Traveling with kids is tough enough without worrying that their luggage can’t stand up to the task. From maneuvering through busy airports to being shoved in and out of compartments, airline overhead bins and car trunks, kids luggage can take a beating. So, it’s important to look for something that’s durable and also a good fit for your child.
Whether your little ones are frequent air travelers or road trippers, or they just need something for sleepovers and trips to Grandma’s house, here’s what you should consider when buying kids luggage:
- Your child’s size: If your kiddo is at a stage where they’re growing like a weed, opt for something with adjustable handles so it’s easy for them to carry and pull as they grow. If they’re young and still building muscles, go for lightweight luggage that maneuvers easily.
- Your child’s personality: Do they love attention? Tend to dread walking longer distances like through an airport terminal? If so, a ride-on suitcase with plenty of character might be ideal.
- How much stuff do they have? If your kiddo loves stuffing their bag with more clothes, toys and supplies than they can ever use on a single trip, you’ll want expandable luggage with plenty of zippers, pockets and compartments.
Whichever kids luggage you choose, giving them a suitcase that’s all theirs will help to teach them responsibility while freeing up space in yours, which is a win for everyone!
Designed as an adult weekender bag
, this small but mighty suitcase is perfect for little ones to stash their games, toys and clothes on a short trip. With four 360-degree wheels, it’s easy for small hands to maneuver. A durable exterior stands up to kids who sit on their luggage as much as roll it, while the roomy interior has a divider with pockets perfect for things like books, iPads
. Designed to fit under the average airline seat and complete with a TSA-approved lock
, it comes in eight vibrant colors.
$63.21 $58.86 at Amazon
Durable, easy to handle and downright adorable, this well-reviewed suitcase offers great value for the money. A push-button handle and zipper pulls are perfect for small hands, and at just more than 4 pounds when empty, it’s lightweight enough that they can easily pull it around on its side-mounted wheels. Inside, tie-down straps hold everything in place, while a divider creates separate packing compartments that make it easy to keep clean and dirty clothes apart while you’re on the road. Kids love the fun, vibrant graphics of their favorite characters from Disney World
and "Star Wars" — and their coordinating luggage tags
This stylish, ride-on suitcase is a favorite of parents and kids alike, but it’s especially perfect for long flights because it doubles as a footrest and even a bed. By unclipping the lid and turning it upside down, a platform pops up where kids can rest their feet while they watch movies, read or draw while in transit. “I love that kids can scoot on it, but it also converts into a leg rest,” says mom blogger Arielle Worona
. When it’s time for some shut-eye, unwrap the mattress that comes tucked away inside, and “it becomes a bed that helps with all the much-needed travel day naps,” says Worona. If kids get tired of pulling or riding it through the airport, the JetKids BedBox has an adjustable strap that makes it easy for parents to carry it over their shoulders.
More of a rolling duffel bag than a hard-to-maneuver suitcase, the L.L.Bean duffel is a favorite of parents for its roomy compartment and variety of size options. “For sleepaway camp and traveling, my daughter uses the L.L.Bean Adventure Rolling Duffel Bag,” says fashion stylist Victoria Sanchez Lincoln. “It rolls, fits everything she needs and the best part is that when she’s done using it, it folds flat
and I can store it away easily without taking up room in my home.” The duffel comes in three size options: medium, large and extra large. Like many L.L.Bean products, you can also have this one monogrammed in your child’s favorite color.
For kids who want to pack and ride in style, the Younglinz Green Motorcycle Flyer is a ride-on suitcase that holds up to 80 pounds for a child and packing load combination (it's not recommended for children weighing more than 50 pounds). “It has a padded seat cushion, foldable handlebars, foot pedals, an adjustable seat belt and my favorite feature, the light-up wheels,” says 6-year-old toy reviewer Sofia Isabella Massachusetts
. The 360-degree light-up spinner wheels provide effortless maneuverability and are easy to spot around crowded airports. Plus, the suitcase is small enough to fit in most overhead bins.
Sturdy 360-degree wheels make it easy for kids to roll this suitcase around both soft and hard surfaces. A side strap holds a water bottle or a stuffed teddy snugly in place, and a separate mesh pocket is a welcome extra when dirty laundry piles up on vacation
. One of the coolest features of this suitcase is the sturdy luggage sleeve on the back that allows you to slide the suitcase over your own when your kids are too tired to pull it. Fun colors and prints of airplanes, dragons and more allow kids to express their individuality. Perhaps best of all, the brand says that 45% of this bag is made from recycled materials.
There aren’t many affordable suitcase options for kids that feature a special compartment designed for a doll or teddy bear. But at less than $50, this option is a steal for the kiddo who wants to bring their special friend along on their travels. When kids get tired of pulling the two-wheeled suitcase by the lightweight aluminum handle, they can carry it as a backpack via the padded straps. With plenty of room for travel necessities, this versatile option is a great one — and it comes at a price that won't break the bank.
