Best Softside Luggage Reviews: Top 7 In 2022

Best Softside Luggage 2021

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Ladies and Gentlemen, Travel Gear Depot proudly presents: The best softsided suitcases and best soft carry on luggage! Please take your seats and be ready for some awesome bags on stage 🙂

Softside luggage has advantages and features that most of the hardsides don’t have. You can read more about this in our excellent 😉 article on the benefits and drawbacks of both types of luggage.

Best Softside Luggage 2021

Read all the way through, or just click in the Table of Contents below on the bag you are most interested in!

Softsided Suitcases – Safe To Check

eBags Mother Lode Checked Rolling Duffel 29 Inch

  • Exterior size: 29″ x 17″ x 15″
  • Weight: 12 lbs.
  • Warranty: Lifetime Warranty against defects in materials and workmanship
eBags Mother Lode 29 Inches Checked Rolling Duffel (Solid Black)
  • Easy access front zip compartment with interior mesh zip pocket
  • Large main compartment
  • Interior zip-around mesh panel pocket with 2 separated large zip pockets
  • 3 exterior quick-grab zip pockets (1 on each side, 1 on top)
  • 2 front feet for a tip-free design (even when fully packed)

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eBags Mother Lode Checked Rolling Duffel 29 Inch (Sinful Red)eBags Mother Lode Checked Rolling Duffel 29 EasyAccess Front PocketeBags Mother Lode Checked Rolling Duffel 29 Inch Interior

We make a flying start by reviewing a bag from the for us new brand Mother Lode. (Funny name we think, someone had an epiphany!)

Click here for a quick price and availability check on Amazon.

This an updated version of the TLS Mother Lode 29″ Wheeled Duffel. Apparently it’s lighter and more user-friendly. It’s always nice when manufacturers listen to the customers and enhance their products accordingly.

So is it user-friendly then? We think it is!

There are plenty of easily accessible pockets, two on the sides, one on top and one large on front.

The main compartment has a mesh lid on the upper half, with two separate pockets for smaller stuff. There are no compression straps on the bottom half, so packing cells are needed (always good to use!)

Stability and durability: This duffel bag has a molded backside. This is great because it keeps it upright and stable. The fabric is 840 denier & 900 denier Twisted Poly. We have seen no users having any issues with this, so it seems durable enough.

Overall the Motherlode 29″ has amazing ratings all over the web, around 4.6-4.7 out of 5 stars everywhere we look.


We have no problem recommending the Mother Lode bag. It seems totally durable, and if you are looking for a soft luggage to check you will not be disappointed.

But remember the packing cubes!

Pacsafe Venturesafe EXP21, 29, 34 Anti Theft Wheeled Luggage

  • Overall size: 22.8″H x 15″W x 9.8″D, 29.1″H x 16.1″W x 12.2″D, 34.7″H x 16.5″W x 13.4″D
  • Weight: 7.7 lbs, 9.5 lbs, 11.6 lbs.
  • Warranty: 5 Year Limited Warranty
Pacsafe Venturesafe EXP29 83L Anti Theft Wheeled Luggage, Black
  • SECURABLE & PUNCTURE RESISTANT ZIPPERS - With interlocking double Zippers that can be locked (optionally with a padlock; not included) to protect your belongings when travelling at airports. Patented in the USA, by Pacsafe, the original anti-theft brand.
  • CUT-RESISTANT FABRIC - Lightweight steel wire mesh embedded in highly cut resistant fabric to prevent theft at airports and hotels.
  • CAN BE LOCKED TO FIXTURES - Comes with a detachable stainless steel wire that can be used to cable carry-on to chairs, or banks (option. with padlock, not incl. ), allowing you to take a rest in between flights, knowing that your gear will not wander off.
  • BUILT TO LAST - With reinforced skid plate and back-rails to protect and keep clean the EVA hardshell back. 3. 54" tread wheels are made of high quality PP+TPU, come with 2. 17" ground clearance, anti-loose mechanism and can easily be replaced with allen key
  • SIZE, MATERIAL & - Size: 27. 6"H x 15. 0"W x 10. 2"D. Two wheeled bag made of robust, durable, water repellant and easy to clean Polyester to ensure secure & long-lasting usage. Weight: 9lb 8oz. Comes with a 5-year Pacsafe .

