Why I Love It: Calpak Carry-Ons

The brand’s exceedingly durable, affordable, and great-looking carry-on has been my dependable travel companion for years, and I can’t recommend it enough.

Calpak
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I never really paid too much attention to which travel bags I used. Growing up, the few times I got the opportunity to travel, I would use hand-me-down suitcases, and later got one from Marshalls that I used during my college years until it basically disintegrated. When I moved to New York a few years ago, I decided to invest in a proper carry-on that would not only make it easier to pack my extra outfits, but also be strong, sturdy, and stylish. That’s how I discovered Calpak, a luggage brand that’s built a reputation for coupling elegant designs with reliable functionality. I purchased their Terrazzo Carry-On just before a trip to Mexico about two years ago and it has been my trusted travel companion ever since. Keep reading to find out more about why I love the brand and why it’s worth considering snagging one of their carry-ons for yourself.

Why I love the Terrazzo Carry-On:

I just love cute things, okay? But, in all seriousness, I really hate having to sacrifice style for quality, especially when it comes to an item that doubles as an accessory. Also, something about having nice-looking luggage makes the travel experience feel all the more luxurious. Above all else, though, I believe a suitcase needs to be durable and easy to maneuver to ensure you’re not adding any more headaches to a long travel day. Nobody wants to risk losing their precious belongings to a weak shell or end up dragging around a roller bag with a broken wheel (annoying and embarrassing!). 

To be honest, I trusted Calpak without even doing proper research, but I did see some influencers and celebrities like Jen Atkin bragging about it on social media back then. In my defense, they do travel a lot so I trusted my instinct and purchased the very cute Terrazzo and I have zero regrets. The suitcase is very lightweight but sturdy, and it boasts two completely separate compartments that are spacious enough for the overpackers out there (hi, it’s me!). I’ve packed almost two weeks-worth of clothes in it and am happy to report that it held up really well and to this day has no visible scratches. Also, I appreciate the four dual 360-degree spinner wheels which make moving around in transit a breeze, even if I’m forced to run from gate to gate. I also haven’t had issues with the handle getting stuck, which is something that I’ve experienced before with others. 

Photo by Andrea Devoto

Why you’ll love it, too:

Calpak was founded in 1989 in California by Edward and Judy Kwon. They started with a collection of handbags and wallets and later evolved into travel goods with a mission to produce quality bags at accessible prices. In 2013, their kids Jennifer and Roy joined and helped rebrand Calpak’s offerings to better match the modern traveler’s needs. That’s when its first Marble Collection—hard shell suitcases in unique prints—was born. They didn’t stray from Calpak’s commitment to affordability, though. Compared to other stylish luggage brands like Away and Paravel, Calpak remains the most affordable (some of its most popular offerings are under $200). And in case you’re second-guessing just how durable its products are, this video should clear up any doubts.

If you’re in the market for an elegant carry-on, you should absolutely take a look at Calpak's full lineup. The Terrazzo is part of the Marbled Collection, which includes a number of other prints and color options that you can customize depending on your style. I also highly recommend browsing the site in full, since they make a number of other great travel essentials like packing cubes, tech and car organizers, and even comfy travel clothes that make for a perfect airport ensemble.

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