Hardside vs Softside Luggage

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When it comes to luggage, there are two main types: hardside and softside. But which one is the best for you? Here’s a look at the pros and cons of both hardside vs softside luggage to help you make the best decision for your next trip.

What is the difference between hardside and softside luggage?

Hardside luggage is made from a solid material, such as plastic or metal, while softside luggage is made from fabric. This makes hardside luggage more protective against impact and scratches, while softside luggage is more flexible and can be squeezed into tighter spaces.


Hardside luggage is typically more durable than softside luggage, as the hardshell material is less likely to tear or rip. However, if you are looking for a lightweight option, softside luggage is the way to go.


Hardside luggage is often more secure than softside luggage, as it is more difficult to break into. However, both types of luggage can be equipped with locks for extra security.


Hardside luggage is generally heavier than softside luggage, as the solid materials used are heavier than fabric. This can be a downside if you need to carry your luggage for long distances.

Ease of packing

Softside luggage is generally easier to pack than hardside luggage, as it can be easily squeezed into tight spaces. On the other hand, hardside luggage is more difficult to pack but can hold more items.


Hardside luggage is generally more difficult to move around, as it is not as flexible as softside luggage. However, hardside luggage typically has wheels for easy transportation.


Hardside luggage is more expensive than softside luggage, as the materials used are more expensive. However, hardside luggage often lasts longer than softside luggage.

Which type of luggage is better?

That depends on your needs. Hardside luggage is more durable and protective, while softside luggage is more lightweight and flexible. Ultimately, the best type of luggage for you depends on your travel habits and what you need most from your luggage.

How to choose the right type of luggage for your needs

Here are a few things to consider when choosing between hardside and softside luggage:

  • How much protection do you need? If you’re worried about your belongings being damaged during travel, then hardside luggage is a good option. However, if you’re not as concerned about damage, then softside luggage may be fine.
  • How much weight do you want to carry? Hardside luggage is typically heavier than softside luggage, so if you’re looking to save on weight, go for the soft option.
  • How much space do you need? Hardside luggage takes up more space than softside luggage, so if you’re short on room, opt for a softside bag.
  • How often do you travel? If you’re a frequent traveler, hardside luggage may be a better option as it is more durable. If you only take one or two trips a year, softside luggage may be more suitable.

No matter what type of luggage you choose, make sure it meets your needs and is the right size for your trip. Nothing is worse than being stuck with luggage that’s too small or too big.

Hardside vs Softside Luggage

The pros and cons of hardside and softside luggage

Hardside luggage


  • More durable and protective against impact
  • Scratch-resistant
  • Typically has more compartments and pockets for organization


  • Heavier than softside luggage
  • Takes up more space

Softside luggage


  • More lightweight and flexible
  • Can be squeezed into tighter spaces
  • Many different designs and colors to choose from


  • Less durable than hardside luggage
  • More susceptible to damage from water and scratches

There is no definitive answer, but hardside luggage is becoming increasingly popular due to its durability and protective properties. Softside luggage is still the most popular type, but the gap is narrowing.

How to care for your hardside or softside luggage

Hardside luggage

  • Store in a cool, dry place
  • Avoid exposing to direct sunlight
  • Use a soft cloth to wipe clean

Softside luggage

  • Spot clean with a mild detergent
  • Air dry
  • Do not put in the washing machine or dryer

The most common problems with hardside and softside luggage

The most common issue is that they can get scratched or dented, and that they can be difficult to pack. However, hardside luggage has the advantage of being more durable and easier to pack. Softside luggage is usually lighter and more flexible, making it a good choice for travelers who need to pack light.

How to avoid damage to your luggage

The best way to avoid damage to your luggage is to be careful with it. Handle it gently and avoid putting it in tight spaces. If you’re traveling with hardside luggage, be sure to pack soft items on top to avoid scratches. And if you’re traveling with softside luggage, be sure to pack heavier items on top to avoid crushing.

Tips for packing your luggage

No matter what type of luggage you choose, these tips will help make packing easier:

  • Pack clothes that can be mixed and matched so you can create multiple outfits with fewer items
  • Roll your clothes instead of folding them to save space
  • Use vacuum-sealed bags to compress bulky items
  • Place delicate items in a mesh bag to prevent them from being damaged
  • Use packing cubes to keep things organized
  • Don’t overpack! Leave some room in your luggage so you can easily add items if needed

Why you should invest in good quality luggage

Quality luggage can last for years if properly taken care of. It’s a good investment, especially if you travel frequently. Good quality luggage will be more durable and less likely to break or tear. It’s also important to note that good quality luggage typically comes with a warranty, which is something to keep in mind if you’re prone to accidents.

Hardside vs Softside Luggage


Hardside or softside luggage – which is right for you? The answer depends on your needs and preferences. Hardside luggage is more durable and protective, while softside luggage is lighter and more flexible. Whichever type of luggage you choose, be sure to take care of it so it will last for years.

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