Two people carrying multiple Patagonia duffel bags towards a boat.

Duffel bags remain a popular choice of travel bag, especially for car travel, and when you don't have to worry about them being thrown around an airport. However, not all duffels are created equal. Some types of duffel bags have special features that can be particularly helpful for travelers. With that in mind, be sure to keep these distinctions in mind when shopping for travel luggage.

Basic Duffel

A basic duffel bag is one of the most economical choices for travel luggage. You can find a simple duffel bag in any size you can think of with a variety of features. Basic duffels can hold a lot of gear, so they are great for any length of trip. If you are carrying gear for some distance, at least look for a duffel bag with a shoulder strap option, or consider a more deluxe model.

Wheeled Duffel

Wheeled luggage is a great way to carry a lot of gear. A wheeled duffel bag is an excellent choice for packing your ski gear for a plane trip or packing gear for your summer hiking trip to get you from your home to the head of the trail. A wheeled option is also great when traveling by plane because wheeled luggage is easier to steer around a crowded airport. Look for one with sturdy wheels and good-quality materials to avoid possible airport wear and tear.

Backpack Duffel

Some large duffel bags have built-in backpack straps to make them easier to carry around an airport or train station, such as the Athalon Glider Carry-On 20" Duffel Bag Backpack. However, note that this type of duffel bag should not be used as a hiking pack. A large and heavy pack might be uncomfortable and difficult to hike in. Because of this, go for a small duffle with straps or a backpack for hiking trips.

Duffels are great for a variety of trips. From a short weekend getaway to a longer trip to the slopes, there is a duffel bag for you. Visit your local Sun & Ski Sports for expert advice about different types and features of duffel bags.