Rimowa Classic FlightRimowa suitcases are incredibly popular with frequent flyers, despite their outrageous price tags. And if you're finally considering getting one, we can help you make up your mind. View Latest Deal
These suitcases are truly something else. They are exceptionally durable, which is the main reason why people bite the bullet and spend the big bucks on them.
But they are not perfect or indestructible.
And you can find out a lot more about the Rimowa Classic Flight luggage right here in our detailed review!
These are the specs of suitcases that are currently available for purchase. There’s not too much variety, that’s obvious from the start. The Classic Flight comes in a carry-on size, which is IATA approved btw – so no doubt that you will be able to bring it inside the cabin. And you can also go for a larger, checked suitcase. The current range is missing those 24-25” medium-sized suitcases, which have the best size-capacity ratio. For me at least.
Another thing that’s obvious just from looking at the specs is that these are not lightweight suitcases. But that’s a given, considering that they are all made from aluminum-magnesium alloy.
That won’t really be an issue with the smallest suitcase – most airlines don’t have weight limits for carry-ons, just height limits. But it could be an issue with the checked bags – the usual weight restriction is 50 lbs, and the largest suitcase weighs more than a quarter of that.
If you’re thinking that you will get this suitcase and all of your problems will be solved, think again. Rimowa suitcases are not indestructible – although considering their price point, they really should be.
That’s the thing – even if you are willing to spend nearly a thousand dollars on a suitcase, there’s no guarantee that it won’t break or get dented on the first flight. The opposite actually – thanks to the aluminum-magnesium alloy shell, these suitcases get dented quite easily. But they don’t crack easily at all – aluminum is so sturdy that it can stop a bullet if it’s thick enough. Without cracking.
And you will probably need to replace the wheels after a few flights, probably even sooner if you fly Ryanair. But here’s the thing – wheels are the first thing to go on all suitcases. If you buy a cheap, $60 suitcase, you will probably throw it away when something gets broken. And then buy a different cheap suitcase, and so on and so forth until you’ve spent $600 on cheap suitcases and have nothing to show for that.
That is where a Rimowa comes in. Yes, they are very expensive, and no, they are not indestructible. But they are one of the most durable options on the market – even though you will still have to deal with some breaks and dents, you won’t throw away this suitcase when that happens.
Additionally, the Classic Flight luggage has reinforced corners, which significantly improves their impact resistance. Corners of a suitcase are their most vulnerable points on the shell, and they’re what usually cracks first. But, since the corners of these suitcases are very well protected, that’s not an issue you will need to deal with.
You do get a good warranty, so Rimowa can do most of these repairs for you. But what happens when a wheel tears off, and there’s no service center near? Or you are still on vacation and have to take that broken suitcase home? There are some neat tricks that could help you deal with a broken wheel, and there are ways that you can fix it on your own. If you don’t mind getting your hands dirty, learning how to fix your own suitcase could save you lots of time and money.
These Rimowa suitcases feature latch closure. That impacts their durability and convenience in several ways.
The upside is that there’s one thing less to worry about – zippers are usually one of the first things that get broken on your suitcase. You can forget about crooked teeth and broken pullers.
Latches are also much safer than zippers. A thief can open up your zippered suitcase by inserting a ballpoint pen between the teeth. And no TSA lock can save you then. That’s another thing you don’t have to even think about with the Rimowa Classic Flight luggage.
However, there is also a downside to these. Latches are heavy, and they add to the weight of these suitcases. That’s not just the case with this Rimowa luggage, but something that happens with all zipperless suitcases.
But there a silver lining, sort of. The aluminum shell of these is already pretty heavy, so the latches don’t drastically increase their weight. We’re prioritizing security here. And if you were hoping to get a lightweight suitcase, you won’t find one here. I suggest you check out some polycarbonate luggage instead.
These suitcases come with four double spinner wheels. There’s a couple of things to take away from that.
Spinner wheels are amazing because they don’t require you to tilt your suitcase to get it rolling. Instead, you can just push your suitcase in front of you when it is completely upright. This is a lifesaver on big and heavy suitcases since it means that you don’t have to worry about having sore arms the next day.
Another thing to note is that double spinner wheels are sturdier and safer than single spinner wheels. Especially on heavy suitcases. They give you great maneuverability of your luggage and allow you to glide through the airport crowds with ease.
The wheels of this Rimowa suitcase roll quietly and smoothly. Which is exactly what you would expect.
