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Thread: Luggage Topic

  1. #1
    Forum's veteran bucknaway's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005

    Luggage Topic

    Many of you have been to Thailand more times than you can count. I am sure you could talk about luggage disasters and lessons learned when selecting proper luggage. I will share with you some of my issues and what I have done to avoid luggage disasters.

    On one trip I had some luggage I purchased from QVC. It was a multi-part bag that came with one large main bag with wheels and a handle. And you could attach 2 smaller bags to it by way of a zipper. It worked well for my first trip but on my 2nd trip, the bags arrived with the zippers partially split and the bags were coming apart and clothes were almost spilling out.

    I replaced that bag with a hard-body suitcase purchased in BKK. It seemed nice at the time but after using it on 2 trips found it didn't hold up. The clasp soon broke and it arrived in the US Airport with only one clasp of the 2 holding it shut and I could not get the 2nd clasp to work again.

    On my next trip I didn't check a bag and only did a carry on. Big Mistake! I was put through the mill with added security screenings at every airport along the way and on my return. I am sure it had everything to do with me flying so far with no checked baggage. Anyway... On that trip, I purchased a large rolling backpack with side compartments, large main bag and strong zippers. This back seem to be the best bag choice and served me well for many trips to come, but on my last trip, I received the bag with one of the wheels broken off (Torn away) from the bag. Ugh.....

    So I had to buy a new bag for this trip. I purchased a Samsonite spinner bag that seemed nice enough in the store. I got it at Burlington Coat Factory for $99. Saw it in other stores for well over $200.00. I liked it in the store... Once I got it home I began to truly check it out and think the wells on this bag are more of a target than the wheels on the bag that got damaged. The bag is 1/2 hard and 1/2 soft. The soft side and hard side come together by a large zipper and I am starting to have some concern over the zipper failing and everything spilling out of the bag.

    If I had a choice right now, I would buy another backpack type bag like the one I got in Chiang Mai, but I can't find one here in my area and I plan to buy one when I return to Thailand.

    But one thing I have learned is to keep the bag as simple as possible with as few straps as possible.

    These are the good'ol days

  2. #2
    Senior member lukylok's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Belgium / Chiang Mai

    Re: Luggage Topic

    I bought one hardshell light suitcase in 2003, good quality from Italy, (Brig's) can't remember the price but it must have been around 150 тВм.

    And it has travelled extensively with me around the globe, in Asia, Africa, Northern America, and of course Europa, in planes, ships, cars, busses, motorboats and more, it has been lost and recovered, and it is still in very good shape.
    I think in luggage, as in everything else, quality pays.
    Now I hope that in 25 days, when I go back to LOS, I won't rue these comments ! :rolling:

    I am looking just now for a nice toiletries kit, lightweigth. The one I have is very good but a bit heavy.

  3. #3
    Senior member
    Join Date
    Jun 2005

    Re: Luggage Topic

    Use of a luggage strap ensures that even if the locks or zippers break that the case does not open. I always use on, and never have the problems you mentioned, even on overpacked suitcases.

  4. #4
    Member springco's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009

    Re: Luggage Topic

    I have a Zero Halliburton suitcase made of aluminum that I bought well over 30 years ago which has stood the test of time. My only complaint is that the suitcase itself is a bit on the heavy side, maybe something around 3kg. It is also a bit expensive. I paid $400 for mine (over 30 years ago) but today the same model is close to $900. But this is a very good suitcase indeed, maybe the most durable one I ever bought.
    Here is a photo of the model I have:

    The only other suitcase that I have ever liked is the basic hard sided one which is available for something around a $100 the last time I checked, that Samsonite makes. This is the same suitcase that almost every airline in the world, that I know of, provides to the crews and which fact I first noticed about 30 years ago.

    This is a picture of the exact same model that I use.
    Mine gets very heavy use and I have never had a single problem.

    Also, as suggested above, I always use luggage straps. And if you use the Samsonite one that I do, which is in black, put some very obvious and unique identifying stickers or tape on the sides so you can distinguish it easily on the luggage carousels at your destination. These are very popular bags.

    Finally, make sure you have secure luggage tags even beyond the one that Samsonite provides on the handle. Also make sure your identification is written inside the case just in the event of a "worst case" scenario.

    2012 - ANYBODY BUT OBAMA !!!

  5. #5
    Forum's veteran
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Thailand (couple times a year)

    Re: Luggage Topic

    Bucky... I've heard baggage handlers in the US airports are the worst.

    I have a suitcase, backpack and hybrid and tend to take what's suitable depending on what I'm doing. If I've doing any lengthy outdoor stuff like muti-day treks, climbing or something else I have no choice and have to take the backpack, which is a pain because you can't wheel it when you're going through airports and in and out of hotels. Never had any major disasters with stuff breaking so am pretty lucky.

    My suitcase is getting really tatty so time for a replacement soon, I think. I'm tossing up between a fabric case and hard case. I prefer the the look and feel of fabric but the case for a hard case is mounting! I've heard the hard cases, like the ones Samsonite makes, are much more durable. Is that true? They can be much more expensive too, which might be a good indicator of value. Don't want anything over $300-$400 and always get something, which can work as cabin luggage (I don't check in any luggage most of the time).

  6. #6

    Re: Luggage Topic

    I have two Samsonites one fabric and the other hard-shell. As with all suitcases they take a bit of a hammering from baggage handlers, but Samsonite know this and put a lot into their product designs. Overall the hard-shell case has lasted a good twenty years or so, and has clocked up a lot of miles, but using this type one needs to remember that it weighs in at a few kilos more than the cheaper models or the fabric types. All in all you get what you pay for.

  7. #7

    Re: Luggage Topic

    The man who can give us the definitive answer on this must be christianpfc.

    I feel almost certain he will have detailed costings on a question as important as to which type of suitcase one ought to invest in and how many miles one can expect it to last.

    The previous matter of where to obtain a 70B haircut pales into insignificance against this.

    I, for one, can hardly wait.


  8. #8
    Senior member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Arlington, VA

    Re: Luggage Topic

    I have had great luck with Eagle Creek luggage. It's a bit more expensive upfront, but has a lifetime warranty. If it breaks they will replace it, no questions asked. Good quality stuff, heavy duty zippers, big wheels... I got one of their rolling duffels for less than $100 from the Sierra Trading Post website. They have tons of bargains there.

  9. #9

    Re: Luggage Topic

    would it not be just as cheap to buy clothes in thailand than to keep on buying bags to carry youre stuff in?
    i find a pair of pants turned inside out and back to front can often last a wek or so anyhow . .. thats a joke bty ..

  10. #10

    Re: Luggage Topic

    As far as the matter of transporting clothes is concerned, there is always the example of the Pattaya-based destitute farang who daily roams the main road in rags and with his cock and balls hanging out.

    Although I have never spoken to this person, he has no worries over luggage or how many pairs of socks to carry with him.

    And I'm sure he talks a lot less shite than many.


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