A well-designed suitcase is essential for frequent travelers or digital nomads. These crucial items help you organize your travel gear and other essentials securely.
Since it's so important, it makes sense that travelers prefer their travel suitcases to be a sturdy and quality investment, so they can be used for a long time. That being said, finding the perfect suitcase isn't so easy!
We previously reviewed Away Travel's Suitcases, but today, I'll review another close competitor and luggage brand: Monos Luggage.
Monos is a relatively new travel luggage brand already rising in the market thanks to its versatile range of luggage. But are they any good?
Can they be trusted over long-standing brands like Samsonite or Tumi? I've done all the research about Monos and its products so that you can find out what you need to know before investing your money in new Monos luggage.
What Is Monos Luggage?
Monos is a Vancouver-based company that provides a variety of travel products. Today, I'll focus mainly on its specialty range of premium travel luggage and bags.
All Mono suitcase features a minimal and chic design and super functional features. Above all, the quality sets Monos luggage apart from the rest.
Moreover, Monos positions itself as an ethical brand by outsourcing sustainable and high-quality materials to make its products last longer.
And if you're into saving the environment—I think we all should try to do our part!—it's great to know that Monos is a climate-neutral certified company with net-zero carbon emissions.
So it offers products that are cruelty-free and eco-friendly. These both sound like great selling points and definitely things I want to try and aim for when buying my bag. But even with these notable product accomplishments, is the price tag really worth it to buy a Monos bag?
Let's find out...
Notable Physical Features of Monos Luggage
Monos luggage bags look very simple and subdued in design, making them perfect for travel of all kinds. They come in a number of regular, but stylish, colors and sometimes there are limited edition colors available.
The hard shell of these suitcases is constructed out of aerospace-grade polycarbonate, a material known for its extreme durability and shock resistance. The adjustable telescopic handle and silent-run wheels make them easily portable.
Monos has also covered the safety aspect pretty well with sturdy YKK zippers and TSA combination locks to ensure your belongings are secure.
Also, All Monos luggage comes with an anti-microbial laundry bag, a couple of shoe bags, and a luggage tag made out of vegan leather.
If you're in a hurry, here's a brief highlight of what Monos has to offer:
- Various Sizes
- Minimal and Chic Designs
- Functional Features
- TSA-Approved Locks
What else can you expect out of Monos luggage? Well Monos is also a climate-neutral certified brand. As I mentioned above, you can feel good about buying items from this company!
Monos also offers non-physical perks like lifetime warranty, 100-day return policy, and free shipping in the USA and Canada.
Now you know general perks of buying with Monos, but let's dive deeper into what Monos has to offer in terms of its featured luggage!
Keep in mind that the prices and availability mentioned below are original and may fluctuate. For the most up-to-date pricing, deals, features, and availability, make sure to check out Mono's official website!
Classic Collection: Carry-On Luggage
The carry-on range features 4 models:
- Monos Carry-On - $272
- Monos Carry-On Plus - $294
- Monos Carry-On Pro - $300
- Monos Carry-On Pro Plus - $321
The interior of the Carry-On lineups is incredibly well-designed. Monos Luggage is lined with antimicrobial material on the interior, which keeps you clean and organized. There are also plenty of pockets to help you organize your essentials!
With a zippered panel on one side and a compression pad-held compartment on the other, Monos suitcases are all for ensuring you stay organized during your travels.
I was a bit confused about the differences in these bags, so I found out what you need to look out for. Here's the details of each model of Monos' Carry-On collection:
The Carry-On is made to be the most suitable luggage size, fitting in as many overhead flight bins as possible.
You'll find Monos' standard size carry to be the perfect cabin-sized travel buddy no matter your destination or air carrier with exterior measurements of 22" × 14" × 9".
The Carry-On Plus is bigger "sibling" of the original Carry-On from Monos. It's the ideal suitcase for travelers looking for a bit of extra space.
Monos claims that the size dimensions on the Carry-On Plus means that it'll fit in most major US airline carriers and larger airplanes. But, if you're flying on a smaller plane or going with a carrier that has stricter carry-on guidelines, this may not be the luggage for you.
The Carry-On Plus dimensions are 23" x 15" x 9.5".
Next variation is the he Carry-On Pro. It's the same size as the original Carry-On but it comes with a front pocket, a laptop sleeve, and zippered pouches.
