Do Airlines Prefer Hard or Soft Luggage?

Last Updated on May 22, 2023 by Taj Uddin Ahmed

We all know that the way we pack our luggage affects the way we travel. But what do airlines prefer? Are they more likely to accept soft or hard luggage? And how can we make sure our luggage fits the airline’s requirements? Do airlines prefer hard or soft luggage? There are so many questions that are wandering in your mind. Do you know the answers already? Well, if you know or don’t know yet, you can read our article, and hopefully, you can learn something that you don’t know.

However, when it comes to traveling, one of the most important decisions is what type of luggage to carry with you. Many people choose to carry soft luggage, but is this the best choice for you? We’re going to dive into the pros and cons of hard and soft luggage, and explain why you should consider carrying either hard or soft luggage.

Airline baggage handlers face a difficult task: how to pack the bags of hundreds of passengers into the limited space available in an aircraft. This can be a tough job, especially if the airline doesn’t have enough room to accommodate both hard and soft luggage. Now, imagine a scenario where the airline has to choose between packing hard or soft luggage. Which type of luggage would they choose? In this post, we’ll explore the psychology behind airlines’ luggage preferences, and discover what makes hard or soft luggage so appealing to passengers.

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What Types of Luggage Do You Personally Prefer for Air Travel?

do airlines prefer hard or soft luggage

Well, when I travel by air I usually prefer hardshell luggage. There are lots of reasons to support it for. Hardshell luggage protects fragile stuff from damage and it can be the protection shield for my belongings. Besides, a Hardcase suitcase is usually waterproof so it can withstand any rough weather.

In addition, I like Hardside luggage especially when I travel by air because it can rotate at a 360° angle due to its 4 wheels and for it, you can maneuver the luggage more easily than you think at the airport.

More importantly, after checking the luggage when it gets through a series of conveyor belts and somewhere it may or may not be opened and searched by TSA. And then, the luggage is sorted into carts by one ramp agent who brings it planeside for other ramp agents to load on the airplane. The agents throw the suitcases fast to load the plane and it may cause damage to the wheels and handles of the luggage.

If you have a sturdy suitcase you may be fortunate by having your luggage one piece after reaching your destination. These are the reasons I personally prefer to choose Hardside luggage especially when I am traveling by air. Otherwise, Softside luggage is always my favorite to me. Well, if you want some best carry on luggage you can find it as well.

How Do Bags Get Damaged?

Checked baggage is one of the worst parts of flying. I’ll be honest with you, you’re never going to see your luggage again unless it’s a miracle.

If there are flights that must be flown, it would be impossible to turn around a 737 or 757 in an hour or less without throwing bags, since it’s just faster. The agents need to ready the plane faster and that’s why they throw the luggage they call it “throwing bags”. In this way, suitcases can be really hurt.

These planes only have two cargo holds. There are two long and narrow ones in which your bags go. When one agent puts bags onto a belt loader that takes it up to an agent inside the cargo hold who throws it 50 feet to the back where another agent stacks it as if it was a game of Tetris.

When throwing the luggage, the wheels and handles often break or crack on impact. So pack any fragile items carefully. Also, don’t put alcohol or wine in your suitcase. You can put a special case with a handle inside your suitcase for those times when you have to check the most fragile of items. 

It’s also possible for bags to get damaged by loose ends getting caught in the belt, which can tear off straps

If your luggage is extremely heavy, the handles tend to break off.

One good thing about larger aircraft such as 747, 767, 777, 787, etc. is that the luggage is all loaded by machines. Your bags are placed in a container and that container is loaded on the plane by machines, so there is no throwing of bags.

There’s a better chance your bag will come out unscathed if you fly on one of those planes.

So, in terms of hard or soft luggage for international travel, you should choose the one you think is best. But in this case most times hardshell luggage is preferable especially when one’s going by air.

What Kind Of Suitcases Get Damaged The Least? The Most?

Cheap, low-quality, and untrusted bags usually have weak stitching.

There are many bags on the market, so it’s important that you find the best luggage for you that will be the most durable and reliable.

Hard-sided suitcases are recommendable as well as a better choice. However, a suitcase with a built-in handle will help prevent scratches and dings to your luggage.

If you’re going to get a suitcase that will last for years, it will have wheels that spin. Besides, these are handy because you don’t have to waste your time when loading.

If they put your luggage in your belly-side pocket so you’ll suffer much less damage from the pressure change.

On the other hand, if you travel often or carry a lot, then you want to be careful when selecting a backpack. Know more.

Before purchasing, make sure you look at all the details of a suitcase. You should look for a sturdy design with sturdy wheels that protect against damage and are designed to stay in place while you’re traveling.

For travel or work, the best bags to get are the “spinners” that have four wheels on the bottom. They are advisable because they don’t have to be thrown out when loading.

