The Betsy Johnson brand is best known for designing weekender bags for women – these are stylish suitcases which are easy to pack and fast on the move. However, this brand also represents designer bags which can fit all your luggage needs, not just for the weekend, but for those longer vacations away from the kids. This hip and original company started up in to 1960’s and became popular because of their edgy-style choices – in fact, the owner and designer of the brand was a dancer best known for being exuberant and a little over the top. In the following review we’re taking a look at one the most popular set’s this company has to offer, first to determine if this set is the next traveling pick for you, and last just to weigh the value of Betsy Johnson for ourselves.
The typical design of a Betsy Johnson suitcase can be expected to feature trademarks like hippie-inspiration flowing fabrics, unique face and animal designs, as well as sexy silhouettes. This particular set of Betsy Johnson luggage features the standard 3-piece collection with a 21-inch carry-on suitcase rigorously tested to meet all overhead size requirements for national and international planes, a medium checked suitcase at 27 inches, and a large checked suitcase at 31 inches. Additionally, this design specifically features the mobility and expandability of all three suitcases, making two design factors of the utmost importance: storage space and ease-of-use. This Betsy Johnson 3-piece collection is clearly designed to pack a lot for longer trips, while still operating on an advanced mobility – with 8 spinner wheels – so that extra luggage doesn’t keep you from getting where you’re going.
Above all other design attributes, storage comes out on top when you’re choosing this collection. At 21 inches and not even expanded, the smaller carry-on is designer with a capacity of 40 liters – for some context this amount of storage space would fit between 3 to 5 outfits depending on how you pack. Upon extension the carry-on opens up an additional 3 liters (that’s two inches of added width for 15% more packing capacity). Likewise, the medium suitcase at 27 inches (holding around 100 liters), and the large suitcase at 31 inches (holding around 120 liters) both come with their own expansions for an additional 15% more space per suitcase. For travelers who often pack heavy and still end up bringing more trinkets home, the entire collection easily offers more than 230 liters of packing space. Other storage features include a slick interior design with a split-level zipper-divided top and bottom, along with tie-down straps for organizing your clothes. One major downside is the clear absence of organizational pockets which you find with other hard side designer brands like Samsonite’s sportier Winfield Collection.
The suitcases in this 3-piece collection are crafted for maximum storage but ultimate optimum maneuverability and motion, therefore it makes sense that one of the first prime features for this suitcase is the combination of telescopic handle and spinner wheels. Each suitcase is outfitted with 8 spinner wheels capable of 360-degree multidirectional movement; meaning these cases can wheel alongside you, behind you, and even in front of you when airports are most crowded. A tall locking ergonomic handle is also designed into the collection for grip support and height adjustability that best helps you manage three wheeling bags at once when you’re on your own. Other features include the hard side protective design, interior water-tight lining, as well as top and side haul handles for safe handling into and down from overhead bins and luggage carousels. Two missing features which are ideal for hard side luggage, include TSA locks and attached toiletry kits; something which smaller competitors like the AmazonBasics Oxford Collection do have to offer, even though they can’t fit as much.
3-piece collections are typically harder to juggle than two-piece collections or even just single suitcases; this particular Betsy Johnson collection has two suitcases which will have to be checked before security, meaning extra airline fees with the bonus of more of your belongings with you at the end of a flight. The large suitcases at 27 inches and 32 inches weigh 8.8 pounds and 9.7 pounds respectively; which is still quite light for a hard-shell design. For the typical imposed weight limit of 50 pounds, that gives you leeway of around 40 pounds per large suitcase, so keep that in mind while packing, especially if you’re going to use the expansion zipper. The carry-on on the other hand weighs 7.5 pounds, and unfortunately for a carry-on at 21 inches this is quite a heavy starting weight when empty.
ABS is the weaker of the three top materials for hardshell suitcases, because it’s more likely to scratch and dent over time; however, with the proper care these suitcases typically last well over ten years. The 3 suitcases from this collection are designed with a fantastic blend of ABS and PC film, meaning these cases are more resistant to abrasions, and more likely to protect all kinds of belongings (even fragile ones). Other durability features include the polyurethane wheels which are just as stable as many in-line skate wheels and are additionally screwed into the frame of the suitcase rather than weakly riveted; the telescopic handle is also made from machined aluminum, though does shake a little as it extends. Another slight downside is the zippers and zipper pulls, all of which are made from flimsy bronze, and the zipper pulls which are shorter than your average tab and therefore more likely to break.
Betsy Johnson is a brand best known for its sense of dramatic style; the cases in this collection feature over 10 different styles which include simple colors as well as decorative prints. The number one purchased print in this collection s the Skull Party print which is both edgy and fun; it’s also very unlikely to get mixed up with another travelers – we’d even say its impossible. Each style comes with full expandability and spinner wheels, and there are even one or two designs which are more laid back and ideal for business trips. Our top favorite business/more-formal prints include Covered Roses and Paris Love; each design is totally unique and bound to reflect your personality.
Measuring in at 31.5 X 19.5 X 11 inches, the large suitcase from this collection will need to be checked before security; next in line, the medium suitcase measuring 27.5 X 17 X 10.5 inches is also a checked suitcase and a great single pick for a 4-day business trip. Finally, the carry-on measures 21.8 X 14 X 9 inches and has been rigorously tested to meet all specifications for a carry-on; additionally, none of these measurements include the zippered expansions which will provide an additional 2 inches of width per suitcase.
The 3-Piece Betsy Johnson collection is protected by a 5-year manufacturers warranty which covers all damages from manufacturing error or faulty parts. This warranty does not cover damages which are the result of airline mishandling or personal neglect.
This item was ranked #1 in the list:
We reviewed competing brands and their different luggage collections, particularly those which offer different sizes and larger or smaller numbers of suitcases ...READ MORE +
The 3-Piece Betsy Johnson collection has three major features working in its favor: it’s designed to provide the maximum amount of storage space for all your packing needs, it’s extremely mobile with strong wheels that can handle any environment, and it’s uniquely stylish with plenty of color and print options for any traveler. All in all, this is a great women’s brand and their collection is ideal for any traveler looking for the next long vacation; these suitcases are very large and will never leave you thinking you left something back at home. Some downsides include short zipper pulls and no interior pockets, but for the price this collection more than makes up for its shortcomings.
- Each suitcase expands for up to 15% more packing space per bag.
- There are 11 different style options including colors and prints.
- The 360-degree spinner wheels are incredibly durable.
- Shorter zipper pulls are more likely to break.
- No extra organizational pockets.