

Due to their huge size and design, bucket bags have become some of the most popular types of travel bags. They have also undergone an evolution in design so they no longer have to look exactly like buckets. They are available in different sizes but most are usually large enough to carry all of your essentials.

Most bucket bags resemble a tote on the inside. They have one big compartment for keeping your things. Some also have zippered pockets on the inside for holding important things like your wallet, passport, or keys.

Bucket bags usually have a drawstring closure. This makes it easy to open and close when you want to access something. However, you need to ensure that the drawstring is secure enough so that it does not open unintentionally.

They come in a wide variety of materials. Some are made from leather, canvas, faux fur, and even nylon. Some have a shoulder strap or handle for easy portability.

10. Briefcase

Types of travel bags: Augus Business Travel Briefcase

A briefcase is flat and shaped like a box. It originated from the legal industry as it was used by lawyers to carry briefs. Because of its professional look, it was later adopted by businessmen and white-collar professionals to carry their documents and electronic gadgets like laptops and tablets.

However, they have evolved with time to become the ultimate travel companion. Some briefcases are now big enough for both professional and personal needs. They can carry not just papers and electronic gadgets but also clothes and shoes for short trips.

Usually, a briefcase has one main internal compartment where you can keep most of your items. Most also have smaller accordion sections and small pockets to help in organization.

Some briefcases also have zippered pockets on the outside. Here, you can keep things that you might need to access easily like your wallet, glasses, and passport.

They are made from different materials such as leather, waxed nylon, vinyl, or even cloth. Most of them have very secure locking mechanisms.

Even better, some come with a key to lock in your contents. They have top handles and even an adjustable shoulder strap for hands-free convenience.

Why Choose the Right Travel Bag?

The type of travel bag you have, in many ways, determines the quality of your travel experience. Thus, the importance of choosing the right types of travel bags cannot be overemphasized.

The right bag allows you to carry all your essentials, and access them easily and quickly. In addition, the privacy and safety of your items are guaranteed.

So, as you go through our list, it is important to master the names for the different types of travel bags. This will be helpful for you the next time you go shopping for traveling bags.

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