American Tourister vs Samsonite – Which has the Best Suitcase for You?

American Tourister vs Samsonite – Which has the Best Suitcase for You?

When it comes to luggage, it’s tough to know which brand is the best to use when traveling. Some people prefer to go the cheap route, but that means you’re risking your suitcase falling apart as it is tossed about by baggage handlers.

On the other hand, if you go the expensive route, then you are paying a lot of money for something that’s not going to be treated well and could potentially rip or tear. Your best bet might be something that resides in the “middle range.” If you’ve looked in this category, you’ve likely encountered two of the more popular options, Samsonite and American Tourister.

While these two suitcase manufacturers are not the cheapest on the market, they’re typically built to last over the long haul. Plus, they’re not near as costly as luggage produced by higher-end brands like Rimowa or Louis Vuitton.

As a result, American Tourister and Samsonite are brands that are often the right choice for frequent and casual travelers. Of course, choosing which one works best for you can be challenging. Fortunately, we’re here to help with that.

We’ll take a look at these two brands, what they offer, how they compare with one another, and a few of our favorite options. So without further ado, let’s get started!

Main Differences Between Samsonite and American Tourister

  • Brand Recognition – American Tourister is no slouch when it comes to branding, but it’s safe to say that the most recognized luggage brand in the world is Samsonite.
  • Price – For the most part, Samsonite is going to be more expensive than American Tourister. However, the price will range from suitcase to suitcase depending on which one you choose.
  • TSA Lock – There are several Samsonite offerings that come with TSA locks built-in. That means you can lock your luggage while still giving TSA the access it needs. American Tourister doesn’t offer a built-in option, so if you lock your luggage, it might be broken by TSA when its inspected.

Samsonite vs. American Tourister

Before we get too far into the ins and outs of Samsonite and American Tourister, let’s take a closer look at the luggage manufacturers along with their history and basic company information.

Samsonite

Even though the company was established around the turn of the 20th century, the Samsonite brand was not formally introduced until 1941. Since that time, the luggage producer has turned into one of the most well-known and recognizable brands throughout the world.

Interestingly, Samsonite also owns other luggage brands, including American Tourister and Tumi. When it’s all said and done, Samsonite is the biggest luggage manufacturer in the world.

 Even though Samsonite is investigating the cost of moving its manufacturing process to the US, which is its largest market, currently all products are produced in China, Hungary, and India.

Here are a few interesting facts about Samsonite:

  • The company manufactured and distributed LEGOs in the 1960s
  • Even though Samsonite was founded in the US, it’s registered in Luxembourg.
  • Samsonite is listed on the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong

American Tourister

Sol Koffler established American Tourister in Rhode Island in 1933. Initially branded as American Luggage Works, the company was eventually acquired by Samsonite, which changed the name to American Tourister. Even though the name is not as popular as its counterpart, American Tourister is still a recognized luggage brand worldwide.

Samsonite vs. American Tourister: Selection

Overall, both of these luggage companies offer similar products from which you can choose. You’ll find a wheeled-duffel bag option, along with smaller accessories available through Samsonite and American Tourister. However, it’s fair to say that these companies focus their efforts on providing quality suitcases.

From a suitcase perspective, you’ll find both soft shell and hard shell offerings that come in a wide range of sizes. So whether you prefer to check or carry on your bag, you’ll have plenty of choices. Both companies provide the option of buying a single suitcase or purchasing sets, which is ideal if your entire family needs luggage.

These two suitcase companies aren’t going to knock your socks off when it comes to design, although there are manufacturers who focus on style. What you’ll get is a quality and reliable piece of luggage that holds up as you travel from Point A to Point B and all places in between.

Samsonite vs. American Tourister: Quality

Typically, it’s hard to make the wrong choice when selecting a suitcase made by Samsonite or American Tourister. However, when it comes to these two brands, American Tourister sits at the lower end of the quality chart.

If you’re interested in the length of the warranty offered by Samsonite and American Tourister, the companies offer both a 3-year or 10-year warranty depending on which product you purchase. Both brands provide repair services by authorized dealers in the event your suitcase breaks while you’re traveling.

Samsonite vs. American Tourister: Cost

In terms of cost, more often than not, Samsonite is going to be more expensive than American Tourister. Of course, the reality is that the actual price you pay will vary based on the product you’re purchasing. Before you decide on a specific suitcase, it might be wise to compare prices before you click on the “Buy” button.

Samsonite vs. American Tourister: Favorites

Sometimes deciding on a suitcase can be frustrating, so we’ve picked out three of our Samsonite and American Tourister favorites. While these suitcases aren’t listed in any particular order, they should provide you with a solid jumping-off point as you go about deciding which bag makes the most sense for your needs.

Samsonite Winfield 2 Hardside Spinner

The Samsonite Winfield 2 Hardside Spinner is a suitcase ideal for carrying onto airplanes or fitting into tight spaces. This well-designed, good looking bag is a reliable, quality suitcase. It’s brushed pattern is a design that makes the Winfield 2 stand out from other Samsonite suitcases, giving it a stylish, refined look.

You can get the Winfield 2 in several colors, including orange, charcoal, and burgundy. Additionally, the bag comes with a built-in TSA-approved lock. It weighs a shade under seven pounds, which isn’t too bad considering there are much heavier suitcases on the market. This bag will provide enough space for those short trips when you want to avoid checking your luggage.

Additionally, the Winfield 2 comes in more than one size. It’s available in both 24-inches and 28-inches, or you can purchase a set of three if you have a need for more than one.

Samsonite Centric Hardside Spinner

The Samsonite Centric Spinner is the perfect carry-on option as it checks in at 22.5 x 15.5 x 9.5 inches. However, if you have a lot of souvenirs or gifts, you can also expand the Centric 1.5 inches to give you a little more space.

