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What Are the Different Types of Luggage Handles?

By Misty Amber Brighton
Updated: May 23, 2024

There are also many types of luggage handles. Some are very short and allow the owner to pick the entire suitcase up. Others are very long and could be retractable so the luggage can be pulled or dragged. Some handles are actually straps which can be draped across the shoulder or back. They may be made from plastic, vinyl, leather, aluminum, or other materials.

One of the more common types of luggage handles is found on many hard-shell suitcases. These handles are typically a "u" or "d" shape and fold down flat on top of the bag. They are normally just wide enough for the traveler to grip with her hands. These are often made from the same material as the suitcase itself, which means they are often heavy plastic or vinyl.

Some types of luggage are intended to be wheeled from place to place. These suitcases normally have luggage handles that retract when they are not being used. They are normally made of plastic and have an ergonomic luggage handle bar across the top of the piece.

Travel bags can also be carried as backpacks or across the shoulders. These models normally have long straps that help a traveler carry them in this manner. There may be only one strap or multiple ones, depending on how the unit is intended to be carried. The straps can be made from leather, vinyl, canvas, or plastic.

Many luggage handles are partly made of metal. They may have an aluminum base or the handle section itself may be reinforced with metal. These types are typically attached to the suitcase with screws or rivets to help keep this section secure.

Cloth luggage handles are normally very wide and thick. This is to make sure they are strong enough to support heavy items placed in the bag. People who are considering luggage with this type of handle should check to make sure it has reinforced stitching at both ends in order to prevent the strap from tearing.

Suitcase handles often undergo a great deal of wear, so they sometimes need to be replaced. Replacement luggage handles can normally be purchased by contacting the manufacturer or by visiting a luggage retailer. These handles are typically easy to replace using very simple tools, which means people who have a broken handle do not need to discard their luggage.

WiseTour is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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