There is one thing you should be careful with, and that’s rolling your suitcase on uneven terrain (cobblestone, dirt, rocky roads, etc.). This can seriously mess up spinner wheels, so try to avoid doing that. It’s better to carry your ridiculously heavy suitcase for 5 minutes than to have to deal with a broken wheel.
These Rimowa suitcases feature a total of three handles. There’s the telescopic wheel handle, and two grab handles – on the top and on the side.
The grab handles are extremely sturdy. They are riveted onto the suitcase, and it would take a lot of effort to remove them from the body of the classic flight. And that’s on purpose. There’s virtually no chance you could accidentally rip out a handle, no matter how heavy the suitcase gets.
These two handles are covered with leather, and they feel very soft and comfortable in your hand. And very luxe, obviously.
They don’t feel slippery at all and are large enough that you can securely lift up your suitcase and carry it in your hands.
The double-barrel wheel handle is retractable, and it locks into both extended and stored positions. It feels stable in your hand – usually on cheap suitcases the wheel handle is flimsy and feels like it’s going to fall out any second. That’s not an experience you will have with the Rimowa Classic Flight suitcases.
These suitcases are extra secure, thanks to the double latch closure. Each latch features a TSA combination lock, which protects your belongings from thieves. But it also allows TSA agents to open up your suitcase without damaging it, should they decide to inspect its contents.
There are rubber wedges between the locks and the outer shell. That means that the latches are no longer loud, and they won’t slam against the shell when you’re opening the suitcase. A small detail, but one that changes your entire experience with this suitcase for the better.
The latch locks feel very robust and sturdy, and they work quite well. With cheap zipperless luggage, you sometimes need to play around with the latches in order to get them to close properly. That’s not going to happen with these suitcases.
The interior of a suitcase is always my favorite part. And the interior of these suitcases tells you a story about their origins.
Both packing compartments are fully lined, and the pattern of the lining features numerous Junkers F13 planes. And in case you don’t know this, the first Rimowa suitcases were made from the same material – aluminum alloy (duralumin) – that this plane was made from. This brand exists only because of the Junkers F13 because it played a huge part in the conception of Rimowa luggage.
I’m done with the history lesson. I was saying that both packing compartments are lined, which keeps your clothes nice and clean throughout your journeys.
The top compartment features a flex-divider system, which is height adjustable. And which has a zippered pocket. The bottom compartment, on the other hand, features two elastic cross straps and two slip pockets at the top and bottom. These are usually known as ‘shoe pockets’, but their use is not limited to shoes by any means.
Obviously, the capacity of these suitcases is not expandable, which could be a downside for some people. But it’s impossible to get the security of a zipperless suitcase if you add a zipper for expansion to it. However, if you’re not used to luggage that doesn’t have flexible packing capacity, it will take some time to get used to the Classic Flight suitcases.
When you’re spending this much money on a suitcase, it helps to know that you’re getting a good warranty.
Rimowa offers a limited 5-year guarantee on all of their luggage. You just have to register your suitcase online – do that as soon as you get it. The warranty covers any manufacturing defects on your suitcase, but it does not cover transport damage. And that is a bit of an issue. So, if your suitcase arrives with a flimsy handle, they will fix that free of charge. But if it gets damaged in-flight, you will need to pay for repairs.
They do offer in-store repairs and have repair centers in some luxury hotels. You can always call the customer service center if you have an issue with your luggage, and they will point you to the nearest repair center. But the repairs won’t always be free.
There’s the issue of money – is this suitcase really worth its price tag? And the answer is not at all simple.
That depends on you and your travel habits. If you fly a lot, then you will probably benefit from having a Rimowa Classic Flight suitcase. I’m guessing that you’re looking at these because you’re tired of having to replace your polycarbonate Samsonite because it broke, again. You want something more durable, with better impact resistance; something that won’t break even if you take a hammer to it.
And if that’s exactly what you are looking for, then these suitcases will not disappoint you. No, they are not indestructible, but they do come fairly close to that ideal. Much closer than a small ABS suitcase does anyway.
But if you’re not a frequent flyer, I don’t think these are the right choice for you. Especially if you can’t really afford them – there are hundreds of good suitcases out there that don’t cost a small fortune. And if you only fly a couple of times a year, you will be fine with any one of them.
Check out some of our other reviews (below), to find a suitcase that is just right for you. And which won’t cripple your wallet.
But if the Rimowa Classic Flight is right up your alley, head over to Amazon to see the prices.