What Size Suitcase Do I Need For 10 Days?


Let’s go through the different luggage sizes that are available and compare them to what you will need for 10 days’ worth of traveling so you can make a decision on what suitcase is best for you.

For a 10-day trip, the suitcase size that you need will be between 18 and 22 inches in length. This size is suitable as carry-on luggage. However, if you want a bigger one for extra space, you can choose a 24-inch suitcase, which is recommended for 2-3 weeks’ worth of travel but needs to be checked in.

Suitcases come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and materials. Some are suitable for carry-on luggage and some will need to be checked in at the airport. The size you use will depend on how you are traveling and your intention for doing so.

The Best Suitcase Size For A 10-Day Trip

A 10-day trip isn’t that long, considering some people travel for months. Therefore, we need to be realistic and consider what suitcase size one really requires to bring on a 10-day trip. You will need to think about what you will be doing on your trip, what things you need to pack, and what you may like to do whilst away if you are not fussed about traveling light

You may consider what suitcases you already have or look to buy a new one to adapt to your needs. This is a good idea if you plan on going on 10-day trips often and want a perfect suitcase to travel with. 

The table below shows the different carry-on and checked-in luggage sizes as well as how many days the bag size would be suitable for and an estimate of the fee to have the bag on a plane.

It will give you a rough guide on what is best for you based on your trip length and whether you will be able to use it as a carry-on bag or not.

A Suitcase Around 18 To 20 Inches Is Good For A 10-Day Trip
Luggage Chart
ItemSize (longest side in inches)CapacityFees
Personal ItemUnder 17 InchesEssentialsAlways Free
International Carry-On18-20 Inches5-14 Days0-$50
Domestic Carry-On21-22 Inches7-14 Days0-$50
Small Checked-In Luggage23-24 Inches2-3 Weeks$20-$100
Medium Checked-In Luggage25-27 Inches2-4 Weeks$20-$100
Large Checked-In Luggage28-32 Inches3-4 Weeks$20-$100

SourceOpens in a new tab.:

From this table, we can see that the ideal suitcase size for a 10-day trip is between 18 and 22 inches, which can fit as a carry-on bag. If you feel like this size is just too small for you, then the next size up would be a small checked-in suitcase-sized 23 to 24 inches, which generally suits a traveler who is going away for 2 to 3 weeks

You can have both a personal item and a suitcase as a personal item is where you put it under the seat in front of you, whereas the carry-on bag will go in the overhead compartment. A carry-on suitcase will probably be one that you can roll around on wheels and is easy to walk with.

long plane flight
Carry On Suit Case

Carry-On Luggage VS Checked-In Luggage

If you are catching a flight to your destination, you will be aware of carry-on and checked-in luggage. This may come into consideration for you when deciding on the suitcase size that you want to take on your 10-day trip.

If you are away for 10 days, you may decide just to have a carry-on bag or have checked-in luggage and save yourself from paying extra fees or potentially having your bag go missing in transit. 

The bag size will ultimately depend upon where you are going and what you are doing, as you may require minimal belongings or quite a bit. It will be a unique and personal need and preference, so consider what is best for you. 

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Carry-On Luggage

Just like anything, there are both advantages and disadvantages to certain things. There are many benefits when it comes to traveling with a small-size suitcase as carry-on luggage, so let’s discuss what they are.

  • Free to have (most of the time)
  • Easier to carry around
  • A safer place to keep valuable items
  • If you need anything from your bag during transit, you can access it
  • Do not need to wait in line to check your bag in and are less likely to get lost

Here are a couple of disadvantages that come with traveling with a carry-on bag:

  • You have to carry it around everywhere
  • You have to take fewer items in your bag

From these lists, we can definitely see that the advantages of using a small carry-on bag outweigh the disadvantages. 

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Checked-In Luggage

Now let’s take a look at the advantages of using a suitcase that is bigger and checked in.

  • More space for more items to bring with you on your trip
  • You don’t need to carry it around, you just need to hand it over to the staff
  • Generally, you do not need to worry about the weight of it

Here are some disadvantages of traveling with a large checked-in suitcase:

  • Can get lost or stolen more easily can cause you a lot of stress if it does happen and has the potential to ruin your trip
  • Can’t access your belongings during your flight
  • Harder to carry around when you are off your plane
  • Your suitcase can get damaged from all the handling
  • You will have to wait in line to check in your suitcase and wait for it to be processed when‌ you arrive at your destination

From these lists of advantages and disadvantages of checked-in luggage, we can see how there are quite a few disadvantages to it. They are mainly due to other people handling it, caring for it, and taking their time with it, and are out of your control.