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We have found ourselves a new favorite brand! Bold statement perhaps, but we are so impressed with all the thought out details in this marvellous bag.

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There is so much to talk about it’s almost hard to know where to start! If you like, watch the video below right away and you will get a good overview of the bags features and how the Roobar™ looking system works. (Please note that the video is produced for the Toursafe but the features are the same!)

Pacsafe has taken luggage security one, or perhaps several, steps further. Their eXomesh® Slashguard is a metal net built into the fabric of the bag. This protects the bag from opportunistic thieves slashing your bag, as well as from getting ripped during handling at the airport.

The zippers cannot be opened using a ballpoint pen or some other pointy object due to the so called ToughZip™ construction. Thus, your bag is protected from forced entry through the zipper. This also means nobody can sneak things into your bag that they want you take through customs for them… like drugs or other contrabands!

The locking system is so smart! First, you can lock both the front pocket and the main compartment (in most softsiders you can only lock the main compartment). You only need one padlock to lock them both, and at the same time you can attach a locking cable to it as well. AND, the padlock is protected under the flap cover so there is no risk it will get ripped off during handling.

There is a 3 mm steel cable included when you buy the Venturesafe bag, so you can lock your bag to some kind of secure fixture. The cable is then attached to the locking system and locked with the same padlock that locks the zippers. You can safely take a nap or sit down to eat without risking that somebody snatches your bag away and runs off with it.

Okey, that was a lot about locking and security! Which is as it should be, since these are prominent features in this bag. But what about the rest of the bag?

The Venturesafe EXP is available in three sizes, as seen in the specs box above: one carry-on and two checked sizes.

This is perhaps one of the most durable bags, or rather luggage brands,  we have encountered. Something that contributes to this is the fact that this is an inliner. That is not common these days, but as we have stated elsewhere here at Travel Gear Depot, we strongly believe that spinners cannot be as durable as inliners with two wheels. (Having said that though, spinner wheels nowadays are much better than they used to be.)

There is one side handle and a top handle, both padded. The dual trolley handle is made from aluminium. There is a zippered luggage ID pocket.

The bag is made from easy-to-clean and water repellant polyester. It is fully lined with light colored polyester fabric. The main compartment has external compression straps, two zippered mesh pockets and two zippered pockets in the lid, which opens fully.

The back is made from molded EVA, and has protective rails, corner bumpers and a kick plate.

Did we mention that it is an extremely durable bag? Actually, we should perhaps have put it in the review article on durable luggage 🙂 But, being a softsider, it fits in well here too!

We have not managed to find any negative reviews of the Pacsafe Venturesafe EXP 21, 29, 34. Okey then, one actually. So what was that about then? Well, the reviewer was disappointed because “the front top side of this is collapsible”. Hmm, well, it is a softside you know…


Needless to say, we totally endorse this excellent softside travel bag. It is perhaps not fashionable design, but it will last you a lifetime.

Victorinox Unisex Werks Traveler 6.0 Medium Softside Case

  • Overall size: 18.5″W x 24.8″H x 14.2″D (expands 1.6″)
  • Weight: 9.35 lbs.
  • Warranty: 1+10 Years Warranty
Victorinox Werks Traveler 6.0 Softside Spinner Checked Medium Luggage, Blue
  • BUILT FOR TRAVEL: Sometimes life is bigger than the overhead compartment, which is why we created Victorinox luggage in a variety of sizes from carry-ons to extra-large checked pieces. Each piece is optimized for functionality and maneuverability, so you can travel through the airport with ease. Built to meet the needs of the modern traveler, our lightweight collections are constructed of durable materials and feature a flexible design with a series of convenient features for packing.
  • DURABLE MATERIALS: To provide even better protection for all that goes with you, we have evolved our soft side luggage to be a light and resilient travel partner. Each piece is designed to handle the demands of intensive travel and stands out for it's highly developed technology, functionality, and durability. Each design endures as many as 30 rigorous tests, stimulating extreme scenarios and environmental conditions.
  • PREMIUM FEATURES: Easily maneuver this multi-terrain suitcase by its 360º dual caster wheels and stable telescopic comfort grip handle system. Each case is crafted from high quality ballistic nylon resisting moisture, tears, and exceeding standards for abrasion by 500 cycles. The spacious interior features include compression straps and front pockets. Certain models include additional organizers such as removable suiters and technology pockets.
  • SAFETY: Travel with confidence knowing your luggage is equipped for anything. Heavy-duty zippers and an integrated TSA approved combination lock provide added security. Certain models include lockable zippers, our Access Lock Combination Recovery Program to recover forgotten lock combinations and/or our Swiss Tracker Bag Tracking Program featuring a unique tracking ID number and a 24–hour-a-day, 365-days-a-year number to return your bag to you quickly.
  • TRUSTED QUALITY: Made in Switzerland; Victorinox provides a lifetime guarantee against defects in material and workmanship. Warranties range from 2-year, or 10+1 year guarantees based on collection. No assembly required, money back guarantee.

