Updated May 2022
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Buying guide for Best kids’ luggage sets

Gearing up for your next family vacation? Packing can be tough, especially if you handle the task for more than one member of your family. Instead of stuffing everyone’s belongings in large suitcases, consider picking up a kids’ luggage set for a more organized approach.

Kids’ luggage sets typically come with two to four coordinating bags, some of which can stack or attach to one another. Besides featuring kid-friendly designs, they’re also kid-sized, so your tiny traveler can be an independent globetrotter, at least when it comes to carrying their own luggage.

The sets normally feature one lightweight rolling case with a telescopic handle that can be adjusted to your kid’s height. The additional coordinating bags come in a variety of styles to accommodate their baggage needs, whether it’s necessary snack space or nooks and crannies for favorite toys.

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To make your kids’ luggage set easy to identify, choose one with a bright color or unique design that you can spot easily from a distance.

Key considerations

Keep these factors in mind as you shop for luggage for your kids.

Longevity: If you don’t travel often and select a set geared toward small children, your little traveler might soon outgrow the set before your next trip.

Practicality: While smaller luggage sets are cute and give kids the feeling of being a true traveler, bringing them as a carry-on or as checked luggage may incur additional baggage fees.

Ease of use: While rolling cases are user-friendly for the average person, they can be challenging for some kids who aren’t quite coordinated or strong enough to pull them unaided.

Level of interest: Some kids go ga-ga over luggage sets with their favorite characters or animals in the beginning, but the interest can wear off, and your child could become less thrilled about using a “babyish” luggage set.

Expandability: Not all kids’ luggage sets have expandability options, so if you tend to bring souvenirs home with you, you won’t have much space in your bags if they were stuffed to begin with.

Suitcase types

Rolling case: Rolling cases are the staple of kids’ luggage sets. They have a telescopic handle, wheels, and a sturdy frame to support another suitcase stacked on top. They come in a variety of sizes, from 12 to 28 inches. Some luggage sets include more than one rolling case, though these are most common in premium sets geared toward older kids and teens.

Mini case: The most common bag in addition to a rolling case is the mini case. These are usually miniature versions of the larger case minus the wheels and the telescopic handle. These cases typically come with a sleeve or hook-and-loop fastener system to secure them through the extended telescopic handle. For the most part, mini cases are anywhere from 12 to around 18 inches, depending on the size of the rolling case.

Tote bag: Tote bags, also called carry cases, are also popular secondary bags. These are structured and often utilized as a snack storage case, especially since their size accommodates insulated ice packs. These cases tend to have similar dimensions to mini cases because they also usually stack on top of rolling cases. In the event they don’t, they’re easy to carry by the handle or via the adjustable shoulder strap.

Duffel bag: You’ll occasionally see duffel bags as part of kids’ luggage sets, though they’re more common in three- and four-piece sets. These tend to be on the smaller side, but they can still fit a wealth of items in the large compartment. They don’t have the rigid structure of the aforementioned cases, which is ideal if you need to stuff jackets, sweaters, and blankets inside.

Backpack: Backpacks are growing in popularity as part of kids’ luggage sets. Some parents see these as ultra practical because kids can pull a lightweight rolling case while carrying a regular backpack. There are also backpacks that come with sleeves that allow them to attach over the telescopic handle for added convenience. The downside with backpacks in these sets is that they’re usually quite small, so expect to only be able to store some coloring books and small toys inside them.

Hard vs. soft

Hard: Hard-shell kids’ luggage sets are made of polyester, ABS, and nylon, all of which keep luggage lightweight. Given their smooth surface, they’re easy to clean with a damp cloth.

On the downside, very few hard-shell cases are expandable, and they sometimes come in awkward sizes that make it hard to pack basic items like clothing and shoes.

Soft: Soft-sided kids’ luggage sets can be made of nylon, polyester, Oxford cloth, or even plastic, so you can find a quality set durable enough for years of frequent travel.

On the downside, while you can pick up a soft-sided set at a low price, you definitely get what you pay for. Some frames are a bit flimsy and can be crushed with minimal force.



Kids’ luggage sets come in far more fun colors and patterns than most luggage sets for adults. Popular patterns include flowers, travel themes, polka dots, and friendly animals. Some sets feature licensed characters from popular movies or comics, though keep in mind you’ll be paying top dollar for these. Solid-colored sets are the least popular with kids, but when you do find them, the bags usually have bold, unique colors.


Most kids’ luggage sets include some level of organization, especially the rolling cases. These have a couple of outside zipper pockets, whereas other types of luggage like duffels and tote bags tend to feature several outside compartments. As far as the inside of rolling cases, they often have zippered mesh pockets and a variety of other pockets, more so than what’s normally seen in adult luggage. There are also elastic clip-belt systems to secure clothing, which have snap closures that are usually simple enough for tiny hands to use.

"Write your family’s contact information, including an email address, on your kids’ luggage tag. In the event the luggage is lost, there’s more than one way the airline can contact you."

Kids’ luggage set prices

Kids’ luggage sets generally cost between $25 and $300. The price is typically affected by the quality of materials and whether the set is from a brand name or is licensed merchandise.

Inexpensive: You can find a budget-friendly kids’ luggage set for under $50, which usually comes with a couple of smaller cases ideal for younger kids. Some of them have surprisingly good quality, with hard-shell designs, whereas others are relatively flimsy nylon.

Mid-range: These kids’ luggage sets cost between $50 and $150 and tend to include better-quality sets with swivel wheels and quality linings.

Expensive: If you’re willing to spend top dollar, closer to $300, you’ll get premium-quality luggage from major brand names in suitcases. You might also find sets with as many as four or five coordinating pieces.


  • Teach your child how to pack. If your family likes to travel, teach your kid to pack their own bag so that vacation preparation is a time-optimized affair.
  • Inspect the bags before you travel. For smooth sailing on your trip, be sure to check that all moving parts like wheels, telescopic handles, and zippers are all in working order.
  • Keep valuables inside. While it’s easy to access electronics and valuables from outside pockets, it’s best to keep these inside your luggage or inside coat pockets.
  • Verify carry-on regulations. Each airline has different rules regarding carry-ons, so make sure your kids’ luggage is within the allowed weight and size limits.
Two children dressed in cold-weather clothing stand next to red suitcases.
Save your receipt and the original tags for your kids’ luggage set in case it gets damaged or needs to be returned.


Q. Won’t luggage be too heavy for my kid to carry?
Unless you’re severely overpacking, kids’ luggage, especially rolling bags, are designed for easy, lightweight transport that even toddlers can manage. With that said, other luggage pieces could be a bit cumbersome for some children, especially if the pieces in your kids’ luggage set don’t stack.

Q. How hard is it to stack the smaller piece of luggage over the telescopic handle?
For the most part, it’s easy enough for kids to manage on their own. If the smaller piece is a bit heavy for them to lift, you may need to assist them. It’s also important to show kids how to lock the extended telescopic handle because they won’t be able to stack the luggage otherwise.

Q. What’s the best secondary, smaller bag to complement a larger rolling suitcase?
It depends on what you’re packing inside it. For clothing and shoes, choose a set where both pieces are the same shape, which is usually oval or rectangular. For toys and games, try a small handheld case that is spacious and structured. If you need a bag that packs snacks, swimwear, and small toys, your best bet is a set with a matching backpack.

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