Is Hardside Luggage More Durable Than Fabric Luggage?

Hard-sided luggage is typically more durable than soft-sided luggage, but it’s not the best option for long-distance travel.

You can’t expect to answer yes to one question and no to another. In reality, there’s no clear-cut answer to this.

If you want to avoid purchasing a cheap suitcase, consider what material it’s made of. Hardside luggage can be more difficult to bend than other types of luggage, which makes it appear sturdier. 

If you don’t mind paying more for it, then this is the best option. It can last a bit longer than other types of luggage.

Even though you spend more money on branded luggage, it’s important to keep in mind that just because something is branded doesn’t mean it will last for a long time.

Sure, if you can afford it, get a quality suitcase instead of a cheap one. You may think that it’s not worth the extra money.

It’s always a smart idea to buy a sturdy and reliable brand-name suitcase, but, for a limited time, you can get some great deals on luggage from some of the best-known brands.

In this case, if you’re looking for durable luggage, regardless of whether it’s a Softside or Hardside, consider the quality.

You should try different types of luggage to see what works best for you. Take a look at what other people have said about them.

Open your luggage, and test the zippers, the handles, and the wheels.

You can only determine if what you’re considering buying is durable if you know what durability is all about.

Which Luggage Type Is Better for Checked Luggage – Hard or Soft?

What kind of luggage you should bring depends on what you’re packing, where you’re going, and how you’ll be traveling.

Hardside or Softside? It’s a question that everyone must answer for themselves.

Most people who use Softside luggage carry it with them on business trips.

Hardside luggage is often preferred for its durability and it’s the type of luggage that people will want to use every single time they travel.

Most luggage is a combination of soft and hard sides. Hardside luggage has undergone several improvements and upgrades, and it’s the best option for business travelers.

They are taking over checked luggage because they are so much stronger and offer better protection for your items than Softside luggage.

Hardside suitcases are better for storing and stacking. They’re also more secure and easier to stack than Softside suitcases.

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Pros and Cons of Hardside Luggage

+ Well-constructed and designed
+ Hard shell and well-protected
+ Waterproof (depending on the bag)
+ Secure for fragile and expensive belongings
+ Most Hardside luggage has 360°- rotating wheels
+ Easy to clean
+ Shock absorbent material stands up to rough airport handling
+ Variety colors
+ Organized and shiny
Unable to be compressed to squeeze into tight spaces
Zippers can sometimes be an issue
Hardside luggage can often be costly

Pros and Cons of Softside Luggage 

+ Lightweight and flexible in shape
+ Travel-friendly
+ Available in different colors
+ Collapses for easy storage
+ Often has exterior pockets
+ Extra storage
+ Handy and easy to use
+ Less visible wear and tear
+ Easier fit in overhead compartments
+ Takes up less space
+ Expandable if necessary
Less protective compared to hardshell luggage
Insects can easily damage the suitcase
Delicate stuff can be broken
Overpriced as per quality
Prone to wear and tear

Do Airlines Prefer Soft Or Hard Luggage?

Believe me, this question (Do airlines prefer soft or hard luggage?) is not a matter of concern. Rather you should be concerned about what type of baggage you prefer to carry when you are traveling by air. You have to understand what type of belongings you are carrying with you. Considering some important factors such as space, comfortability, maneuverability, sturdiness, and other factors as well would motivate you to decide which type, Hardside or Softside luggage, would be great for your belongings and journey. We have already discussed the pros and cons of the Hardside and Softside luggage and we think you can make a decision by seeing those points.

In our point of view, the points we made already should be enough to make a decision on picking up the right suitcase for your travel. Besides those points, Distance, as well as Tour Duration (three days/ five days/ or seven days/ and/ or more or less), would play a vital role to make a precise decision. So, the decision is only yours.

But if you ask my own opinion, I would say, if you travel a short distance where you need to use NO Airlines, you can carry Softside luggage, well Hardside luggage won’t be a problem too. However, if you are traveling by air and have some delicate and expensive belongings, I recommend in that case to carry hardside luggage.

Now, you are the one who will call the shot.

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Final Words

Do airlines prefer soft or hard luggage – This is a simple question that has a very complicated answer. When it comes to choosing between hard and soft luggage, there’s no right or wrong. It depends entirely on your personal preferences. However, if you want to know which one do I prefer when I use an airplane? I have already answered this question, however, in addition, in my case, most times I use two sets of baggage – one for long trips and one for short trips. The short-trip luggage has a handle, wheels, and a lock to keep it closed. The long-trip luggage has wheels and a lock but no handle.

So, you alone will have to take the decision about which type of luggage you want to use during your journey. We hope you make the best decision for your travels by picking the right luggage.

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