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We already know that Victorinox produces high quality gear, and this soft suitcase is no exception.

If you like, go directly to Amazon and have a look!

Our opinion here at Travel Gear Depot is that this soft spinner suitcase is the perfect business travel luggage! Let us explain:

  • It has a removable garment suiter that will hold your best business outfit in impeccable condition.
  • The Pack More System allows you to pack your shirts in a separate expandable packing cube to keep it from getting wrinkled.
  • On top of the packing cube is a padded sleeve that fits a 15″ laptop.
  • Zippers are self-cleaning heavy-duty YKK coil.
  • Made with 600D ballistic nylon. Waterproof and very tough.
  • Integrated TSA-lock, no padlock you need to keep track of.

See what we mean about it being perfect for business travels?

Watch the video below and check it out! NOTE! The USB port shown is only on the carry-on size.

The bag is also equipped with dual spinner wheels (as you might guess from the name 🙂 ) from Hinomoto, a dual and stable trolley aluminum handle, soft top and side handle. It is also expandable with 1.6”, for when you need to pack some extra warm sweaters or leisure shoes. Or perhaps you need your own pillow to sleep well 🙂

Neat perk: Vicorinox has a service called “Access™ Lock Combination Recovery Program“. This allows you to register your chosen combination for the lock on your Victorinox profile, and if you forget it simply log in and request an email that includes your chosen digits.

The warranty for the 6.0 collection is better than many but not the best (think Briggs & Riley or Eagle Creek!). For the first  year, it covers all kinds of malfunction of the bag, including damage from handling in transit.

For the following nine years, it’s more like a regular warranty. It covers manufacturing defects in material and workmanship.


Business persons around the world, you can stop looking for the checked bag you need for your business travels. The Victorinox Werks Traveler 6.0 is the one!

Ricardo Beverly Hills Mar Vista 24-Inch 4 Wheel Expandable Upright

  • Overall size: 27″ H x 17.5″ W x 11″ D
  • 8.9 lbs.
  • Warranty: 10 Year Limited Warranty
Ricardo Beverly Hills Mar Vista Softside Expandable Luggage with Dual Spinner Wheels, Purple Paisley, Checked-Medium 24-Inch
  • Four upright spinner pieces feature four dual wheels that spin quietly and responsively in any direction. 22-inch wheel aboard, rolling garment bag and rolling tote feature durable inline wheels that are smooth rolling.
  • Reinforced carry handles are padded for extra comfort.
  • Multi-stage locking retractable handles adjust to the height most comfortable for you.
  • Ergonomically designed handle system features tpr grips that fit comfortably in your hand.Body Dimensions(Inches: 24 H x 17 W x 24 D
  • Upright cases expand with the pull of a zipper to instantly increase packing capacity. 10 year limited warranty

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In our review article on hardside suitcases (that you can read here) we enthusiastically reviewed the hard version of this beautiful paisley patterned bag. Are we in love with this pattern? Oh yes, we most definitely are 🙂

But, we know our calling here, we have to look at the function and the features of it as well. And actually, if it doesn’t meet our criteria, we won’t like it in spite of it’s beauty. (This is not true, we will love it anyway, but we won’t recommend it to you, promise 😉 ).

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To begin with, it actually comes in plain graphite as well, so if you’re not a fan of patterns this can still be a bag for you!

This is a large suitcase, but very lightweight for its size. It is not collapsible but has a glass fibre frame to sustain the shape of the bag. The outer material is ballistic nylon. We have not been able to find how many deniers the nylon is, but none of the user reviews we have read have had any issues concerning the durability of it.

