July Luggage Review: Lightweight, Customizable Carry-Ons



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We love well-designed, thoughtful, and stylish carry-ons. And with travel slowly becoming a part of our lives again, there’s no better time to check if your current suitcase meets everything you need and, more importantly, want. Because today you don’t have to sacrifice anything when it comes to your suitcase.

That’s where July comes in. The Melbourne-based brand launched in 2019 but arrived in the US this month. And while Away, Calpak, Paravel, and other trendy travel brands have been creating high-quality, eye-catching luggage for years, July’s products have a handful of unique features we haven’t seen anywhere else. A few key differentiators right off the bat: the brand currently offers the world’s lightest double-wheeled carry-on suitcase, customization options in 12 different languages, and an ejectable USB-C power bank that will charge your laptop and phone .

“There’s not a single company that doesn’t see the United States as the perfect place,” shares Athan Didaskalou, Founder and Chief Strategy Officer at July. “Like other Australian expats, we are delighted to be here and to give the travel scene an injection of Aussie design.”

Read on to learn more about how July mixes up the luggage category and a breakdown of the brand bags you’ll want to pack on your next adventure.

What sets July apart?

Sometimes being a newer brand in a crowded market can be a bonus. Before creating their luggage line, July’s team read thousands of reviews of existing suitcases. Then he decided to fix the things that weren’t working. Suitcases that start to break down after a few trips? Inconvenient handle heights? Are the wheels stuck or breaking? The unique features of July’s suitcases are a response to specific pain points in the travel experience.

Didaskalou points out that this idea of ​​helping people travel better is an integral part of what July is. “The suitcases look great, but more importantly, we design new things from scratch,” he says. “We try to innovate every day.”

For example, the unique eggshell shape of July’s suitcases is a direct response to a problem with more angular suitcase shapes: weak points at elbows and corners. The unique, curved design of July cases allows for more bounce and ultimately a more durable case that better protects your stuff. Plus, the cases are reinforced with custom aluminum bumpers for even more protection and a scratch-resistant German polycarbonate exterior. Because July aims to create an unbreakable suitcase that will last you a lifetime (not just a few years), it also backs its luggage with a lifetime warranty.

July

One thing July offers that no other brand does? An unparalleled level of customization options. “It’s all about customization,” Didaskalou told Underscored. “And personalization doesn’t just mean English words. It means being truly personal to the person using it. Personalization is available in 12 different languages ​​(and emojis!) for all July carry-on options. Plus, you can choose from nine different fonts, countless color combinations, and three different locations for personalization: the back, side, or top of the case. July also uses a special printing process for your personalization which means there is no wear or fading, even against the elements.

The impetus behind such varied offerings is rooted in inclusivity. “We live in a cultural hot pot of mixed races and people, and what’s personal to some is often their native language,” Didaskalou says. “Multilingual personalization is the next step towards an inclusive travel product.”

Continue in July ($245; july.com)

July continues

July’s signature suitcase, the Carry On, is a 46-litre carry-on designed to hold the maximum amount of stuff allowed inside the cabin. It’s available in 12 different colors, from stylish neutrals to fun and bright options. The exterior is sleek and features July branding on the front of the case.

The Carry On comes with an ejectable battery integrated into the top of the case, under the handle. There is also an integrated TSA lock in front of the handle. Both components are configured very similarly to Away’s carry-on, but there are a few unique advantages to July’s clever design. The first is that the ejectable battery is accessed by pressing down on a clip, which then releases a flap. This is in contrast to other ejectable batteries, which simply use standard flaps which we’ve found can actually pop open during travel. The clip is much more secure, which is essential when traveling. The other big plus is that the July Battery comes with standard USB and USB-C docking stations, so you can charge both your phone and your laptop. Plus, it’s already been approved to fly on all major airlines, so you don’t have to worry about whether it will cause you any safety issues.

Two external features of the suitcase that are definitely worth noting: The SilentMove wheels are indeed completely silent and extremely smooth; they were actually created by the July team because they were unable to find the “perfect wheels” anywhere else. But the handle is perhaps our favorite detail – it’s a multi-stop telescoping handle, which just means the height is almost completely customizable to whatever works best for your height. It’s super easy to adjust and completely comfortable to hold, thanks to the soft-touch rubber grip.

