Briggs and Riley Luggage


I like to think of myself as a moderate travel enthusiast. I travel for pure enjoyment an adventure as both time and budget permit. It might sound kind of odd, but I find waiting for luggage at the carousel sort of thrilling. I mean, if you’re waiting there after reaching your destination, you have an entire vacation to look forward to (easy to say when your not jet-lagged). If it’s at your home airport on the return side, you can be thankful your home again and start thinking about the next time your luggage will be put to use.

But lets be honest, if I can get away with just a carry-on, that is my go to option. Checking luggage can be cumbersome, costly, an add stress to a busy day of airports and flying. Unfortunately it’s often a necessity. We only have so much space in our carry-ons, and based on vacation length, family members and personal need, a checked suitcase might be needed. Therefore I opt for quality luggage to help navigate the rigors and possible harms of checking luggage. With quality I have the peace of mind knowing I will get years and years of usage.

Table of Contents

Luggage Size Guide

The Competition

What to look for in a carry-on bag

Carry On Suitcase

Top Carry on Choices

What to Look for in a checked  suitcase

Medium Sized Checked Luggage

Top Checked Luggage Choices

How to Choose Between Hardshell and Softside Luggage

Spinner Luggage or Two Wheeled Carry On Luggage

Why We Love Briggs & Riley

Other Briggs and Riley Products

Briggs and Riley Rundown

Sum It Up

Luggage Size Guide: How to Pick the Perfect Luggage Size?


What is the right amount of luggage needed for my vacation? A fair question often asked by the vacationer. This question is best answered based on personal needs. It’s easiest by planning out in advance the amount of days away from home, climate traveling to, and activities while vacationing.

By planning out in advance, one can get a sense of the things needed each day. A family of five traveling to Europe for two weeks will most certainly need multiple checked suitcases, while a couple going on a 3 day weekend trip can likely get away with just a carry-on or two.

Does your vacation require formal wear such as a suit or dress? Do I need a garment bag specifically? Or will a checked bag do the the trick? Will my carry on luggage have too high a weight to avoid fees? Do I need to pack more clothes that what I originally thought?

These are all valid questions that often run through a travelers mind when leaving packing to the last minute. Therefore we recommend starting the packing process a week in advance, just to take some of the travel stress away knowing your belongings should easily fit in your chosen suitcase.

Need packing tips? Check out our article on how to pack a suitcase.

The Competition


Choosing the right suitecase(s) can be a very challenging ordeal. There are just too many choices to make our job easy. The best starting off point we can offer: pick a budget and try to stick with it. For a family of four, if your budget is $200 or less, you are going for quantity over quality. You will find luggage that might look flashy and sell you on offering numerous pieces for a lower cost. Great for budget travelers who only need luggage once a year. If you have a higher budget of $500+, you will find quality brands such as Samsonite or Briggs & Riley. You might only find two or three pieces sets, but we can promise your luggage is built to last by a reputable name in the travel business.

Picking and packing the right suitcase can be a daunting task for most people. When you make your suitcase brand choice, run with it and don’t look back. Know that when you check in your hotel and vacation has begun, your past second guessing and ready for relaxation.

Many people purchasing a new piece(s) of luggage, fail to do the proper research and forget one of the most important factors. The warranty. One of our most favorite features regarding Briggs & Riley luggage, is their lifetime guarantee. Most luggage companies do not offer anything even remotely comparable. You can read all about it here:

What you should look for in a Carry-On Bag


Quick, neat, efficient. The  three things we think of regarding a carry-on. I don’t want to deal with the hassle or expense of a check suitcase, so I’m going to maximize what I can do with my carry-on. These bags designed specifically for a traveler to pack smart, not to fill a week’s worth of clothing (unless you are the most efficient packer on earth).

Carry-On Suitcase (19-22″)


While airlines try to standardize things, that is not always the case for carry-on suitcases. Standard carry on size is 19-22″, however if you are worried, I would read your specific airlines policies regarding baggage size and fees. One cannot assume the same luggage you traveled on a US carrier from San Francisco to LA, will fit in the same overhead bin as an Asian carrier flying Beijing to Shanghai.

Every airline limits its baggage size and weight, so make certain that you read the guidelines before filling your carry-on. We have used a 2-wheel carry-on that will hold four days’ worth of garments more efficiently than a slightly larger standard carry-on bag without compromising the hefty size limits. Briggs & Riley’s patented CX Technology allows for expanding and compressing clothing and accessories as you need them for an emergency. Search a carry on that has features you need. If you truly hate navigating the obstacle course of an airport, look for a spinner that moves with ease. If exterior pockets are important to you, look for a softside carry-on that has exactly that. If you dislike using a zipper, maybe a hardside with no exterior pockets is right for you.