Why wait until adulthood for their first vehicle when the Ridaz Mercedes Benz G-Class Kids Suitcase can fulfill that dream early? “This suitcase is perfectly compact and attractive,” says Vanessa Dewar, owner of Stush Kidz
, an online retailer of kids travel gear and accessories. “My son gets compliments everywhere he takes it. It can fit several sets of toddler clothing and even has a compartment for a child’s toothbrush, underwear and socks. If packed neatly
, a pair of sandals and sneakers can fit as well.” It also fits under most airline seats, which is a big plus if your family is avoiding checked bags
Ideal for long trips that will require lots of walking through airports, the Trunki bills itself as the original ride-on suitcase. One mom of two said it was perfectly durable for her 6-year-old and 7-year-old, saying “In between flights, we would find an empty gate or hallway and the kids would zip up and down the area on the Trunkis, which helped a lot when we got on the plane as their energy had been burned off.” It comes with a seat belt made for plush toys and teddy bears, a multifunctional strap so parents can tow tired toddlers, a comfy saddle and horn grips for steering when used as a ride-on. It’s ideal for toddlers and preschoolers, but not quite large enough for bigger kids.
This adorable — and affordable — luggage is trifunctional. It can be used as a handbag, carry-on luggage
for every part of your child's journey. The front quick-access pouch is perfect for keeping snacks and storybooks separate, while mesh side pockets hold everything from bottles to a pair of shoes
. Choose from different animal designs — from panda to shark, unicorn, dinosaur and more — and sizes to suit your toddler best.
$253.92 $126.87 at Amazon
This Delsey carry-on is the perfect transition piece for teens who want to seem more “adult.” The slick metallic exterior comes in myriad colors, and the double spinner wheels ensure it can be pulled around effortlessly. A roomy interior includes two large compartments with a zippered divider to help maximize space and minimize wrinkles. It also expands another 2 inches for additional packing space, should your teen decide to go on a shopping spree while on vacation — so don't forget those packing cubes
! It's available in four sizes and 10 colors to best fit the frame and style of your kiddo.
With its sleek egg shape and a double compartment, this modern suitcase looks like something Jane Jetson may have bought for Elroy or Judy. Tuck toys and books into one of two interior compartments and use the large, zippered mesh pocket to store clothes, undergarments and accessories. The two silent wheels will keep you — and your little one — feeling sane when walking long distances through airport terminals.
$120 $63.64 at Amazon
Reviewed by tens of thousands of Amazon users, this luggage is so durable one mom said it took nearly 10 years before she felt the need to replace it. The perfect size carry-on
— especially for older kids — the 20-inch bag comes in a whopping 33 shades. Each bag comes with an ergonomic handle and four spinner wheels that rotate 360 degrees, and it easily expands by 2 inches to fit even more inside. We love that this is a bag that can grow with your child and be used for years — and plenty of vacations — to come.
Riding on your suitcase is one thing, but folding down an aluminum platform to ride your luggage like a scooter levels up the fun. An adjustable aluminum handle makes it easy for kids to maneuver and locks in place when it’s time to convert it to a regular roller bag. Light-up wheels make it easy to spot your kiddo if they scoot away from you. “He never once complained about walking in the airport, and it kept him entertained during their layover," one grandparent reviewer said of the scooter. From race cars to robots to yeti monsters, the Kiddietote comes in four designs.
Extra deep with plenty of space for clothes, shoes and toys
, this luggage comes in 14 different prints and can be coordinated with matching duffel bags and toiletry kits
. In other words, there's a design for every child's favorite interest. The included luggage handle locks at two different heights so it can adjust to your growing kiddo. Inside, you'll find plenty of pockets for storing all of your kid's plane essentials
$85.99 $79.99 at Amazon
With an adjustable handle that can grow with your kiddo, this iPlay luggage set is great for kids aged 2 to 12 years old. The carry-on luggage piece comes with a scratch-resistant waterproof shell and 360-degree spinner wheels. Meanwhile, the included boxy backpack with extra-wide straps will sit comfortably on your child’s shoulders and back, even when walking long distances. We love this set for its durability and fun design — sure to impress the shark-loving traveler in your life.
$180 $67.49 at Macy's
Families who travel frequently need more than one piece of durable luggage for their little ones. Enter this five-piece set that’s a great value. It comes with a roomy piece of carry-on luggage and a coordinating backpack
, lunch bag
, neck pillow
and luggage tag. When not traveling, the individual components can be used on their own for trips to daycare, school lunches and sleepovers. Each item has individual pockets, and one road-tripping
mom said it fits perfectly whether you’re tossing it in your trunk or the overhead bin on a plane.
Once kids hit middle school and beyond, chances are they’ll cringe at anything with a cutesy pattern. This scratch-resistant carry-on in six grown-up shades like mint, navy and rose gold comes with double coil anti-theft zippers designed to prevent unwanted entry and four spinner wheels for super-easy maneuvering, and it expands 25% in size to accommodate any souvenir shopping they do. Chances are you’ll want this one for yourself.
$69.99 $64.99 at Amazon
Made for kids aged 3 years to 6 years, this sweet set comes in five artsy designs from owls to astronauts that look as if they were hand-painted. Both the luggage and backpack have multiple compartments to separate and secure clothes, toys and more, and together they easily accommodate about three days' worth of your kid’s stuff, making it ideal for short getaways. An adjustable handle on the luggage and adjustable straps on the backpack make it easy to find the comfiest fit for each trip.
Made with sturdy in-line wheels that make it more resistant to damage and allow for more storage room inside, this teen-friendly suitcase can be monogrammed in their choice of 24 fonts and colors for a personalized touch
. The interior is split into two separate compartments with small and large zippered pockets, plus straps to hold clothing in place neatly. This piece of luggage is available in both a carry-on bag size and checked luggage — or get both for a matching set.
Looking for a new travel credit card? Check out CNN Underscored’s list of the best credit cards currently available.