As for the interior of the case, it sports all the organization you would need (and more). Features include a stain-resistant liner and a hidden laundry bag that can be stored in a small zippered bag on the side of the suitcase (and when not in use, the bag works well as a pocket for cable or accessories). The left side of the suitcase is a zippered mesh compartment, which is very useful when it comes to storing things like shoes, toiletries or accessories that you don’t want to crush with the rest of your clothes. The right side of the case is an open compartment, which includes a mesh compression pad attached to a sturdy Y-strap to keep everything in place and secure. Our only complaint: While the compression pad is great for organized packers, it’s a shame you don’t have the option to detach it from the Y-strap when you might want to forego the extra room.

July Carry On Pro ($295; july.com)

July Carry On Pro

The Carry On Pro is essentially the same case as the Carry On with one major addition: it includes July’s detachable SnapSleeve – a dream when it comes to storing your laptop and other small essentials. The padded laptop compartment is made from scratch and water/dirt resistant ribbed fabric. It can hold up to a 16-inch laptop plus any other smaller items in the exterior zippered pocket. To remove the pouch, simply unzip it from the case and click on it by pulling on an internal tab. Germany’s built-in magnetic technology is a first for luggage – it’s both super secure and easy to master.

For those who like to be on their laptop in the air, the Carry On Pro is a huge win in terms of convenience and streamlining your packing process. For some, this may completely eliminate the need for an extra bag. Especially when paired with the case’s ejectable battery, the SnapSleeve and battery are a match made in travel heaven.

July Carry On Light ($225; july.com)

July Carry On Light

The lightest double-wheeled carry-on in the world, the Carry On Light weighs just 3.96 pounds. Read: absurdly light. “It’s something a lot of customers have asked us for,” says Didaskalou, who adds that the suitcase was actually developed during the pandemic lockdown. The carry-on comes in eight different colors and can hold up to 38 litres, which is considerably smaller than the Carry On’s 46-litre capacity, making it the perfect size for weekend trips or simply when you want to pack lightly.

If you don’t like the bells and whistles of the Carry On, the minimalism of the Carry On Light is definitely appealing. The left and right compartments can be zipped with a mesh divider, allowing for simple yet effective organization. And it includes all the essential Carry On features that make it so practical for travel: the telescopic handle, the smooth wheels, the integrated TSA lock and the polycarbonate shell.

July Carry On Trunk ($345; july.com)

July Cabin Trunk

Finally, for those looking for luxury when it comes to their luggage, the Carry On Trunk turns heads. It’s available in three timeless colors and features a glazed polycarbonate shell, which is even sleeker than the standard polycarbonate shell used in other July cases. It has the same 46-liter capacity as the Carry On but weighs a bit more at 8.4 pounds.

The big appeal of the Carry On Trunk (other than its luxurious appearance) is that it has no zippers. Instead, there are two built-in TSA locks as well as protective feet on both sides. All the other main features of the Carry On Carry Over: the ejectable battery, the telescopic handle, the Y compression system and more.

If you are looking for a larger checked bag, July offers three different sizes: the Checked (an 80 liter option), the Checked Plus (a 110 liter option) and the Checked Trunk, a larger version of the Carry. On the trunk. All three are available in a range of gorgeous colors and with the same customization options as the carry-on cases.

At the end of the line

July ticks all of our boxes when it comes to practicality and style. The brand’s innovative details make it perfect for all kinds of travel, while the range of color options and personalization are great fun. While July’s suitcases might not be the most affordable on the market, the lifetime warranty offered by July is a huge plus – you can be sure you’re making an investment that will literally last a lifetime.

July

Throughout July, July is offering free delivery, free personalization and a free Carry Me (a chic and durable travel bag) with the purchase of any suitcase. And if for some reason the suitcase isn’t right for you, July also offers free returns and a 100-day trial for customers in the United States. So if you’ve been hesitant to upgrade your luggage before your next post-pandemic trip, rest assured, there’s never been a better time to do it.

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