Our Top Picks for the best carry-on luggage: Briggs & Riley Sympatico Hardside, or the Briggs & Riley Baseline Soft Side.

This suitcase is the most comfortable, reliable, and favorable travel companion for those traveling multiple times a year. What we love about this carry on, you are NOT sacrificing any space for style. With the patented CX compression technology, you can gain as much as 22% more space, to make sure you pack enough clothes for your needs. The features of this hardside spinner seem almost endless. To name a few, this suitcase offers:

  • adjustable garment compression panels
  • large interior zip around pocket with smaller mesh pockets
  • recessed handle
  • four wheels that are light weight, ball bearing double spinners for effortless airport navigation
  • aircraft grade aluminum telescopic handle system
  • built in TSA friend locks
  • power pocket built in for pass through USB cord for convenient use
  • sturdy ykk zippers
  • lifetime guarantee when registered

The Briggs & Riley Baseline 22″ softside carry on is a classic among classics. It’s one of Briggs & Riley’s original carry on bags that has been improved upon with more and more features over the years.

Some of this suitcases features are:

  • one touch patented CX expansion system
  • built in tri-fold garment folder
  • premium garment panels
  • two mesh lid zip pockets
  • substantial corner guard protection
  • smart link strap if needing to add a second bag (Briggs & Riley backpack)
  • powerpocket for convenient storage
  • TSA built in combination lock cable.
  • two premium enforced wheels with upright rest guards
  • lifetime guarantee when registered

What you should look for in a checked suitcase

A checked suitcase means one thing. You need space. Therefore make sure the checked luggage you decide on is big enough for your needs. Checked luggage can range in size from medium 23-26″ to larger 27-31″. If those sizes won’t suffice, you can go as large a travel trunk.


A medium to large bag is likely essential when taking an international trip. However, it is not a reason to over pack because you have more room. An extra suit or pair of pants are still a hassle if they put your checked bags over the weight limit.

The Briggs Riley medium expandable spinners are a great travel asset as they let your clothes be carried for an extra day or two compared to other medium spinners. Price will certainly be a factor as with more room comes a heftier price. Although if you are trying to save on budget by cramming into a carry on bag and go over the weight limit, you are now stuck with the hassle of paying the airline surcharges.

Our Top Picks for the best checked luggage: Briggs & Riley Torq Medium Hardside Spinner, or the Briggs & Riley Baseline Medium or Large SoftSide Expandable Spinner.

The Torq large hardside spinner is quite similar to the Sympatico series large hardside spinner. We like the Torq version almost solely based on design, however both models are great choices if you are going the checked bags route. This suitcase certainly provides ample interior space to easily fit enough clothes, footwear, laptop, and even formal attire like a suit or dress for all ones travel needs. Sturdy yet lightweight, frequent travelers will navigate airports with ease with four premium 360 spinner wheels. Perfect for the 3-7 day trip.

Some features this suitcase includes:

  • cinch down garment panels
  • free included monogram for initials
  • large main compartment with a mesh lid pocket for convenient storage
  • built in mesh suiter (prevents formal wear from most wrinkles)
  • aircraft grade aluminum telescopic handle system
  • built in TSA friend locks
  • power pocket built in for pass through USB cord for convenient use
  • scratch resistant textured case
  • sturdy ykk zippers
  • polycarbonate shell
  • lifetime guarantee when registered

The Briggs & Riley Baseline Softside Medium or Large Expandable Spinners are original pieces that have spanned the test of time. Based on your travel need, either checked bag should suffice with a main large compartment boasting packing space that is built for the week + traveler. If you generally pack larger items like shoes, hats, or electronics, perhaps the larger suitcase would be right for you.

Some features these suitcases include:

  • one touch patented CX expansion system
  • built in tri-fold garment folder
  • premium extra-large garment panels
  • two mesh lid zip pockets
  • substantial corner guard protection
  • smart link strap if needing to add a second bag (Briggs & Riley backpack)
  • Powerpocket for convenient storage
  • TSA built in combination lock cable.
  • lifetime guarantee when registered

How to choose between hard-shell and soft-shell luggage?

Hard-sided luggage is more popular that softside. This is no disrespect to softside luggage lovers. It’s mainly due to more choices for hardside luggage, and that luggage companies make hardside luggage very sleek and marketable. While there are pros and cons to both, it really comes down to personal preference.