You may have had a negative experience in the past and want to avoid checked in-luggage or you may have the intention to travel light and only have a carry-on bag. Whatever you decide, do what works best for you. Know you are only traveling for 10 days and understand what you need to bring with you and what you don’t.

Local Tourism Travel
Travel Light As You Can For Long Trips Away

What To Consider When Making Your Choice 

When making a final decision on what suitcase size you will use to carry your belongings in for your 10-day trip, you want to ask yourself a few questions that can help you come to a conclusion.

What Will I Be Doing?

If you are going on an adventure-packed trip where you want to take your diving gear, your music equipment, sleeping bag, and more, you may need a bigger bag to fit all these in. 

However, if you are going to visit family and you will be spending time with them at their home and in their town, it is likely that you will mainly just need to pack clothes and perhaps a book to read when you want some downtime. 

You will be able to wash your clothes in your family’s washing machine, use their sheets and towels, and possibly more. Therefore, a small suitcase is all that you would need.

Carry On Bags Are Easy To Travel With

How Do I Normally Travel?

Do you tend to pack way too much and never wear half of the clothes that you have brought with you on your trip? Do you end up realizing that you have way too much room in your suitcase and are struggling to fill it? 

If you know you tend to over-pack “just in case” and you never end up using any of it, or you always have too much space available in your bag, this can be a great reminder for you to know that a smaller size bag will suit you just fine.

You can have a small checked-in bag and your own personal bag with you on the plane and that will be enough for you.

How Long Am I Away For?

Remind yourself that you are only away for 10 days. That’s just over a week. What do you really need to pack and take with you and what can you leave at home? Take what you will use and leave what you won’t.

There is a very small chance you will need any of the things you are thinking of taking “just in case”.

What Size Suitcases Do I Have?

Look at the suitcases that you have. You may have a small carry-on suitcase or a large one for long trips. If you do have a small bag available that is the ideal size for a 10-day trip, take that one. You have that size just for short trips away like this, so use it. 

Globite Small Suitcase Black
Spinner Suitcase For Trips

Roller Suitcase VS Spinner Suitcase

You can get suitcases that have wheels on them to make them easier for you to pull. This is becoming more common in newer suitcases to protect you from injury while lifting your luggage.

A rollaboard suitcase has two wheels on it and stands upright so you can pull the suitcase at a forty-five-degree angle as you walk. A spinner suitcase has four wheels attached to the bottom of the suitcase, which enables you to pull and push it as it remains straight.

So which one is better? What rolling suitcase should you use for a trip away? If you want a lightweight and durable suitcase and one that is also great as a carry-on bag, then a rollaboard suitcase will be the way to go. 

However, if you don’t need a durable suitcase, just something that is easy to use and doesn’t require much strength to move and you don’t want to put any strain on your back, a spinner suitcase would be your best choice. 

Cost-wise, spinner suitcases are about $10-$30 more expensive due to the extra wheels and frames that are used. The wheels are also less durable than rollaboard suitcases and therefore may need to be replaced more regularly, so keep that in mind too. 

Size-wise, you will find that you will get more room in a rollaboard suitcase because, unlike the spinner suitcase, it doesn’t have the space at the bottom of the suitcase used up from the wheels that stick out.

Therefore, you will get about 5-10 litres more out of a rollaboard suitcase than you will be compared to the same size spinner suitcase. 

A suitcase With Two Rear Wheels Is Called A Rollaboard

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How Can I Make The Most Of The Space In My Suitcase?

You can use methods such as rolling your clothes up instead of folding them to make extra room in your suitcase. You can also only pack the essentials. That way, you can forget about bringing your large checked-in suitcase and instead be able to have a carry-on bag.

2. Are There Fees For Overweight And Oversized Luggage?

There are fees if your luggage is too big and heavy, so ensure your bags are suitable and follow the rules so you don’t get a surprise fee. If you are traveling with family or friends, you could put some of your items in their bags to spread the weight around if you need to.

3. What Suitcase Is The Best For Going Up Stairs?

The type of suitcase that you use for going upstairs will not matter as you will not be able to roll it. You will have to carry it by the handle. Therefore, you could say the lightest suitcase and a good handle would be your best option. If you try to roll a suitcase up the stairs, it will ruin the wheels.

Final Words

Overall, for a standard 10-day trip, you should only need a small suitcase (around 18-22 inches in length) to take with you. Unless you are going on an outdoor adventure or have something big happening where you need to take your equipment with you.

Daniel Clarke

The website is run by myself Daniel Clarke, I’m lucky enough to have been living in Hervey Bay, for 31 years so I’m classed as a local I have seen many changes over this time. Read more about us here

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