Years of marketing have assured that the Samsonite name is instantly recognized in all parts of the world, but even if the name is well known, that doesn’t automatically mean you will receive the best bang for your buck.
Now to answer your question.
Samsonite is a good brand because it offers an ideal combination of brand power, quality products, durability, design, warranty, and customer support, all in one affordably priced package. In addition, it has tons of reviews online because customers truly love Samsonite products.
Still, it’s not the perfect brand for everyone. In the fast-paced world we are living in today, sometimes unknown manufacturers are making better products than established brands.
Now let’s dive right in and analyze the Samsonite brand.
What makes Samsonite a good brand?
Samsonite is probably the biggest luggage brand in the world today, and I do not expect any other luggage manufacturer will be able to steal their first place ranking any time soon.
The company was established in 1910, and years of intelligent marketing have cemented the brand name into people’s minds.
As a side note, I wrote an article about Samsonite History which you can find here.
Samsonite is a pure luggage manufacturer. They didn’t start by making other items then switch to suitcase production like many other brands.
When you consistently make suitcases for over 100 years, you are bound to end up making great products.
In the past, Samsonite has been forced to manufacture other items. Still, they made this decision because wars heavily impacted the travel industry, and they needed the influx of cash to survive.
Something to keep in mind is that the Samsonite brand power has slowly diminished.
If the overall appearance interests you the most, know that running around with a piece of Samsonite luggage is not going to turn heads.
However, you can enter any airport business lounge with a Samsonite, and you will not feel out of place with it by your side.
Most brand customers believe that Samsonite cases look a bit too generic, but if design is your major buying point, the Samsonite Winfield 2 and the Samsonite Centric look different than their other models.
Most of the bags that Samsonite makes are in the $100-$250 range. Of course, you can also find more expensive models from Samsonite, but in my humble opinion, once you decide to pay more than $400 for a piece of luggage, it’s better to choose a premium brand like Tumi or Rimowa.
Design and Durability
The Samsonite luggage design is more of a functional one.
Samsonite is well aware that their luggage will not win any design contests, and they try to mitigate this by offering their cases in a large palette of colors.
I prefer a piece of luggage that lasts longer rather than looking a specific way. But that’s just me.
All Samsonite hard cases have some scratch-resistant texture regardless of the price point.
In addition, most of the soft-sided ones have a water repellent finish applied to them, making the cases water-resistant.
The wheels are engineered to be lightweight and will last longer if they don’t suffer any rough handling.
If you read reviews online, you might have stumbled upon comments from people saying that their twenty-year-old Samsonite bag is still going strong. These are exceptions and should be treated as such.
Old Samsonite cases were renowned for their durability. However, nowadays you should consider yourself lucky if your bag lasts you more than five years.
Nevertheless, Samsonite is a company that constantly invests in new designs and building techniques.
The brand is also trying to push the limits of physics by offering increasingly sturdy and lighter-weight products.
Sometimes they manage to score a hit and revolutionize the luggage industry as they did in 1969 when they launched the Saturn suitcase made from polypropylene with a structure fully supported by injection-molded shells.
Over the years, the main telescopic handle has improved and is now made from oval tubing, which is usually less prone to bending.
Related: Best Material for Hard-Side Luggage
Keep in mind that to save weight, depending on the model, the side handle might not be present, and even if it’s there, it’s built in a way that screams poor quality.
If your luggage is overpacked, I don’t recommend grabbing it from the side handle. It seems like Samsonite put it there just to say that their product has a side handle.
One area that the brand has significantly improved over the years are the zippers. Now it feels like all Samsonite zippers are of premium quality.
Spare Parts and Repairability
Samsonite does have good customer support service. Considering that you can find some luggage brands out there that don’t even bother to offer customer support, having the option to repair, change your product, or be reimbursed is a big plus.
Spare parts are available for purchase online, but not for all models. If you are a DIY person, you can find wheel replacement kits and other parts online.
Once in a blue moon, Samsonite might decide to repair your product without requesting a payment, even if the warranty does not cover the damage. But, of course, you won’t know if they will do so unless you send their customer support a message and a photo of your damaged product.
Samsonite offers a limited ten-year global warranty. Unfortunately, this warranty only covers defects caused by the manufacturing process.
If any damage occurs from your misuse or someone else’s, the warranty will not cover it. You can blame the baggage handler all day long, but Samsonite will not repair or replace the product without payment.
Related: Traveler’s Choice brand review
You should know that the warranty applies to the first customer. If you bought a Samsonite product as a gift, you will be responsible for repairs.
If for whatever reason, you decide to repair your product yourself or get it fixed at a third-party repair service, then the warranty is void.
I must admit that overall in this area, Samsonite is falling behind its competitors. Sad to say, but the packing features are medium-level quality for most of their products.
You will not be disappointed, but also not blown away by the packing options.
Of course, you can always buy additional luggage straps or packing cubes to make your life easier, but I would prefer improvement on Samsonite’s part in this area.
I’m not saying that you will have a hard time packing your belongings, but Samsonite could do better for the price you pay.
Reviews are one of the brand’s strong points. As a result, you will easily find hundreds of reviews for most of the brand’s items, not to mention a lot of answered questions about them.
Another strong point is that some customers are loyal and continue to buy their products repeatedly.
As with any brand, you will stumble upon reviews from people who are unhappy with their purchase. Let’s face it – some people will never be satisfied regardless of the product’s quality and features.