Hard shelled luggage might protect your belongings better than soft shell, which is generally the main reason more people choose hardside. However, soft shelled luggage offers more features, like exterior pockets and is less prone to damages during travel. If you overfill a softside, you might have issues with a zipper closing. Hardside suitcases can be more prone to scuffing, scratching, or even cracking, while soft side have a little more give to them. Typically softsided suitcases have at least one single pocket accessible from the outside for quick and easy access. As both soft and hardside use a main zipper, it’s important to go with quality, as zippers are often the first thing to break.

Spinner luggage (4 wheels) or two-wheeled carry-on bag?

Carry-on bags are meant for convenience. Nobody wants to tote around a weeks worth of clothes in a big checked suitcase if a more efficient carry-on suitcase will do. Sticking with the convenience theme, what is the difference between a 4-wheel spinner or a 2 wheeled carry-on? In our previous research, we are staying with our assessment that two-wheel models have slightly more space than four-wheel spinner bags. Perfect for that one extra piece of clothing you can’t do without. They also use larger wheels with a more robust design that rolls well over rough surfaces. However, 4 wheeled spinners glide with minimal effort and put less pressure on your wrist for long stretches at a time. Like so many other aspects of travel luggage, it mostly comes down to personal preference.

Why we Love Briggs & Riley?

I’ve never heard someone say there isn’t enough choice out there to make a good luggage decision. Backpacks, carry-ons, checked luggage, full size trunks and everything in between come in all shapes, sizes, colors, brands and prices. We just so happen to choose Briggs and Riley for our top travel luggage choice.

We love Briggs and Riley for a few specific reasons:

  • They make high quality luggage.
  • They have been around 30 years and have adapted an innovated along with the travel industry
  • Their prices are reasonable for the quality of their work
  • They offer a LIFETIME WARRANTY upon purchase and registry of your product
  • Their Patented CX Compression technology


Other Briggs & Riley Travel Gear

Briggs & Riley offers much more than your standard travel suitcase. Backpacks, laptop cases, packing cubes, briefcases, duffel bags, garment bag, compression straps, toiletry bags and luggage covers are some of what Briggs & Riley offers above suitcases. Purchasing any of these you can expect the same quality and craftsmanship you would expect with the Briggs and Riley name.

We purchased a Briggs Riley toiletry kit awhile back. The quality is certainly better than your run of the mill dopp kit. However for nearly double the price, it might be difficult to justify the cost for something that is only meant to hold your ablutions.

Is Briggs and Riley a luxury brand?

Why are Briggs & Riley so popular? They invented the CX compression technology. We would consider Briggs Riley to be right on the edge of luxury. They are certainly a higher end luggage brand that have prices still inline with what they boast for quality. If you are a serious traveler, you should own this luggage brand. If you are a moderate traveler, you would still do well to own something that will last you a lifetime.

Are Briggs and Riley worth it?

We believe Briggs & Riley offers exceptional luggage for a fair price. Whether it be a checked bag, suitcase, or carry on luggage, you will find premium zippers, material (both exterior and interior) and the Briggs Riley lifetime guarantee.

Where is Briggs and Riley luggage made?

Briggs & Riley Travel-ware, manufacture their luggage in Hauppauge NY. This company was founded in 1993 by Richard Costa. The firm is well known for a simple life guarantee – covering damages incurred by airlines. Their famous saying goes ‘Engineered for Reality, Guaranteed for Life’.

Are Briggs and Riley bags waterproof?

Water resistant is more accurate than waterproof. Very similar to other luggage brands boasting the same. I don’t yet know of a suitcase brand where a piece of fully submerged luggage full of clothes wouldn’t prevent from becoming waterlogged. However with premium materials, your clothes should be adequately protected from the elements. You can however purchase a premium luggage cover to give your luggage that added buffer against mother nature, airport carusels, and luggage belts. Briggs and Riley makes an excellent one called Treksafe.

Sum it up

Many individuals look at quantity over quality, which comes down to price. Therefore it’s easy to dismiss Briggs and Riley because of up front sticker shock. However, based on their lifetime warranty, quality of luggage, and features, this brand justifies a higher than average price tag for a Briggs and Riley suitcase.

If nothing else, we hope we have given you ideas about travel and help guided you in your search to purchase that top pick. Don’t hesitate to grab that Riley bag or one of the great Riley suitcases we have reviewed.

We wish you safe and happy travels!

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