The few negative reviews have been about one broken inside zipper, two instances of zipper pulls getting ripped off, and one of the suitcase being too large and hence it will make you overweight. We leave it to you to contemplate the last statement ;-).

The multi stop dual trolley handle is ergonomically designed, and has a textured grip just like the hardside that makes it comfortable for the hand. The handles on the top and the side are cushioned and gentle on your hands.

This is a spinner suitcase, and as you may know by now we’re are always slightly wary of spinner wheels. But, we have to admit that they have improved a lot over the last years, and are often acceptable. We have seen no complaints on the the wheels for this bag at all. They seem to be “smooth and quiet”.

There are two front pockets on the outside, these are zippered but not lockable. The lid to the main compartment opens fully along the side, and has a large zippered mesh pocket where you can put the clothes that wrinkles easily.

There is also a smaller mesh pocket along the side. Instead of cross straps in the main compartment (that is lined with a patterned fabric) there are two adjustable mesh panels to keep your clothes in place. We think these are less prone to wrinkle your clothes than the traditional straps.

Oh, we almost forgot to mention that it’s expandable as well! You can add another 2 inches of packing space.


As with the hardside version of this bag, we have no problem recommending it. In fact, we think it’s an amazing bag sold for a very reasonable price. We agree with what one reviewer happily exclaimed at the end of the user review:

“I do not see how anyone could be unhappy with this luggage!”

Soft Carry On Luggage – Easy To Fit In The Bin

Ricardo Beverly Hills Mar Vista 2.0 21-Inch Spinner Carry On Luggage

  • Overall size: 21+2″ x 15.5″ x 10″
  • Weight: 5.84 lbs.
  • Warranty: 10 Year Limited Warranty
Ricardo Beverly Hills Mar Vista 2.0 21-Inch Spinner Carry On Luggage (Wine)
  • Durable material-nylon fabric is built to last. It resists abrasion and tearing while providing superior protection against the elements. The result is beautiful luggage that looks new longer. Innovative stability-with the 360 degree dual spinner locking wheel, the case stays nearby with the press of a button
  • Easily maneuverable-multi-stage retractable handle with ergonomic grip fits comfortably in hand for optimal comfort and easy movement. Lightweight construction-the internal frame utilizes lightweight, flexible polycarbonate tubes fully integrated into injection-molded polypropylene trays
  • Grab & go capabilities-the built-in suiter loop and adjustable anti-wrinkle bar protect hanging clothing. Maximum organization-a unique two-compartment packing system with a zippered floating partition adjusts its capacity based on contents for easy access and maximum organization
  • Flexible security-adjustable tie-down panels keep personal belongings in place. Removable toiletry pouch-this snap-out water resistant pouch is tsa friendly, while keeping toiletries separate from other packed items
  • 8x14x21.5

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Ricardo Beverly Hills, again? Well yes, we felt bad not to tell you that this great bag is part of a collection. There are two carry on sizes, the smaller one is presented below.

Actually, we won’t go through all the features one more time. All you have to do is scroll one bag up and read, the carry ons have everything that the large suitcase has, they’re just smaller 🙂

As you can see in the bullet list above, the overall size of this 20 inch carry on is 22.5 inches. This means that it may not meet the cabin baggage criteria of some airlines. Luckily, there is a smaller size as well, just look below 🙂

Ricardo Beverly Hills, again? Well yes, we felt bad not to tell you that this great bag is part of a collection. There are two carry on sizes, the smaller one is presented below.

Ricardo Beverly Hills Mar Vista 17-Inch 4 Wheel Expandable Wheelaboard

  • Overall size: 19.5″ x 14.5″ x 8.5″
  • Weight: 6.2 lbs.
  • Warranty: 10 Year Limited Warranty
Ricardo Beverly Hills Mar Vista Softside Expandable Luggage with Dual Spinner Wheels, Purple Paisley, Carry-On 17-Inch
  • Four upright spinner pieces feature four dual wheels that spin quietly and responsively in any direction. 22-inch wheel aboard, rolling garment bag and rolling tote feature durable inline wheels that are smooth rolling.
  • Reinforced carry handles are padded for extra comfort.
  • Multi-stage locking retractable handles adjust to the height most comfortable for you.
  • Ergonomically designed handle system features tpr grips that fit comfortably in your hand.
  • Upright cases expand with the pull of a zipper to instantly increase packing capacity. 10 year limited warranty

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If you need a piece of soft sided luggage in the smallest carry on size, this is as great a choice as the 20” and the 28” versions of the bag (look above, and at the 28-inch bag for a full description and review). Being so small, it’s slightly different organized inside.

