Sustainable suitcases: Travel environmentally consciously with these brands

A selection of suitcases, travel bags and hand luggage that are not only stylish but also sustainable

Sustainable suitcase
Source & Copyright by Rimowa

Source and Copyright by CarbonTag

Author: House of Eden

The days when suitcases were just considered travel equipment belong to the past. Nowadays, suitcases are a lifestyle item that reflects the style and attitude of the traveler. The suitcase must have a beautiful design, but at the same time be functional and durable. Although high-quality and sustainable suitcases are often more expensive, this investment proves to be worthwhile in many ways.

What makes a suitcase harmful to the environment?

The problem with conventional suitcases is complex and has a significant impact on both the environment and consumers. One of the main causes of these problems lies in the materials these cases are often made from. These materials are not only of poor quality, but also contribute significantly to the environmental impact.

The combination of inferior materials and poor workmanship makes traditional suitcases short-lived, which in turn leads to an increased need for replacement suitcases. These frequent purchases not only put a strain on consumers' wallets, but also have a negative impact on the environment. However, the increased production and disposal of suitcases made from environmentally harmful materials increases the ecological footprint and contributes to worsening environmental problems.

Sustainable suitcases and what to look out for when buying:

Sustainable suitcases are characterized by a number of criteria that distinguish them from conventional suitcases. These criteria are crucial because they ensure that both the environmental and social aspects of production are taken into account.

  • Choice of materials and production methods: Sustainable suitcases should be manufactured in environmentally friendly facilities that focus on energy efficiency and waste reduction. Which includes renewable energy.
  • Fair working conditions and decent wages: A key factor in fulfilling social responsibility.
  • Environmental and resource conservation throughout the entire life cycle: So from production to disposal. This means that sustainable suitcases should be produced in a resource-saving manner, repairable and recyclable.
  • Longevity of sustainable suitcases: It is of utmost importance that that they are designed to last for years to minimize the need for new cases.

Which suitcase brands are the best?

In the world of the luggage industry, there are numerous brands that stand out and are particularly convincing in the area of ​​sustainability. Below, we'll take a closer look at some of the best sustainable suitcase brands that stand out for their innovation and commitment to environmental protection and social responsibility. Here are six of these brands that are particularly convincing.

6 top brands for sustainable suitcases

  1. Nortvi
  2. Patagonia
  3. Horizon Studio
  4. Rimowa
  5. paravel
  6. Lo & Sons

1. Nortvi

Nortvi not only focuses on quality and style, but also attaches great importance to environmental friendliness and sustainability. The brand offers durable luggage that actively contributes to reducing plastic waste in the oceans. Nortvi donates monthly to clean up plastic waste in the ocean. The company also completely avoids plastics and animal products in packaging and in the production of its bags, making all products vegan.

The cases are extremely durable, because of the innovative material Makrolon polycarbonate, which is an astonishing 200 times stronger than glass, ensuring a lifetime of use. In addition, Nortvi cases offer practical inner pockets for organizing and separating luggage. For those who like to use multiple suitcases, the brand also offers perfectly coordinated suitcase sets.

Price range: 199 € to 299 €

Suitcase offer: Hard-shell cases only

Hand luggage offer: a small selection of suitcases and travel bags

Warranty: Yes, for life

Used material: PET bottles for the inner lining and Makrolon polycarbonate for the outer shells

Source & Copyright by Nortvi

2. Patagonia

Patagonia, known for its strong environmental awareness, offers sustainable travel luggage made from eco-friendly materials. The main material, lining and webbing are made from 100% recycled material and are manufactured in “Fair Trade Certified” factories. Patagonia also supports the “1% for the Planet” concept by donating at least one percent of its sales to environmental protection.

For travel-loving customers who need large pieces of luggage, Patagonia offers sturdy and spacious travel bags and suitcases. These pieces of luggage are resistant to the rigors of traveling and are also available in different colors in the online shop.

Price range: 130 € to 380 €

Suitcase offer: Travel bags and hard and soft-shell suitcases

Hand luggage offer: lots of hand luggage, bags and backpacks

Warranty: “Uncompromising guarantee”

Used material: 100% recycled polyester from used drinking bottles

Patagonia bag

Source & Copyright by Patagonia

3. Horizn Studios

Horizn Studios is strongly committed to environmental friendliness and sustainability. All products are 100% biodegradable and received the Vegan Travel Award for the best luggage in 2020. The brand uses environmentally friendly packaging without single-use plastic, instead relying on polylactide and recycled cardboard boxes. Sustainable energy sources in offices and stores as well as CO2-neutral logistics are priorities. Horizn Studios in the stores will accept old luggage and dispose of it properly. Additionally, the brand is offering display products and minimally used returned products in a refurbished sale at a reduced price. Production is 99% waste-free and continuous research into waste reduction is part of the company philosophy.

Horizn Studios offers durable, recyclable and well-organized luggage, plus custom color options to choose from. The Circle One suitcase collection made from flax-based material presents innovative details, including handles made from grain and nut shells and magnesium rods.

