Diapers – check! Sunscreen, swimsuit — check, check! Something to pack it all in…not checked. There comes a point in every kid’s life when they must face the vacation head-on and actually help you out with the packing and the rolling of the suitcases through the airport and hotel lobby. In fact, most of them like it as it gives them a sense of independence and responsibility that they don’t usually get at home. My rule is that if you can walk, you’re old enough to carry your own bag (within reason, of course). Starting out small and then gradually adding to the bag and moving up in size as they grow, they learn what actually needs to come with them and what’s too heavy to carry, gets to stay home. Here’s a look at some of our favorite suitcases and believe me…we’ve been through many of them already in just five short years (we travel…a lot)!
This was the first suitcase we purchased and it’s great for trips through the airport because they can not only pull their own suitcase but also ride on it. However, with more than two kids and two adults, someone is left without a ride. It’s still the best kid’s suitcase out there! Melissa & Doug Trunki Roll Suitcase, $28.99, at amazon.com.
If you’re in the market for a matching 2 piece set (roll bag and matching backpack) the animal patterns are adorable from American Tourister and you can’t beat the price! American Tourister 2 piece set, $23.99, at amazon.com.
Even if a Disney trip is not in the plans this summer, the kids will still love rolling their favorite characters with them wherever they go. It even has embedded LED lights! Heys Carry-On Disney Luggage, $69.99, at bedbathandbeyond.com.
Looking for something a little larger to last the test of time? Try the tried and true personalized luggage from Pottery Barn Kids. With amazing patterns and solid colors to choose from (and to mention Star Wars, Batman and Spider Man patterns), you will definitely find something that will last you now through the teenage years. Mackenzie Large Luggage, $99 (sale), at potterybarnkids.com.
If you need more flexible space, try a rolling duffel which is still easy for the kids to roll themselves! Explorer Rolling Duffle, $44.99, at thecompanystore.com.
As a side note, most of the kid-sized suitcases are not recommended to be checked onto the airplane but to be used as carry-on luggage only and stored in the overhead compartments. Since it’s one bag per person, you shouldn’t have a problem finding space. It also gives you a little extra room to add activities, toys and snacks just in case they’re are in delays on your trip. Happy traveling!