Instead of the mesh panels it has cross straps. This works well since it’s so much smaller than for example the 28” suitcase, the clothes are nicely held in place. There is no long mesh pocket, but two smaller fabric pockets for socks or the like.

In the lid is a padded compartment for a laptop of maximum size 15.5”. If you don’t have a laptop to put there, you can use it for folded clothes instead. There is also a mesh pocket in the lid on top of the padded compartment, here you can put smaller items.

A feature we totally like with this carry on is the water bottle holder on the side. If you don’t have a bottle, use it for your cell phone or something else small. Nothing at all to put in it? Then hide it with the zipper. Neat, right? 🙂


Nothing to complain about. If a 4-wheel softside, yet sturdy, small carry on is what you need, this is a great choice.

Hadaki Plane Hopping Roller 18-inch Carry On

  • Overall size: 18″ x 14.75″ x 8″
  • Weight: 4 lbs.
  • Warranty: 30 days (!)

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This is a happy bag! We made the decision to review this nylon bag despite its outrageous warranty, that is only 30 days. The company tries to justify it like this: “Our products are guaranteed for 30 days from the date you receive the merchandise. Given normal day-to-day use this should be sufficient time to determine if the item has a manufacturer’s defect.”

We’re not that sure 30 days is enough to determine if there’s a manufacturer’s defect, especially as you may not always use it that much at once. But, we have only encountered positive reviews about the quality of the Hadaki bag, and that along with the features of this bag made us decide to let it slip into the realm of Travel Gear Depot 🙂

Click here to check out prices, colors and availability on Amazon.

There are no less than 17 different colors and patterns to choose from! No, we did not put an extra figure in there. You can have a black bag, a floral bag, a striped bag, or a plain turqoise bag. And all of them are fully lined with a nice fabric in a color or pattern that agrees with the exterior. The outer fabric is water repellant and the inside is easily wiped.

This is a very ultra lightweight carry-on, it weighs only 4 lbs. As the height is only 18 inches it will certainly meet the size requirements for most airlines. Being soft and squishy it is easy to fit into tight spaces.

Some users claim it’s so small it can be used as a personal item to be stored underneath the seat in front of you when flying. We think you need to check that with the airline first, especially if you also use a carry on to put in the overhead bin. Otherwise you risk ending up having to check one of the bags since you’re only allowed the one bag in the bin.

A feature we are very happy with are the wheels. This is an inliner, which means it has two wheels that are well protected. They do not protrude like the wheels on a spinner. We think that spinner wheels on a carry-on is not necessary, since it’s small and will not be as heavy as a checked suitcase.

On the front are two large pockets, one zippered. The telescoping handle only stops in top position. As usual there are top and side grab handles, and there’s a substantial protecting bottom/kick plate.

Your clothes can be packed in two separate compartments since there is a lid on the top half (the bag opens almost at the middle), or you can leave the lid open and get one large main compartment. There are no smaller pockets, so packing cubes would probably be a good addition.

One of our aims here at Travel Gear Depot is to help you travel sustainably. So far we haven’t devoted much time or attention to that, but the Hadaki brand from Kalencom corporation actually represents a step in that direction. All of their products are eco-friendly when it comes to chemical usage. They do not use AZO, phthalates, DBP, BOP or any other chemicals known to be harmful.

Yay to that!


We don’t understand why the warranty for this softside carry on, or any of the Hadaki bags, is this ungenerous. 30 days? Come on!

But setting that fact aside, there is no reason not to like this bag if you’re after a truly soft and ultra lightweight carry on.


What is the best softside luggage?

Best on all accounts are the Pacsafe Venturesafe Anti Theft Wheeled Luggage. Amazingly well manufactured, amazing reviews, amazing features. Amazing all-over!

What is better hard or soft luggage?

Now this is a tricky one to answer, because it depends on how you will use your bag and what your personal preferences are. If you need to transport fragile items, choose a hardside. Orherwise, perhaps a softside will serve you the best. Read our discussion on the subject here!

Which brand of luggage is the most durable?

For the best answer to this query, read our article about the good luggage brands on the market!

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