The 10 Best Wheeled Duffels

Updated February 21, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

10 Best Wheeled Duffels
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 44 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. Back in the day (you know, pre smartphones), we had to carry our stuff around like so many bell hops. Whether you spell it duffel or duffle (both are correct), few bags made for better combinations of portability and spaciousness than these. Today's models, with a set of rolling wheels added, remain some of the most useful luggage options on the market. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best wheeled duffel on Amazon.

10. Olympia Luggage 8-pocket

The Olympia Luggage 8-pocket is made from "Protecflon," which sounds poisonous, but is actually a supremely strong form of polyester. Its self-repairing zippers ensure a long life spent freely opening and closing your bag without snags or tears.
  • hideaway pull handle
  • spacious for its size
  • balances poorly when upright
Brand Olympia
Model srd-22-Black-One Size
Weight 4.9 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

9. High Sierra AT7

The High Sierra AT7 has reflective piping for nighttime safety, and it is effortless to maneuver despite its bulk. That's because it can be carried by a handle, pulled along on its wheels, or slung over your shoulders using its backpack straps.
  • zippered divider panel
  • stands up to regular use well
  • heavier than many other options
Brand High Sierra
Model 57019-1041
Weight 11 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

8. World Traveler Rolling Carry-on

The World Traveler Rolling Carry-on comes in patterns ranging from zigzags and leopard spots to owls and kisses, all of which are destined to make an impression. It has a chic designer shape and a wide U-shaped opening that provides easy total access.
  • 2 full-length exterior pockets
  • silver pewter buckles and zippers
  • shoulder strap isn't very strong
Brand World Traveler
Model 8112022-165LT/W
Weight 4.3 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

7. High Sierra Evolution

The High Sierra Evolution features a U-shaped opening that makes it simple to insert and remove large items, and multiple compartments, so that you can keep everything organized. Its telescoping handle is safely hidden in a zippered pocket when not in use.
  • oversized zippers are easy to grasp
  • drop-bottom design
  • isn't the most durable option
Brand High Sierra
Model 89573
Weight 6 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

6. Timberland Twin Mountain

The Timberland Twin Mountain looks great and travels well, basically everything you want in a piece of luggage. It features four strategically-placed grab handles that make it hassle-free to lift from almost any angle, and two compression straps.
  • convenient self-righting zippers
  • lightweight yet very sturdy
  • available only in two similar colors
Brand Timberland
Model 3683c06
Weight 8.4 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

5. Travelpro Tpro Bold 2.0

The Travelpro Tpro Bold 2.0 can hold many weeks worth of gear and has a water-repellent coating. It is also highly abrasion resistant, making it ideal for those extended trips where the bag will be jostled and tossed around a lot.
  • smooth-rolling wheels
  • well-cushioned handles
  • comes with a lifetime warranty
Brand Travelpro
Model 4121530
Weight 14.5 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

4. Code Alpha Mini Monster

Despite the name, the Code Alpha Mini Monster isn't that mini, so if you travel heavy, this is a good choice. Military buffs will appreciate that it comes in multiple camo styles, while those who like to keep everything organized will appreciate the divided interior.
  • zip-off toiletries bag
  • rugged exterior fabric
  • water-resistant construction
Brand Code Alpha
Model MRC9933AF-ABU
Weight 11.5 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

3. Leathario Weekender

Look classy as you travel through airports and train stations with the Leathario Weekender. It is made from 100-percent genuine leather, comes in tan or burgundy, and has a nice retro styling that anybody would be proud to show off.
  • ideal for work trips
  • attractive brass hardware
  • separate top and bottom compartments
Brand Leathario
Model BLT000131
Weight 11.9 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

2. Samsonite Andante

Surprisingly affordable considering that it comes from one of the most well-known names in luggage, the Samsonite Andante has a sturdy polyester exterior and a nylon lining that effectively withstand tears and rips, so feel free to overpack it as much as you want.
  • large opening for easy access
  • fits in most overhead bins
  • well balanced even when full
Brand Samsonite
Model 48825
Weight 7 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

1. eBags TLS Mother Lode Mini

The eBags TLS Mother Lode Mini is compact, yet seems roomy when packing due to the expansion zipper than adds 22.3% more space, so you can feel free to stock up on souvenirs without worrying about everything fitting for your journey home.
  • highly reflective cords
  • lockable zippers
  • telescoping handle offers 3 heights
Brand eBags
Model 125538
Weight 10.3 pounds
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

It's More Than A Suitcase

Duffel bags, sometimes referred to as holdalls, are most commonly used by athletes and people who travel frequently. They are issued in the military and are sometimes referred to as seabags when used by sailors or marines. Duffel bags are generally made of a thick cloth or other strong fabric. The original and military issued duffel bags close at the top with a drawstring.

