hardside vs softside luggage

Hardside vs Softside Luggage: Complete guide with difference and marking.

When you enter the market, the first thing you need to think about is whether you will buy hardside vs softside luggage.

Before buying luggage from the market it is an important decision that you have to decide which one to buy hardside vs softside luggage.

I will discuss some topics to help you decide which luggage to buy between hardside vs softside luggage.

  1. What is the definition of hardside vs softside luggage and what are their components?
  2. What is the difference between hardside vs softside luggage?
  3. Pros and cons of hardside vs softside luggage.
  4. The earned points of hardside vs softside luggage .
  5. Conclusion and other features of hardside vs softside luggage.

Now i am discussing the following point in the below:

Definition: hardside vs softside luggage and their components:

Soft sided luggage is usually made of fabric. Fabrics are made of woven linen for durable and easy removal such as cordura and ripstop. Cordura is a high quality fabric that has more texture than the ballistic and the main feature of some soft cordura is that it can be more abrasion resistant.

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hardside vs softside luggage

Check Latest Price on Amazon

DIMENSION 21.25 x 15.25 x 10 inches  Standard
WARRANTY  10 years warranty  Best
MATERIAL  Polycarbonate  Best
PRICE  From $237.99  High
RATING  4.4 out of 5  Better
BUY From  Amazon

Currently the ballistic is more advanced. It is also durable, soft and abrasion resistant. In a word, it is more smooth and shiny than ballistic, cordura and ripstop. Overall it can be said that the ballistic is almost equivalent to the cordura.

You may be familiar with Ripstop Lyon. This is commonly known as parachute material. Ripstop is used to make structural or semi-structured luggage. Its main feature is very light weight fabric.

The three components, such as corduroy, ballistic and ripstop, differ slightly in quality. Cordura and ballistic is strong enough to carry the weight of your packed item. But the ripstop has a little difficulty. It may not be strong enough to carry more of your items.

There are some issues with soft-sided luggage that are missing in hard-sided luggage. For example, it has more than two easily accessible outer pockets. These pockets are usually protected by zippers or simple locks.

This can be a good choice for light luggage searchers. Because they are made of fabric you will find a place to pack tight. It will be convenient to store luggage in the overhead bin of the aircraft. But there are some disadvantages as it does not provide as much security as it looks tough. Many times thieves are able to steal by tearing or cutting soft cloth. I will discuss the differences in detail.

Hard-side luggage:

The body of luggage that is made of hard shell is called hard-side luggage. Strong side luggage is usually made of high quality plastic such as polycarbonate or ABS polymer. You know that polycarbonate is a light and flexible polymer, which can usually absorb excessive heat.

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hardside vs softside luggage

Check Price on Amazon

DIMENSION 9.50 x 20.25 x 14.25 inches  Standard
WARRANTY 2/5/ 10 years warranty/lifetime  Best
MATERIAL  Polycarbonate  Best
PRICE  From $181.99  High
RATING  4.6 out of 5  Best
BUY From  Amazon

Polymer plastics are very durable. ABS is a lightweight high quality plastic. Hard-sided luggage made of aluminum is the most durable. But luggage made of aluminum is heavier than other.

Hard-sided luggage is usually divided into two parts which helps you to pack the items evenly in each part. Each part keeps the items stable with the help of a strap or medium section. Most of the hard-sided luggage is prepared in this way. However, there is some luggage in the market which has to be packed by opening the lid.

Hard-sided luggage can provide more protection when packing valuable and fragile items than soft-sided luggage. Because it’s sturdy frame can protect the items inside and does not break easily. There is also an integrated lock on the hard luggage.

In terms of safety I would give more points to hard sided luggage made of aluminum. It usually has metal double latches instead of zippers.

If you plan to pack extra, I would discourage you from buying hard-sided luggage. There is no chance of packing extra stuff in strong luggage.

Hard luggage must have a certain size to be stored in the overhead bin of the aircraft. If the standard size is exceeded, special difficulty or additional fee has to be paid for storage of the luggage.

Hard-side luggage is said to be an ideal luggage for traveling on a ship. There are special rooms on the ship for storing luggage which is really very nice.

Hard-sided luggage has several disadvantages, such as easy stains. It is rigid and you can’t press too hard on it if necessary. It will need a certain place to store it in the house or anywhere, which can be a bit of a challenge for the occupants of small houses in general.

We usually fill the luggage with fragile and expensive material. Since the hard-sided luggage cover is a rigid frame, its stiff cell protects the valuables or fragile items in the luggage.

However, due to the use of advanced technology plastic polycarbonate or ABS, it is almost impossible to break hard luggage. Luggage breaking is now considered as a matter of imagination.

One of our concerns is weather prevention. Due to hard-side luggage zippers or other small openings, in most cases it is not completely water resistant. However, hard-shelled luggage protects your valuables from light rain or moisture.

You can be sure that the surface of hard-side luggage can be easily cleaned by wiping it.

Soft-sided luggage, on the other hand, absorbs water and has a higher risk of retaining stains and odors.

Light-weight carry-on luggage such as Chester carry-on luggage is light-weight. But if you want to get real light weight luggage, you have to buy luggage with more money.

