Hi there and welcome to a brand new year. And Happy Valentines Day too!
2012 is shaping up to be an exciting year for the luggage business with new designs and suitcases getting lighter and lighter. With airlines reducing their luggage allowances, now with the average check-in weight being 20KG, and carry on being 7KG, suitcase manufacturers are having to lighten their loads as well. Bring on the feather weight champions for 2012!
It would be remiss not to mention there are many brands out there that are doing their best to keep up with the featherweight competition, but the two fore runners are of course Samsonite and Antler.
Traditionally Samsonite have always been a little more expensive and have the reputation for quality, while Antler as a brand in general, are more like your Holden car, reliable but not fancy. Luckily for us consumers, a price war has been raging since Christmas, so you can still get both these super light suitcases for roughly the same price if you shop around. Which is the better of the two you may well ask? Well here is the low down on the two most popular models. You can be the judge yourself!
Samsonite B-Lite 4 Wheel Spinner only
Colours: Black, Champagne and Aubergine
10 Year Warranty on workmanship of the case. Airline damage NOT included.
|Size||77 x 50 x 30cm||67 x 44 x 26cm||55 x 38 x 21cm||50 x 32 x 23cm|
It also includes a TSA combination lock, (read the instructions carefully on how to set it!) and a laundry bag inside. The two biggest sized cases expand, but data not available but add approximately 8 litres allowing for the expansion.
It is incredibly light and looks very stylish. It boasts ‘amazing strength thanks to its innovative structure design,’ (Samsonite) and this has proven to be the case. The handles are moulded into the case without any kind of screw attaching them, so that is one less thing that can go wrong.
Zippers look a little flimsy and could wear quickly. You cannot lock the outside zipper compartment. Apart from the black one, they get very dirty and tatty looking very quickly.
Antler New Size Zero
Colours: Black and Bronze
10 year Guarantee on the workmanship of the case. Airline damage NOT included
4 Wheel and 2 Wheelers available
|Size||82 x 51 x 34/37cm||69 x 44 x 30/33cm||56 x 35 x 23/26cm|
While there is nothing very stylish about this case, the colours are both practical and easy on the eye. The TSA lock is fitted to the outside of the case and the front zipper can be locked. The New Size Zero is available in 2 Wheels and 4 Wheels. The stats above are for the 4 Wheeler, but just remember, if you go with a 2 Wheeler, you get a bit more bang for your buck in terms of capacity and less weight. What the wheels take up in height and weight, you get in kind in the 2 Wheeler. This I like. The handle can be zipped away for more protection. It is attached by screws which could potentially be a problem.
Not as well made as the Samsonite in terms of the structure and fabric quality. The website gives you very little information about the case other than the stats above. It certainly doesn’t look quite as sexy as the B-Lite!
So be the judge yourself. Whether you are heading off on a cruise or an airline, you need a case that you can manage yourself in case you have to. So keep it small and keep it light!
It is always best to see these cases before you buy and the best place to do that is at The Luggage Professionals in Malvern in Melbourne or Crows Nest in Sydney. Their staff are knowledgeable and will go out of their way to make sure you get the best case to suit your needs.
NOTE: Prices can vary day to day so I am not going to quote them here!