Carry-On Pro Plus
Same idea here. Take the Carry-On Plus and then slap on the additional exterior pocket to store electronic items like laptops, iPads, or travel headphones. That's what Monos' Carry-On Pro Plus is.
Tip: The Carry-On Pro Plus will likely not fit in overhead bins in smaller planes or airlines, and it's also bulkier for a carry-on.
Conclusions About the Carry-On Lineup
Now you know the differences between the different models. How do they fair as a travel companion?
These Carry-On bags fit all great luggage criteria: easy to maneuver, highly durable materials, and easily organizable.
That being said, they don't always meet size restrictions. One tip I would give is to check the dimensions of your Monos Carry-On, especially the Pro and Pro Plus, with your preferred airline to ensure it fits!
Also, the most common complaint about Mono's Pro suitcases is that it's difficult to close the front pocket if packed to the optimum capacity. Pack wisely and accordingly!
Classic Collection: Check-In Luggage
The Check-In suitcases are available in 2 sizes:
- Monos Check-In Medium - $350
- Monos Check-In Large - $383
Mono's Check-In Luggage gives me a sleek and well-polished first impression with its matte finish. Check-In medium has a capacity of 70L and can hold standard carry-on luggage.
If you're looking for a larger suitcase, go for the Check-In Large with an increased capacity of 90L.
As for the interior, you can store your clothes on one side, use the compression straps to keep them compact and close the panel. There are zippered pouches on the other side to organize items like shoes, books, etc.
They also come in 12 different stylish colors, which are great for travelers to easily identify their luggage from the airport's baggage carousel!
Monos Hybrid comes in 5 variations, which are mixed between carry-on and checked luggage sizes:
- Monos Hybrid Carry-On - $325
- Monos Hybrid Carry-On Plus - $345
- Monos Hybrid Check-In Medium - $405
- Monos Hybrid Check-In Large - $435
- Monos Hybrid Trunk - $455
The hybrid model's exterior is a combination of aluminum and polycarbonate, utilizing the best features of the two materials to create and define a class of its own.
Additionally, the zippered opening is replaced by two TSA latch locks for optimum security of your belongings. The Monos Hybrid is great for travelers looking for a better-quality carry-on suitcase.
Monos Hybrid comes in 3 different colors and some of the models fit nicely inside the check-in suitcases!
Here's what I found out about each of the different Hybrid models...
Hybrid Carry-On & Carry-On Plus
Did you love Monos' Carry-On collection? Well you'll love the carry-on sizes of their Hybrid line.
Take all of the great features of the Carry-On and Carry-On Plus and then add the durability of aluminum to it. In these carry-on suitcases you'll find a hard polycarbonate shell with a refined metallic finish, zipperless aluminum frame, and anodized aluminum corner guards. Talk about a hardy luggage!
Just like the Carry-On and Carry-On Plus, the difference between the 2 Hybrid versions is also the size. The Hybrid Carry-On Plus will have slightly larger dimensions. That means it's important to check whether it'll fit on your planned airline.
Hybrid Check-In Medium & Large
These items are the same ideas as above. The Hybrid Check-In Medium and the Hybrid Check-In Large are "upgraded" versions of Monos' Check-In lineup.
Fan of the good old travel style?
Bringing back the vibes of old-school globetrotting, Monos' Hybrid Trunk puts a fresh, more modern spin on a classic look. This newer addition stands taller, making it a breeze to pack for those epic journeys. It's got spacious compartments in the middle, ready to handle all your bulky stuff like a champ!
Not specifically looking for luggage and want something smaller to carry daily or on shorter trips? The Monos Metro Duffel or Backpack might be the solution for you.
Monos Metro Duffel - $210
The Metro Duffel is the perfect bag for travelers going on shorter trips! The Metro Duffel features a sleek design with water-resistant nylon and vegan leather material. The Duffel also comes with a QuickSnap™ kit. This smaller bag magnetically attaches to your bag securely but can come off easily.
I'm a huge fan of the Metro Duffel since I often pack a smaller bag for daily uses anyway!
Monos Metro Backpack - $200
The Metro Backpack comes with the same materials and features the Metro Duffel has in backpack form. The backpack also comes with a QuickSnapTM kit, water-resistant nylon, and vegan-leather material!
The Metro Collection comes with a premium backpack and duffel with vegan-friendly leather and water-resistant nylon. With the QuickSnapTM kit included, the only thing I would say that's a con is the premium price that comes with the two products.