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hardside vs softside luggage

Check Latest Price on Amazon

DIMENSION  From 19.6* 14.75*9.5  Standard
WARRANTY  10 years warranty  Best
MATERIAL  Polycarbonate  Best
PRICE  From $95.83  Medium
RATING  4.2 out of 5  Good
BUY From  Amazon

Differences: hardside vs softside luggage


Theft of your valuables from luggage is usually a rare occurrence. However, you need to ensure the safety of valuables. Both hard-sided and soft-sided luggage is usually secured with a TSA-approved zipper lock stand. Now the thief has to cut the luggage frame to steal.

It is almost impossible to cut the frame for hard-sided luggage. On the other hand, soft-sided luggage is made of canvas or nylon which can be cut or torn.

Different colors and patterns are beautifully inspected in both hard-sided and soft-sided luggage. The tear on the soft sided luggage is brightly colored and the stains are clearly visible.

On the other hand, different colors and designs come on the hard side luggage in a beautiful way.

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hardside vs softside luggage

Today Check Price on Amazon

DIMENSION  21.65 x 14.2 x 8.27 Inches  Standard
WARRANTY  10 years warranty  Best
MATERIAL  Polycarbonate  Best
PRICE  From $200 +  High
RATING  4.2 out of 5  Good


Since the soft side luggage frame is soft, it is very easy to pack soft and flexible materials. Flexible materials do not require any plan for packing in soft luggage. You can pack more flexible items in soft luggage.

On the other hand, when packing all kinds of flexible or hard items in hard-sided luggage, it should be kept in a decorated shape. You will not be able to pack the necessary materials if you pack in a chaotic manner. There is no opportunity to pack extra things in the strong-sided luggage.

Soft-side luggage has many easy-to-access outer pockets. These pockets can hold much-needed items. Strong luggage only has space to hold things in the main compartment.

In all vehicles like train, bus or plane you have to store your luggage at the specified place. It is very easy to store soft-side luggage in the overhead bin of all vehicles or aircraft. To transport luggage, you must know the size of the luggage, the international and American baggage restriction related to the fee and weight.

A special feature of soft luggage is that it can increase the extra space by 25 percent with the help of zippers. As a result, the traveler gets a special benefit of last minute shopping. But you know there is no such opportunity in the luggage with hard side.


I mentioned the matter earlier but now I am going into details. The outer pocket of soft side luggage is really a great availability. You can easily store your much needed items like jackets and toiletries in the outer pocket which you can easily take out if needed. Some of your things weren’t packed last time but you don’t want to open the main body. Then you can easily store them in the outer pocket, it’s really great.

There is no chance to think like this in the luggage with hard side. Even if you keep a small item, there is no option but to open the main compartment. Sometimes it is really very annoying. However, some hard luggage has internal pockets but it is rarely seen.

Soft-sided luggage has both external and internal pockets. You can pack small and large items in separate pockets, making it easy to find what you need.

Extreme caution is required when using tight luggage. It can cause stains due to friction. However, there is good news that all the damage caused to the aircraft is borne by some aviation authorities. In addition, all types of aircraft damage can be repaired free of charge under the warranty terms.

Pros and cons: hardside vs softside luggage

I try to discuss about pros and cons of hard-side vs soft-side luggage. I expect that it will help to build clear inform about them.

  Hard-side luggage Soft-side luggage
Pros Ensured better protection
for items inside luggage.
Having better security
from theft.
Easy to cleaning.
Water and moisture
 ✔ Having packing facility and
getting more space.
Very flexible and easy to
storage anywhere.
Better organization option
by external pockets.
Easy accessible pockets.
 Cons   Without opening main
compartment no way
to pack items.
Lack of enlarge extra
Luggage frame may
be dented or scratches.
 ✔ Absorb water and smells.

Thief prefer to cut them.

Lack of better for breakable

Earning points: hardside vs softside luggage

If you are not able to gain clear idea about hard-side vs soft-side luggage, I will draw a table and here get point for showing differences between hard-side luggage vs soft-side luggage.

Subject Hard-side  luggage Soft-side  luggage Hard-side  luggage Soft-side  luggage
Security X 1 0
Protection X 1 0
Flexibility X 0 1
Organization X 0 1
Durability 1 1
Weather resistant X 1 0
Light-weight X 1 0
Storage X 0 1
Total 5 4

We can see from the table that hard-side luggage gained 5 and soft-side gained 4 out of 8. I think you will be to identify which hard-side vs soft-side luggage is perfect for you.

Conclusion and features: hardside vs softside luggage

If you are buying medium quality luggage, it will be quite difficult to select the necessary components for both soft-sided and hard-sided luggage at present such as polycarbonate or ABS has increased the durability of hard sided luggage. Ballistic linen woven on the other hand is a great material for soft lateral luggage which has contributed to increase its durability. In a word, the luggage used by all these materials must be long lasting.

But the important thing is that there are other things besides these, such as the quality of the luggage and the craftsmanship you should also pay attention to. We’ve found that luggage handles, wheels, and zippers fit into the warranty terms. Customers usually complain about these things. Of course you have to be careful about the quality of the expandable handles, wheels and zippers of the luggage.

Finally, i will say that my attempt is to inform you about the hard-side vs soft-side luggage and its features. Above all, you must justify your own knowledge. And I always confess that information may be changed for day by day. Always try to connect with the update information. Thank you very much.