Most travelers are familiar with Away’s hardside luggage, backed by an impressive lifetime warranty and thousands of positive reviews. But the company’s signature etched-line suitcase shells just got a fancy upgrade with the release of the Aluminum Edition, so naturally, I had to try it. Recently, I got my hands on one of the Away Aluminum Carry-On bags and am here to report that’s uber sleek.
SPY has ranked Away products highly in the past for their fantastic weekender bag, for their lightweight luggage, as well as the best carry-on luggage in general. But the Aluminum Edition adds a whole lot of class to an already great lineup with its timeless metallic design that is as pretty as it is functional.
But after using my new Away Aluminum Carry-On, The Bigger Carry-On, to be exact, this might be my favorite splurge. Why? Let’s get into my honest Away Aluminum Carry-On Review.
- Sleek, sharp-looking aluminum shell
- Lifetime warranty and 100-day test trial
- Can double as storage in your home
- Four sizes to build a full set
- Accessories like 360-degree wheels, laundry back, TSA-approved locks, and ejectable USB charger
- Scratches and dents easily
- Very pricey
- Limited color choices
- Doesn’t expand
What is the Away Aluminum Carry-On Aluminum Edition?
The Away Aluminum Carry-On (The Bigger size) is simply a new design iteration of the brand’s already-popular suitcase. It is made with a durable and modern aluminum shell that offers a beautiful sheen and added layer of hardness to protect your belongings from the elements of airline travel.
In addition to the “Bigger” size, Away offers the Aluminum Edition in The Large, The Medium, and their standard Carry-On models. It is also available in three colors: onyx black, silver, and rose gold.
Other than appearance, the main difference between the Aluminum Edition versus Away’s other options is its lack of zippers. Yes — this contraption uses twin locks to adjoin both sides, giving it more of a trunk feel. It also boasts leather-trimmed handles with a slow-release spring that allows them to fold down gently against the side of the bag.
What Does the Away Aluminum Carry-On Promise?
Aside from a lifetime warranty, Away offers an unrivaled 100-day trial period during which customers can test a suitcase and decide if it’s the one for them. This is a huge game-changer and what allowed the company to distinguish itself among the best luggage brands and emerge as one of the most respected travel brands in the world.
What Comes with the Away Aluminum Carry-On?
Customers can bank on receiving all of the accessories that come with any Away suitcase purchase — interior compression straps to keep belongings compact, a laundry bag to separate dirty clothes while traveling, 360-degree wheels for smooth handling, dual TSA combination locks for peace of mind, and an optional USB charger that you can use to juice up your phone (for an additional $20).
Highlights of the Away Aluminum Carry-On
Aside from being aesthetically pleasing and flaunting a different finish than most mainstream carry-on options, I just loved using the suitcase. This carry-on glides like a dream on most floor surfaces and conveniently fits in any overhead compartment, even The Bigger Carry-On size. The USB charger is also convenient (though gate agents will make you remove it prior to boarding) and can operate independently from the suitcase.
Perhaps my favorite feature is that this product doubles as a piece of home storage when not in use. Since it gives the appearance of a modern trunk (especially with its latches and lack of zippers), it can sit out in any living space and feel as if it’s an intentional part of the decor. This is ideal for those living in larger cities with smaller apartments, as luggage typically takes up too much of that highly-coveted closet or under-bed space.
We’d be remiss not to reiterate the wonders of Away’s lifetime warranty and 100-day trial. Having the peace of mind that something expensive can be replaced takes one less stressor off the already-stressful act of traveling.
Criticisms of the Away Aluminum Carry-On
Price, of course, is of serious concern, as this particular model will set you back a cool $665. Is this investment worth it? Well, that entirely depends upon your budget, lifestyle, and travel schedule. Jetsetters will surely be able to justify the purchase, as it will be used often and pay for itself over time. A more financially conservative customer may opt for less expensive alternatives (or the company’s cheaper offerings).
Also, aluminum immediately shows signs of wear and tear. While Away markets this as an intentional design decision to highlight the “marks and signs of your time together,” you’re obviously not going to remember where the dings and scratches come from, which can be quite bothersome to anyone who is a bit of a perfectionist.
Lastly, we’d love to see the aluminum in additional color options. Imagine a gold, hunter green, navy, or even copper with a metallic finish. We’re sure this is something that will happen down the road, but it’s something to note if you are looking for a specific shade to match a pre-existing collection.
The Verdict: Should You Buy An Away Aluminum Carry-On?
If you’re a self-proclaimed travel guru who has essentially become one with your suitcase, this is the splurge for you. It’s sleek, it’s dependable, and it’s backed by the warranty that made Away luggage famous.
While it’s certainly expensive, keep in mind that it can be so much more than a suitcase with its ability to double as an aesthetically pleasing piece of storage in any home. Although, if you think you’ll be concerned with the inevitable dings and dents, opt for the black onyx color because it will most likely be the most discreet.
And at the end of the day, you feel cool while lugging it. It serves as a trendy, though classic accessory like a Gucci belt or Louis Vuitton duffle that will always be in style.