Its distinct design will make it easy to spot your suitcase while it takes a ride on the luggage belt if you do decide to check it. Color options include Caribbean Blue and Burnt Orange. Plus, it comes with a TSA approved, built-in lock to keep your belongings safe. The Centric also has a 10-year limited warranty available.

In the event you need something larger, you can stick with the Centric series, as it offers a few bigger options. Additionally, you can purchase a set of three if you have a need for more than one suitcase when you’re traveling.

Samsonite Flite Hardside Spinner

The Samsonite Flite Hardside is a true hardshell in the sense that instead of using a zipper, it latches. This is perfect if you’re checking your bag as it prevents your contents from getting crushed or broken.

This sturdy suitcase will protect your belongings but won’t break your back as it weights less than 10 pounds. The Samsonite Flite is 28 inches by 10.5 inches by 20 inches, which includes its wheels.

Something to keep in mind before you decide to buy a Flite Hardside is that due to its design, the suitcase is one big compartment. Although there is a smaller compartment contained within the lid, if you want your suitcase contents organized, this might not be the ideal bag for you. Or you can purchase some packing cubes in order to keep your belongings together.

Otherwise, your best bet is to use this suitcase as your to go when checking your luggage since its sturdier than other Samsonite options. It’s arguably the one thing that matters most when it comes to checked bags.

American Tourister Tribus Spinner

If you want an American Tourister bag you can check, then take a moment to consider the Tribus Spinner. This suitcase is an excellent option if you don’t want to mess with carrying your suitcase on the plane with you.

Similar to the rugged Samsonite suitcases, the Tribus Spinner has a true hard shell, which includes a three-point latching system. Due to this, the Tribus Spinner comes in at almost 10 and a half pounds, which is a little heavier than similarly styled suitcases. However, you’ll quickly discover that a little extra weight is worth it to keep your belongings protected.

You can get the American Tourister Tribus Spinner in three different sizes: the 25-inch version, a smaller 21-inch option, and a large 29-inch suitcase. Unless you think you’re going to carry-on some very fragile merchandise, there’s not much of a need for the smaller version fo this suitcase. We recommend sticking with the larger options instead.

On the other hand, if you need a solid suitcase you can check before boarding your flight, the Tribus Spinner is an excellent option. Plus, there’s a red option of this bag available so you can easily spot it when it’s going around the luggage belt.

American Tourister Curio Spinner

The overall feeling of American Tourister suitcases is that they are not as well-designed or stylish as the ones Samsonite has to offer. This is not true of the Curio Hardside Spinner and its cool circular waves design.

This American Tourister bag is 22 inches by 14.6 inches by 9.4 inches. It checks in at just a shade under six pounds so you’re not going to be dragging it around behind you due to its weight. In addition to the standard black most suitcases come in, the Curio Spinner also comes in white, purple, and pink.

The Curio Spinner is made of polypropylene, which means it’s not a whole lot stronger than your typical soft-shell bag. If you think you’ll use the suitcase for checked items, we would recommend getting a larger version.

Having said that, this suitcase will serve you just fine as a carry-on. If you like the design of this bag, don’t think twice about getting one. It will definitely get the job done.

American Tourister Disney Spinner

For our last option, we decided to throw in a fun suitcase. The American Tourister Disney Spiner features Mickey Mouse on its 28-inch softside. This series of bags is a collaboration between American Tourister and Disney, which features several various versions of these suitcases.

These fun designs are sure to stand out as you wait for your luggage, no matter where you are. If you’re a Disney fan, you’ll have no problems spotting your suitcase. The Disney Spinner has four wheels that spin and measures 19 inches by 31 inches by 11 inches.

The Disney series also has a carry-on option, so if you want to display Mickey Mouse on the plane instead of the luggage belt, this might be the best choice for you.

Something to keep in mind that is the case with many American Tourister suitcases is that they do not include a TSA-approve lock. If you prefer to have one on your luggage, you’ll have to purchase one separately. Otherwise, this is the ideal bag for anyone who loves everything Disney.

Comparison Chart

Here’s a high-level comparison of how American Tourister and Samsonite suitcases compare with one another:

Samsonite

American Tourister

Weight

6.8-12.7 pounds

7.2-10.4 pounds

Size (Inches)

20,21,24,25,28,29

21,25,29

Wheels

Spinner Wheels

Roller and Spinner Wheels

TSA Locks

Yes

No

Expandable Options

Yes

Yes

Samsonite vs. American Tourister: Final Thoughts

Even though Samsonite has been around much longer than American Tourister, you can’t go wrong when choosing suitcases from either of these companies. Both offer a wide variety of suitcases, and no matter which one you select, you’ll more than likely be happy with your purchase.

The brand and model you choose will more than likely boil down to what you need for traveling in terms of design and functionality. One thing we do recommend is that you purchase a soft or zippered shell if you’re carrying items on the plane and a hardshell option if you decide to check your bags.

Overall, Samsonites typically last longer. American Tourister bags are made of quality materials, but they just don’t stack up when compared against the bags Samsonite offers. However, if the most important thing for you is cost, then American Tourister might be the way to go.

Both brands offer plenty in the way of features, durability, and comfort, so you know you’ll get all the things that matter most when you’re traveling with your suitcase. In the end, it really depends on what you prefer when you travel.

Justin Caldwell

Justin Caldwell is a freelance writer and editor based in Olathe, Kansas. Though he travels primarily domestically with his family, he has spent time in other countries absorbing the culture.  He and his family love exploring his own country and discovering those less often visited places found off the beaten path (and he comes prepared with the best gear). He also writes on subjects ranging from cryptocurrency to smart home technology to whiskey.