While the features of the two products are unique, I personally wouldn't spend that much money on a backpack or a duffel.
However, Monos frequently offers seasonal deals and discounts, so be sure to be on the lookout for those!
Best Monos Luggage: My List
Here's my list of Monos Luggage's best products I would personally get in the future:
Keep in mind prices are in USD and may fluctuate.
Besides suitcases, Monos also sell packing cubes that help you stay organized while traveling! Here are some helpful accessories Monos carry:
Monos vs. Away: Which One's Better?
Away is a very similar luggage brand to Monos. Their suitcases are similar as they both feature a polycarbonate shell, TSA locks, silent wheels, and an internal compression system. Like Monos, Away also offers a 100-day trial period for its purchases.
Monos leads in its simple yet classy design and color options. It's also sturdy and more durable in construction.
If you prefer more choices, then Away's collection offers much more. Also, its aluminum models come with an ejectable battery and charger that can charge up to 4 devices. Read our detailed review of Away Luggage!
The choice between the two ultimately depends on your requirements and preferences.
Benefits of Monos Suitcases
Monos has addressed the quality issue of the adjustable, wobbly handles found in many suitcases. The telescopic handle in Monos suitcases is sturdy, and the release button is underneath the handle. The overall construction of its luggage bags is awe-inspiring. You can expect them to last long without a doubt!
Monos Luggage Warranty
The boutique luggage company provides reliable customer service and a limited lifetime warranty.
100-Day Trial Period
The 100-day trial period lets you return the product if you aren't satisfied with it. The only catch is you have to return it in its original condition.
Drawbacks Monos Suitcases
Colors That Dirty Easily
Light-colored suitcases can get dirty quickly, and you might also notice scuffs and scratches over time. But honestly, which bags don't? There's an eraser provided to get rid of them, but we are not sure if it works on tough ones.
While being very worth the price, Monos Luggage is not an option for travelers hunting for the cheapest. Its suitcases range from around $250 to $400. But you can wait for a Monos luggage bag sale to get great discounts.
I'm all for finding budget-friendly solutions for travelers! But, I do believe you should splurge a little more for a well-built suitcase that can last up to 10-15 years. It's both sustainable and cost-efficient!
What Are People Saying About Monos Luggage?
Monos Luggage reviews online have been incredibly positive, with many travelers falling in love with the brand after the purchase.
Many, like me, have hesitated to purchase expensive and relatively unknown luggage such as Monos. That being said, most buyers have been satisfied with their purchase, saying that their decision to buy from Monos is definitely worth the money.
Travelers also praised Monos for its sleek and aesthetically pleasing design and its lightweight and quality materials.
However, there are also some concerning patterns in Monos negative reviews. Many users pointed out the flaw in their "100-day return policy", citing that Monos only covers the 100-day return if they're not actually used for traveling.
Other travelers have pointed out inaccuracies in the quality mentioned above on several of their luggage and have been really disappointed in the actual quality of the product.
Several users have complained about the handle being less than sturdy compared to other name brands, while others have mentioned dents forming on luggage easily.
So, what's the verdict? Are they actually worth it?
Is Monos Luggage Worth It?
With everything being said, is Monos a good brand?
Considering past users' features and the majority of raving reviews, Monos for me is definitely a good choice, but not something I'd personally buy.
They brand themselves as the expensive premium brand, but reading multiple non-paid non-influencer reviews show you that the quality is not on par with some of the best in the world.
I completely believe in investing in a quality suitcase. While I'll definitely consider Monos the next time I'm searching for their suitcase, it won't be my choice for now.
I would still use suitcases from proven brands with long track records, like Samsonite and Delsey, as I've had excellent customer service experiences and no-fuss returns and warranty coverages.
At least until there's a better deal from Monos since the price point for me is considerably high.
My Rating: 4.0/5
- Sleek and modern design
- Secure TSA-approved locks
- Extended warranty + 100-day return
- Sustainability-focused brand
- Vegan-friendly materials
- Super expensive
- Unresponsive Customer Support
- Material scratches easily
- Carry-On hard to stow
Pack and Plan Your Trip With Pilot!
Now that you have your suitcase, why not get started planning? If you are making travel plans to head somewhere, don't forget to use a reliable travel planner like Pilot!