Choosing the right suitcase for your family holiday – our top tips

Suitcase - a pile of suitcases

When trying to choose luggage for a family holiday, parents are now presented with a huge range of suitcase options. With each different piece offering it’s own array of bells and whistles it can be difficult to know which one to choose – so check out our top tips to help you pick!


It’s important to choose a suitcase that’s big enough to hold everything that you’ll need to bring with you on holiday, but one that you can still realistically handle. With young children running around your ankles or a baby strapped to your front, even two prepared parents might struggle to manage two lots of sizeable luggage as well! Be sensible about what you can actually carry.

It’s also important to check the luggage allowance of your airline – this does vary between flight providers so don’t get caught out! Be sure to weigh your suitcases before you leave, so there won’t be any nasty overweight baggage fees awaiting you at the airport.

Find out more about our unique Essential Kit Guarantee, designed to help lighten the load of travelling parents.


There are all sorts of snazzy suitcase features available to travellers today. Whether it’s easier transportation, crease-free packing, all-elements weather protection or something else, there’s such a range of luggage extras to choose from.

Do keep in mind that extras often come at a cost however – whether that’s an increased price or an increased weight! Ask yourself, do you really need all those bells and whistles?

One feature that can be useful is a super lightweight suitcase lining, which means you might just be able to squeeze in that extra pair of shoes amongst all the baby paraphernalia after all! An expanding feature is also useful for this purpose.


There are all sorts of colourful and cheery suitcase designs nowadays, but if you’re planning on using your suitcase more than a couple of times, don’t be tricked into choosing design over durability. Although it’s useful to have a case that’s easily recognisable, it’s more important to have a bag that’ll last the journey – add your own coloured ribbons or straps if need be.

Try to choose a robust and hardwearing case that can survive being thrown around the airport – there’s nothing worse than a burst suitcase making its way towards you on the baggage carousel after a long flight!

It can also be useful to choose a waterproof suitcase, as bags often sit out on the runway in bad weather, or consider lining your case with plastic bags to help protect clothes from water damage. Strong handles are also useful when manoeuvring luggage about an airport – a broken suitcase handle can be an absolute nightmare when you’re trying to get everyone safely through a busy terminal.


Two wheels or four wheels? It can be a tough choice!

Suitcases with four wheels stand upright on their own and can be wheeled sideways, leaving you a hand spare to hold on to little ones. Two wheeled suitcases are often lighter and easier to drag over bumpy and uneven surfaces like pavement curbs, but tend to tip over more easily.

Ultimately it’s a personal choice; try testing a couple of different options in the shop or if you’re ordering online, leave plenty of time to send back your purchase just in case it doesn’t feel right once it arrives.


Suitcases can be expensive, so think carefully before you buy. If you want something of good quality that will really last, then expect to pay a bit more. If you’re on a tight budget, try to get the best quality you can for your money and prioritise this over gimmicky extras or fancy designs.

Once you’ve seen a suitcase you like the look of, be sure to check out reviews from fellow travellers – they should give you a better idea of what’s worth your money and what is worth avoiding. Try Luggage On Tour to get you started.

Tanya Johnson
Tanya Johnson

Tanya Johnson is the Marketing Manager at Tots to Travel, mum of one, big fan of family adventures, the great outdoors, sport and fitness.

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