Too roll or not to roll...
April 8, 2007
Frank@OBOW in Luggage

...that is the question: Do you lug your luggage --with your hand, shoulder, or back-- or roll it? The benefits of wheeled luggage are obvious. For those with physical limitations or for those whose travels involve lots of flat, smooth surfaces, wheels are appropriate. The demerits of wheeled luggage are less obvious but are very real. Airplane aisles, stairs, cobblestones, curbs, escalators, and fellow travelers' toes are all unfriendly to wheels. And, there's nothing like losing control of a wheeled case on a ramp. They tend to flop and twist and can wrench a wrist. Wheels are also prone to break or jam; ditto the telescoping handles. And finally, the mechanisms themselves add weight and bulk to carry-on luggage. Weight and bulk are the traveler's enemy. Most wheeled bags are semi-rigid as well. This can present a problem when the overhead compartment or taxi trunk is almost full. Forsaking wheels may be the right move for the onebagger. There is one caveat though: Make sure the shoulder strap or backpack strap system your bag uses is a good one. Otherwise you may rue the decision to travel sans wheels.

Article originally appeared on One-bag, carry-on, light travel tips, techniques, and gear (
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