Price range: 345 € to 545 €

Suitcase offer: Hard-shell suitcases and travel bags

Hand luggage offer: Carry-on suitcases, bags and backpacks

Warranty: All products purchased from February 01.02.2023 have a lifetime guarantee

Used material: recycled and 100% vegan materials; Circle One Collection: flax-based material, grain and nut shells and magnesium

Horizn Studios suitcase

Source & Copyright by Horizn Studios

4. Rimowa

The classic: Rimowa. Although the brand does not explicitly position itself as a traditional sustainable travel brand, its unique approach contributes to sustainability by focusing on quality and longevity. The possibility of using a Rimowa suitcase for a lifetime despite minor damage is guaranteed by the repair service in all Rimowa branches and in selected hotels.

Rimowa cases are widely known for their high quality and robustness and not only meet functional requirements but are also aesthetically pleasing. Rimowa offers a diverse range of colors and models to satisfy individual tastes and needs of customers.

Price range: 530 € to 2.020 €

Suitcase offer: Hard-shell suitcase

Hand luggage offer: Large selection of hand luggage suitcases, bags and backpacks

Warranty: lifetime guarantee with a repair service

Used material: anodized aluminum

sustainable suitcases

Source & Copyright by Rimowa

5. Paravel

Paravel has been proud of its climate neutrality since 2020 and is therefore characterized by timeless designs. The deep-rooted commitment to sustainability is reflected in impressive numbers: 6,25 million plastic bottles were converted into negative nylon, from which Paravel products were created. The materials Paravel uses are not only environmentally friendly, but are also characterized by their remarkable durability and longevity.

With the Aviator Collection, Paravel presents a collection of eco-friendly suitcases that are both carbon neutral and of the highest quality.

Price range: 510 € to 615 €

Suitcase offer: Hard-shell suitcases and travel bags

Hand luggage offer: Weekenders, duffles, backpacks, totebags and handbags

Warranty: Ten year guarantee against manufacturing defects

Used material: Negative nylon made from recycled plastic bottles, recycled vegan leather, recycled polycarbonate, recycled zippers and recycled aluminum

sustainable suitcase

Source & Copyright by Paravel

6. Lo & Sons

Lo & Sons is a brand defined by its deep-rooted commitment to sustainability. The brand's philosophy extends to all aspects of its business, from production to distribution. Lo & Sons relies on environmentally friendly materials and manufacturing processes to ensure that their products are not only of high quality, but also have minimal impact on the environment. In addition, the brand places great emphasis on ethical working conditions and fair wages for everyone involved in production.

The Lo & Sons range includes luggage that reflects these sustainability values. The products are not only functional and stylish, but also environmentally conscious. With a wide range of sizes and designs, Lo & Sons offers a versatile selection.

Price range: 200 € to 330 €

Suitcase offer: Travel Bags

Hand luggage offer: Backpacks, totebags, duffles, weekenders and handbags

Warranty: one year warranty against product damage and defects

Used material: Organic cotton, vegan leather, recycled materials such as canvas, nylon and polyester as well as nappa leather

Lo & Sons travel bag

Source & Copyright by Lo & Sons

What is eco-friendly hard case or regular suitcase?

The more environmentally friendly choice between a hard case and a regular suitcase depends on various factors. Both have advantages and disadvantages in terms of environmental impact:

Hard case:

  1. Materials: Hard cases are often made from materials such as polycarbonate or ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene), which are more resource-intensive to produce and potentially harder to recycle.
  2. Shelf life: Hard-shell cases are typically more durable and resistant to impacts and scratches. This means they need to be replaced less often, creating less waste in the long run.
  3. Weight: Hard suitcases are often heavier than soft suitcases, which can result in higher fuel costs if you take them with you on air travel.
  4. Recycling: Some manufacturers offer recyclable hard-shell cases, which improves their environmental friendliness.

Normal suitcase (soft):

  1. Materials: Soft suitcases are usually made of materials such as nylon or polyester, which are less resource-intensive to produce and are easier to recycle.
  2. Weight: Soft suitcases are typically lighter than hard suitcases, which can help reduce fuel emissions from air travel.
  3. Repair: Damaged soft cases are often easier to repair, which is extending their lifespan.
  4. Storage space: Soft suitcases often have more flexibility when packing and offer more storage space, which can lead to more efficient packing.

So the greener choice depends on your priorities. If durability and shock resistance are more important to you, a hard case might be a better choice. However, if you prefer lighter, recyclable materials and want to use less fuel when traveling by plane, a soft suitcase would be more environmentally friendly. Ultimately, how you use, care for and dispose your suitcase at the end of its life is also important to minimize its environmental impact.

Sustainable suitcase, sustainable travel

Travelers can find a wide range of eco-friendly and durable suitcase options at brands like Nortvi, Patagonia, Horizn Studios, Rimowa, Paravel and Lo & Sons. These brands not only have the needs of modern travelers in mind, but are also responsible for our environment. The use of recycled materials, climate-neutral production processes and innovative designs, however, demonstrate their commitment to a sustainable future.

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