The high number of reviews will also help you make a better choice because when you research a specific product, you will encounter people who mentioned a more suitable option for them, sometimes from a different brand.
Is Samsonite a good suitcase to buy?
On the whole, most of the luggage made by Samsonite has received positive reviews, making them a good buying choice. However, based on the number of reviews, the Samsonite Omni seems to be the preferred piece.
If image is important to you and you’ve decided to buy your luggage online, keep in mind that the actual product’s colors are darker than what you see online.
Online shops are employing a marketing trick to increase sales by slightly brightening all images of the products, and there is a chance that you will receive a somewhat different color than expected.
You should also remember that Samsonite has factories worldwide, thus meaning that the same model made in Europe may not be 100% the same as the one being sold in Japan or the United States.
Is Samsonite worth it?
If you’ve never had a piece of luggage from Samsonite, then the question you are asking is valid.
There isn’t really an anecdote I can tell you to help you understand what the Samsonite brand means for the travel industry.
If I were to look outside the travel industry, the best analogy would be Volkswagen. Simply put, Samsonite is the Volkswagen of the luggage industry.
You can hate it, you can blame it, but whatever you think about it, the bottom line is simple: it works.
That is why millions of customers prefer this brand. It’s not about technology or materials. Their thought process goes like this: I’ll buy a Samsonite suitcase that will last me a couple of years, and when wear and tear occurs, I’ll buy another one.
I bet that if you were to resurrect and send Steve Jobs into a shop, he would buy a turtleneck and a piece of Samsonite luggage because this decision would not interrupt his thought process.
Nevertheless, in recent years, we have seen an increasing number of new manufacturers who offer better reliability at similar prices.
Why would someone still choose the Samsonite brand compared to others?
Actually, Samsonite doesn’t shine at anything. They are not making the best quality luggage, don’t offer the best support to their clients, it’s not always easy to get certain spare parts to repair your old product, and certainly, Samsonite doesn’t have the best wheels or handles in the industry.
Yet, it’s overall the biggest luggage brand.
Samsonite is not number one by fashion design or build quality, but it’s in the top three for any feature you can think of; couple this with a reasonable price and the power of the Samsonite name, and you end up with more than a decent product.
Regardless of the model of luggage you buy now, the older models were sturdier. People forget to mention that they were also more expensive and bulkier than the new models.
Yes, you could stand on an old Samsonite case without denting it, but this feature doesn’t make it a good piece of luggage by today’s standards.
A suitcase doesn’t need to hold a man on top of it; it just needs to hold and protect your belongings. Nothing more, nothing less.
And to answer your question, most pieces of luggage from Samsonite are indeed worth it. People wouldn’t flock to buy them if they thought they could get a better deal elsewhere.
Why is Samsonite the best luggage line?
Samsonite is not the best luggage line on the market today, not by a long shot. However, a Samsonite suitcase offers a combination of conservative design, above-average durability, good quality, good support service, and affordable prices.
Truthfully I don’t think there is a “best luggage brand” on the market nowadays regardless of the price point. They all have their pros and cons.
Why is Samsonite so expensive?
In general, Samsonite is not an expensive brand. You can find most of their products in the $100-$200 range. This price seems more than decent for a piece of luggage. Three-piece sets are in the $250-$600 range.
It is true that you can find suitcases from other brands that are way cheaper, but most of the time, they will offer an inferior product by cutting down on durability and features. Some don’t even bother to provide support or repair services.
However, over 90% of Samsonite customers consider the price a good one for the quality they are receiving; I can’t argue with them.
How long do Samsonite suitcases last?
In general, a suitcase from Samsonite will last between 2 to 7 years. In the past, there were instances when Samsonite products lasted more than 20 years, but now the manufacturing process has changed, and you should be satisfied if your product lasts you more than 5 years.
Also, you should be aware that Samsonite is making minor improvements year after year based on customer feedback with some models.
In this way, Samsonite shows that it cares about buyers’ opinions, but this might anger some customers because when they buy the same model, they will receive a slightly different product.
Is Samsonite a luxury or high-end brand?
The straight answer is that Samsonite is not a high-end or luxury brand, not by price and not by quality. A piece of luggage from Samsonite would be considered a luxury piece only in third-world countries.
If Samsonite were a luxury brand, they wouldn’t have acquired Tumi.
If budget isn’t a problem and you want a good suitcase, I recommend Rimowa or Tumi.
How often is Samsonite on sale?
As a general rule, you can find deals on Samsonite products every year on Black Friday. The only discount you will get for the rest of the year is by buying a piece of luggage in a discontinued color because they tend to be cheaper.
When hunting for the best price, don’t forget to check multiple online and brick and mortar shops because sometimes you can find a better deal.
On the other hand, if you find your preferred model at a very low price, remember that you might be looking at a counterfeit product.
Samsonite products are not heavily counterfeited compared to those made by luxury manufacturers, but they still make their way into innocent customers’ hands.
Remember that when something seems too good to be true, it probably is. Shops need to turn a profit and will not just sell a piece of luggage at half the regular price.
One little-known advantage of owning Samsonite luggage is that you will have a lower chance of being stopped at the baggage check in because the staff there has already seen the same kind of luggage multiple times, and they don’t need to measure it to see that its size qualifies it as a carry-on.
In the struggle to make their piece of luggage as light as possible, Samsonite reduced the wheels’ weight, which created some reliability problems.
If you are a regular traveler who plans to use the luggage only on flat surfaces and are not planning a trip to Europe or another continent, then Samsonite is a good choice.