The duffel bag gets its name from the town Duffel in Belgium. This is where the original cloth used to make these bags was produced. Duffel bags are a popular choice among frequent travelers and are even sometimes personalized and given as gifts on special occasions.

Children now use small duffel bags for overnight stays with friends or for carrying all of their necessities for summer camp. Adults, especially people who are particularly physically active, love the versatility that a duffel bag provides and often use them for outdoor camping trips or weekend excursions.

The duffel bag was often used by military personnel in World War II. It wasn’t until after the war that it became popular among the civilian population as well. Surfers in California and Australia especially enjoyed the duffel bag in the 1940s and 1950s, and it began to be associated with that particular sub-culture.

In Australia, surfers didn’t bother with attaching a drawstring to the duffel bag. Instead, they simply added all of their necessary items, such as swim clothes and towels, to their canvas bag, and used their hands to hold the top shut while slinging it over their shoulder for easy carry.

Once others began to catch on to the convenience a duffel bag provides, they began to be mass produced and favored by athletes and frequent travelers.

Learning How To Choose The Right Wheeled Duffel

If you are a seasoned traveler and appreciate convenience and maximum storage space in your luggage, then a wheeled duffel bag might be just what you need. Because they are so often made from flexible, soft material, they are made to expand and fit a large number of items. They are much more than your average gym bags now.

They have more storage space than most traditional suitcases and other luggage, so they are great for campers or people who need to take a lot of things along when traveling. They are especially helpful for travelers who spend a lot of time outdoors and extended periods of time away from home.

Once you have decided that the load you need to carry is heavy enough to necessitate a wheeled duffel bag, there are a few things to consider when choosing one for your next trip. First of all, consider the type of fabric that the duffel is made from. Depending on how you plan to use it, the fabric may or may not hold up to certain traveling conditions.

If you plan to spend a lot of time outdoors, you might want to get something with a material that is strong and easy to clean. However, if you are a business traveler who appreciates a classy appearance with the convenience of a duffel bag, you might consider something made of suede or even leather with a unique design.

Second, check for storage space. While duffel bags don’t generally have the same number of storage pockets that a regular wheeled suitcase might have, many are still equipped with hidden compartments and side pockets for convenience and easy access. While every duffel bag has the large main storage compartment, you can find variety in the side pockets and sometimes the expandable netting. There might even be hidden organizer pockets inside the bag so you can stash important items and help you make maximum use of your space. Also, check for expansion zippers. These allow you to make the bag bigger or smaller depending on the amount of things you need to carry.

Third, check for durability. This can be assessed by looking at the bag's seams. Duffel bags do not have frames to support them like most traditional luggage, so all of their strength lies in the seams. The highest quality seams will be lock-stitched. Other high-quality seams are taped from the inside and are surrounded by piping that looks like plastic tubes. These tubes reinforce the strength of the bag and allow you to stuff it with even heavy items.

A Brief History of the Wheeled Duffel

Bernard Sadow was the first to apply for a patent for a wheeled suitcase. After a long string of rejections, Sadow eventually sold his idea to Macy’s, and the first wheeled suitcases hit the market in October of 1970.

There were a number of issues with these because they were average suitcases with wheels attached to a narrow bottom. If they were filled to capacity, they tended to be heavy and tip over making things horribly inconvenient for the hurried traveler.

In the late 1980s, Bob Plath invented the “Rollaboard” which is the basic wheeled suitcase so many travelers use today. Since its handle is retractable, and it rolls on two wheels, it is much easier to maneuver and can carries more weight than the original wheeled suitcases. Out of the invention of the Rollaboard came Travelpro, a popular luggage company.

Today, wheels are added to nearly any type of luggage imaginable, including large duffel bags. The duffel bags have long been a favorite of athletes and frequent travelers because they hold so much more than the average suitcase. Adding wheels to the bottom of the duffel bag just makes sense.

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Last updated on February 21, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.

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